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We’ve all heard that SEO is powerful because it improves market visibility. Here’s eight reasons to invest in local seo services.
Yes, We Know about SEO
By this time, most of us have heard about SEO. We’ve heard that SEO is powerful because it increases your visibility in search engines. We’ve heard that increased search visibility usually boosts your website’s traffic, increases your phone calls, and ushers in more walk-in traffic to your business. Is any of this really true? In this article, we’ll learn about SEO and why SEO works, and we’ll look at eight different reasons your business needs to consider utilizing SEO.
Let’s Define SEO
Sure, we could go into complicated definitions. But, at its core, SEO is essentially a process that makes your website show up better in Google and other search engines. SEO usually involves making a variety of “inside tweaks” and “outside tweaks” to your website and other properties on the web. The combination of both of these work together to help your website become more “search-engine friendly,” which improves your website’s visibility online.
- Inside Tweaks – involves changing content on your homepage, adjusting titles and descriptions of pages, and publishing new content on your site.
- Outside Tweaks – involves publishing articles on a variety of other sites and linking back to your website.
Local SEO Services in Action
Now that you understand the basics behind SEO, have you ever wondered just why SEO works? Here’s a step-by-step breakdown:
- Showing Up in Searches: the SEO process makes your site show up in more searches on Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines.
- Increasing Search Visibility: As your site shows up for more search terms, this increases the search visibility of a website. Search visibility is an average of how many search terms (called keywords) your site “owns” in Google. The higher your search visibility, the better. Ultimately, you want your site to have a higher search visibility than your competitors do.
- More Site Visitors: as your search visibility increases, this leads to more and more visitors coming to your site.
- More Conversions: As more visitors come to your website, you have more chances that visitors will reach out and contact you. Whenever someone contacts you via your site, this is called a conversion.
- More Leads: as your site generates more and more conversions, your business gets more and more leads.
- More Sales: more leads means more chances to close potential customers and generate more sales.
- Snowball Effect: As your site’s search visibility increases, you’ll start seeing more and more people reaching out to you. This “snowball effect” will continue to grow as your site grows.
SEO is effective simply because the SEO process itself improves your website’s search visibility and conversions. SEO is powerful because it directly connects you with people who are searching for your product and service. SEO has the power to convert these searchers who have never heard about you (cold traffic) into real customers who actually grow your business!
8 Reasons Your Business Needs SEO
Now we’re starting to see why you would hire a firm to do local SEO services. But how do we know that SEO is actually a good investment for your business? Let’s look at eight reasons why your business should definitely consider investing in organic SEO.
Reason #1 – SEO Provides the Highest ROI
Did you know that SEO provides the best ROI vs all other forms of marketing? This 2013 State of Inbound Marketing article indicates that SEO, on average, generates 14.6% of leads. So, within the course of a month, if 100 people visit your site, about 15 people should convert (contact you).
Take a look at the graph to your right. In this graph, you’ll see that other forms of marketing produce such as telemarketing and blogs produce a lower ROI (7% and 9% respectively). Other forms of marketing such as direct mail or print advertising/direct mail produce an even lower ROI of 1.7%.
What? A 14.6% close rate with SEO and a 1.7% close rate with print advertising/direct mail? What an extreme difference! Now that you know the difference, where would you rather spend your money?
Reason #2 – SEO Increases Your Impact
Earlier we discussed search visibility. As the SEO process happens, your website gobbles up more of the “search market share.” Owning more of this digital market share means that your business gets more opportunities to capture more and more traffic to your site and convert more visitors into potential customers. Local SEO services are powerful because it multiplies your impact by getting your business and brand in front of targeted eyeballs.
Let’s look at some numbers. To the left is a hair studio client that we’ve been working for the past year. When we first started working together, their site had about 100 visitors per day and generated about 2 to 3 phone calls to their business per day. Two months into the process, their site was getting 500 visitors per day and generating 5 to 10 calls per day. Five months into the process, their web traffic increased to 1,000 visitors a day and the site was generating 10 to 15 phone calls per day. By examining these numbers, you can see that the increase of web traffic leads to more phone calls, emails, and walk-ins to their local business.
Reason #3 – SEO Drives Offline Sales
A study done by WebVisible/Nielsen in 2008 found that 86% of consumers use the Internet to find local businesses. Recently, this number has jumped up to 90%! This trend indicates that more and more sales are driven by customers first going to the web and doing research, learning about the brand, and then visiting the local business.
At the center of this opportunity, as with everything else in digital, is mobile. Stop for a moment and think about the smartphone revolution. Now, at any time, anyone with a smartphone can find local businesses, research new products they are interested in, and discover new services. What type of impact are we seeing? Last year, the use of mobile devices before or during in-store shopping trips influenced or helped to convert approximately $970 billion in sales, representing 28% of the total.
Reason #4 – SEO Builds Your Brand
Wikipedia describes a Brand as a “Name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.” But, Purely Branded says that brand is much more than that. “More than a logo, a brand lives and evolves in the minds and hearts of potential clients.” Branding becomes a fostered set of emotions and ideas that consumers associate with your company. Branding is vital if you want to stand out from the competition and have a unique identity that people clearly recognized and want to align themselves with.
How does SEO help your branding? SEO makes your company’s branding appear better, stronger, and more well-recognized within Google and other search engines. Whenever people enter search phrases in Google, when your company appears at the top of search results, your branding branding “makes the first touch” from a marketing perspective. Then, with the Second marketing touch, Third, Fourth, and so on, psychology takes over. People begin to believe that your company is the best and become more inclined to click to your site and learn more. SEO makes all this happen when your business appears in the first results of the search engine.
Reason #5 – SEO Builds Trust
Nowadays, most people start their research online before going into the store to potentially buy products or services. This study from 2013 indicates that 81% of consumers go online before heading out to the store. Interestingly enough, that number jumped from 61% to 81% from 2012 to 2013!
So, more and more people are first doing their research online. When someone does a search and “sees” your business at the top of Google, they also believe that your company is credible. The more that people believe your company is credible, the closer they are to a conversion.
It’s also important to realize that it’s not enough to just have your website at the top of Google. Your business needs to do more work to convert web traffic into real customers. In person, on your website, and over the phone, you must be able to get inside the heads of your potential customers. You must communicate with your potential customers in their language, feel their pain, and present them with a solution that diminishes the pain. The better you can do this, over and over, the more customers you’ll convert. Winning big means continuing to convert more and more potential clients into paying clients, on an ongoing basis.
Reason #6 – SEO Leverages Social Media
Is your business using Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media sites? SEO plays an important role in social media because the major search engines like Google look at how many and how often people are linking to your site from social sites.
According to Marketing Land, social media:
- Aids in public relations, as a distribution channel and a means of generating easy online buzz.
- Helps foster relationships, which in turn helps build links and improves rankings.
- Helps brands rank for their social networking profiles and receive greater visibility within Google and other search engines.
- Provides a form of social proof, giving greater credibility and trustworthiness to your content.
Search Engine Land reminds us that “SEO alone cannot help you reach your highest marketing potential.” The highest marketing potential happens when you combine social media, branding, split testing, and other marketing strategies into your overall SEO strategy. The combination of each individual element, as it strengthens and reinforces the others, will help your business grow exponentially over time.
Reason #7 – SEO Eliminates Your Competition
SEO is, by nature, very competitive. The websites at the top of a search list get the greater share of traffic. The companies in the top position have had to work hard to get to the top. The companies below that number one position are constantly working to achieve the top position. It’s an endless game!
In SEO, one of the most exciting things happens when your website moves up and pushes your competitor out of the top position in a search. Now, instead of seeing your competition, people searching actually see your company, your brand, your website, and your offerings. This is the moment when all of your hard work begins paying off because people start to reach out to you!
Reason #8 – SEO Makes Your Website Produce Leads
On the Internet, your website is your “digital calling card” because it is s the first point of contact that anyone has with your company. Once your website is set up correctly, local SEO services are so effective because it brings people to your site. Once they’re there, you can start focusing on converting that traffic into more leads for your business.
What if people visit your website but don’t end up contacting you? In situations like this, you’ll need to hire someone to do conversion optimization, such as making design and copy changes on your site so that it can generate more leads.
Your Business Needs Local SEO Services
Can you see now why SEO is so much more powerful? SEO directly connects people who are searching for your product or service with you! SEO provides the highest ROI because it helps your website produce more leads for your business. SEO is powerful because it builds your brand, increases trust, and drives offline sales. SEO leverages social media in your favor and reduces your competition.
The final question is this: Are you doing SEO for your business? If not, reach out to an SEO company that can help!