I have to admit that I've never really felt comfortable with the term Search Engine Optimisation. SEO is often associated with shady practices of manipulating search engines to rank your website better. It just sounds dodgy to a lot of people.
I see SEO another way. It's correcting issues (technical, on-site and off-site) that stop your website competing effectively against your competitors. SEO fixes website issues so that your website is fully visible to search engines. SEO also helps a website to reach it's full potential in organic rankings.
Google (and other search engines) constantly adjusts it’s algorithm, to determine how websites will be ranked in their organic ranking. This is known as the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). It's practically a full-time job to keep up to date in the latest trends in SEO and search algorithm updates. The following are the reasons I believe every business, no matter how big or small should invest in SEO and create and effective Online Marketing campaign:
SEO is long term
Search Engine Optimisation is likely to exist as long as search engines exist. Sure, as time progresses SEO will change to align with known changes in search engine algorithms. However, the need for SEO will always be there for websites.
Many of the initial technical (and off-site) SEO factors, once corrected will put you in good stead to rank organically for free. Sure, SEO is an ongoing process, but fixing the basics will provide lasting benefits to the ranking of your website.
Some of the criticism of SEO is the time it takes to start working. Once you rank well however and have corrected the technical and off-site issues, the maintenance costs are sustainable and if you invest in SEO it will provide considerable ROI, even for small businesses.
SEO is cost effective
Depending on the market and region you’re serving, Pay Per Click (PPC) costs could be as high as $50 to $100 per click! Depending on the life time value of the client, and the acquisition rate, often paid advertising in the online world doesn't provide the return on investment your company expects long-term.
With paid advertising, many business run a campaign for a few weeks or months before they blow their advertising budget for the year and need to pause their campaign.
Unless you are a business with large advertising spend, or in a relatively un-competitive market (hence low PPC costs), PPC advertising often isn't sustainable for small businesses long-term. They’re activated only in “spurts”
SEO costs on the other hand are predictable and sustainable. There are no spikes or “quick wins”; just constant, predictable evolution towards SEO success.
SEO is organic
There's something fulfilling about organically ranking for the keywords you desire, without having paid advertising to ensure your website is displayed in the search engine. If you rank organically, it means Google values your website and it's judged a credible and authoritative resource on it's own merits. No tricks or advertising required.
Google alone currently processes around 3.5 billion searches per day. 3.5 billion, just Wow!! Content visibility in a search engine results page depends almost entirely on SEO. Recent studies have concluded that a whopping 71% of searches end with the organic results of page 1 of google, with around 15% ending in a click on a paid AdWords listing and the rest on subsequent pages of Google results, or the search is aborted.
SEO improves user experience
SEO in 2017 isn't about keyword stuffing or manipulating search engines via tricks. It's about creating a great user experience through meaningful content and great design to increase the click through rate of users. SEO, content generation and website design go hand in hand to improve the user experience holistically.
Inbound marketing > outbound marketing
For many years, advertising has been heavily shifting from predominantly outbound marketing to inbound. What does this mean? Essentially, customers come to you when looking for a product or service, rather than you reaching out to them. Cold calls and emails are disruptive for consumers and are heavily dependent on timing. Let’s face it, no one really wants to be interrupted by a stranger trying to sell them something!
SEO is foundation of inbound marketing. Invest in SEO and you'll see consumers clicking on your website from organic search results and coming to you, rather than you needing to chase them to buy from you!
Your competitors are doing SEO
SEO is a constantly changing "battle" between your competitors, the search engine and your website. Website rankings float up and down each month based on your competitors’ SEO efforts, new websites being launched as well as Google's algorithm updates. If your competitors invest in SEO (most do!) and you don't, you'll be seriously left behind in the search engine results space and slide down the rankings.
In 2017, every website owner should invest in SEO. Whether you have the time and experience to perform SEO yourself, or would like to free up time and leave it to the experts is your choice.
At Evolocity, we’re here to help with SEO. Contact us today for SEO assistance.
Check out our free guide to SEO. This will get you started on the path to SEO success!
You can also check out our other SEO blog arcticles here