The Power of SEO
First, it’s important to understand what SEO is. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and it’s part methodology and part art that allows Google’s algorithms, or any other search engine, to find you and classify your website on the internet. Where you show up on a search based on your keywords (page one or page 1000), is called your “rank”.
Second, understand that Google is interested in delivering search results that are accurate and provide the best user experience. They want you to always use their search engine, which means going to Google.com whenever you run a search. This allows them to show you ads for which they get paid.
Getting your website ranked high organically (which means free to you without paying for ads) is very important for your business IF you want to get more leads and traffic without spending your time prospecting.
The easier you make it for Google to find your site and categorize it properly, the more accurate their results will be. The idea is that accurate search results mean the people that find you will be closer to your ideal client.
Also, as you’re out-and-about building relationships with people, some will forget your name but remember your business, or vice-versa, or may only remember parts of each. They will then “Google” you, and hopefully you’ll come up in their results. Proper SEO can help maximize your off-line networking, as well as your on-line network presence.
The highest ranked websites have additional opportunities for business growth. Advertisers, affiliates, and other partners will view your site as a high value, and may request to pay you for advertising or selling their products to your viewers (banner ads and affiliate programs). This creates a mutually beneficial relationship for your industry partners, with very little effort on your part (once your site is ranked, of course!).
Therefore, it’s really important to rank your website high. But how high?
According to this study from a few years ago (https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/study/2276184/no-1-position-in-google-gets-33-of-search-traffic-study) , there’s a dramatic drop-off as you move down the list. And that 92% of all traffic from the average search is confined to page 1.
The Reality of SEO
Over the years, there have been many theories and solutions, both ethical (whitehat) and unethical (blackhat) which have come and gone. Some methods have remained solid and reliable. Others have garnered the dreaded “Google Slap” for poor practice or unsupported tactics. Google’s utmost concern is the quality of their search results, so SEO companies that rely on spammy links and crummy content, are no longer ranking.
A truly ethical, long-lasting SEO campaign will achieve high ranking on the search engines within a specific period of time, then only require tweaking when Google changes their algorithm. Many SEO companies will have you believe that you need to be with them forever in order to keep your ranking, however that is just not true or fair to you, the business owner. Yes, it can take a long time to rank your site, depending upon how competitive your keywords are. No, you don’t need to employ an SEO team forever.
Interested to learn more about SEO? Read our San Jose SEO post to know more.