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SEARCH MARKETING: Searching the horizon

Search marketing, in all its various forms, is truly a phenomena. Which other marketing disciplines could boast 70 per cent year-on-year growth in 2005 in the UK (Source: E-Consultancy)?

The same research estimated the search marketing industry to be worth £600 million in the UK in Q2 2005, which is even more impressive given that the primary deliverable (pay-per-click or keyword advertising) was launched less than five years ago. Whilst traditional mediums such as advertising and direct mail are attracting increased scrutiny, and telemarketing and email are suffering from the burdens of further legislation - search marketing is forging ahead, steadily securing a bigger share of overall spend.

Until now, expansion of pay-per-click advertising has largely driven this market onwards, but service providers recognise diversification and innovation as the means to drive further expansion. To that end, as well as increasing the sophistication of pay-per-click offerings, considerable sums have been invested in developing new services, which are more flexible, intuitive and responsive to the searcher's needs.