Visibility is the currency of success in this digital age. Establishing an online presence is not an option; it is a necessity for all businesses. To achieve this goal, you need Search Engine Optimization (aka SEO). But why is SEO important?
In this article, we will look at the importance of SEO in a business’ identity and its impact on web traffic.
1. Organic search is a good source of traffic
Organic search is often the primary source of website traffic. Most internet users use organic search to find what they are looking for online, whether a product, a service, or just some information.
Why? Because it’s free and the data is solid. When your business appears at the top of search engine results pages, users are more likely to click on your website.
Being organically visible in search engine results doesn’t require users to know about your business. Instead, you have a chance to introduce your business to them and initiate a relationship. You not only attract more visitors but also potential customers who are likely interested in what you offer. Organic search is a bridge connecting your business to many potential customers out there.
Moreover, organic search can often outperform other search forms. A study from BrightEdge shows that organic search drives 53% of all site traffic, while paid search accounts for 15% and social media accounts for just 5%.
Furthermore, according to Search Engine Watch, more than 40% of business revenue comes from organic search. This demonstrates that not only does organic search lead to more traffic, but it also yields higher-quality leads that are more likely to convert into customers.
2. SEO builds trust, authority, and brand recognition
SEO also helps in building trust and credibility with potential customers. Google often emphasizes the importance of E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness). When your website appears on page 1 of Google, users interpret it as a sign of authority. This implicit trust can enhance brand recognition and foster a positive reputation.
Moreover, SEO helps in creating a broader and more effective brand awareness. If your web pages are on the first page of search engines, your potential customers are more likely to trust you when they search for a particular term rather than brands that don’t have a robust web presence. This is why small businesses that want to build better brand awareness must invest in SEO and start gaining top rankings for the key terms related to their business.
In essence, SEO forms a critical component of your business’s online presence and brand building. It’s the digital calling card of your business. If done right, it can multiply your impact massively by getting your brand in front of the eyes of potential customers.
3. SEO creates a better user experience
SEO is not only about pleasing the search engines but also about creating a smooth and positive user experience. A well-optimized website can help customers find exactly what they need. Good SEO practices translate to a user-friendly interface, easy navigation, and helpful content that effectively fulfills your target audience.
Google has learned to interpret a favorable or unfavorable user experience, and a positive user experience has become a pivotal element to a website’s success. Users know what they want, and if they can’t find it, there’s going to be a problem. And your performance will suffer.
Quality SEO incorporates a positive user experience, leveraging it to work in a brand’s favor. The goal is to offer users the information they are seeking in fewer clicks, quickly and easily.
So, the next time you think SEO, think beyond just target keywords and Google search; think about how you can enhance user experience on your website. This holistic approach will not only improve your search engine rankings but also result in a satisfied, happy customer base.
4. SEO is cost-effective
Compared to other forms of marketing, SEO is remarkably cost-effective. SEO targets users who are actively looking for your products and services. Its inbound nature helps businesses save money as opposed to outbound strategies like email outreaches or cold-calling.
Hubspot has made it clear that leads generated from an inbound strategy cost 61% less than leads generated by an outbound tactic.
This shows that a good SEO strategy can lead to more qualified leads. So, if you’re looking to cut down on marketing costs without compromising results, SEO could be your ideal solution.
5. SEO connects you with customers throughout the buying cycle
A well-rounded SEO strategy should encompass all stages of the buying cycle and guide customers through their buying journey. Optimizing your content can effectively address the specific needs and inquiries of your customers at each stage of the buying cycle.
Customers often go through 4 phases in their buying journey:
Stage 1: Recognize the problem.
Stage 2: Gather information about the problem.
Stage 3: Evaluate different solutions.
Stage 4: Buy the best option.
For instance, customers who try to find solutions to their problems may search for product or service reviews. By ranking these “best” keywords, you can help your customers find what they need.
Conversely, customers who are ready to purchase may search for specific product names or brand names with buying intent keywords like “buy” or “purchase”. By optimizing your content for these latter keywords, you can attract customers who are ready to convert and drive more sales for your business.
6. SEO data is quantifiable
SEO is not guesswork or intuition, it’s a data-driven field. Every strategy you implement, every keyword you optimize for, every backlink you acquire. All these SEO efforts are quantifiable.
With SEO platforms such as Ahrefs, SEMRush, or SE Ranking, you can see your site’s traffic, keyword rankings, bounce rate, and conversion rate. The information provides you with insightful data about your website’s performance and improvement areas.
This data allows you to measure the success of your SEO efforts and adjust your digital marketing strategy. When you know exactly what works and what doesn’t, you can make informed decisions and boost your website’s rankings.
7. SEO is a long-term strategy
SEO won’t bring you overnight success. It’s a long-term strategy.
When you invest in SEO, you’re planting a seed that will grow over time. It takes patience and commitment but once your website is established, it can sustain itself.
You need at least 6 to 12 months to start seeing results from your SEO efforts.
That’s the beauty of SEO—it’s not a one-and-done task. Your efforts today will continue to reap benefits long into the future. And while it may be tempting to seek out quick wins, remember–lasting success in the digital landscape comes from building a strong SEO foundation and nurturing it over time. Slow and steady does win the race in the world of SEO.
8. Understanding SEO helps you understand how the web works
Understanding how SEO works is like getting a behind-the-scenes tour of the internet. It allows you to comprehend how search engines function, how they read and interpret content, and how they decide what to display on the first page of search results.
This knowledge is powerful. It enables you to tailor your content, making it more visible and appealing. It also helps you improve user experiences on your website, making it more accessible and user-friendly.
After all, search engines and users share a common goal: they want relevant and high-quality content. So, as you fine-tune your SEO skills, you not only get a handle on how the web works, but you also deliver exactly what it wants.
9. SEO is scalable
SEO offers scalability, a key advantage for all businesses. Small businesses can compete on an even playing field with larger corporations using SEO.
No matter the size of your business, SEO techniques can be employed to increase visibility and drive more website traffic.
Moreover, the benefits of SEO don’t stop even when you stop investing (at least until the next core algorithm update or new competition comes in).
As your business grows, your SEO efforts can be scaled up to match your expanding reach. Unlike many other marketing strategies, SEO gives you the flexibility you need as your site evolves, ensuring that your online presence continues to grow in line with your business.
10. SEO complements your paid ads efforts
While paid advertising can effectively drive traffic to your site, its results are immediate and often short-lived. The moment you stop funneling money into your ad campaign, the traffic it generates will come back to ZERO. SEO, on the other hand, works around the clock, constantly driving organic traffic to your site.
When you combine SEO with paid advertising efforts, you create a powerful, integrated strategy. SEO boosts your organic traffic, increasing your site’s visibility for relevant search queries, while paid advertising targets a specific audience segment for immediate results. Together, they create a comprehensive digital marketing strategy for your online presence.
In addition, investing in SEO can reduce the cost of your paid advertising campaigns. By driving more organic traffic, you can decrease the budget allocated for paid ads, allowing you to maximize your ROI and stretch your marketing budget further.
11. SEO helps you keep your competitive advantage
SEO is a must if you want to maintain a competitive edge. Smart use of SEO can help your business stand out in a crowded online space. It allows your website to rank higher in search results, making it easier for potential customers to find you.
The name of the game is Getting to the top of Google. Websites with more backlinks and content tend to outrank their competitors on search engines, and eventually, in doing business.
To find missing content on your website, I recommend using a Keyword Content Gap tool by Semrush. First, type in your website and competitors, then hit Compare.
Then, check out the Missing tab to find all the content that you should target for your website.
12. SEO is PR
Though SEO and PR are often viewed as separate marketing strategies, they overlap each other. SEO is, in essence, a form of PR in the digital realm. Like traditional PR efforts aim to boost a company’s visibility and reputation, SEO enhances your online presence and credibility.
By securing high-quality backlinks from reputable websites, SEO contributes to your PR strategy by positioning your brand as an authority in your field. This is similar to when a notable publication mentions your company, adding credibility to your brand.
Additionally, both SEO and PR require consistent quality content that resonates with your audience to establish trust and foster a positive relationship.
SEO and PR are two sides of the same coin. They can work together and form a formidable strategy that can significantly elevate your brand’s reputation, and overall success.
In conclusion, I hope this article makes it clear why SEO is important for your business. SEO helps you not only climb the Google rankings, but also maintain a competitive edge, optimize your marketing budget for increased ROI, and ensure your business is accessible to your target audience.
SEO is a long-term investment with sustainable results, one that plays a crucial role in your overall marketing strategy. If you want your business to thrive online, investing time, effort, and resources in SEO is not an option, but a necessity.
How can I make SEO effective?
To make SEO effective, you need to focus on these elements:
Local SEO (if you have a local business).
Check out our article to learn how to create an effective SEO strategy.
How do I know if my website has good SEO?
Your website has good SEO if it follows these rules:
The site speed is fast (under 2s).
Keyword rankings are good for relevant keywords.
The website is mobile-friendly.
The content is relevant to your niche.
Internal linking to relevant content.