It’s no wonder — According to The 2011 Social Shopping Study; 50% of consumers spend 75% or more of their total time shopping engaged in product research. The number one starting point for the online shopping experience is with a search engine. This means optimizing your website for Natural Search is a critical success factor for your business. It’s not enough to have a website. It’s important to make sure your website is structured and contains content that is relevant to your visitors as well as the search engines. Optimizing the structure and content of your website will help you grow your business and increase sales. Don’t be fooled by agencies who “guarantee” top rankings in search results and put their focus only on keywords. Improve search engine position Drive qualified traffic to your site Increase conversion Reduce Bounce Rate Engage Customers Be recognized as an authority in your niche Promote your local business
What is SEO Marketing?
SEO marketing also referred to as Search Engine Optimization is the process of increasing the visibility of a website on search engine results pages. There are many factors that need to be taken into consideration as a part of your strategy. A solid strategy considers more than just keywords. It should include consideration how search engines work, which search engines are being used by your target audience, and what your customers are searching for. The goal is to improve the relevance of your website so that it is indexed and well positioned by the search engines. Search engine optimization is about more than having a lot of content. It also includes making sure your website is well structured and can affect the development and design. It’s about making sure that you not only have content, but that it’s the right content. Search engines take the quality of content and the structure of a website into consideration when “ranking” a website. SEO marketing isn’t something you do once and then you are done. The playing field is constantly changing as the search engines refine the way they work. The goal of a search engine is to deliver the most relevant results possible to the searcher.
Why is SEO Marketing Important?
Nine out of ten people use the internet to shop. The number one starting point is search. Gone are the days of bookmarks and customer loyalty. Today’s consumer is in charge. They know what they’re looking for and they know how to find it. If your company website isn’t on the first page of results it’s practically invisible.
- 97% of US internet users shop online
- 70% of all click-through traffic in Google’s search results go to the #1 position on the page (Google & Bing Study: 2011 Study by SlingShot SEO)
- Organic search results are a compliment to a paid search campaign
- Improve search engine position
- Drive qualified traffic to your site
- Increase conversion
- Reduce Bounce Rate
- Engage Customers
- Be recognized as an authority in your niche
- Promote your local business
My Business is Local – Is SEO Marketing still Important?
According to Google’s research, 90% of internet users use search to find local businesses. People used to use the Yellow Pages to find local businesses – today they use the internet. Every business should have a website and every business owner should have a basic understanding of how search engines work and have a marketing plan in place. The statistics speak for themselves: 74% of online users perform local searches(Kelsey Group) 20% of all searches are related to location (Google) 43% of search engine users are looking for a local business 61% of local searches result in a purchase (TMP/comScore) 82% of local searchers follow up with an offline contact such as a phone call, a visit to the store, or a purchase (TMP/comScore)
How SEO Will Grow Your Business?
Here is how seo is going to help you in growing your business:
People Make 100 Billion Google Searches Each Month
Google sees 100 billion searches each month, which means an average of 3.3 billion searches each day. …Um. Can you wrap your brain around that many search queries? I can’t! This is a ton of traffic. Even the tiniest percent would mean a ton of new visitors to your small business’ website. With this many people using Google to search for a local plumber, a new restaurant to try, or advice on starting a business, you’d be a fool to watch from the sidelines. Don’t believe you can get this traffic? Well, you can. By creating great content surrounding the term “landing pages,” Unbounce consistently ranks #1 for this query. That means anytime someone searches for “landing pages,” the landing page optimization company comes up first, bringing thousands of visitors into the site.
SEO Traffic and Sign ups are (Pretty Much) Free
When you start a sponsored campaign (that means you pay for it) on networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or elsewhere, you’re a slave to your bank account. When the money runs out, so does your exposure. Fortunately, organic traffic from search results is free. Sure, you have to pay an SEO specialist (or agency) to optimize your site and a writer to provide you with content, but these costs are up-front. A great piece of content can drive search results over long periods of time. For example, Grasshopper, the entrepreneur’s phone system, published a blog post called “The Best States to Form Corporations: A Concise Guide” back in 2010. In 2014 (four years later!), that page still brings thousands of visitors each month to the domain. It’s one of the top pages for Grasshopper.com. Once your site is running smooth, filled to the brim with informative, readable, and useful content, then the traffic will come pouring in. Those resources can last on your site for a long time, speaking to your target audience long after they’re published. (That doesn’t mean you can sit back and relax. Google and other search engines are always changing their algorithms. Google LOVES fresh, recent content).
You Can Become an Authority via Hyper-targeted Content
One of the best ways to prove your chops is to come across as an authority. If everyone on the web thinks you have the absolute best content for your industry, then they’ll send people to you. Not only will your content speak to these readers, but they’ll trust you. When it’s time to jump in and buy your product, they’ll come calling. Who’s killing it with this strategy? Birchbox. Birchbox’s product is a monthly box full of lifestyle and makeup samples, so all their content is hyper-targeted to people interested in beauty. Their blog posts not only talk about the best eyebrow pencils, but also address issues in beauty as a whole, such as how many haircuts women are allowed to have in North Korea. What’s included in Birchbox’s content strategy?
- Advice on how to use products
- Videos for completing tricky beauty techniques
- Examples of beauty trends from around the world
- Photos and examples of popular products
Increasing Customer Engagement and Relationship Building
Think creating content is just for search engines? Think again. The reason that companies put out content (and, in turn, increase visibility in search results) is ultimately to help, entice, and charm their prospective and current customers. So, by putting out great content, you’re going to build a community of like-minded individuals who are committed to the same things. The best example of this is Runkeeper, a fitness tracking app. RunKeeper’s Instagram photos, blog articles, and tweets get hundred of comments from those interested in gaining insight on training. RunKeeper’s weekly Twitter chat hosts an open exchange of ideas. When it comes time for these people to buy or recommend a fitness tracking app, they say “RunKeeper is the way to go.”
It Lasts a Helluva Lot Longer than an Ad Campaign
Ad campaigns are great for exposing your business to a new audience– I’m not knocking them– but they only last so long. If you promote a tweet, it can suck your money down the drain. It’s the same with Pay-Per-Click ads on Google. Plus, ads see substantially less clicks than organic results. These results are clicked by a margin of 94 percent. That means a searcher will click a natural result 94% of the time, and an ad only 6 percent. Pretty dismal, right? All in all, you’re better off dedicating your efforts to SEO than funneling all your money towards ad campaigns. The More Visibility, The More Clicks, The More Links… The more visibility you have online, the better your business will do. If you want to grow, you want more clicks and more links. There are a ton of factors that will help you rank at the tippity top of a search result– links from other sites, a fast and responsive site of your own, healthy social media sharing– but it starts with an understanding that SEO is the ticket to growth. Search isn’t going anywhere, so jump on the train. Grow your business with SEO.