Recently we wrote a blog “What is Digital Marketing? How Can it Help your Business?” and we broke out and spoke about all the main elements of Digital Marketing. We stated that all Digital Marketing starts with Content Marketing in this blog, and we wholeheartedly believe that. After all, if you do not have compelling content that customers want to engage with, you are in deep trouble.
If you are able to create compelling content, it will all be for nothing without SEO (Search Engine Optimization). The importance of SEO in business today, and the benefits of SEO in today’s digital economy can not be understated. If customers and prospective customers cannot find your business when they are doing searches on Google, on Bing or elsewhere, it is the equivalent of your business not being on the map in the predigital economy.
What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimization means optimizing your site so that it comes up on the first page of a search engine. Ask yourself, how many times do you venture to the second or third page of Google searches? The importance of SEO really hits home when you hear the joke, “Where is the best place to hide a dead body?” … and the answer is “Page 2 of Google Search Results!”.
An important thing to keep in mind when it comes to SEO is that it is focused on organic search and not paid SEM / Search Engine Marketing or PPC / Pay Per Click. SEO is free, SEM is not. SEO is more valuable and more challenging to cultivate. If you are like this writer, you are wary of what comes up first on a Google page in the “Paid Ad Section”. This writer looks at those entries, but places more value on the pages that come up AFTER the paid links in search results. In fact, research finds that only about 3% of people click on ads and instead go to organic search results driven by SEO. Based on all this it is easy to understand the importance of SEO in business. Please Audit your website for Free to understand your current SEO standings.
Nearly 88% of searches are done with Google according to a Statista report. Clearly, Google is the big dog and ignoring performance on their search engine is not a good strategy. Search result ranks on Google are all determined by Google’s algorithm. Much of the algorithm is not published, however much is known about what drives it from years of experience. Google is constantly tweaking its algorithms and they are not static. This is why it is beneficial to get some professional assistance with a company’s digital marketing.
Importance of SEO in Business
Now that we have discussed what SEO is, and spent a bit of time on why it is so important to rank at the top of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page), let us translate that back to the importance of SEO for a business. Being on the first page of results or at least the first couple in a competitive niche is the equivalent of being on the digital map. If customers can not find you on the internet, they can not find you in their digital world. Most people today research purchases online making it critical to have a presence there. SEO done well helps a business to build its brand. Content Marketing is that brand and message, but SEO is how people find it and engage with it. Customers and prospects trust your business if you rise to the top of search engines. Customers and prospects can learn about your business from your online footprint, and then decide when or if they want to engage with you on their own terms.
SEO is driven by on-page and off-page factors and businesses need to pay attention to both. On-Page factors includes, your website speed and load time, the key words you are using, web page titles and their meta descriptions, your overall site structure, your internal linking, whether you have any or many broken links, and if you list duplicate content on your site. Off-page includes factors like links from other sites to your site, the quality of the links pointing back to your site, how competitive your market niche is and social media activity. We will devote several other blog posts to SEO and will release one on best practices to optimize your SEO. Suffice it to say, SEO must be part of any Digital Marketing strategy and the importance of SEO in business is not up for debate.
Benefits of SEO
Going back to our map analogy, the number one benefit of well executed SEO is that people can find you. Also, ask any salesperson and they will tell you that inbound leads from people who want to talk to you are exceedingly more valuable than leads derived from outbound marketing activities. Inbound is way more powerful than outbound. Inbound leads mean you are not interrupting people and that they are searching you out.
If you have useful content, they likely already know something about your products or services as well. Another big benefit to SEO is that you can match or beat your competition. If your competition is not on the first page of search engine results and you are, you have beat them to the punch and are no doubt getting more inbound leads. If they are on the first page, and you are as well – at least you are on the same competitive footing.
Another benefit to SEO is that a business will prefer that people find you from SEO versus paid SEM traffic. SEO brings with it more creditability. A business can focus its SEO efforts on keywords that matter to its business. This takes careful thought and consideration but once done it makes sure your SEO efforts are not wasted. Conversely, having people show up on your site for the wrong reason because they searched for something not relevant to your business is not good and points to the importance of a good keyword strategy.
Professional digital marketing consultants can help with key word targeting. SEO can be very cost effective and this is another big benefit. It just involves being thoughtful and having relevant content. Outside help can assist with Content Marketing. Using SEO, a business can geo target a specific business area. Listing a business on Google Maps and using “Google My Business” tools can be a huge asset to local business and service providers.
Want to Learn More?
We trust we have covered the importance of SEO in business and many of the benefits of SEO in this blog. It is not impossible to get up to speed on SEO and learn the ins and outs yourself. However, it is a full-time job and requires consistent effort. At Valenta we are all about optimizing the business of our clients. Running a business and exceling at it is a full-time job. SEO and good Digital Marketing takes a lot of time, and we are here to offload that work for SMB clients at affordable rates. At Valenta we bring a team of experts that address all the skills required for Digital Marketing, including SEO.
At Valenta we exclusively service SMB clients. SMBs can sometimes struggle with digital marketing and do not have large staffs in house to support their efforts. At Valenta we offer managing partners, plus local or regional senior marketing experts, and offshore staff that can economically execute back-office tasks, content creation for digital marketing, implement SEO, run social media and email campaigns, perform video editing and graphic design and all manner of digital marketing solutions. If you would like to explore additional information about digital marketing our website is a good start. Read more about our Digital Marketing Staff Augmentation services.
If you would like to speak with us on this topic or any other, please Contact Us