What is SEO and Why Do You Need It?

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the “art” of getting a website ranked on top of the search engines for a given keyword or phrase that a desired audience for that site may be using to search for what the site offers. SEO is one of the best investments a business can make because it puts them in front of the people that are looking for exactly what they offer, when they are ready to make a buying decision. There is no better way to increase revenue than to be where your target customer is looking and studies have shown that 89% of customers use the search engines to make a purchase decision as well as 71% of business purchasing decisions actually begin on a search online. So being where your potential customers are looking is the best thing you can do for your business.

Just being online is not enough, however. Your website has to come up as high as possible in order to take full advantage of the amount of potential customers looking for your products or services. Statistics show that 75% of searchers never even click any site that is not on the first page of the search results, and 40% of people never click on any results past the top 3. This makes SEO an absolute must for any business trying to take advantage of the potential customers searching online. A good SEO will know that just improving the rankings of a website is not enough to get the company a solid ROI for the SEO services. The best way to provide a company with a good return is to get them to the top of the search engines.

Rochester SEO Rankings 12.7.17

A lot of business owners still insist that the old fashioned way of marketing is the best way to get them new customers or clients. The ancient methods of print advertising or direct mail simply don’t work as well as they used to. That’s because in today’s day and age, where technology is so readily available, more and more people are turning to the internet. In fact, more searches are performed from mobile devices than on computers now. There are over 30 billion mobile searches made every year. And 55% of purchase related conversions are made within one hour of a mobile search being performed. So not only does your business absolutely have to be online and have their website ranked highly, but it has to be a mobile-friendly website, meaning it has t look good on mobile devices. Actually, Google recently announced that they will not show websites that are not deemed mobile-friendly in the search results.

The other problem with the ancient methods of advertising is that they simply don’t convert as well as SEO. SEO leads have a 14.6% conversion rate as opposed to a 1.7% close rate of the archaic print or direct mail ads. You simply can’t control who is seeing those advertisements as well as you can control who sees your website with SEO. With SEO, you control where your website shows up. For what keywords that you think your customer is using to search for your products. It is an extremely targeted form of advertising. With print or direct mail ads, you are sending thousands of pieces in hopes that one might be in the right place at the exact time they look at your ad to make a purchase decision.

Some business owners also state that they would rather spend their marketing dollars on online advertising rather than SEO. This is a viable option and one that may yield results. But when a recent study showed that 79% of users always/frequently click on organic search results as opposed to 81% of users who said they rarely/never click on sponsored search results, it showed that consumers are very skeptical of online ads. That is because ranking highly in the search engines conveys trust and authority. It automatically pushed your business to the forefront of your potential customers mind when they think about your products or services. That is something that advertising could never duplicate. And that is why SEO is the best option for any business trying to take advantage of the multitude of potential customers using the search engines to make purchase decisions in today’s marketplace.

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