Investing in SEO: Is It Worth It and Why?
To keep a business afloat, entrepreneurs always seek new ways to market their website, products, services, information, persona, brand, etc. To test the efficacy of a method, investments are definitely needed.
But it’s not that difficult to hire a bunch of professionals or even one consultant, throw some of the budgets into the theory and see how it works out in a matter of weeks. You may get returns on investment pretty quickly and, if the technique is beneficial, quantify your profit.
Well, if we talk about SEO, the money-throwing method doesn’t work the way you expect it to. We can’t imagine someone going “OK, let’s spend $15,000 to try this new SEO method for several months and see if it helps”.
This sounds too vague, right? But sometimes this “do or do not, there is no try” approach is what can bring your company to a completely new level in, say, 3 months. So, is search engine optimization worth that leap of faith?
We say yes. We may be biased a little, but hey, the approach really works for at least 80% of web pages. And the remaining ones just don’t use it right.
SEO investments won’t come back in a month, but if you’re patient enough, it will show new levels of sales to the whole business as you jump higher in the rankings, leaving competitors far behind.
In this article, we’ll discuss why is SEO important for business, whether it is worth the money, and why it’s such a tricky approach.
Why Is SEO Important for Small Business?
Small businesses have suffered enough because of the pandemic and all kinds of quarantines. That’s why progressive entrepreneurs have decided to move online. There are thousands of them, both local and those aiming for cross-state or international markets.
Imagine a thousand businesses in one category. And all of them need customers.
That’s when SEO comes into the game. Let’s overview some of the most basic yet important benefits of optimization for your company.
No Audience Like for Large Businesses
Large corporations do market themselves, but they don’t always need to do that. Their audience is pretty wide and all they have to do is to remind them about their products and new lines.
Small businesses, on the other hand, have to earn their audience’s attention and trust. They may not have the same reliability score at first. So, it’s necessary to build relationships. But, first of all, yours should be the first website they see in the search results. This is essential for you to even get a chance to make an impression on your target audience.
And how do you get to the TOP results? Right, you use the right keyword in the right content.
Small businesses tend to have harsher competition because the number of companies in one segment may be huge. You need SEO to make yourself the first choice when it comes to your focus keywords.
This involves technical optimization, UX, the quality of content, proper keyword choice, quality backlinks, and more. And all of these factors are direct or indirect parts of your optimization strategy.
The tougher your competition, the more investments you need to beat it and find your unique audience. So, sure, you need to make your site suitable for a high ranking and the attention of that target audience.
The Need for Leads in the Rough World
All kinds of marketing can be aimed at lead generation. And when you ask: “What can SEO do for my business?”, one of the answers is that it can become a lead magnet for your company.
Depending on the main goal for you at the moment, you can adjust all the optimization settings and achieve the said goals much faster than if you don’t use such a powerful tool.
Change the keywords or their main verb in the focus one (buy, find, choose, etc.), and you’ll change the direction of your campaign. As a result, you’ll have a certain kind of leads on the site.
So, this is a wonderful instrument you can use in a multitude of ways, including lead generation.
Online Presence Is Necessary Nowadays
Without an online presence, you won’t be able to expand the business and even make it known to everyone in your town. You also won’t be able to get a large amount of real feedback and lose opportunities to talk to your customers and make your business a better place for them.
For that, you need a platform like your own website. Create a blog there and share valuable info. Add keywords to your posts and rank for them. Encourage people to ask questions in the comments section and talk to them.
Also, embrace social media. There, you will talk with your audience more, directing them to the blog, and then to the shop or price list, if this is your main goal now.
Why Is It Tricky to Invest in SEO?
By ‘tricky’ we don’t mean that you won’t succeed or someone will fool you. We mean that the standard expectations don’t work when it comes to investing in SEO.
Here are some factors that make this a unique niche:
- Results take time to become noticeable.
You may have to wait for 3 to 6 months to see the first results from your campaign. Thus, the ROI won’t be rapid, which many business people fear.
- It’s difficult to quantify the results.
When you see how good your campaign was, it will be hard to assign any of the results to a single project.
- You need more than money.
You will need product resources to see results, not only money. For some, this seems too much hassle and they quit. But you can take their place and get even higher in the ranking, which is good news.
So yes, it’s no regular marketing method. But boy, does it work if you just take a leap of faith! We have seen dramatic improvements over the first 6 months of cooperation with small businesses in different niches.
Is It Worth Investing in SEO?
Yes, absolutely. “How much?” is another question that we will peek into later on. Even if it’s a couple of hundred bucks, for a certain business scale, it’s OK. But prepare to make some changes to your site to make sure you accompany the SEO decisions your specialists will offer.
For example, you’ll have to create a blog. It will allow you to encompass many more keywords, all kinds of them. Thus, different target audiences can be tested. So, you’ll definitely find a TA that works for your business perfectly.
Even if you’re all set with the keywords, how about backlinks? This is also a part of any optimization campaign, a very important one. Hire a service that will look for blogs you can post guest publications on, and you’ll already invest into a huge chunk of your future success.
Benefits of SEO Investments
There are a lot of advantages to investing in website optimization. We’ll cover the most important ones here, including your opportunities for competitor analysis and conversions.
Analyzing your competitors is essential for the success of your marketing campaign. You have to know what keywords they use, how many visits they have, which of them are non-branded, what other peculiarities there are about their campaigns.
Keep in mind that you need only non-branded searches from every competitor. Branded searches are those that have the name of the company in them. You need the more general ones.
In this case, a person looks for a business in a niche, not for a particular company. Your job is to be there for that person, better higher in the ranking than your competitors.
And guess how you can do that?
Right, with the help of the mighty SEO.
Site Ranking Increase
Continuing the topic of rankings, getting into the TOP-5 for your KWs is great. But, there’s a huge difference when you get into the TOP-3. And even there, the higher you get, the more people access your pages. And we don’t say it’s 2-3%. How about 20-30%, at least?
So, if you rank third, don’t stop there. Go all the way to the very first place.
When you’re the third, getting to the first requires more investment. If you want to get to TOP-50 first, having TOP-3 in your dreams, it’s clear that the money you’ll have to spend decreases dramatically.
Because to get to the first place, your specialists need to analyze the hell out of your competitors and your own site. They have to find the slightest differences and find ways to change things in your favor.
Another amazing benefit of SEO is, of course, more conversions. This is what most businesses are going towards in their campaigns. Conversions increase indirectly depending on optimization.
Your or your team’s actions influence the ranking and increase brand awareness. Thus, more people find out about your business, many of them see good recommendations from other websites. You build relationships with them, gain trust. Then, they are becoming buyers, many of the – regular ones.
Doesn’t this sound wonderful? All this can be yours if you just find the right team and invest the right amount of finances.
Once you elevate the website in ranking, you’ll experience long-term improvements in the attention of visitors towards your site and your business. This manifests in a larger number of sales and lots of opportunities for business expansion.
And this will last for a long time. Things will even get better if you continue to cooperate with amazing specialists and create effective campaigns.
Determining Whether It’s a Good Idea to Invest in SEO Now
Now, here, the question isn’t whether you should or shouldn’t use optimization. It’s addressed to whether you need to invest lots of money in it and hire a team.
First of all, you have to consider the volume of your addressed search market. This depends on how ‘general’ your topic is. For example, if you’re an online encyclopedia, there are thousands of queries people can use that you can rank for.
But if you sell, say, aluminum enclosures, there aren’t a lot of options. Then, if you’re a local business in that niche and there aren’t many competitors, you don’t need to invest a lot in SEO. Basic content marketing and proper keywords will do the job. Although, one specialist to delegate the job to is a great idea. If you think about why you need SEO, you might as well take care of the talent base for the task.
So, this brings us to the initial step of the decision-making process — analyzing your competitors. Gladly, the array of digital tools for it is wide and effective. You can use Moz, for example.
By analyzing the keywords they rank or want to rank for, as well as annual SEO visits, you can evaluate the sum of money to invest in the desired results. Of course, the more you give, the more you receive. But if, for example, you have a limited budget at the moment, don’t spend 50% of it on optimization. People will come to you, but will you have enough to give them?
So, Is SEO Worth the Money or Not?
We say absolutely. The main thing is to analyze your search market and set proper goals. It’s possible that you won’t need to spend a lot on SEO. Hire a link-building service for off-site optimization, get support from a marketing professional, choose the right keywords, and you’re all set.
Also, don’t forget that such optimization isn’t only about KWs and inbound links. Take the tech part into account as well.
So yeah, this is one of the best methods to invest in your website, business, and sales. Don’t expect to see rapid results. But prepare to experience a jump in 3-6 months! This is totally worth it.