For quite some time now, there has been more than one term for optimising how effectively a website performs. Most know it as SEO, and this is still considered much the generic catch-all.
However, for some, this has become tarnished.
The problem is largely due to those claiming to supply such a service providing nothing more than link buying and spamming. With the public getting wind of such practices, there were always bound to be issues.
For many people, search engine marketing (SEM) has taken a preference. Also able to neatly encompass other online marketing activities such as PPC, such a move is easy to understand. Others wish this to simply cover paid-for strategies though, with SEO staying resolutely linked to improving organic results.
For some time, both terms have been used side by side with a perhaps little overlapping, a little confusion but, by and large, it has all been happy. Recently though, Matt Cutts from Google has suggested everything be wrapped in one parcel.
He proposes SXP; search experience optimisation.
Cutts claims that it shows a great deal more focus to the consumer and that it covers every base concerned with online marketing strategies. This may be true, but whether it is necessary is another point.
What writes the definition of a term is always open to debate – it is one of the reasons why the Oxford English Dictionary is updated four times a year. As such, it does not matter what term for optimising a site is used, just that the work that is done is ethical and effective.