As the Internet has become a commodity around the world, its commercial aspects have not gone unnoticed. One of the best methods for companies to monetize the exponential growth of the Internet is to utilize search engine marketing in their marketing mixes. With search engine marketing spend growing much faster than any other form of online marketing, it is the most popular new advertising vehicle around.
This thesis discusses the various aspects of search engine marketing: how to utilize it, which methods to use, and which methods to avoid. It will work as a guideline, as a resource to recent statistics and industry news, or as an introduction to a relatively new marketing channel. The goal of the thesis is to make the reader understand the concepts involved in search engine marketing as well as illustrate how companies can utilize search engine marketing.
The goal of this paper is not, however, to provide a detailed guide of how to execute each step of the search marketing process. Due to the different natures and demands of websites, such a guide would be very difficult to write and it would be unnecessarily long.
Due to the rapidly changing search environment, some of the information presented in this thesis may become out-dated shortly after finishing this thesis. I have attempted to provide current information and insight on future development of search engine marketing, some of which may not be accurate in the future.
This thesis is suitable reading for businesspeople and students but also for individuals, who wish to learn more about the search engine marketing phenomenon. The only prerequisites for understanding the contents of this thesis are prior usage of the Internet and search engines in particular. Knowledge of websites, their structure and HyperText Markup Language (HTML) will also help the reader grasp the concepts easier.