Think of search engine optimization (SEO) and social media marketing (SMM) as pizza and cheese. If you get them together, you are better off and you are still able to take them separately.

There are differences between these two but objectives are almost the same. Both want to target potential buyers of products and services and make businesses grow.

This article explains how SEO is different from SMM and which one of these can be more effective for small, medium, and large businesses. Let’s also discuss which one is more effective.

Whether you are a digital marketer or a business, continue reading if you are looking forward to growing a business through SEO, SMM, and other areas of digital marketing.

Understanding Social Media Marketing (SMM)

As its name suggests, social media marketing revolves around social media or social networking websites. A number of activities can be performed to engage the audience and make sales.

Today, there are many websites where businesses can target their audiences. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn are famous. Of course, there are many other applications and websites.

Compared to search engine optimization, social media marketing is less complicated. In a typical social media promotion campaign, marketers make paid or free posts to engage potential buyers.


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Understanding Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization aims at raising the search engine ranking of a website by performing different activities. Content creating and link building are two important areas where SEO campaigns focus a lot.

Though there are many search engines (such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, Ask, Duck Duck Go, and AOL) we normally focus on Google Search Engine because it enjoys the biggest market share all over the world.

Compared to social media marketing, search engine optimization requires more activities. In general, search engine promotion operations can be divided into two main categories: on-page and off-page.



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SEO vs. SMM: Comparison and Contrast

Digital marketing provides many options to promote business online. Some of these options include searchengine marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, and influencer marketing.

Trying all of these options require a significant amount of money on a regular basis. Not all businesses allocate that much money on recurring digital marketing activities.

Businesses often have to choose between options such as SEO and SMM due to a lack of enough budget. This makes them compare the potential costs and benefits of both options.

In this part, we are going to compare and contrast SEO and SMM. We will discuss three main areas: content, audience, and success rate. Here is the discussion:

  1. Content

Written and visual content plays an important role in SEO and SMM. Experts call it the king of marketing because it plays an important role in every communication. Let’s see what role it plays in SEO and SMM:

SEO: The rule of thumb is; write for people and optimize for search engine bots. In general, long-form content such as blog posts, articles, and pages are required in this game. The SEO world has become quite competitive. Content creators have to follow different SEO guidelines.

SMM: Long pieces of content are not required here. Posts with a short text and visual content are enough. But please note that the text and images should be engaging, thought-provoking, and action-oriented. Entertaining and engaging content must be created to get the best out of an SMM project.

  1. Audience

Targeting the right audience is important in both SEO and SMM. Being in front of the right people at the right time can be much fruitful. Here is how this element can affect SEO and SMM:

SEO: Identifying the true audience is important in SEO.It is always helpful to know the unique needs of the market segment you are targeting through search engines. No matter what you sell and where you are based, you have to find the people who would like to know about your product or service.

SMM: It is also important in SMM to identify the true audience. It is helpful to know the unique needs of the market segment you are targeting through search engines. At the end of the day, only those people are going to engage with your ads and posts that are genuinely interested in your service or product.


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  1. Success Rate

For different businesses, the success rate of SEO and SMM can be different. The unique needs of a business define how much resources are required to get the desired results. Continue for details:

SEO: Search engine optimization normally requires many resources. Please note that SEO requires steady effort. SEO often draws more sales than social media marketing.If you have a killer SEO strategy and able human resources, the success rate for your SEO campaign is likely to be high.

SMM: Social media marketing normally does not require many resources. On social networking websites, people only like to see recent posts. So the time of posting is of great importance.If you have a killer SMM strategy and able human resources, the success rate for your SMM campaign is likely to be high.

  1. Human Efforts vs. Online Tools

In this day and age, carrying out SMM and SEO functions has become easier. Human efforts are still required but some online tools can help perform redundant tasks with great ease.

SEO: There are plenty of free or paid SEO tools that make it much easier to perform various search engine optimization functions. You can check online for more details.

SMM: Many free or paid SMM toolshelp perform different functions during social media promotion campaigns. Search online and know which tool will suit you.


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Why Invest in SEO and/or SMM?

There are many reasons to invest in SMM and SEO. Due to tight marketing budgets, businesses are often not in a situation to spend marketing dollars on both SEO and SMM.

A successful social media or search engine campaign can increase sales and goodwill. On average, businesses get $2 for every dollar spent on SMMor SEO.

Do not worry if you are not able to spend on both domains; you can start by choosing one of them. It is good to try them one by one to know which one is more useful.

Changing Trendsin SMM and evolving SEO in 2020are making people do a lot of research before spending money. Following the latest trends can make them more fruitful.


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Search Engine or Social Media; Which Is Better?

You have read how search engine optimization (SEO) social media marketing (SMM) are different from each other. In the end, we can say that both SEO and SMM are important to grow a business online.

We cannot say which one of these is better unless we know the marketing goals of a business. Both have pros and cons that can suit or hurt a business. A small test can elaborate further.

Besides SMM and SEO, there are other wings of digital marketing (such as email marketing and search ads) that can help with business growth on the internet.

In case you need more in-depth knowledge about these topics, consider consulting a digital marketing expert. Moreover, you can also read more articles online for more clarity.

Wish you all the best with your social media and search engine marketing goals.