Is SEO Still Important for Small Businesses in 2018?
The short answer is a clear undeniable yes. SEO is crucial. The long answer, you might ask?
But First, What is SEO?
I’m going to keep this short and sweet. Although SEO itself can get tricky and messy, what it is is pretty simple.
According to Wikipedia, SEO is “the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results” aka organic search. SEO is a subsection of SEM (search engine marketing) which includes paid results.
Now translate that to something you actually care about and understand.
SEO (search engine optimization) at its core is the process of optimizing your content and web pages so that show up near the top or at the top of search engines for specific searches.
So for example, if you’re searching for “Small business digital marketing services” the web pages with the best SEO around that content and those keywords should be showing up first. The process that is SEO is what makes that happen and gives Google the value it has.
Now back to the original question.
Reason #1 Why SEO is Important for Small Businesses – Gaining Leads
Let’s get real here. All the rest of this post focuses on some excellent reasons why SEO is still important for small business in 2018. But this is the king of them all! The whole reason for marketing and sales in the first place is to obtain leads and then convert them into customers, right?
Right, and SEO gives you the optimal reach to your specific target customers. Did you know that over 90% of online experiences start with a search engine! There’s no way around it in 2018. If your web presence isn’t strong enough you will be flushed out. People unconsciously trust search engines and truly believe that what shows up at the top must be the best. The first 5 results in Google get 67% of the clicks. 91% of searchers do not go past the first page and I can guarantee you less than 50% go past page 2 or 3.
With that being said, if you are not at least showing on the first page you are missing out on over 90% of customers or leads you could have. Just think about that for a second. If you are only getting 10% of your total market looking for your services because you are not on the first page. Now boost yourself to the first page or number 1 on Google. That means that now 90% of people are seeing your business. That’s 9 times as many people! Imagine if your leads, customers, or profits increased by 9 times what they are today. This is what it would look like.
Or even this…
And I’m dead serious. A solid small business SEO strategy can truly make or break your profits. It can change you from the shlub walking around the town to the millionaire that you always dreamed. Now it doesn’t happen overnight! But still, it is possible.
Reason #2 Why SEO is Important for Small Businesses – Brand Exposure
SEO gives you the optimal potential for exposure. Think about it, you’re a small business. Most likely not too many people are familiar with your brand. You don’t have the brand awareness that a large corporation does such as Apple, McDonald’s, Nike, etc. These means that customers are unlikely to spot your logo and name and know exactly what you do or who you are.
Being at the top of Google and Bing rankings, however, does allow you to start building that brand awareness. Customers looking for your service will notice you consistently showing up for their searches related to your industry. Thus creating a quality brand of your company in their mind. To a normal searcher, the more you show up near the top of rankings the more likely you are to be perceived as high quality and trustworthy. For a bad company with bad service isn’t going to consistently rank high in searches. (Obviously bad companies can rank high, but for the most part, Google is good at weeding them out. ?)
Google with untruthful companies be like….
Reason #3 Why SEO is Important for Small Businesses – Customer Insights
This more or less has to do with the keywords that you are ranking for.
But through an SEO optimized website, keywords, and Google campaigns you should be gaining more visitors, and credibility on the interwebs.
With Google Analytics installed you can then track valuable information about your customers. You will be able to see what services and content of yours are bringing the most traffic and converting to customers. All while you obtain plenty of other useful personal information. You can also see what keywords they were searching for and how they ended finding you. These both will allow you to optimize your content, marketing, services, and products around what your customer is searching for without them even telling you! ?
Not only can your small business obtain those valuable insights through SEO and Google Analytics, but also loads of other helpful information. This includes the technology they are using, browser, geographical location, time spent on the site, age, when they are active, and so much more! Allowing your business or startup to optimize your marketing campaigns and overall digital marketing strategy (web design, social media, paid ads, etc.) around your most valuable customer segments. ? Yes, you can track your most valuable customers as well. Aka which are converting to leads the most and spending the most money with you. So let’s give a shout out to Google Analytics on this one! ?
Reason #4 Why SEO is Important for Small Businesses – ROI (Return on Investment) aka the $$$$
The great part about a good small business SEO strategy is that you don’t have to spend a single dime if you want to. It just takes time. Now I know time is the most valuable resource we all have. But I can guarantee that time you spend in SEO will greatly make up for it in profits and lead generation.
Now tracking SEO ROI can be a tricky thing. But with some beautiful tools like Google Analytics, it can be done and possibly even a breeze. Below is a good podcast on how to track SEO ROI if you’re interested. Also here is a good link to read up about SEO ROI, both brought to you by Neil Patel. It may be a bit harder than paid ads or PPC or other digital marketing channels but is totally possible.
When comparing the ROI of SEO versus PPC you can see that an average paid ads campaign can roughly get a click-through rate (CTR) of about 5-10%. That’s if that campaign is fantastic, which we’ve done before with previous clients. But think back to reason one when I stated 67% of clicks go to the top 5 rankers on Google. If you are sitting in the top 3 or 5, the average CTR could be getting you upwards of 30-40%. That’s 4 to 8 times as good! ? A more average and realistic number is around 20% or so, which is still 2 to 4 times as good as a pay per click campaign.
The best part? Like I said before you aren’t paying for every click. Whereas with social media ads, google ads, etc. you are paying a small to medium size few everytime someone visits your website. Here you are just sitting back and raking in the visits. If your website is completely optimized to convert visits into leads and leads into paying customers, you can sit back and watch the money roll in! If your website isn’t, definitely contact us we might know a person or two that can help out. ?
Reason #5 Why SEO is Important for Small Businesses – SEO Isn’t Going Away
SEO is here to stay people. As long as the internet is around people will be searching and finding the information they need through one search engine or another. The companies that invested in SEO long ago, when people thought it would die down. They are now raking in the dividends and getting clicks, visitors, leads, and paying customers absolutely free.
Some SEO cold hard facts:
- 91% of adults use search engines to find information on the web
- 65% of people see online search as the most trusted source of information about people and companies. That’s a higher level of trust than any other source
- I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again! 93% of searchers never go past the first page, instead using only the first 10 search results to form their impression
- 70-80% of users ignore the paid ads, focusing on the organic results
- A study by Outbrain shows that search is the #1 driver of traffic to content sites, beating social media by more than 300%
- Search directly drove 25% of all online U.S. device purchases in 2010 (taking a wild guess that that’s gone up!)
- Every month there are more than 10.3 billion Google searches, with 78% of U.S. Internet users researching products and services online
And this doesn’t even cover it all. Just search facts about SEO and you’ll quickly see how it can make or break your small business or business of any size for that matter. But that should be enough stats and juice for you to realize that you need to start your SEO strategy today. The best day was to start yesterday, the second best day is today!
Don’t be left in the dust and get running on your SEO now!
Running to optimize your website like… ??♀️
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a part of something called search engine marketing (SEM) which includes paid search ads. SEO is basically the process of optimizing your online content to show up higher or at the top of search results.
SEO could possibly be the most important factor in your digital marketing arsenal for these 5 reasons:
Gaining visibility, reach, and ultimately leads
- 91% of people never scroll past the first page
- 67% of searchers click on the top 5 results
- If you reached the top result, you could increase your traffic 9 times for that search
- Showing up top consistently helps distinguish you from competition
- Repeatedly seeing your name/brand creates a persona of high quality and trust
- Plain and simple, more people are seeing your name/brand
Gaining Customer Insights
- Use Google Analytics to find out information about your visitors
- This information tells you what is bringing in paying customers without asking or questioning
- Can optimize your digital marketing strategy, services, and content around what your customers’ interests are and what they are searching for
- Takes the guesswork out of figure out customer personas
The best ROI
- You don’t have to pay a single penny to have great SEO
- It just takes patience and time
- Paid ads average 5-10% click-through rate while the top organic result can average up to 30-40%
SEO isn’t going away
- It’s here for the long haul so either jump on now or be left in the dust
- Companies that invested earlier are now receiving their dividends of free clicks and visitors
- Get started today, your future self will thank you
*None of the facts in this are owned or founded by Webspearmint. Follow links for original source and references.
Not Sure How to Get Started?
Contact us at Webspearmint. We may know a few people that could lead in the right direction. ? We’ve helped many small businesses like yours reach the first page and beyond on Google, Bing, etc. And we would love to work with you and figure out your digital marketing needs. ?
But what’s the catch? There is none. We are a small digital marketing agency looking to help small business where they need it the most! We’re here so you don’t have to stress about digital marketing. Freeing you up to do what you do best. ?
As you can tell by reading, SEO is extremely important. So what we promise is to not sell you on anything, but give you actionable and tactical digital marketing advice to help your business. We’ll tell you exactly what we would do to help out and the rest is up to you. So what’s there to lose!
Thank you for reading, we look forward to hearing from you! ?