As an entrepreneur, you’re no stranger to hard work. You’ve spent years learning everything you can to run a successful business. You invested in a great website. So why aren’t the customers steadily flowing into your business?
Unfortunately, this is a common problem among both seasoned entrepreneurs and those just starting out. However, the question is easily answered with another question: how visible is your business on Google?
Why Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is vital to any business
There’s a long-winded explanation for why local search (and SEO) is one of the best options for your business to scale sustainably. It involves a lot of digital marketing concepts, like organic traffic, link building, website visitors, and bounce rates.
But the simple truth is that most customers will find your business in the search results of an online query on Google’s search engine. Traditional marketing, paid advertisements, and social media marketing hardly compare to the kind of results that a solid SEO marketing strategy can bring to your company.
But if it’s so important, then why didn’t I see any real results with my previous SEO agency?
If you’ve already invested in an SEO company but you didn’t feel like you see results, there may be a few reasons why. Maybe you signed with a large, national agency that boasted great reviews on their website, but you never saw any noticeable increase in your site’s visibility. This could be because the content quality wasn’t where it needed to be for you to see those great results. Google can tell when your content is written for SEO, and not for readers — and it will not promote your website in the search engine rankings if the algorithm doesn’t show any value for humans within the content.
For truly great results, you need to have great content: blogs and information that is easily readable, attentive to your customers’ questions, provides value — and yes, optimized for SEO.
You may also need a new website. A good rule of thumb is that your site should be refreshed and updated every 7 to 10 years. This will help your online presence keep up with current design trends, and optimize user experience. You also need a mobile friendly website. Did you know that 62% of Americans are using their phones to find the answers to their questions? If your website is out of date, or if it’s not mobile responsive (meaning that it’s usable on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets), you may be missing out on a lot of potential clients.
A full-service marketing agency should be able to launch a high quality website, while keeping on-page SEO in mind throughout the website design process. Ideally, each of your services offered should have its own corresponding webpage, and all of your products should be organized for an optimized e-commerce experience. This will increase your visibility in the search engine, as well as help you measure clicks — meaning that you’ll be able to see which services or products your potential customers are most interested in.
And of course, don’t forget: without a brand strategy, you may be turning customers off with mixed messages across your blog, social channels, and customer services. When customers know and love your brand, it makes all the difference!
P.S. – You may want to read up on the benefits of brand equity. It’s never too late to invest in your brand!
What does an SEO expert do?
Search engine optimization is no small task.
First, the marketing company will do a full analysis of your website, including:
- Your keywords
- Your current website ranking and online visibility
- Your website analytics, including Google Analytics, call analytics, bounce rates, site visitors, and more.
- Your backlinks, internal links and hyperlinks, anchor text, and more.
And then, armed with a comprehensive report and a lot of data, the SEO company will start planning your marketing strategy. It may take some time for the SEO experts to conduct keyword research, but once they do, you’re off to the races! Finding the right keywords is everything. You need a high volume keyword, with a low difficulty rating for the best results. Then, content marketing becomes the key.
The goal of content marketing is to produce high-quality website content in the form of blogs, product and/or service descriptions, or infographics. You want the copywriting to target keywords so that the AI (artificial intelligence) in search engines like Google promote your website’s authority, and distributes your site in the organic results.
But your website content shouldn’t only focus on search engines! You MUST be publishing high quality content. Potential clients that find your blog should truly find it informational. As customers spend more time on the blog, and even browse other website content, Google will recognize your website’s authority, and continue to increase the website ranking in the search engine results pages.
This next part is very important: after the initial search engine marketing strategy begins, your SEO must be continuously maintained.
Because search engine marketing is a long-term game, you may not see results overnight. And because search engines like Google are constantly updating their search algorithm, your SEO company needs to continuously monitor the website’s keywords, analytics, rankings, and site authority. If you pause your SEO marketing campaign for too long, there’s a chance you could lose all of your progress and have to start over from scratch.
Although, technically, you could run your business’s blog on your own, you’ll be able to scale much more quickly if you hire an SEO service provider. Hiring an SEO expert in-house, or even outsourcing to an SEO marketing agency means that you can spend less time monitoring all of these important ranking factors, and spend more time scaling your company to accommodate all your new clients!
While some business owners can successfully tackle SEO on their own, it’s important to remember that search engines are constantly evolving. For instance, the rise in voice search changed SEO tactics drastically. Think about Alexa, Siri, and Google – don’t you search a little differently when you ask an AI, versus typing a query into the search bar? When you hire an SEO expert, they stay on top of the trends, so you don’t have to!
Why should I hire an SEO expert?
When your business is visible in the search engine results, you’re reaching more potential patients and increasing your new patient acquisition. Companies that prioritize their online reputation earn brand recognition, and receive passive leads in the form of online inquiries.
Although it’s likely that you’ll need to hire an SEO expert to achieve noticeable results, the return on investment (or ROI) for search engine marketing efforts is invaluable. The passive lead generation allows you to scale your business’s growth as much as you like!
Because the benefits of SEO services are so great once your marketing efforts have paid off, it’s important to make sure your business is ready for growth. It doesn’t matter how much your customer bases increases if you’re not prepared to hire more staff or provide high quality service for your clients.
It’s also important to keep in mind that you require high quality content to really see results. Continuously auditing your website, conducting new keyword research every month, staying up-to-date on search engine algorithms, optimizing existing content and creating keyword-focused, thoughtful blogs is a lengthy and time consuming process. You’ll get much better results from an SEO expert than from someone that promises to do all of these things for half of what a reputable SEO company would charge.
Not ready to hire an SEO expert? Check out some of our best DIY SEO tips for busy entrepreneurs.
How to ensure a direct, measurable ROI
When you’re considering signing a contract with an SEO expert or a marketing agency, it’s important to be very clear about what your exact goals are. SEO can be difficult to measure, so you need to partner with an agency that gives you a clear outline on what to expect, and when.
The best way to do this is to have a direct conversation with your SEO agency. Talk about your goals for your business. Are you looking for a higher ranking in the search results, and an increase in organic traffic to your website? How much additional revenue do you want to take on? How many additional clients would you like to see each month? What is your best case scenario for this partnership?
Because search engine marketing campaigns can be one of the most difficult to measure, it’s absolutely essential that your relationship with your marketing expert is built on trust. It’s also important to keep in mind that SEO is like playing a long game. Results may not appear overnight, but with consistent effort and the use of effective techniques, you can increase your business’s online visibility and see a tangible return on investment.
Is SEO a good addition to my marketing campaign?
While every company should develop their own marketing plan, it’s important for you to conduct a cost benefit analysis for your business. You may ask yourself questions like:
- Am I prepared for growth? Are my team members prepared to take on more work?
- Are my current customers satisfied with my services? Do I have good feedback on review sites?
- If my website is outdated and damages my authority, am I open to updating it?
- Is my marketing budget able to accommodate paying for this service monthly?
Unfortunately, SEO efforts won’t help every business grow. For instance, if you have an excellent website with top current rankings in organic search results, but an average review of less than 3 stars, your company may not grow even as your online visibility increases.
Even with an effective internet marketing strategy and an excellent website, quality service must be a priority.
However, for businesses with a well-designed website, an average of 4+ stars on review sites, and the ability to scale their services and team members, SEO is one of the best investments you can make. It’s a relatively low-cost form of online advertising, and it’s generally an effective marketing tactic. Most research on consumer search habits point to SEO being a worthwhile investment for your company.
Would you like to talk to Kairos Design Studio about your SEO goals?
Here at Kairos Design Studio, we pride ourselves on being a full-service SEO agency. We create quality content, we have proven that our method results in huge increases in online visibility for our clients, and we customize our SEO strategy to fit your business.
With our experience and knowledge of best SEO tactics, we build excellent websites for our clients, should they need them. We’ve won multiple awards for our web design projects, and we always incorporate technical SEO into the design. And as long as your website is responsive, so is our SEO and SEM strategy!