SEO is still important for small businesses – here’s why

SEO – three letters that cause mixed feelings for many business owners: some who know and see the benefits, some that want to avoid it at all costs, and some that have had their wrists slapped due to bad SEO practices before. But like, dislike or ignore it, SEO is vital for any business with a website.

Search engine optimisation is something that all business owners should be thinking about today. Because in the future, your natural search engine rankings could massively boost your business.

More brand awareness

If people see your website floating around, you would be surprised at just how many people remember you. The more traffic you get to your website, the more remarketing you can do (putting ads in front of people that have visited your website – on other websites they visit and on the social networks they use). This will increase your company awareness even more. The average prospect needs a whopping eight associations with your business before they become a customer. The more you make yourself available to them, the higher chance you have of getting the results you want. Being seen more, along with your other marketing tools is critical to increasing your long-term customer base.

More customers

If your website is spot on, increasing your traffic will lead to an increase in your customers. If your website doesn’t turn visitors into customers then this is what needs to be your priority, not traffic. But once this is taken care of (which we can help you with by the way!), more traffic results in more customers. So by being high in the rankings for a range of relevant key search terms, your traffic should steadily grow, with people all ready to buy your products or services. 50% of all searches will head to the top three results in Google. This means it is crucial that your business is occupying the top spots.

Some of your competitors WON’T be doing it

Many of your competitors will have old websites which aren’t responsive and mobile friendly. Your industry may have seen the same businesses occupy the top listings in search results, but that can change. Whilst it takes effort and possibly paid help, you can get there and convert their customers into becoming yours. There are always opportunities to explore and get more business from in regards to natural rankings.

Less reliant on budget

As the name suggests, pay per click costs money each time someone clicks on your advert. If you have 50 visitors, you pay 50 times. Whereas if you have 50 visitors from natural results, technically you aren’t paying per visit, just the effort and time it has taken to get you there. SEO is less budget reliant than PPC. Your SEO campaign should help you to improve your range of keywords meaning you aren’t so restricted in terms of a monthly budget.

SEO isn’t entirely cheaper than PPC as it does depend on how much you invest in each. But in general it should work out far less budget restrictive in the long run than your paid campaigns might be.

Increased long-term return on investment

There is no increased cost with more people searching for something through natural search results and landing on your website, unlike PPC where you still have to pay for each visit. This means in terms of a long-term return on investment, SEO will always be the more cost effective way to go. As discussed, because SEO is your long-term goal, it might cost you more in the first year than other online marketing strategies, but if your SEO is good and the results are effective, it will provide one of the more effective return on investments you will ever see from a marketing perspective.

So how can you start improving your SEO? Take a look at our 8 simple ways.


content marketing calendarDownload our free Content Marketing Calendar

Use this template to create a full schedule of activities for marketing your business over the next 3 months.

Click here for more info and to download.

5 tricks you may have missed that can generate more business

Most of our articles and updates focus on how to get more business via online marketing methods such as Google and social media. But, it’s important to consider life outside of SEO and PPC, and these methods shouldn’t be dismissed.

Business was being generated long before the internet began. Although technology is being used more and more, every business should still consider other methods instead of putting their eggs all in one basket. In case their successful lead generating method no longer delivers the results they need.

So we’ve listed 5 other ways to generate more business that if you’re not doing at the moment, you might want to consider. If these are done right, they can really help to increase your customer base whilst being quite cost effective.

Exhibitions

To make exhibitions work from a brand awareness point of view and a direct sales point of view, you need to choose the right ones to get your money’s worth. You’ll also need to take a few roller banners, promotional items, a laptop plus your products you want to sell. Getting these together will cost, but it’s a one-off investment that can cover several exhibitions, so it’s worth it.

Pick exhibitions that are either niche to your industry or localised. Also try to visit them before you agree to exhibit, to see how things works and the turn out, as well as the other businesses exhibiting. Most places require a fee for you to exhibit so it’s important that you pick the right place.

Postal marketing

You will have seen a massive drop in the amount of advertising you’ve received in the post over the past several years. Whilst some may take this as meaning postal advertising doesn’t work anymore, others will see it as a great opportunity. By sending something with a handwritten address, you can almost guarantee that it will be opened. This is simply because we’re not used to getting so much post these days.

Of course, there are costs involved in this, in terms of developing effective promotional material to send. But with the right level of thought and planning, this could really be a winner. Especially for the more traditional people that aren’t as confident in the world of online advertising – the kind of business that may not see your digital marketing efforts.

Local networking groups

Networking groups require you to go, get to know others and in turn, let others get to know you. They’re not just something that you go to a couple of times and never go back to. But with a bit of effort, networking groups can be effective, especially the smaller, independent ones. Search around for some local networking groups and try them out, as most are free on the first visit. Then choose a couple that you think are right for you. Even if you try for a few months and it isn’t for you, you may still get some good contacts.

Facebook groups

This approach is a long one, as you cannot simply go wading into groups and start bombarding them with your services – not if you want results anyway. You need to join local Facebook groups and national business networking groups (e.g. Local Business Network). But before you jump straight into waving your company banner around, join in the conversations, build an authority and then the results will start to come. By building the know, like and trust in these groups, people they are more likely to buy from you. If you can work hard at it, not only will you increase brand awareness, you will generate leads.

Localised sponsorship

From local charity events to football teams, sponsorship can be really effective in your community and doesn’t always have to cost a fortune. Plus at the same time you’re giving something back, which is great. If you sponsor the right event or team, the long-term brand awareness is potentially massive. Imagine sponsoring a local kids football team. Not only will your logo be seen on match day and in the resulting photos, but every child has a parent who has friends and family, all of which will see your company logo on their kit. Ring around some local teams or keep an eye out for local events to see if you can offer sponsorship.


content marketing calendarDownload our free Content Marketing Calendar

Use this template to create a full schedule of activities for marketing your business over the next 3 months.

Click here for more info and to download.

Website strategies seminar

We held a seminar covering website strategies that get results. For those of you who didn’t attend, this post gives an outline of what was covered.

Read more

8 ways to improve your position in Google search results

With advances in technology, it’s simple to create a website at a low cost. This means that most businesses have many competitors when trying to sell their products and services online. Now that Google is the main search engine used, it can be difficult for businesses to be noticed in search results. These tips listed can give you some guidance on how to improve your position in Google search results.

Read more