Should you be one of those domain or business owners who holds a basic grasp of search engine optimisation (SEO), you probably have a reasonable understanding of the inherent benefits included.
- Rankings are boosted to increase visibility
- Costs and overheads are kept low
- Provides long-term viability online
- Creates significant brand awareness
- Allows for a genuine point of contact
- Adaptable to change in the business
Yet there are a number of other advantages that don’t receive the same amount of recognition. Here we will examine those details in greater depth to drive home the point that SEO must be central to any enterprise that holds a modicum degree of ambition.
Many of Your Competitors Are Bad At It
Right now in 2017 there are approximately one billion live websites on the Internet. That makes for one enormous haystack. Good luck finding your particular needle.
SEO is therefore imperative to drive brand awareness and garner the type of audience that your enterprise demands. This is a skill that online departments are investing more in, but the relevant knowledge is still taking time to adapt.
In that respect, ground can be gained quickly because many operations are educating themselves on the process. They might be hiring SEO specialists to accelerate their standing, yet a third party will not always be privy to the unique circumstances of that niche or marketplace.
By getting savvy now through implement clever SEO techniques, your domain can make the competitors appear second rate.
SEO Costs Can Be Shopped Around For
One of the disadvantages of the Internet is that there is so much choice out there, it is hard to see the wood from the trees. What is of real value and what should be avoided? The sheer size of options makes it an overwhelming experience.
The flipside of this scenario sees a high volume of competition where the power lies with the consumer. Google might hold many of the aces when it comes to SEO, yet their own Keyword Planner application will outline a series of options that can be altered on price.
Should you require a third party to gear your website or social media campaign to SEO demands, then the world is your oyster.
Consider any of the following freelancer options as a starting point:
Don’t ever just accept market price within SEO because a competitive advantage in this field does not require a significant outlay.
Traffic Garnered Through Simple Keyword Strategies
There is something in the SEO world known as “hidden ranks” that act as secret treasure in the optimising domain. Keywords will have rankings on search engines, although many marketers are working away blissfully unaware they even exist.
Many sites will want to stick to a tried and tested formula in an effort to boost the SERP (search engine rank page). The problem then occurs when everyone is using the same set of keywords, making it impossible to actually stand out from the crowd.
Keywords that are in the top 100 might easily be overlooked within a campaign or strategy, but they are out there waiting to be utilised. Given the right amount of promotion through the correct avenues, keywords that are discovered as part of the hidden ranks can score a plethora of organic traffic.
Run your niche through Keyword Tool and find out what terms you are missing out on this very minute.
Campaigns Are Always Flexible and Easily Altered
While the marketer has spent hours, days, weeks and months prepping for a static print advertisement campaign, an SEO launch can switch at the drop of a hat. Perhaps a product is no longer viable in one region or there is a last minute recall that will force thousands of delays.
Via the traditional method, this results in lost revenue with no way of reclaiming what was invested. For online optimisers, it is just a matter of editing the copy and getting the updated version to go live.
Flexibility is one of the truly great assets of SEO, something that is so hard to obtain in the domain of marketing.
Optimisers Become An Authority
Whether it be backlinking or internal linking, sites that are geared towards strong and healthy SEO performance become authorities in their respective niche. That will range from gardening supplies to dietary supplements, sports equipment or legal services – the same principles apply across the board.
Those of you who do hold a basic grasp of search engine optimisation will know that there is a basic correlation between ranking and traffic.
According to research conducted by Chitika, the top 10 hits for a search gleaned the following results:
- Rank 1: 32.5%
- Rank 2: 17.6%
- Rank 3: 11.4%
- Rank 4: 8.1%
- Rank 5: 6.1%
- Rank 6: 4.4%
- Rank 7: 3.5%
- Rank 8: 3.1%
- Rank 9: 2.6%
- Rank 10: 2.4%
After the first page, the visibility drops significantly.
What this generates is a system that is self-perpetuating. The higher the rank, the stronger the likelihood that other sites will backlink to your domain. This funnel of redirection creates authorities who benefit from the added exposure.
Put simply, those that score a podium finish (top three) can be considered authorities on a niche.
Eliminates Human Cost
Enlisting the help of a site like HubSpot can cut out plenty of the human costs involved in starting, designing an overseeing an SEO campaign.
There is a perception that much of the SEO work has to be micromanaged by different parties to take up a large portion of business hours within a given week. Yet the HubSpot platform alongside a social media software program like Hootsuite enables time constraints to be respected.
These sites understand that there is a finite amount of time for owners to dedicate to the field and channeling it through one dashboard cuts down on confusion and cost.
Measuring Metrics is Straightforward
Heading out to develop a flyer, billboard or poster can take hundreds of man-hours before the final product comes to fruition. That is just the starting step. Then you have to worry about how visible that design will be to the wider public.
This might appear on a freeway that has hundreds of thousands of drivers passing it by on a daily basis. But how effective is the cut-through? To what degree can you account for the return on investment (ROI) with a tactic that is essentially centered around the notion of brand awareness?
Analysing the performance of an online campaign through a search engine in comparison is a walk in the park. Data is delivered with immediacy and can take the form of a graph, a table or an in-depth report.
Google Analytics is widely considered to be on the cutting edge in this domain, outlining to the user in specifics where they are succeeding and where they can improve.
Engaging in the SEO field empowers the owner to discover how they are tracking in real time.
SEO Compliments Your Offline Marketing Efforts
The marketing online vs. offline debate is a ridiculous one to be had, because it is completely misplaced to begin with. There is no debate to be had as each method has its merits in the field of advertising.
What optimising search engine performance allows an enterprise to do it leverage what has already been gleaned in the real world. If there is a healthy subscription base to a newsletter or magazine, those followers can be contacted and incorporated online. The same can be said for posters, banners or print materials – scanning them into digital form and plugging through social media channels.
Traditional marketing methods still very much have their place, particularly for niches that are geared towards an older demographic. The trick is striking that balance and scoring well in SEO enables business owners to get the best of both worlds.
Social Media Visibility Counts For Double
There is an understanding out there in the business community that social media is a great engagement tool for the consumer base. Whereas the old directory used to be the go-to avenue for a potential customer, the majority of owners know that a presence on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Instagram is a must.
Yet what is often overlooked is the increase in organic traffic which is a metric that skyrockets SEO performance. This was not always the case but with social media naturally evolving into a one-stop-shop for users young and old, search engines recognise and respect clicks that are scored from these locations.
A Twitter handle or a Facebook page can now be seen as a genuine vehicle that is incorporated into a grander tapestry. They are not static modes of communication thanks to advances in SEO development.
Due to search engine optimisation being such a wide-ranging and vast exercise that overlaps with multiple platforms, there is no reason why building blocks cannot be put in place immediately. Of course there is a long process that will ensue and a framework that incorporates a campaign, but the advantages significantly outweigh the disadvantages with SEO.
There will be companies out there who see more currency and value via a short-term fix such as a pay-per-click option (PPC). That investment will see visibility increase straight away, but without the foundation of a healthy SEO strategy, that won’t create any lasting dividends.
What advantages have you discovered by implementing search engine optimisation tactics? Let us know in the comments section below to continue the conversation.
Lucas is the Managing Director and the Head of SEO Strategy at SEO Shark. He has over 15 years of experience in achieving SEO results for small and medium businesses as well as multinational and ASX-listed brands. He is also an author of multiple publications about digital marketing.