I keep seeing this term SEO - but what is SEO? Stick around for our Bonus Tip!
So you've got a great website selling a fantastic product or service.
But now you need to get visitors to your website.
So you've been onto Google, typed in "promote my website" or something similar and you've been bombarded with the term SEO.
But what exactly is SEO?
Understanding SEO as a concept will help you understand why SEO is so important to you as a business.
SEO stands for "Search Engine Optimisation". The Wikipedia definition of SEO states "Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of increasing the quality and quantity of website traffic by increasing visibility of a website or a web page to users of a web search engine".
To put it simply, "doing things to make your website rank higher".
So, for example, if you are a builder in Southport a popular search term will be "builder in southport". The aim is to be as high up on the search engine for that term as possible.
In this post we're going to look at our top ten reasons why you should be using SEO to do this.
1. Being listed on the organic listing is the most popular way people click to choose a website.
Being listed in the organic section of Google's listings on page 1 of the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) generates approximately 70% of all of the clicks. being listed in the top 5 of page 1 accounts for around 67% of the total. Places 6 to 10 make up the rest.
That figure then rapidly drops away after you reach page 2 and beyond.
Basically, if you are not on page 1 of Google's organic search, you've only got less than 30% chance of being found.
Having a dedicated SEO strategy whose long term goal to get you on page number 1 is therefore an essential aspect of your marketing campaign.
2. Organic search is still the most popular way that websites are found.
With so many ways that your website can be found, currently search engine search is still the number 1 entry point with over 64% of all website traffic found via organic search.
Although social media is making in-roads into this figure, currently being ranked organically is the best place to find new visitors and customers.
3. Customers who search and find a website are more likely to convert.
From a sales perspective, this is probably the most important. If a user uses a search engine to find something, the chances of "intent" to purchase tends to by higher (unlike a link from Social where it may be just to view "out of interest").
And because the search engines are only interested in providing the most "relevant" content to the visitor, chances are that if you are the top of page one, the content is extremely relevant to the search term of the user.
Although other forms of advertising are becoming more focused (think paid advertising on social media, it's nowhere nearly as focused as a specific search on a search engine.
4. The rise of Local Search.
The search engines, especially Google, are becoming more focused on providing local search results for users. This is a growing trend - because what's the point of finding you a builder in London if you live in Glasgow?
Google My Business is now displayed above organic listings in the SERP. Part of your SEO campaign should be to ensure that, if you're a local business, your listing is correctly optimised.
5. SEO breeds Brand Trust.
Users trust companies like Google and Microsoft. Therefore, they also trust them to return results from proven businesses. If you're site is being shown at the top of the search results, then users see this as a vote of confidence from the search engines that your site in return can be trusted.
When a visitor feels they can trust a business, they are more likely to purchase from them as well as recommending them to a friend.
If you're trying to build a business around a brand, having that trust is essential for growth.
6. Old methods of search are redundant.
20 years ago, 15 years ago, even 10 years ago in some cases for most people the first place to search for something they needed would be traditional print media - whether via newspapers, telephone directories etc.
Companies such as Yellow Pages and Thomson Directories made money by selling "promoted listings". However, with the growth of the internet, they've moved away from their traditional money makers and moved online. Across the board, over 90% of searches are now done online.
Newspapers are finding the crunch as well and apart from the major players, and smaller independents who rely heavily on advertising from loyal local businesses, press media is also on it's way out.
The decision is simple. Why invest in local press when that investment could be made in growing the future of your business - being found on the internet.
7. SEO lasts long after the money has been spent.
Think about it... if you spend money on an advertising campaign, whether that be within print media or through PPC (Pay Per Click), then your money is only good until the time it runs out.
Papers get thrown away. PPC & Social Media adverts stop when the budget is spent.
However with SEO the work that's been done lasts forever. For example, page content - a great way to generate growth. As long as your website exists, that page will exist. Always there to be ranked, always there to be read.
Very little other marketing spend has such as long lasting effect.
8. SEO is cheap.
Sounds like an odd comment coming from a company offering SEO services, right?
But think about this after reading points 6 & 7. With SEO you're paying for content that could potentially last forever. You could be seeing the benefits of your spend years after the spend has been made.
Divide that spend across the time it exists. Then compare it to a single advert in a paper or a 2 week PPC campaign.
9. SEO is easy to monitor.
Some customers think SEO is difficult to gauge.
A good SEO company should be keeping you updates on a regular basis on what they are doing. And not only that, if you use Google Analytics / Google Search Console, you'll see an increasing flow of visitors to your website.
Your SEO company should be showing you what they are doing. Some of this should be straightforward. Adding new content on your site (new pages, blog posts etc) is easy to pinpoint.
Unlike other advertising, sometimes it's difficult to distinguish where the visitors are coming from.
10. It helps improve usability. on your website.
Any search engine algorithm contains many factors. Google's consists of over 200! But included in those metrics are factors related to usability.
If a user has a "bad" experience, chances are they will move away from your site quickly. This is called "bounce" rate. Websites with a lower bounce rate rank higher.
Websites that give users great content also keep them on their site longer - improving their Click Through Rate (CTR - i.e. when users click through to other pages) and dwell time (how long they spend on a page), again key metrics that the search engines use.
OUR BONUS TIP!
We like to give our readers a bonus tip every once and in a while, and this is a good one.
Chances are, for most local businesses, not all of their competition will be doing SEO... this means that those that do will have a competitive advantage over them.
Think about it... plumber in Blackpool? Over 100 of local companies fighting for business? If only 10% of them have a dedicated SEO strategy, you could easily crack the top ten rankings quite quickly... and think about what that is worth to your business!
Don't miss out... to find out more about our SEO services in your area (Southport, Ormskirk, Wigan, Preston, Liverpool or Manchester) give us a call today on 07968 129060. We'd be glad to discuss your requirements in more detail.