Imagine installing billboards for your brand in Manchester when you want to target customers in Birmingham. Imagine paying for a TV advert during Loose Women when you need to talk to men under 21. Imagine paying for a print advert that contains fantastic copy - but hiding it on the back pages of the newspaper in a box the size of a postage stamp.
Ok, so it’s not exactly John Lennon, but you get the point. This sort of marketing practice is clearly misguided but, if we’re honest, so too is a lack of attention to organic SEO. If your business has traditionally been engaged in the world of print and broadcast marketing then you need to turn your attention to digital. Alternatively, if you’re already marketing digitally but haven’t really got to grips with organic SEO, it’s time to expand your horizons. By failing to focus on this, you’re at risk of looking every bit as flawed as the three examples above.
Here’s why it’s important for your marketing efforts:
It gets you noticed
Spreading awareness of your products and services is what marketing is all about and organic SEO helps with this. It’s important that customers find your website at, or near, the top of search engine results pages as the highest-placed results can attract a click-through rate that is 10 to 20x higher than the ninth or tenth item on the list. Ask yourself this: why would you scroll past seven or eight rival businesses offering the same services to come to yours? Organic SEO can help you to make sure that your output is geared towards taking and keeping the top spots for the keywords that matter to you and your customers.
It helps you to serve customer
Businesses have to keep up with modern smartphone-wielding digitally savvy customers and their behaviour and habits. People like to research purchases online – and like to be able to shop on their terms, whenever and wherever they want. You might think that you can just pay for ads to target these people online, as you would offline, but 95% of traffic is organic and the technology has, to an extent, placed the power in the hands of the consumer. Smart SEO allows you to analyse and predict the habits of customers, helping you when it comes to creating marketing material backed up by data.
It underpins everything else you do
With reference to the last point, organic SEO could and should underpin the rest of your efforts. By knowing which keywords to target, having a website with no technical flaws or issues, and being aware of what is needed to overcome online competitors, you’re in a great position to be able to deliver the most relevant content and build valuable links that will engage readers and, as a result, attract and convert paying customers. Trying to go ahead with all of this without considering SEO is the equivalent of attempting to run before you can walk – leave out this all-important first step and you’ll miss out on a massive opportunity.
It’s not just about technical IT
SEO isn’t just some ‘dark art’ performed by computer nerds who get their kicks from coding and algorithms. It is a highly-effective tool in your marketing arsenal that brings important results. Done properly through an expert SEO team, it can generate more traffic for your website, attract more customers, help to bring back existing customers to spend more, and build trust and authority for your brand. It is a way of updating and evolving your marketing output to move with the times, while providing a cost-effective way to do so. Once you stop seeing SEO as some confusing and complicated technical process and see it for the value it can provide, you’ll start to realise why it is so important.
Once you appreciate the value of organic SEO you can expand your marketing operation successfully and avoid making the sort of fundamental mistakes you learned to avoid with traditional marketing. Recruit an expert to do this in-house or reach out for an agency that can unlock the power of SEO, and you’ll reap the rewards.
By John Baker, content editor at Zazzle Media
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