All businesses, no matter how large or small, require at least some level of internet exposure if they want to succeed in this digital age. However, digital marketing is very overwhelming, and determining where exactly they should begin will be challenging for most businesses.
One of the most effective ways to increase your business’s online presence and overall results is to utilize SEO. SEO is very complicated, which is why we wrote this blog post! Continue reading if you would like to learn more about SEO and why it is imperative to your business’s success.
What Is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. In the most basic terms, Google search relies on an algorithm to rank web pages. If a prospective customer types in a search term related to your business, you want to show up as high in the search results as possible. After all, few people scroll past the first page of results to find what they need. In fact, most people will only pay attention to the top few results on a page. Effective SEO is what gets you there!
How Does SEO Work?
SEO requires both quality and quantity. The better you are at producing quality, optimized content in large enough quantities to outdo your competitors, the more you will get rewarded with better search engine rankings. SEO works by combining several key elements, including the following.
Certain keywords and phrases have the power to control your online rankings. You need to carefully research the terms your target audience is using to search for your products or services. SEO requires you to use these keywords and phrases strategically so that your various web pages appear in response to those searches.
Content is the fuel that drives your SEO strategy. It allows you to take the keywords you’ve identified and incorporate them into engaging content that your target audience will find useful. Content can be anything your audience reads, watches, or listens to, such as blog posts, infographics, videos, podcasts, and more.
Backlinks are links from other websites to your own, often using those valuable keywords as anchor text. You think of them as a vote of confidence for your brand when a reputable and relevant website agrees to give you a link. Google looks at it that way, too, and uses quality backlinks as one of its SEO ranking factors.
17 Reasons Why Effective SEO Is Crucial
One of the great things about SEO is that it’s accessible to everyone. Instead of paying a small fortune for sponsored ads, you can focus on an SEO strategy that will continue to pay off for your business in the long-term. Here are some of the many ways SEO can benefit your business.
1. It Offers a High Marketing ROI
When evaluating where you will focus your digital marketing dollars, return on investment (ROI) is often a major factor. While SEO takes time to produce results, it delivers an impressive ROI. Consumers and business customers alike turn to search engines for just about everything. For new leads, search engines offer a close rate of nearly 15%, which is significant compared to less than 2% for traditional marketing.
2. It Drives High-Quality Traffic to Your Website
Getting traffic to your company’s website is important, but it’s just as essential that the traffic you bring in is of the highest quality possible. After all, if you sell industrial pumps, you don’t want to attract people who are searching for bicycle pumps. Through SEO, you can use a variety of targeted strategies that will allow your website to rank well in the search engines for the keywords that will bring your target audience to your digital doorstep.
3. It Increases Brand Awareness
Customers can’t give you their business if they’ve never heard of you. When a consumer decides they need to solve a problem, whether they require a local auto mechanic or need parts for their sewing machine, they’ll usually start with an online search.
If your company’s name continues to appear in the search results due to your SEO efforts, this creates brand awareness. Even if they aren’t ready to buy today, they’ll remember your name when they’re ready to move on to the next step.
4. It Boosts Your Credibility
One of the major benefits of increasing brand awareness through SEO is that it can also build trust. The more people see your brand name in response to their searches and begin consuming your content, the more they will begin to see you as an authority in your field. When they have a question later, they will instinctively know where to go for answers.
5. It Promotes Your Business 24/7
While you may not be open 24 hours a day, you want potential customers to be able to find you and learn more about your products and services 24/7. That’s one of the benefits of search engine marketing and SEO. When someone decides at 3 AM that they want to research local kayak shops or pick a restaurant for the weekend, your SEO efforts can pay off and lead them directly to your website.
6. It Targets Every Stage of the Sales Funnel
Most buyers go through a series of stages before making a purchase — Awareness, Evaluation, and Conversion. One of the great things about SEO is that it can help you create content that targets people at each stage of the buyer’s journey. Buyers will have different questions at the Awareness stage than at the Evaluation or Conversion stages. Your SEO strategy will optimize your efforts.
7. It Helps You Outperform Your Competitors
Google receives over 93% of the world’s search engine traffic. Even if you aren’t investing in SEO to show up at the top of the search results, you can be sure your competitors are working hard to capture those spots.
As a small business, you can’t afford not to make this one of your priorities. You can start by analyzing how your competitors are ranking for your chosen search terms. Then, you can create an overall strategy focused on SEO that will boost your online reputation.
One of the most significant benefits of SEO is the increased leads, conversions, and market share your business will experience. Once your SEO strategy begins to produce results, this is something you’ll notice daily. Customers who found you online will call, hit the “Buy Now” button, or show up at your store. To put this in the proper perspective, statistics show that the first position on the first page of Google results in 33% of all search traffic.
9. It Strengthens Your Digital Marketing Strategy
When you invest in a digital marketing strategy, SEO should be a large part of it. As a standalone, it’s an excellent way to get free traffic to your website, but it also strengthens other areas of your digital marketing efforts, such as content marketing, social media marketing, website development, and more.
10. It Helps You Reach Your Target Audience
Another benefit of SEO is that it can help your business connect with every member of your target audience. Depending on your business, you might have several different target audiences. For example, a roofing company might install roofs, maintain and repair them, and offer gutter services. Using SEO, you can reach each of these audiences by targeting keywords that are specific to their interests.
11. It Can Reduce Overall Advertising Costs
SEO can help your business by reducing your overall advertising costs. When you implement a comprehensive SEO strategy, your business can achieve first-page Google rankings for valuable search terms. This allows your business to reduce its advertising spend in other areas. For example, if you were spending thousands each month on paid social media ads to bring in traffic, you can lower these costs.
12. It Works Hand in Hand with Your PPC Campaigns
It takes time and patience to get results from SEO, but it’s worth the effort. The good news is that your SEO efforts can improve the success of your paid marketing campaigns. When you use PPC ads, which places your name at the top of search results, it boosts your credibility when people see your brand name several times on the first page of Google.
13. It Boosts Your Local Marketing Efforts
When your target audience is local, meaning it’s limited to a specific geographic area, local SEO strategies can help you reach those people effectively. One of the first steps is to create and optimize your Google Business Profile so that you can ask for online customer feedback. You can also focus other SEO efforts on local searches, such as adding local data on your website and throughout your content.
14. It Helps Increase Your Social Media Followers
It may sound strange on the surface, but a robust digital marketing strategy that focuses on SEO can increase your social media followers. If people like what they see when they land on your website, they are more likely to give you a follow on social media platforms. At the same time, your individual social media profiles can show up in the search engine rankings, and posts can boost your website traffic and increase your brand’s credibility.
15. It Gets People Into Your Brick and Mortar Store(s)
There’s a common misconception that digital marketing is only for online businesses. Nothing could be further from the truth. When you are looking for a fabric shop, car wash, or the “best pizza place near me,” you often turn to the search engines for suggestions.
According to Google, 88% of people who perform “near me” searches on mobile devices will visit the physical store within a week. More than two-thirds will visit within a day! SEO helps people find your business online.
16. It Informs Your Success with Insights
It’s vital that you understand the impact of your digital marketing efforts and investments. Fortunately, SEO gives you valuable insights so that you can assess the performance of your various strategies in real time. Using Google Analytics or other web analytics solutions, you can monitor things like website traffic, conversions, bounce rate, and time on site so that you can improve your efforts and results.
17. It Drives Long-Term Business Success
The last important thing to understand about SEO is that it is a long-term digital marketing strategy. When you make it one of your business’s ongoing priorities, it will produce results for many years to come. Even when the search engines implement algorithm updates, your business should still reap the benefits if you invest time into adapting your strategy!
RSM Marketing Can Help You Develop a Comprehensive SEO Strategy!
Developing a strong SEO strategy is vital to the success of your digital marketing efforts and thus, your business, but optimizing your website and all of its content to perform well on search engines is far from easy! Google constantly updates its algorithms in both massive and minuscule (oftentimes without announcing any of the changes whatsoever), which requires you to stay on your toes and adjust your strategy if you want to keep up with the robots.
SEO is a significant time investment that often falls to the wayside because business owners simply don’t have the time or resources available. This is why you should consider outsourcing your SEO to an experienced and reputable company because you definitely don’t want to miss out on the many ways SEO can benefit your business!
RSM Marketing’s digital marketing and SEO experts can put together a strategy that will maximize your business’s marketing budget and lead to the greatest return on your investment. In addition to SEO services, we also offer social media management, PPC management, website design, and several other digital marketing services.
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