The abbreviation “SERP” stands for the search engine result page. You might come across this term every now & then in the digital marketing realm. In short, SERPs are the result a user sees when using a search engine. The user enters the search query (specific phrase or term or keyword), upon which the search engine presents them with a SERP.
The result page on the web is considered the utmost important. The higher your company ranks, the more exposure & credibility your company will have in regards to the search engine.
When we type a phrase or keyword in the search engine, the web provides us the most relevant web pages listings based on keyword rankings. The web page listing includes the linked page title, linked page URL, a brief description of the page content & the links to points of interest within the website.
The search engines constantly customize the experience for their users by presenting results based on a variety of factors beyond the search terms, such as the user’s physical location, browsing history & social setting.
The appearance of search engine result pages is constantly under scrutiny due to the experiments conducted by Google, Yahoo, Bing & other search engines to offer their users a more informative & responsive experience. The links grow less relevant as they move farther down the list. The search space has undergone several changes in their appearance from their predecessors.
In today’s age where almost every aspect of a business is being digitized, digital marketers are constantly implementing strategies to improve their SERP rankings. You may be lagging behind your competitors if you haven’t considered this aspect of your digital marketing plan.
How does it work?
A SERP might show anywhere from zero to millions of items depending on the web pages that contain a particular word or phrase. Research shows that in most of the cases, search engine users will look at only the first one to three pages of the results, so showing up on the first page is essential. Digital marketers constantly try to make their sites & pages appear at or near the top of a SERP.
The basic factors of a SERP include the query box, page listing & paid advertisements. Depending on the topic that is being searched videos, maps & definitions may also appear. The result may vary based on the industry, the type of web content or the topic of the search query.
Components of SERP
There are two different types of content on SERP pages namely:
- Organically ranked web paged
- Paid Advertisements or paid results
Organic search as the name implies is the result of natural rankings determined by the algorithms of search engines. If the content has a strong keyword strategy it would appear within the top three search result pages. From an organic standpoint, your placement on a SERP depends on your keyword strategy.
There are primarily three types of internet search:
- Informational- here the user tends to find information on a given topic.
- Transactional- here the user tries to locate a specific website through their search.
- Navigational- here the paid results are most likely to be displayed as this search query has high commercial intent.
Now coming to the Paid results, these are the advertisements you see on the top of the page. By using PPC or pay-per-click, a business pays a fee to have their page ranked at the top. The ads will be ranked & positioned depending on a bidding process & their overall quality score. Unlike an organic search strategy that can take months to implement, an ad will be visible instantly once it has been paid for. However paid results can take a wide range of forms & there are dozens of advertising formats to cater to the needs of advertisers.
Benefits of Organic & Paid result
Coming to Organic results, when your page is within the top three search results, the uses will view it as a credible figure which sets apart from your competitors. Once you can achieve a high ranking in the SERP, it’s easy to keep that positioning & the search engine will also view your website as a reliable source of information, helping to keep that ranking for an extended period.
When it comes to paid results, the marketers target a specific audience to get their advertisements. If you dint have time to wait for months for an organic search to come through, PPC (pay-per-click) is the best method. PPC also increases the click-through rates of your users which can lead to sales when they are ready to buy.
Hence using both techniques you can significantly improve your online awareness & building a strong marketing strategy to generate leads for your company.