Many small business owners wonder why SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is so important. The answer is that good SEO is vital in today’s online marketplace if you want your business to thrive. A great SEO strategy enhances your customers’ experiences of your website and improves your search engine rankings.
Search engines work by using search keywords to direct the user to the most relevant web pages. If you don’t have an SEO strategy in place, then you’ll be low down on the list of results. So, who will your customer click on? That’s right- your competitor at the very top of the web search. So, investing in SEO for your small business is the very best way to make sure you are getting new leads and new customers. So, what are the top 10 reasons why SEO is important for small businesses?
1. You reach as many potential customers as possible
Really great SEO helps to place you right at the top of search engine results for your chosen keyword. When it comes to deciding which business to use, people tend to go by what comes up first on search engine results. Many people believe that the top result is there because it is ahead of the competition and, therefore, provides a better product or service. If they like the business, they’re likely to share it with their friends and family, leading to even more valuable leads. Over time, this adds up to an awful lot of new customers just because a site owner was smart enough to optimize SEO and get themselves to the top of a Google search, and ahead of the competition.
2. The leads you get are more likely to convert to sales
One of the great things about SEO is that it directs targeted traffic towards your website. In other words, the people clicking on your website will already be looking for the exact service or product that you’re offering. You don’t need to convince them that they need what you’re selling, because you’re exactly what they were searching for when they went online. Of course, you will have to ensure that your website is slick, user-friendly and persuasive to convert that click into a sale. However, you’ve taken the most important step, and that’s to get genuine potential customers onto your site. If you’ve put in the hours to optimize your site appearance and content, likelihood is that you’ll be looking at increased sales and business growth.
3. SEO creates an awesome user experience
When SEO is well-optimized, this makes a site cohesive and easy to navigate. It helps to guide your customer seamlessly through without confusion or getting lost. This makes it simple hassle-free for them to make a purchase. When a site is poorly designed, navigation can be confusing and consumers can feel like their time is being wasted while they attempt to find their way around. When this happens, chances are they’ll give up and head for a competitor. So, SEO is an important investment if you want your customers to love using your site. Even better, when a site is enjoyable to navigate, your customers will recommend it to people they know.
4. Site speed matters
A site that’s well-designed in terms of SEO is quicker to load, and that really matters. This is because the average online consumer doesn’t want to wait around for pages to load. They want a buying and browsing process that’s quick and seamless. Waiting for pages to load can be frustrating. When people are frustrated, they’ll leave a site for a speedier alternative. Believe it or not, a loading time of just 4 seconds will lose you 25% of potential customers. Up that to 6 seconds, and approximately half of people will have given up and gone elsewhere. Speed matters on mobile devices, too. So, don’t neglect SEO if you want customers to stick around on your site.
5. You’ll boost your online reputation
When it comes to maintaining and growing an online business, reputation is key. Your site is the best way to create a great impression with your customers. Unfortunately, people are likely to warn people off your site if they have a poor experience using it. On the flip side, create an awesome user experience and your customers will tell others about it. Do not underestimate the power of word-of-mouth and social media recommendations to boost your business. Make full use of SEO, and you’ll create an awesome online reputation to go with your awesome website.
6. Great SEO lead to great reviews
When your website has great SEO, it helps to give your customers an all-round good impression of your business as a brand. When your customers feel positively towards you, they’re far more likely to write you a glowing review. Perhaps just as importantly, you’re far less likely to garner negative online reviews. This really matters, because many people use online review sites to help them decide whether or not to spend money on a product or service. If your reviews are outstanding, this can signpost new customers to your site and convince people who are on the fence that you’re what they’ve been looking for.
7. You’ll boost your social media visibility
A good SEO marketing strategy doesn’t just make your business more visible in search engine results. It also makes you as visible as possible on social media. This is because a smart SEO marketing expert will make sure that your site encourages your users to share your business on social media as much as possible using well-placed widgits. Shares via social media are exceptionally valuable to your business, because people take them as a recommendation that you are the best at what you do. Think of it as akin to a fantastic online review that can reach thousands of potential clients instantly. Over time, this can build a greater awareness of your business and what you stand for, bringing traffic to your site. More high quality traffic to your site can work wonders for your search engine ranking.
8. It creates a buzz within your industry sector
When your website is using SEO-led design to the fullest, this boosts your market presence and visibility. This is likely to attract the attention of leaders in your particular sector. This is desirable because these people have a wide scope of influence, and people respect their opinion. If industry leaders become aware of your brand and like what you’re doing, they’re likely to share your site with others. Endorsement from experts creates a buzz in your sector and is great for generating new leads and new customers.
9. It’s cost-effective
If you compare the amount of money you need to invest in SEO with the returns you’ll make if it’s done well, SEO is one of the most cost-effective ways to invest in the growth of your business. After the initial financial investment, SEO is a reasonably low-cost strategy to maintain. However, the benefits to your business will continue to grow over time. SEO won’t just make you more visible in search results. As you become more visible on social media and grow your online reputation over time, the number of quality leads and, ultimately, sales you make will grow and grow. By consistently maintaining your site’s SEO, you should see the most bang-for-your-buck in comparison to other investments you may be considering for your online business.
10. Great SEO future-proofs your business
Remember when we said SEO was a great long-term investment? That’s because SEO isn’t going anywhere. In fact, it’s likely to become more and more important as time goes on, as more and more business is done online. If you want your business to be able to grow and compete in an ever-increasing online market, you need a solid SEO strategy to see you through. This helps to safeguard the success of your business not just for today and tomorrow but for many years to come. This is where an SEO marketing expert can be your business’ secret weapon. They’ll understand the ever-changing and evolving requirements of search engine algorithms, so they’ll be able to help you adapt your SEO strategy to cope with changes in the long-term.
How do I get SEO for my small business?
Hopefully, we don’t need to convince you any further that great SEO-led design is a must-have for your small business. However, you may be wondering how to get the benefits of an awesome SEO strategy for your site.
It is possible to try and manage your SEO marketing strategy in-house. However, unless you have an SEO expert as part of your team, this can be a tough ask. Understanding SEO-led design is a complex task and search engine algorithms are changing all the time. For beginners, this can be an extremely time-consuming way to attempt to manage your SEO and may yield disappointing results.
For this reason, it’s a good idea to invest in the services of an SEO services company with expertise in helping small online businesses to thrive. Here at Small Business SEO , we know what it takes to make your business stand out in a competitive online market. We’ll work with you to deliver a future-proof SEO strategy to improve your search engine rankings, boost your online visibility and ultimately make your business more profitable.
The Bottom Line
Now you understand why SEO is vital to grow and sustain your business, you’re one step closer to a marketing strategy that helps you achieve your business goals. For small businesses on a limited budget, SEO is the best and most cost-effective way to get a high ROI for your financial input.