If you’re a small business owner, you’ve probably heard that most of the small businesses don’t survive the first three years. What’s missing in all those businesses that fail? Can it be a vision for the long-term and a strategy backing up that vision? SEO should definitely be in the mix of that long-term strategy. Why? Let’s see:
The reason why small businesses opt for SEO over Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Ads or other types of paid advertisement is the cost. Organic search is extremely cost effective and has an impeccable ROI. When we talk about the cost effectiveness, we need to make something clear, though. Your initial investment for SEO or PPC may be the same, or even SEO efforts may cost more. But, SEO efforts of today are going to bring clients for you today and tomorrow while PPC efforts of today are going to bring clients only today. So SEO’s long-term influence makes it a more cost-effective solution.
We know that as a small business owner, especially when you’re starting the funds are always tight. If your marketing strategy depends on PPC, they will stay tight and probably an unexpected expenditure will be the beginning of the end since you’ll start having problems with cash flow. But if you invest in SEO, then you’ll be on the path to growing your business.
Basically, SEO is the word of mouth of the internet age.
2. SEO is highly effective
The reason why organic search is more effective is because the customer is already looking for you. They have already set their minds to use your services or purchase your goods when they come looking for you via search queries. When you put up an ad in the local paper, most of the people will just ignore it since they are not interested. The question remains, will your clients find you when they look for you?
Small business SEO ranks second after word of mouth. Here are some stats:
- 44% of online shoppers will begin the buying process on Google (or any other search engine)
- 59% of consumers use Google every month to look for reputable local business.
- Every month, there are 59 billion searches on Google.
- 61% of internet users use Google to look for products and other purchases
Do you see how effective SEO can be? Organic search takes the gold when it comes to web traffic and conversion. As search volumes and the diversity of keywords people use in search queries increase, the need for a relevant SEO strategy has become more important.
3. SEO has long-term effects
When it comes to paid options, your website’s visibility will be tied to your budget. (You get what you pay for, sorry.) As soon as you stop paying, you will no longer appear in those channels. (Oops, you could easily slip back to page 10, by the way). You need to keep spending a considerable part of your marketing budget just to be on page 1 of Google which will cut your profit margins. Organic search is long term. You only need one currency to trade in the SEO market: consistency. Over time, your brand’s presence, visibility, and website traffic will increase. In fact, you will do better than your rich competitors who like to use shortcuts.
4. Better quality leads
SEO results in better quality leads. In fact, stats have it that organic search leads have a 14.6% close rate (For PPC this rate goes to 1.7%, so it’s like bringing a knife to a gunfight). The simple concept here is making yourself available when clients are looking for you. Clearly, people are not looking for you on TV or radio. Do you think they are anxious to see your ad as they watch their favorite program? Organic search allows you to access YOUR audience without interrupting them. It’s not a hard-sell method, but just being at the right time, at the right place (At least your customers are going to think that way.)
5. Brand image
Since organic search is based on keywords and keyword phrases, you can stay at #1 on Google for a very long time. (As long as you are implementing your SEO strategy). Showing up higher in the search results gives your brand a good image. It tells people that you’re the expert on this subject, you have the credibility, not someone who has a rich investor who can buy ads. A better reputation means more business. Isn’t that what we’ve been all looking for?
All in all, SEO is crucial for small businesses. Organic search has many benefits, ranging from user-friendliness, longevity, higher ROI, and high-quality leads. The question remains, will your clients find you when they come searching? If you’re not sure, let us start with a free SEO audit of your website. If you are more like a DIY person, you can improve your on-page SEO yourself by following our 8-step SEO plan.