Why Companies Should Spend Money on SEO
SEO has always been one of those hazy areas where companies know that it is critical to driving traffic to their websites but where it is also unclear as to how much money should be spent on optimization, if any at all. At one time, it’s true that it wasn’t actually all that necessary to spend on search engine optimization – and the goals of SEO were merely more traffic through higher rankings. That said, there weren’t nearly as many websites as there are today and the search engine algorithms, particularly from Google, were not nearly as complex.
On May 22, 2013, high quality SEO went from being important to vital when Google implemented its Penguin update and then again later that year with the Panda update. The impact of that algorithm change was largest on small businesses.
The reason is that they were the ones who were most likely to have implemented their own search engine optimization strategies (if any at all) or to have used lower quality SEO services because they didn’t realize that these efforts were deserving of a higher priority from the marketing budget. Suddenly, webmasters, small businesses and marketers were forced to understand that SEO isn’t something to be taken lightly.
The trend toward increasing importance to SEO is only growing with “mobile-geddon”. A large majority of consumers now have smartphones and many also have tablets. Moreover, they are using those devices regularly to look up businesses – particularly local businesses – in order to find their locations, what products and services they offer, their hours and other relevant information. Since this has essentially replaced the use of a phone book or other form of traditional directory, if businesses want to exist to local customers, they require SEO to ensure that they will be found.
If you have ever debated the importance of spending money on good quality SEO, consider the following reasons that you will want to change your tune:
- Google said so – Google has made it clear that they won’t tolerate old-school SEO tactics that involved stuffing keywords into articles, spinning different versions of the same content, bookmarking excessively, paid linking, sparse or duplicate content and others. Quality is key and that’s all there is to it. Though this warning from Google is obviously self-serving, it is important to realize that when it comes to search engine results, they really do hold all the cards.
- It prepares you for the future – The low quality aforementioned SEO techniques were what caused massive harm to businesses when Google changed its algorithm to weed out that content. Therefore, if you focus on high quality, reputable, relevant search engine optimization, it will help you to avoid the expenses of having to recover from whatever updates Google implements in the future. They want a focus on quality and relevance, so you’ll already have it in place.
- It provides you with a full site content audit – Proper SEO implementation takes the opportunity to go over every bit of site content from top to bottom to ensure that everything is up to date, relevant, appealing and accurate.
- It turns your content into effective marketing – When your SEO has been properly implemented, it will work not only to drive organic traffic directly to your business, but it will also ensure that your content will be designed in a way that will also function as effective marketing. Instead of having a primary focus on keywords (as opposed to the human reader), not having enough content to inform visitors or reading like a never-ending ad, high quality SEO converts website content into something that will bring visitors to the site in the first place and then engage them once they have arrived and ultimately generate leads.
- It pays for itself – The data has never stopped showing that SEO remains a solid investment because the ROI is solid. This means that the cheapest search engine optimization vendor is not necessarily the best one. You may invest a little more in your content and strategy, but it will pay off through high ROI activity.
Done well, SEO can have a considerable impact on your bottom line when you factor in conversion optimization. SEO does not and should not only be about higher rankings and more traffic. Once the research is set and you know what your prospects are looking for – you can create well-optimized pages that will generate leads. Conversion optimization and SEO genuinely complement each other in these ways –
Over the last few years SEO has stepped out of its childhood and is now an adolescent that is becoming an important contributor in the digital world. As Google continues its algorithm changes, it is clear that it is the websites that have honored the requirement to keep up with higher quality SEO will reap the rewards. Though it may be more complex and it may come at a higher initial cost to execute, its ROI remains high, particularly when it is designed for conversions and lead generation. When it all comes down to it – that return on investment is the most important figure worth considering.