It would be fair to say that in most cases, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is probably something people have heard of, but don’t truly understand.
They may have come across it when reading an article or in a conversation with other small business owners. But if asked, they probably couldn’t explain why SEO is important for small business.
So we thought we would take this opportunity to give you a list of reasons – 10 in fact! to why using SEO can be vital for your small business growth.
What we’ll cover in this post:
- How organic search is the main source of website traffic
- How SEO can help you reach potential customers
- How SEO builds brand loyalty
- How good SEO can improve User Experience (UX)
- How local SEO is a must
- The importance of keeping up-to-date with Algorithm changes
- How SEO keeps you up-to-date
- How SEO can be affordable
- How SEO helps you understand your customers
- Why SEO is a long-term strategy
Let’s take a look at these in more detail.
1. Organic search is the main source of website traffic
Organic Search is a query made through a search engine such as Google, that returns a result listing that is not a paid advert (PPC Ads).
If a user clicks one of these results in order to view a web page, this visit becomes classed as Organic traffic to that website.
The reason for the website appearing within the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) is due to the owner investing in SEO.
According to Smart Insights:
Organic search results count for 40% of all traffic to a website. This is compared to 20% coming from Paid Advertising.
The rest of the traffic is made up of direct referrals and Social Media Marketing, showing that organic search is still the main source of website traffic today!
2. SEO can help small businesses reach potential customers
Your customers are out there. In fact, they’re searching for your products and services right now! So how do you reach them?
Well, this is the best bit. If you have a proper SEO strategy in place, you can carry out keyword research to find out what search queries your customers are asking in Google.
This means that you can optimise your pages for these popular queries so that they appear in the SERP when searched for.
Just think how powerful that can be to your business. You have the ability to put your company in front of customers for things they actually want. It’s the equivalent of them walking into a sweet shop looking for sweets!
3. SEO build brand awareness
We can all relate to the importance of being high in the search results. Just ask yourself, when was the last time you clicked a link on the second page of Google? Exactly!
There are many factors why a website appears high up in the search results and one of them is popularity.
Google wants to give it’s customers the best results it can for what they are searching for. Otherwise, if it returned irrelevant websites for your query, you would stop using Google, wouldn’t you?
So, if a businesses website gets lots of clicks and traffic to it, it (Google) can only assume people like it – or in other words, they trust it.
Knowing this, if your website appears on the first page of major search engines, your potential customers are more likely to trust your brand over others that don’t have a strong web presence.
4. Good SEO can improve your Users Experience (UX)
A great benefit of implementing SEO on your website is improved UX. As we mentioned above, to appear higher in the rankings, your website needs to be trusted and popular with customers.
In order to gain this popularity, customers need to not only visit your website but spend time on it and return again and again.
For this to happen, they must have a good experience when using it. It must answer their questions, it must solve their problems and it must fulfil their needs.
A bad example of this would be an eCommerce website that you need to click 7 times before you found your product. Good SEO in this case would allow a user to find the information they are looking for in fewer clicks, quickly and easily.
5. Local SEO is a must for small business
Local SEO focuses on optimising a website for a specific area, such as a town, city or region. This allows people to find you quickly.
As it is locally focussed, it’s important to gain customer reviews and ensure all mentions of your business within directories (citations) are kept consistent.
Setting up and keeping up-to-date a Google My Business profile is a must for any successful Local SEO strategy.
6. It’s important to keep up-to-date with Algorithm changes
SEO is a long term investment. We can apply the required techniques and changes to help improve our website rankings, but it can’t stop there.
As search engines constantly change their algorithms, so must our websites. This ongoing work is what makes SEO a continuous process.
The result of not keeping up-to-date with algorithm changes can be disastrous for small business. At worst, depending on the update, it could lead to a Google penalty.
7. SEO keeps you up-to-date
Linked to the above section, keeping up-to-date with your SEO can also help you understand the World Wide Web in general.
As SEO is a changing subject, we must keep up-to-date with it to ensure successful results. This means we will also be expanding our general knowledge of the Internet, which is never be a bad thing for our businesses.
8. SEO can be affordable
Don’t get me wrong, SEO requires an investment, it’s not free. However the value it adds to a business makes it invaluable.
There are affordable SEO packages available to suit all businesses, no matter what their budget. However like most things, the more a business can invest generally means the more likely it will see bigger results.
9. SEO gives you insights into your customers’ buying patterns
When you have enough traffic coming to your site, you can start to look into Google Analytics and find visitor information such as demographics, where they are located and age groups.
With this information, you can then use it to help develop or adapt your marketing strategies. If you know more women than men use your website, you can change graphics to suit this.
If you know you have a lot of German visitors, you may look to implement a translation widget so that they can browse your website in their language.
This type of information is vital to a small business and understanding your customer base can make all the differences when trying to grow your business.
10. SEO is a long term strategy
SEO can provide amazing results to any business no matter the size if they are willing to invest in a professional service.
Even in the first year, results can be noticed and sales increased. However, the work doesn’t stop there.
SEO is a long term strategy that shouldn’t stop as soon as you start to see results. This is a common mistake people make when working with SEO professionals.
It takes time for results to show and there is a delay between the changes you make to your website and the moment it shows within your analytics.
An example of this is changing your Title Tags to increase engagement. You can make the change today, request indexing by Google and you might see them change in the SERP in a couple of days.
However, you won’t actually see if they have increased engagement within your analytics for weeks, sometimes months.
Don’t stop your SEO because you’ve not seen any results in a few days. Equally, don’t stop just because you have seen results.
SEO requires patience and trust in the process. Make changes, monitor and continually adapt to results.
So why SEO is important for small business? Implementing a good SEO strategy is important for any business. By understanding best practices, user experience and monitoring performance, you can learn how to drive traffic to your website.
Are you looking to grow your business and invest in SEO? Do you require a strategy that will help you increase traffic to your website, drive sales and improve ROI?