SEO is a relatively well-known industry now, and few marketers would dispute its importance in the digital landscape. When it comes to small businesses, however, not all owners are convinced that the investment is worth it. Does search optimization always pay off?
It’s easy to see why people might be reluctant. Small businesses have very limited marketing budgets to work with, so they need to weigh every dollar spent carefully. Meanwhile, search has several characteristics that make it a little daunting.
First, SEO is primarily a long term investment and gains are usually seen months later. Second, there’s no guarantee that your website will get a certain position on the first page. Compare that to PPC, where you rapidly get a measurable return for your money, and you can see why some business owners don’t see why they should bother with SEO.
But organic search has several advantages that make it incredibly valuable. These selling points are why SEO is a core element of any effective and realistic digital marketing strategy.
• Organic search results are seen as far more trustworthy than paid ads, which many users ignore.
• Organic search is far cheaper in the long run, and results aren’t directly tied to your budget.
• A good search strategy is very sustainable and strengthens your brand.
Even the apparent weaknesses of SEO mentioned earlier aren’t that bad. While it is a long term project, many websites see massive traffic improvements in the first few weeks after basic optimization. And while no one can guarantee which website gets that coveted #1 spot, it can be very easy to rank for some keywords and in niches with a fairly low competition.
So should every small business invest in SEO? At the very least, they should have the basics: on page optimization, and a good understanding of which keywords will bring in valuable traffic to their website. The returns are simply too good to pass up.