SEM or Search Engine Marketing is the smartest way to connect to customers, improve revenues, and build brand value. SEM tools are helpful to business owners in several ways. Whether you are looking to improve PR (Public Relations), increase quality traffic to your website, or beating competitors, SEM tools are the need of the hour.
Any business owner, SEM agency, or eCommerceMarketer today is sure to vouch by the importance of SEM time and again.
According to digital marketing gurus, search engine marketing is all about the right tools. With the right tools in hand, you can improve your SEM instantly.
And free of cost, without spending a single penny.
So, here are our recommended tools to optimize your online marketing campaigns.
SEM provides SEM agency business with a gargantuan thrust to list the product advertisement at the right place at the right time. In short, when a customer is looking for a product, the right SEM marketing mix ensures that your product is visible to the potential buyer. And bang, you have a sale.
So, what can you do to optimize your SEM performance?
Improve Keyword Research
Keyword research is the backbone of successful SEM. Use these best free keyword research tools and rest assured your SEM campaign is on the right track:
1. Google Keyword Planner
The Google keyword planner does exactly what its name suggests—helps you plan your SEM keywords. The main aim of the Google keyword planner tool is to:
- Recognize new keywords—lets you discover new keywords that help you connect with prospective customers who may be interested in buying your product or service
- Generate search volume and forecasts—gives you a comprehensive idea about the search volume and other historical data. Based on this, it forecasts the future efficacy of the keywords.
The Google keyword planner is completely free to use. All you need is a Google Ads account that can be easily set up in absolutely no time.
Soovle acts as a giant umbrella search engine that provides keyword results from different search engines like Yahoo!, Bing, eBay, Amazon, YouTube, Wikipedia, and Google. It saves you the hassle of searching across different websites and helps you find the right keywords on a single platform.
Another great benefit of using Soovle, is its ultra-smart auto-generate feature. Feed-in a general keyword related to your business; sit back, relax, and let smart Soovle suggest all the possible keywords related to your business.
Being a Google Premier Partner, WordStream works equally well on Google AdWords and Facebook Ads. WordStream facilitates PPC as well as paid social media management simultaneously.
A great way of generating kick-ass keywords to bust the competitor’s market share is to use their keywords efficiently.
WordStream’s free keyword tool is the perfect way to unravel your competitor’s keywords.
WordStream’s user-friendly interface makes it a perfect choice for SEM managers. But on the flip side, it can be quite challenging for beginners. If you are a beginner in the world of SEM, make sure you go for the premium package that offers customer service support representatives to help you through your queries.
If beating competition is on your mind, SEMRush is just the right tool for you. No, SEMRush is not just copying what your competitors do. SEMRush helps you evaluate your own and your competitor’s performance on aspects like:
- The estimated monthly traffic for keywords
- Referring domains
- Organic keywords
- Advertising stats
- Landing pages.
By optimizing your AdWords, you can enhance the performance of your SEM, albeit with a lower CPC (cost per click).
Optimizing AdWords is as easy as ABC with the right tools.
5. Google Ads
Google Ads is one of the most popular PPC platforms that SEM experts bank on.
This powerful tool facilitates both creating as well as sharing ads on mobile and desktop platforms.
Google Ads has abundant benefits for users. If you are looking for a never-ending data bank, Google Ads is the perfect choice for you. Marketing experts estimate that Google receives almost 5 billion search queries in a single day. With such overwhelming traffic, Google can reach almost everyone.
Google Ads offers you the choice to select campaigns from search, display, or video campaign choices.
Karooya’s Ad preview tool lets you set up a realistic mock-up of your ad and also allows you to share it. With the help of Karooya, you can test different ads and select the best choice for your target audience.
Karooya offers a free subscription only for the first six months. It also offers different pricing plans for SEM agencies with diverse client accounts of Amazon Ads, Google Ads, and Bing Ads, to name a few.
Superior Budget Estimation
Digital marketing, like conventional marketing, calls for a budget estimate. SEM agencies need to have a clear idea about digital marketing costs and return analysis. This helps evaluate the efficiency of the marketing campaign.
7. CPC ROI Calculator
The CPC ROI Calculator helps you calculate the ROI (Return on Investment) of the CPC (Cost per click) advertising. With the help of this tool, you get:
- A Client Activity Report showing the total monthly clicks
- Average monthly CPC
- Measurements of the percentage of users that visited your website from an ad publisher and converted to an actual buyer
- Final amount earned through sales generated through Ads.
The data generated by the CPC ROI Calculator helps SEM agencies to choose the right keywords, generate powerful campaigns, and, more importantly, discontinue non-profitable SEM campaigns.
8. Google Traffic Estimator
The Google Traffic Estimator is another free tool from Google that provides you with an almost accurate estimate of:
- Most popular phrases and keywords
- Ineffective keywords that generate little or no traffic.
Google Traffic Estimator helps you measure and compare the cost that you are incurring per click. It helps you avoid redundant and unproductive keywords and phrases. Google Traffic Estimator is the right tool to manage your SEM campaign within a budget.
Time for testing
No SEM campaign is complete without conducting extensive A/B testing. A/B testing or split testing is the ultimate test of your campaign. It compares the different versions of your webpage, social media, or email and provides a complete analysis of their performance.
9. Google Analytics & Google Content Experiments
Google Analytics offers both free as well as paid versions for performance testing. Google Content Experiments work along with Google Analytics to create A/B tests. This deadly duo lets you do different types of testing like:
- A/B testing
- Multivariate testing
- A/B/n testing
- Redirect tests
- URL targeting
- Cookie targeting
The Optimizely tool allows users to conduct A/B testing, multivariate testing, and server-side testing. Optimizely is powered by a potent AI-backed experimentation model that optimizes your SEM strategy.
Unfortunately, the free version of Optimizely only offers a single concurrent experiment and project to users. For unlimited concurrent experiments and projects, you need to pay for their Accelerate or Scale package bundles.
Build your system of using intuitive and free SEM tools to keep your campaign management costs low. Start with some of the tools on this list.
This is a good starter to know about the basics of digital marketing and what are the following strategies that you could learn as well.