Digital marketing poses special challenges for its purveyors. Digital channels are proliferating rapidly, and digital marketers have to keep up with how these channels work, how they're used by receivers and how to use these channels to effectively market things. In addition, it's becoming more difficult to capture receivers' attention, because receivers are increasingly inundated with competing ads. Digital marketers also find it challenging to analyze the vast troves of data they capture and then exploit this information in new marketing efforts.
Simply put, search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing the content, technical set-up, and reach of your website so that your pages appear at the top of a search engine result for a specific set of keyword terms. Ultimately, the goal is to attract visitors to your website when they search for products, services, or information related to your business.
The results are of two general types, organic search and paid search (i.e., retrieved by the search engine's algorithm) and sponsored (i.e., advertisements). The results are normally ranked by relevance to the query. Each result displayed on the SERP normally includes a title, a link that points to the actual page on the Web and a short description showing where the keywords have matched content within the page for organic results. For sponsored results, the advertiser chooses what to display.
AdWords Customer Match lets you target customers based on an initial list of e-mail addresses. Upload your list and you do things like serving different ads or bidding a different amount based on a shopper’s lifecycle stage. Serve one ad to an existing customer. Serve another to a subscriber. And so on. Facebook offers a similar tool, but AdWords was the first appearance of e-mail-driven customer matching in pay per click search.
Another excellent guide is Google’s “Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide.” This is a free PDF download that covers basic tips that Google provides to its own employees on how to get listed. You’ll find it here. Also well worth checking out is Moz’s “Beginner’s Guide To SEO,” which you’ll find here, and the SEO Success Pyramid from Small Business Search Marketing.