There is a lot of discussion surrounding SEO (search engine optimization). Some people know how to execute SEO effectively, so that good and relevant content has an opportunity to rank in search engines. Others don’t know enough about it, so they stay away, and yet others have not tried it in many capacities and are not sure what to do with it, and possibly even hired a consultant who also didn’t know their way around (although they claimed to). A lot of times this comes from the top with CEO’s and online marketing, which I wrote about previously.
The first group understands the effectiveness; the other groups come up with many other reasons why they shouldn’t do SEO. Here are some of my favorite rebuttals:
- YellowPages still work
- We already have too many customers
- People don’t make buying decisions using the internet
- Costs too much
- Ok with competitors winning
- Old-School cold calling works
- People don’t search to find services
- EVERYONE already knows who we are
- SEO is only for B2C
- You can hire an intern to make the internet work
- Search optimization doesn’t work anymore
While there are many other channels to drive traffic to your website, SEO is still a very important piece of the online marketing puzzle. When users are in need or are researching, search engines can be a key component to resolving the need or issue.
As the web evolves, so do the search engines and so does SEO. As an online marketer and SEO practitioner, the ways and reasons for optimizing content is considerably different than it was in years past.
With the above reasons for not doing SEO, there is also another theme that stands out. Some of these are not just talking about SEO but online in general. Sales, leads, and other interactions with companies takes place ONLINE. Without online being a piece of a business, you’d be missing out on an important part of business today.
Some of this comes back to the traditional sales funnel. We’ll come back to SEO shortly.
A website lead/sales funnel looks very similar when put next to a traditional funnel. The website acts as another sales person or source of information for prospects and business for a company. A company website should have the ability to drive visitors down this funnel to engage for business, purchases, branding and many other initiatives.
An understanding of the role of the website is the first step to making it work for its desired purpose. This could be to sell a product, provide leads to sales people, initiate lead nurturing and many other conversion points that can help your business drive new clients/customers and help to keep the already existing clients/customers.
Once there is understanding of what the website is for, the next step is to make sure that it is aesthetically pleasing and user intuitive. This is important to ensure the user takes action.
Website Visibility and Appearance
Website visibility and marketing works to drive visitors to the website at different times during the sales cycle, which may also be the first experience a user has with a business. This makes the appearance of a website and its functionality extremely important. The website is an important investment, both from a marketing and perception standpoint. The website can demonstrate who the business is, what it does and what it means to the user.
Driving visitors to a website that is hard to look and very difficult to navigate isn’t worth driving visitors to. Sales and leads may come, but not at the level they could or should.
This website may have a hard time selling anything.
With a strong website, the marketing of the website becomes an extremely important aspect. This comes down to driving visitors to the website, and more importantly the right visitors.
The Role of SEO
The highest driver of visitors to websites today currently comes from search engines. The search engines provide users an answer to a need they are searching for. Because of this, SEO plays a large role in not only visitors to the website, but to put those visitors into the lead funnel to convert to clients and sales. SEO has the ability to position websites within the search results for terms that fulfill the need the searcher has.
Conductor wrote a nice blog post on where web traffic comes from along with this nice chart across different industries:
The Conductor report states that roughly 50% of all traffic to websites across the internet is derived from search. This is the primary reason why SEO is so important to the marketing of a website and should be considered the foundation for the marketing of the site.
All tactics of online marketing play a role in the success of the SEO on a website, so set the foundation to begin with. Then utilize the visitors from search to drive new leads, sales or whatever else the business objective is for the site.
Set the foundation of online visibility using SEO. Don’t say no.