The subject of SEO is a relatively contentious issue — especially among businesses new to the internet.
For one, most business owners have had their fingers burnt by so-called “SEO experts” who failed to deliver on their promise. Secondly, some online entrepreneurs have a vague understanding of it, so their efforts haven’t worked for them. Thirdly, other business owners think it is too expensive a strategy to commit to.
With all these issues, one is tempted to abandon SEO altogether.
As a business owner, if you’re reading this piece and thinking along the same lines, you’re making a big mistake, and I’ll tell you why.
According to a recent data analysis from Borrell Associates, SEO expenditure is expected to hit the $80 billion mark by 2020. That’s a remarkable increase from the $65 billion records spent using SEO expert services.
Surely, if businesses are willing to spend more on SEO services every year, it must work — right? Yes, and I’m going to elaborate in detail why your business needs SEO in 2019.
1. It Helps to Build an Intimate Relationship with Customers
The overarching goal of SEO is to make sure your customers can easily find you on search engines. So, it’s easy to think your SEO efforts are for search engines — not the end user.
However, a closer look at the factors that can influence your ranking in SERPs is tailored to give your customers a better experience doing business with you. All things considered.
For example, white-hat SEO techniques encourage useful and reliable content, mobile optimization, internal links, interactive user interface etc. All these techniques work together to give your customers an overall quality experience surfing the web, across all platforms and devices.
Think about it, if customers can always trust you to deliver content that is not only useful but also easy to access, they’ll become some of the most vocal advocates for your products or services. Customers who are loyal to your business could be some of the biggest sales drivers. You’ll also want them in your corner when you face a negative review either online or offline.
2. It Helps in Lead Generation and Conversions
Your business’ visibility will increase when you embrace SEO as a core strategy. That’s because search engines will look favorably on your site and rank it high in SERPs for the optimized keywords. So, when users do a search using those keywords, your website is right there at the top of the pile.
It’s like locating your business at a three-way intersection of a popular street. More customers are going to swing by than if you had located it in the middle of a field outside the city. Ranking high in search engines means more searchers are going to click through to your site
According to an Advanced Web ranking study, the click-through-rate (CTR) for top position ranking is 30%. This result is in stark contrast with 10% CTR for a third position ranking, and it continues to tail-off as you move further down the page.
In essence, you’re guaranteed traffic once you can rank number 1 for your keywords. But that’s just the beginning. Getting lots of traffic doesn’t necessarily translate to more conversions, so don’t let SEO get in the way of actually doing your homework.
You have to deliver content that drive engagement, builds trust, and promote conversions. To do that, you’ll need a web-form that captures a means to follow-up on your leads. It could be a phone number or email.
3. It Opens Up New Opportunities for Business
If you often wonder whether SEO is worth the effort or it’s just a waste of time and money, you’re not alone. Optimising your site takes hard work, money, and most importantly, it takes time to take effect.
Some business owners give up when their big break is just around the corner and end up undoing all the previous work. I can assure you that ranking your business to the top spot in search engine results is worth the effort. Many previously unknown businesses have shot to limelight using this strategy.
You never really know who is looking at your content and what opportunities they can open to your business. Take the story of Jeff Bullas for example; he got a chance to partner in a startup in New-Zealand. That’s after a millionaire found his online content and liked his ideas.
There are countless other stories like this where new opportunities arise just by increasing your visibility. You can be invited to interviews, talk-shows etc. where you get the chance to exercise your expertise.
Also, you can be asked for collaboration on new projects, mentor-ship requests etc. Some of these opportunities will help you to blow your competition out of the water completely.
4. It Levels Out the Playing Field
With the recent increase in mobile and voice search, local SEO has taken center stage. This has leveled out the playing field for both major and small-time players across several niches. One of the most outstanding developments in search is Google’s “Find places near me”.
Search engine algorithms have developed over the years and are getting better at understanding user intent. For instance, the same search query by users brings different search results, and this difference depends on location.
For example, if you are a chef who runs a local restaurant, a user searching for a place to eat within your neighborhood will not be served with results of a restaurant located on the other side of town simply because it’s a household name.
This has opened up a significant opportunity for local business to try and wrestle their share of the market off the big multinational companies.
So, if you’re a local business, there is absolutely no reason why you should neglect optimising your business for search, especially local SEO. All you have to do is ensure your business is listed on google, provide your contact information and optimise your content for voice-search.
When your customers use the personal assistant of their choice, you’re right there to direct them to your business.
Are you ready to start ranking?
You definitely should start implementing SEO strategies for your business. Even if you have had a love-hate relationship with a previous SEO consultant, it’s still worth a shot!
You can also try hiring a new, reliable SEO expert if you can’t trust the one you hired. And remember, SEO is a long-term marketing strategy. It takes a while for the results to kick in However, SEO done the right way is a gift — that keeps on giving for years to come.
Sandeep Mehta is a digital marketing and SEO expert. He has performed growth hacking techniques for his clients to generate more traffic on website. He has also shared his experience on many high authority websites.