How important is search engine optimization (SEO)? Well, let’s just say if you are not leveraging SEO to build your business, you are leaving money on the table.
That’s not an overstatement. The number of SEO benefits is astounding and every business needs to invest in it.
When you optimize your website for maximum free traffic from search engines like Google, you are setting the foundation for long term success. Successful SEO campaigns deliver consistent targeted traffic that is already interested in the solutions your company provides.
So what are these SEO advantages for your business? And how can they help you beat your competition, even if you’re not sure what other small business metrics to be measuring?
Look no further than this comprehensive list and get your business ranked in no time.
1. SEO Delivers Targeted Search Traffic
Traffic from search engines delivers the best traffic available online. That’s because people are searching online for an answer or solution that your company provides to address their problem.
To that end, you can attract traffic to your business, which is sometimes referred to as inbound marketing. You don’t need to advertise on other platforms and attempt to convince people to come to your website (outbound marketing). Traffic from search engines is already interested in your offerings. Easy peasy, right?
2. SEO Provides High Return on Investment (ROI)
One of the biggest advantages of search engine optimization is that once you have a page ranking well on Google, it will continue to bring traffic to your site. You’ll receive a steady flow of traffic, around the clock, for as long as Google considers that page to be one of the best for a particular keyword phrase.
It may cost you money for an SEO professional to help you get a top-ranked page, but that page can potentially continue to deliver results for years to come.
3. SEO Delivers a Quality User Experience
You may know about optimizing your web pages for keyword phrases you want to rank for. But SEO is so much more than that today.
In order for SEO to be effective, business owners must make their sites faster and user-friendly. Sites need to be clean and free from clutter.
Business owners also need to structure their sites wisely, so that users can find what they want quickly. That means customers can easily find your products and services and make a purchase.
4. SEO Builds Brand Awareness
SEO also helps your business build brand awareness with higher rankings. When your site starts appearing on the first page of the search engine results pages (SERPs), potential customers start to view your site as trustworthy. That’s because most top-ranking sites have a strong web presence.
5. Local SEO Increases Sales
As many as 3.7 billion people access the internet on their mobile devices. With the surge of people searching the web on the go, local SEO is an integral part of the success of small and medium-sized businesses.
Local SEO concentrates on making your site visible to those in your surrounding area. To that end, 18% of local smartphone searches lead to a sale within one day while only 7% of non-local searches lead to a sale.
SEO professionals optimize your site for local recognition, which usually includes local citations and backlinks. They also create a Google My Business listing so your site shows up on maps searches.
Reviews are particularly important for driving local customers to your business. Focus on getting positive reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp, Home Advisors and others that relate to your business.
6. SEO Is Inexpensive
Yes, SEO is not free. There is a cost for most worthwhile endeavors, right? However, SEO is fairly cheap when you look at the big picture.
What SEO can do to lift a brand’s awareness and their bottom line is tremendous, especially when compared to the meager cost of professional SEO work.
It’s important to note, SEO is a quantifiable business investment. Your successful SEO campaigns should deliver fruit for years. And, like a good investment, the dividends can compound for even greater success the more you reinvest in it.
7. SEO Beats Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
With SEO, there’s no additional cost for the traffic you receive from search engines. Compare that to PPC advertising, which charges your business every time a user clicks on one of your ads, which can get expensive very quickly.
The click-through rate for organic search results is considerably stronger than PPC ads. Why? Because organic search results are more trusted.
The SEO advantage is that you are likely to receive more traffic than your competitors who are paying money to advertise for the same keywords.
8. SEO Helps Small Business Beat Larger Competitors
If you run a small business with a limited marketing budget, you may find it challenging to compete with larger competitors through paid advertising. With PPC ads, the one with the most money usually wins.
However, SEO is a great equalizer. If you employ a sound SEO strategy, you may be able to beat the competition in the SERPs. Let your big competition spend their money on advertising, while you rely on effective SEO campaigns to gain consistent traffic and customers.
Remember, if your competition ever stops spending on advertising, their traffic will immediately disappear. Meanwhile, you can continue to get traffic and results for the long term because of your investment in SEO.
Businesses Who Understand SEO Advantages Win
The 8 SEO advantages listed above are just the tip of the iceberg. The benefits of SEO are too many to mention in this space. But if you learn one thing, understand that search engine traffic is more responsive, less expensive, and lasts for the long term.
We’re not saying ignore pay-per-click advertising altogether. PPC has its place.
Many experts even recommend that new sites start a small PPC campaign while their SEO efforts ramp up. As your site begins to deliver more organic search traffic, then you can scale back your paid advertising, or stop it altogether.
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