What is Search Engine Optimization or SEO?
Search engine optimization (SEO) brings more customers to your business by ranking your website higher in Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines.
SEO isn’t just about building a website for search engines. It’s about building a website for people– that’s what search engines want. And this is how we deliver results for you.
Why Do I Need SEO?
Search engines like Google do two things:
1) Crawl the web to compile a database of web pages they find
2) Give users a list of web pages, ranked by relevance
When you make a query in a search engine, it combs through its vast database of web pages to deliver a search engine results page (SERP) with web pages ranked by relevance and popularity. The more relevant a result, the higher it ranks, the more people click on it … and the more traffic goes to that website.
Google and other search engines use mathematical formulas (algorithms) that take hundreds of variables (search signals) into account. The goal is to determine how well your web page answers a query (relevance). Then they rank your web page, in part, by how many websites are linking to you (popularity).
The vast majority of web traffic comes from just 3 search engines: Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
Increased traffic from major search engines can give you more exposure, customers, and revenue unlike anything else. That’s why investing in SEO can deliver an exceptional rate of return compared to other forms of marketing.
To illustrate, here are …
6 Reasons Why You Need SEO
1) Search Engines Deliver Up To 64% Of All Web Traffic
One study analyzing over 310 million website visits found that search engines like Google were the source of 64% of all traffic.
Social media, like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, are now eating into that figure. But organic search still delivers the lion’s share of visitors to most websites.
2) SEO Can Deliver High-Value Leads
A recent survey showed that prospective customers who find your website via organic search will result in a sale 14.6% of the time, on average. This is compared to a 1.7% close rate for prospects that you find via outbound marketing, like tele-sales or email blasts.
What you need to know: SEO is nearly 900% more effective than outbound marketing.
And it makes sense. When someone finds you while searching for a solution to a problem, they are more receptive to your offer and more likely to buy. This is the very definition of a “warm” or “hot” lead. Contrast that with outbound marketing, which is interruptive and forces you to talk to people who are not interested, i.e., cold leads. SEO wins in a knockout.
3) SEO Inserts You Into The Buying Cycle
Nearly all consumers research a product or service online before making a purchase. You know this is true because you do it yourself.
SEO can multiply your sales by helping people find your company during these stages of the buying process:
-Information: This is typically indicated by broad search terms, like “car stereos” or “best corporate gifts”
-Evaluation: Here, the search terms become narrower, like “Yamaha car stereo prices” or “ballpoint pens under $20”
-Transaction: Here, the search terms are geared toward making a purchase, like “buy Yamaha X-300” or “Parker pens Fargo”.
Research we’ve seen shows that 81% of shoppers will review and compare items online before making a purchase. And for B2B buyers, it’s as high as 94%.
Bottom line: With 8 or 9 of your potential customers researching products and services online, you need to be part of this process before they find your competitor. And SEO can make it happen.
4) Your Opportunities Are Expanding
According to Google, more than 50% of search queries are now done on smartphones and other mobile devices. But that figure is probably closer to 60% — and rising.
Which is good news for your business. The dramatic increase in mobile usage has brought with it new SEO techniques, such as local search optimization and mobile-friendly website design. That gives you more ways to get found in search than ever before, but only if you take advantage.
5) The Halo Effect
When your website ranks highly in a trusted search engine like Google or Bing, it’s like appearing on TV or in the newspaper. Your business benefits tremendously from the implied endorsement that comes with unpaid visibility. In PR terms, this is called “earned media” and it can be far more effective than “paid media” advertising, such as commercials.
6) SEO Traffic Beats Paid Ads
This piggybacks on the halo effect above.
Our research finds that paid search, like Google AdWords, accounts for only about 10-15% of all website traffic. Yet unpaid, organic search results drive 60-75% of website traffic. Which means paid search is only the tip of the marketing iceberg.
What this means to for you: You’re leaving money on the table – as much as 75% of potential website visitors and customers – if you ignore SEO and organic search.
But there’s another side to the SEO coin. Get it wrong, and you could pay a steep price in terms of wasted time and money. Here are …
4 Costly SEO Mistakes To Avoid
1) Mobile-Unfriendly Website
Search engine optimization involves much more than content and keywords. It includes the experience users have when they visit your website. And since more than 50% of people will find you on a smartphone or tablet, your site must deliver a mobile-friendly experience.
Google’s Mobilegeddon algorithm update of April 21, 2015, which now penalize websites that fail to do this, shows how important your website’s design is for SEO.
2) Broken Links
Don’t you hate it? You’re reading a web page, intrigued by the information, click on a link and …it’s broken! You get an error page.
Guess who else hates broken links? Google. Broken links will get your website downgraded in Google because they deliver a bad user experience. This can wreck all of your hard work in content creation and SEO.
Don’t shoot yourself in the foot. Sweep your website regularly to find and clean up broken links.
3) Missing Links
Just as broken links can hurt you, a lack of high-quality outbound links can cause your web page to rank poorly in Google.
Take the time to insert external links to relevant, high-ranking websites with good reputation. And don’t forget to link back to any high-quality websites that link to you, as this can further boost your search rankings and web traffic.
4) Ignoring Analytics
This is so obvious, but many people miss it. The only way to know if your SEO efforts are working is to analyze your progress. Failure to set up and review traffic data for your website is a serious blunder.
But it’s easy to do. Google gives you two incredible resources — Analytics and Webmaster Tools — to measure and analyze your website’s performance. By creating conversion goals and weekly reports, you can see which web pages are converting browsers into buyers, for example.
It’s critical to know what’s working, what’s not, and what to do next in your optimization. Otherwise, you’re simply flying blind.
How we work
Step 1: WE LISTEN to get to know your business and define your needs. Whe
ther you’re a Fortune 500 corporation or a small local business, you’ll gain new clarity.
Step 2: WE BUILD a customized SEO plan that’s unique to you and your market. Because no other business is just like yours.
Step 3: WE LAUNCH your SEO campaign with our proprietary tools, tested and proven since 2006.
Step 4: WE IMPROVE your rankings in Google and other search engines by continually adjusting and improving your website content, architecture, and links.
Step 5: WE PROTECT your new, higher rankings by adjusting to Google’s regular updates. Unlike other SEO services, we play both offense and defense for you!
This 5-Step SEO System is one reason why we can send more qualified visitors to your website. And because these visitors find you in unpaid, “organic” search, they are pre-disposed to doing business with you.
When you join us, you join more than 1,000 clients who enjoy 96% satisfaction. That’s the highest retention rate of any SEO service or digital marketing agency we know of.