As a small business owner, you’ve probably heard a thing or two about search engine optimization (SEO). However, if you’re wondering about the benefits of SEO for your company, we’re willing to bet you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon just yet, and that means you’re probably missing the boat.
Believe us, we get it. SEO isn’t exciting and it’s not easy to understand a business owner who has better things to do with his or her time (like run your business) than learn how to please the Google Gods.
We understand, but you may want to consider: If you haven’t incorporated a productive SEO campaign in your marketing plans, you are very likely missing out on some very appealing results. Most small business experts agree that search engine optimization is now considered a necessary part of any successful business and if you haven’t given it a try yet, it’s time you take a serious look at it.
In case you’re skeptical and are concerned about the expense of implementing SEO, here are 9 benefits of SEO for small businesses you may not have considered.
1. SEO Makes Your Website More User-Friendly
First and foremost, search engines are looking for websites that make it easy for their visitors to find what they want and that give them useful, valuable information. SEO, in the form of relevant content, photos, videos, ease of navigation, and a mobile-friendly website, helps do all of that.
When your visitors are happy and finding what they want, they stay on your site longer, produce more clicks, are more apt to recognize your brand, create more leads, and are more likely to become paying customers.
2. You’ll Keep Up with the Competition
One of the most important aspects of running a successful business is keeping up with or, if you’re working at it, staying one step ahead of the competition. The reality is, your competitors are probably already using SEO to draw customers you’re missing.
Look, running a business is a lot like running a race. It’s a race to reach your customers first. It’s a race to make more money than the competition. It’s a race to make it to the top. If you’re not doing SEO for your company, your competition will leave you in the dust.
3. SEO Helps Move Your Website to the Top of the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages)
Did you know that less than 10 percent of search engine traffic makes it past the first page? That means if your website doesn’t land on the first page of a search engine result page (SERP), your customers are highly unlikely to find you.
In addition to that, the higher your site comes up on the first page the more visitors you will get. In fact, on average position #1 in Google search results will bring you 3 X more website visits than position #3, 7 X more than position #6, and 15 X more than position #10. Huge differences, right?
Using proper SEO practices helps move your website up through the rankings to the first page and as high on the first page as possible, so people searching for what you have to offer can find you.
4. A Good SEO Campaign Ensures More Visits to Your Website
Because your site ranks high in the SERPs, there’s a virtual guarantee of more visitors to your website and more new prospective customers as long as you maintain your SEO campaign. The longer your site remains at the top of the search engines, the more your customers recognize and trust you and the more likely they are to close the deal with you rather than a competitor who ranks lower.
5. Local SEO Encourages People to Visit Your Physical Location
Studies show that a whopping 81 percent of people will search online for what they want before heading out to visit the physical store. For example, someone visiting New York may do an online search for “best Italian restaurants in New York.” Upon browsing the results and making his top choice, the traveler then visits the restaurant and becomes their customer.
6. Top Ranking Makes You More Credible in Your Customers’ Eyes
We’ve already established that a good SEO campaign will move your website to the top of the SERPs. Not only does this make it easier for everyone to find you, but it also makes you appear more credible. When your website shows up in the first, second, and third spots in an online search, it gives the browser the idea that you’ve probably been around for a long time and that you’re top in your niche.
Customers tend to view those companies that rank low in the SERPs as inexperienced or financially-incapable of doing what it takes to boost their sites in search engine results.
7. SEO Builds Brand Awareness
One of the key aspects of promoting any product is brand awareness. If people don’t know who you are, they won’t be able to find you nor will they buy from you. Implementing proper SEO practices pushes your brand to the top of the rankings, resulting in more exposure for your brand. More people click through to your website, which in turn, results in better brand awareness.
The longer you use SEO, the longer your website remains at the top of the SERPs. This kind of exposure is priceless in terms of making a big name for your brand.
8. SEO Helps Create a Mobile-Friendly Atmosphere for Your Visitors
A mobile-friendly website has a big impact on how Google ranks it. People use many different types of devices to access the Internet, and as such, your website must be easily viewable on many different screens. Google now actually ranks sites higher that work well on mobile devices, primarily tablets and smart phones. Google recommends “responsive design” websites to provide the ideal mobile friendly experience for users.
Google is all about the user experience, and a good SEO campaign is designed to ensure your website delivers a user-friendly experience no matter what device your customers are using to view it.
9. SEO is an Investment in Your Business
As cheesy as it sounds, we’ll just say it. SEO is an investment in your business – now and for the future. While a good SEO campaign can be expensive, no business that hopes to hang around for the long-term can survive without it.
History shows that SEO delivers more leads, better brand awareness, and higher ROI than other alternatives such as Pay Per Click advertising. In fact, it often delivers more conversions than any other type of marketing because the traffic you get from SEO is highly targeted. The people that come to your website through an online search are specifically looking for what you are offering.
Who can afford to ignore these kinds of results?
The Bottom Line
Search Engine Optimization is vital to the success of any business. Without it, you’re falling behind your competition and missing out on a huge opportunity to be the company everyone turns to when they need what you’re selling. Hopefully, the benefits listed above are enough to encourage you to get started with an SEO campaign of your own. Yes, it’s complicated and time-consuming, but don’t worry if you don’t have the time to do it all yourself. Give us a call today to discuss how our SEO services can help skyrocket your business to the top of the search engine results, bringing you ever prospective new customers, clients or patients.