What SEO Really Means for Small Business
As a small business owner, you likely hear about search engine optimization (SEO) a lot. You've likely heard it's important, but may not be clear on exactly why it's important, because while SEO is simple in concept, it is a complex behind-the-scenes type of marketing, so it's difficult to understand what it is, let alone why it's important.
SEO is vital for small businesses for many reasons, however, many small businesses feel that there isn’t any pressing reason to invest in it, feel as though they can't afford it on a limited budget, or don't see its overall value to their marketing strategy.
SEO provides a huge opportunity for small businesses to compete with larger companies, increase their visibility to consumers online and locally, and grow their business.
But first, it's helpful to understand what it is, and the specific ways SEO benefits small business.
In a nutshell, SEO is what enables consumers to find your business online through search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. If the majority of your customers are locally based, it can be easy to overlook the influence SEO has on local consumers deciding where to bring their business.
SEO Explained in Layman's Terms
The first thing virtually all consumers do, even when referred to your business, is to look you up online. In this digital age, if you don't have a website consumers lose trust in the credibility and quality of your product and/or service. Consumers like to read reviews, get more information about your business, and even something as simple as figure out how to find you.
If they can't do these things with a couple of clicks, they take their business elsewhere.
SEO also ensures the right customers are finding you, so when they do a search for your product or service they find exactly what they are looking for when they reach your website, and stay to learn more.
SEO involves using the most popularly searched keyword terms that accurately describe your business on all your online content, including website copy, blogs/articles, and images. Search engines have specific (and ever-changing) algorithms they follow to prioritize what results come up on any given search.
If your online content isn't using the correct keywords, in the correct places, your business may not show up on a consumer's search at all. If your online content doesn't have the correct keywords for your brand, company, and specialty, consumers may find you but find your information irrelevant or off-base, and they won't stay to learn more.
Generally speaking, sites have mere seconds to show a user that they have reached the right site, get them engaged with their product and brand, and prompt them to further explore the site. If your site doesn't capture their immediate attention, they click away.
When consumers find exactly what they are looking for easily, quickly, and clearly, conversion rates (whether online or with a visit to your business) are extremely high.
SEO Advantages for Small Business
46% of all Google searches are looking for local information - an optimized website dramatically increases the chances your business will be found by your local consumer base.
88% of consumers who do a local search on their smartphone visit or call a store within a day - if your site isn't optimized for both desktop and mobile, you are missing out on the vast majority of consumers who search online.
18% of local smartphone searches lead to a purchase within a day, whereas only 7% of non-local searches lead to a sale - consumers increasingly rely on online research and reviews to decide where to take their business.
“Near me” or "close by" type searches grew by more than 900% over two years - SEO enables consumers - even local consumers - to find your business without relying solely on word-of-mouth or people driving/walking by your business. Cold leads are the hardest leads to find when building your business, and an optimized website does the work for you!
92% of searchers will pick businesses on the first page of local search results - even if you have a website, if it's not search engine optimized, users can't find you. Worse yet - they are finding your competitors instead.
Search result information will send 70% of consumers to a physical store. There is a misconception amongst some small business owners that if they do not sell products or services online, they don't need a website. More than half of all consumers use online search to get information about a local small business before physically visiting the store.
Morgan Marketing Solutions - Expertise and Affordability
We are a full-service agency that can meet any of your marketing needs. We work exclusively with small-to-mid-sized businesses, and we understand the unique needs small businesses face. We can provide you with all, some, or one of our services, and we take the time to understand you, your business, your goals, and your overall needs. We don't recommend services that you don't need, and we can scale with your business as you grow.
We function like an in-house marketing department, at a fraction of the cost! Get to know us better with an introductory call or visit - we'd love to hear from you!