- Search engine optimization (SEO) is among the top marketing strategies to help your business gain more traffic which can potentially be translated into sales.
- SEO is an all-around approach that includes making changes to your content, website design, and site construction to improve your website ranking.
- A better web ranking means more people see your website first, increasing your traffic and opportunities for conversion.
As more businesses make the shift to cyberspace, the competition has increased exponentially. This has made it challenging for new or small businesses to establish their branding and reach customers in this fast-paced market.
In effectively creating an online presence for you and your company, search engine optimization (SEO) online marketing remains one of the best options available especially since it is one of the most cost-effective digital marketing strategies available. It makes sure that the content you post on your website or even your social media pages to be easily searchable through search engines like Google, Yahoo!, or Bing.
To understand why you need to adopt this strategy, here are seven ways SEO online marketing can help change your business:
This is the main objective of SEO, and one that is applicable to small businesses and large enterprises alike. Making your website search engine optimized increases your odds of appearing among the top results for a relevant keyword. For example, if someone types “small business term loans” and your company website shows up in the first page, users are more likely to see and click the link to your page. Forbes once reported that the first Google search engine results page (SERP) captures 71% of all traffic clicks, going as high as 92%. Landing in the second page, however, comes at a distant 6% of all potential traffic.
If you think this only works with large companies having dedicated content and marketing teams, think again. Even for small businesses such as individually-owned online stores that make things to sell for profit and traditional mom-and-pop stores, SEO online marketing can help you gain an advantage. Localized SEO helps your business stand out and even get associated with a certain place. Using your town or city name in your posts, tags, and even snippets and meta descriptions help. This way, when someone makes a localized search, your business will have a better odds of appearing as a top search result. This also leads to other benefits for your company, such as…
Of course, the more people visiting your website, the more chances you have to generate leads that you can potentially convert into sales. Remember that search engines no longer need to be exact in order to draw results, it can now deliver search results based on a partial match between the keywords you use and a user’s search inquiry. Usually, people who search specific products and services are keen to find the best options available to them and having your website optimized for search engines increases your chances of tapping these market gaps.
Aside from increasing traffic directed to your site, SEO online marketing strategies also help complement your existing lead generation efforts by driving awareness to your company. An optimized website can increase the organic traffic to your site. Organic traffic refers to visitors that come by your website from unpaid sources, and are more likely to be real people with real needs – some of them being potential customers or clients for your business.
Brand credibility is one of the most important targets of marketing in general. Not only do you have to establish your presence as a product or service provider in the online space, but you have to earn the trust of your market. This is actually a holistic objective that not only requires good products or services, but you also have to let people know that you do have them.
As you optimize your website content, you help your brand become more visible on the internet by appearing more frequently and ranking higher on search results. Your website ranking is an important metric for developing brand credibility because the more people visit your site, the more they see what you have to offer. People who leave your website with a good experience will either purchase your product or service, or tell other people about it, which in turn drives additional organic traffic to your website.
Meanwhile, bad practices can hurt your efforts toward brand credibility. Inconsistent content posting, linking to bad or dead websites, or using too many keywords are some of the practices that should be stopped. For example, Google has hundreds of factors it considers for ranking websites, and those tagged as spam will find a drop in their web ranking and consequently, their online visibility.
Contrary to misconceptions, SEO is not just about creating quality and optimized content. It is an overall effort that involves, of course, the website itself. Your web design in general has to be easy on the eyes and should be easily navigable. Keeping a streamlined website creates a positive user experience, making it more likely for them to visit you again and increasing your chances of turning leads into sales.
As for the technical aspect, search engines use a process called web crawling. It refers to the use of “crawlers,” which are basically automated programs that find content on the internet. These robots download pages, extracts its links, and indexes them to make them searchable in their engines afterward. Its indexing affects your website ranking, and if your website is difficult to crawl or unavailable at all, it affects your indexing and your visibility in that particular engine. Therefore, an optimized website is one that is structurally prepared for indexing, making it easier to display in the search engine in relation to certain keywords.
As you optimize your website, you start cutting down on unnecessary “features” that don’t really serve any practical purpose and apply tools that help improve your load time. It may involve actions such as compressing images, reducing webpage redirects, using less custom fonts, or simply choosing a faster host – all of these practices are a part of optimizing your site for search engines.
A website that loads faster means a better bounce rate – the percentage of online traffic that leaves your website after visiting only one page on your website. They basically “bounce back” to the website that led to your page, which may be a search engine or another site. Depending on your marketing targets, bounce rates that are too high or too low might indicate that something’s wrong. One scenario that leads to abnormal bounce rates are websites that are very slow to load, they may either move to another site or start a new session on their browser.
Using SEO practices to speed up your website loading time also helps create a good user experience, not to mention making indexing easier for search engines. Maintaining a quick load time ensures that your visitors do not drop out of the marketing pipeline: they can interact more with your website, see your products and services, and be exposed to more content that can ultimately affect their purchasing decision down the line.
Imagine generating leads and converting them into successful sales without having to invest in costly marketing programs. This reduces your expenses and increases revenue, which accelerates your company’s financial turnaround. This makes SEO one of the most sought-after strategies in the online market, its capacity to translate traffic into potential sales while being more cost-effective than traditional options.
With the right research and execution, you can make a targeted campaign that will connect your company with the specific market segment that you can turn into potential sales opportunities. In comparison, each click for a Google Ads posting could cost anywhere between $1 to $2, which translates to about $9,000 to $10,000 monthly. On the other hand, SEO builds organic traffic. Similarly, while cold-calling remains an effective strategy, leads from this strategy costs more than 60% compared to the leads generated by an SEO-based campaign.
SEO is an active strategy, with more studies being released regularly and best practices changing from time to time. However, adopting an SEO online marketing strategy means your company remains updated with the fast-paced market, which will keep you ahead of the curve in the long run. It doesn’t necessarily mean that your website has to have all recommended SEO best practices; pick what suits your needs and your resources, maintain honesty and transparency, and stay consistent.
As a marketing strategy, it immediately stands as a quantifiable campaign and could easily inform the company decisions moving forward. Although it doesn’t have straightforward cost and return on investment as other strategies like paid ads, you can measure almost every detail that comes in and out of your SEO efforts with the use of proper tools. As the market quickly changes, it can be difficult to establish causality and connect inputs with their effect on your measurables. Despite this, you can still have a picture of your inputs and the overall results of your campaign.
Also, one downside to focusing on an SEO strategy is that it doesn’t always guarantee quick returns. It takes time to build your website ranking and your SERP depends on the specific keywords used. You may even publish viral content at one point, only to be followed by months of lukewarm reception to your materials. Still, consistency and the right research will help you achieve results faster and these results often last longer.
SEO online marketing is a powerful tool to help establish your company in the online market. When done properly and consistently, it can increase the volume of your website visitors and even influence their spending decision, ultimately increasing your company revenue and accelerating growth. As more businesses move into cyberspace, adopting SEO strategies will help your company stand out from the rest and reward you with more opportunities.
While it has its challenges, its benefits outweigh its risk, making it a valuable investment for businesses of any size moving forward.
Featured Image Credit: Pexels
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