Chances are, you’re at least familiar with how your business can benefit from search engine optimization (SEO). Maybe you’ve even considered it in the past. After all, it increases the chance that a prospective customer finds you via an online search, and it’s an excellent tool for improving brand awareness. It’s also a great way to gain an edge over your competition. You may think that simply having a quality website and an active social media presence is enough, but nowadays, the extra effort goes a long way. If you’re thinking about switching up your marketing tactics and trying something new, here’s why your small business needs SEO.
Increased Web Traffic
One of the most important benefits of SEO is the bump in overall web traffic. Statistically, the enormous clicks on a search engine results page (SERP) go to the first few positions. You won’t get as many clicks if you’re not in the top positions. Searchers see the top positions on a results page as more authoritative and trustworthy. By targeting the right keywords and phrases, you’re essentially offering an answer to a user’s query. It’s a great way to provide an immediate solution to your customer base while also establishing the beginnings of a business relationship.
If you’ve ever been stumped by choosing a restaurant for dinner, chances are you’ve pulled up Google and typed in “food near me.” That modifier, near me, is essential. It makes your search location-specific. Several other modifiers have the same effect: zip codes, city and state names, and neighborhood information. By adding these modifiers to a search, users are delivered local information catered to them.
So how do businesses snag these coveted local results? If you guessed through SEO, you’re right. Local SEO efforts are an excellent way for small businesses to boost awareness and acquire new customers. After all, a large percentage of users who conduct a local search do so with the intent to visit a business that same day, and SEO helps stack the odds in your favor.
Using the previous restaurant metaphor, say you searched for nearby Italian food. As a user, are you more likely to choose the restaurant with a two-star review or even no reviews over the popular spot with four and a half stars and excellent diner testimony? Chances are, you answered the latter, and that’s why reviews are so critical.
Not only does the presence boost of SEO increases the visibility of your online reviews, but it also increases the likelihood of new customers leaving reviews. It’s a great way to establish trust amongst prospective customers quickly. Many searchers admit that they put a lot of stock into online reviews, so it’s up to you to make sure they get an immediate glimpse at your business’s reputation.
A Better User Experience
Essentially, search engines can tell if your website provides a poor user experience, and Google especially emphasizes user experience when determining which sites rank higher than others. A search engine’s overall goal is to connect users with the information they’re seeking as quickly as possible with as few total clicks. That’s why Google now offers featured snippets that most accurately reflect the answer to a user’s query.
If you’re optimizing your website for search, you’re optimizing it for user experience. By creating visible breadcrumbs throughout your site, incorporating contact forms, pushing relevant information to the forefront, and making your site easier to navigate, you’re boosting your credibility in the eyes of your users as well as in the eyes of search engines. It’s truly a win-win scenario.
SEO is typically much more affordable than paid search, social advertising, and developing a solid social media presence. Whereas many agencies will charge you a management fee and the added costs of any of your ads, SEO is often a flat monthly fee that doesn’t see much change. It’s an excellent way for a budget-conscious business owners to amp up their digital marketing efforts without stretching their bank accounts too thin.
It’s easier to justify if you think of it as less of a marketing cost and more of an investment in the health of your business. After all, SEO provides numerous benefits and even leads to higher conversion rates. It’s an ongoing, long-term strategy to increase your profits over time.
Every business should incorporate SEO into their marketing efforts to succeed genuinely in this day and age. It’ll help you secure search traffic over your competitors, it’ll ensure that your website is as user-friendly as it can be, and it boosts your brand awareness significantly. It’s a great way to make sure your name is the one on consumers’ lips. The experts at Digital Coast Marketing are well-versed in the ever-changing best practice of SEO and are ready to work with you to get your business the rankings you deserve. To learn more about their SEO program and their other marketing tactics, call 843-619-7704 today!