Search marketing is receiving more focus and funding, as companies look to generate more sales and visibility on the web.

Companies investing in offline and more traditional marketing channels are adjusting their budgets and strategies to place a greater focus on SEO and overall search marketing, according to a report from IPA Bellwether. The study suggests that U.S. spending has been limited by global economic uncertainty, however, organic search has helped businesses reach wide audiences with less upfront investment.

According to IPA Bellwether, search marketing budgets account for 7.4 percent of total spending. Moreover, developing well-rounded web marketing strategies has become a key goal for many organizations moving forward.

SEO and paid search campaigns have become larger focuses for companies due to both performance and the general growth of search. Brafton recently highlighted a report from comScore that found search activity on both Google and Bing reached all-time highs in June at 11.4 billion queries and 2.7 billion queries, respectively.

“The focus has been cutting back on main media advertising, direct marketing and below-the-line activities and reallocating that money toward sales promotions and the internet, both of which are often cited as a means to quickly grow sales,” Chris Williamson, chief economist and author of the Bellwether report, said in a release.

Making search marketing work for any business requires both agility and the commitment to developing a dynamic and engaging website. SEO and paid search campaigns fueled by reader-friendly content marketing are likely to help organizations looking to capitalize on increased search activity. Brafton recently highlighted a report from Market Force that found 78 percent of consumers are influenced by branded website content.

Joe Meloni is Brafton's former Executive News and Content Writer. He studied journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and has written for a number of print and web-based publications.