Why SEO is important for small business
Does every business NEED SEO? Do you really need to invest in search engine optimization, or can you get by without it?
We have discussed SEO in a number of articles on our blog, so if you want to first understand the basics of SEO, see this article.
SEO consists of multiple strategies, actions, and best practices, all of which have the end goal of improving your website’s position in search engines.
SEO is Google’s way of determining which sites deserve to rank highly for each search query entered into its search engine. Without SEO, it would be extremely simple for software to manipulate the search results so that the site with the most links or pages or most…anything! would rank #1 all the time.
Here are 4 Key Reasons why SEO is necessary for a small business
1. SEO targets quality traffic
There is nothing better than attracting an interested audience to visit your website without spending a lot of your marketing budget. Outside of spending time and effort, you do not have to pay for this “organic” traffic.
But once you’ve made that initial investment, there’s no ongoing cost to keep attracting traffic to your content. This is a major difference from PPC (Pay-Per-Click) ads which involve a cost every time a user clicks a link and visits your page.
Traditional advertising methods, like cold calling, spam emails, and interruptive ads, are done solely with the advertiser’s goals in mind and many consumers find them downright annoying.
2. You don’t need to pay for ads with SEO
Google’s “organic” rankings are based entirely on what its algorithm determines to be the best results for any given search query.
This means that once you’ve created a page that the search engine deems worthy of directing its users to, it can continue to attract traffic to your site for months (or even years) after you publish it.
Paid marketing is like a faucet. Turn on the tap and traffic will flow. But as soon as the tap is off (i.e. you run out of money), your traffic will dry up. Of course, researching, gathering, and writing high-quality content requires an investment in either the form of time, if you choose to create it yourself, or money, if you choose to hire a digital marketing agency to create it for you.
3. SEO gets more clicks than PPC
Although PPC ads appear above organic rankings, 70-80% of all searchers ignore paid ads and focus only on organic results.
If your business is in e-commerce, it should also be noted that approximately 39% of total e-commerce traffic (worldwide) comes from search – 35% of it organic and only 4% of it through paid search ads.
4. You’re able to track and quantify everything
Your SEO specialist will record and track all the data to your website so you will know how many people visit your site every day, what pages they visited when they left, and if they ever returned.
This allows you to better understand how your products or services are being received by your audience. If you see that people keep leaving your site after reaching the “checkout” section, you would know they were interested but something on that page caused them to leave.
So, can my business get by WITHOUT SEO?
Most successful marketers would say no, and for good reason. Having great content, products, and services that no one can find when searching on Google or Bing will not help your bottom line. Worse, since it is more than likely that your competition is employing SEO, you will be at a serious disadvantage in attracting visitors, leads, and sales to your site.
Despite all the benefits it has to offer, SEO is still one of the cheapest marketing tactics for a small business to employ. It’s not just that it doesn’t require a large marketing budget; it also brings results. The simple fact is that Search Engine Optimization is a cost-effective method for attracting customers.
Because SEO is always changing, it’s crucial not to become complacent, or to assume that your site, in its current state, will always rank where it does. Search engines consider the freshness of your content as well as how recently other sites have linked to you. If you don’t update your content, you may not gain new links, and your site will lose relevance over time.
Unless you keep up with the optimization of your site, you won’t have much luck maintaining the success you can find online.