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What Is SEO And Why Is It Essential For My Business?
If you own or run a business in today’s market, you have no doubt heard of the term “SEO” and know it is something you need to consider, but do you really know what it means? This acronym stands for Search Engine Optimization. In other words, making it easier for your customers to find you when they use their favorite search engine, such as Google or Bing, in order to locate products or services they need. More and more people are turning to the internet first when it comes to finding something they need, so if your business is still relying on traditional “yellow pages” listings, you could be missing out on significant income.
Search Engine Optimization
Have you ever wondered how it is that search engines are able to take your simple phrase and return thousands of relevant results? Perhaps you have wondered how it is your competition is able to show up at the top of the page, while your business is lower down, or even absent completely? The answer is simple – search engine optimization.
The major search engines use bots known as “web crawlers” that go from page to page, indexing what they find so that the search engine can match it to terms that users search for. SEO is the process of optimizing your website so that your page matches as many of these searches as possible (while still being relevant). Often this is in the form of inserting keywords, so that your site matches any possible combination your potential customer is using. For example, if you have a carpet cleaning business called Dave’s Carpet Service, you want to be connected with customers whether they are searching for “carpet cleaning,” “carpet care,” or “who can I hire to clean my carpet?”
Types Of Internet Marketing
Keyword searches may be the most common form of internet marketing and SEO, but they are far from the only options. It is difficult to find someone today who does not have an account on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or all three. These social media platforms are online gathering places, so it is no wonder that they are a prime target for marketing efforts. Ignoring these significant online gathering places is a big mistake. A good social media marketing campaign has a chance to go viral, where users pass the link, advertisement, video, or other media from friend to friend, spreading word across the internet like wildfire as individuals share it with everyone they know.
Another popular form of internet marketing is email marketing. With a simple offer of a discount, coupon code, or informational newsletter, many customers are willing to share their email address with businesses they patronize. This allows you to directly market interested customers, creating brand loyalty and promoting interaction.
Hiring Professionals For Your Search Engine Marketing
If all of this information seems a bit overwhelming or daunting, you are not alone. Fortunately, there are many options available. One of the best is to simply hire a marketing professional to handle all of the technical details for you. A good marketer or SEO professional is worth their weight in gold, and the expense will soon pay for itself in an increase in sales, as well as time saved so that you can focus on other aspects of your company. While you are busy trying to figure out the basics of optimization, other areas may get neglected, and the end result may be far less impressive than an expert would be able to do in the same amount of time.
When looking for an SEO company, make sure you check into their work and previous clients. Reputation matters, and anyone can set up a SEO business with little to no experience necessary. Fortunately, these fly-by-night operations do not usually last long, so any company with a list of happy customers is a great place to start. That is not to say that a new company can’t be trusted, especially if it is run by an experienced pro who simply got their start working for someone else. It just means that it is smart to take a closer look before you make any commitments.
Another aspect to consider is whether the company focuses on larger corporations or small business SEO. The SEO needs of a multinational company are much different than a small local business. Besides a larger budget, SEO for large companies will focus on much larger campaigns, while local SEO needs to have a much more refined target audience. A small town Indiana company doesn’t need a big flashy New York City style ad blitz, nor should they have to pay as much! On the other hand, if you have a larger business, a small local SEO company may be out of their depths when asked to run a nation-wide or even world-wide campaign.
Having an SEO expert on your team is another way to ensure you stay ahead of the curve. If your company has ongoing needs and doesn’t want to contract out for every job, it might be wise to consider adding a dedicated SEO professional to your team. Make sure you thoroughly check any potential hires, and verify the references they provide.
If your company doesn’t have the need or the budget for a dedicated SEO team member, you might consider an SEO Agency to help meet your needs. Many companies have options to fit your specific needs, whether it is a one-time website overhaul or ongoing support for the foreseeable future.
Finding The Most Affordable SEO Company
Finding quality service for your SEO needs doesn’t have to break the bank, and just because a company charges top dollar, doesn’t mean they offer superior service. However, it is a good rule of thumb that you get what you pay for. Make sure you thoroughly vet the company you hire. They should be able to show you some of their previous work as well as provide customer testimonials and reviews.
If you find a company that interests you but seems like it might be out of your price range, give them a call anyways. You never know what kind of offer they will make you. It is also worth your time to see if they offer any package discounts or have any currently running promotions. Many companies are willing to work with you a surprising amount, especially if it means they will gain a loyal repeat customer.
If you are in need of multiple services, such as SEO optimization and social media marketing, you may be able to get a discount or bundled offer from an Internet Marketing company that offers both. For example, they can set it up so that your website runs perfectly in sync with your current email marketing efforts, or links up with a current campaign on Facebook or Twitter. They can ensure that all of your advertising efforts run seamlessly and work well with the SEO running on your business website, gaining you more traffic, and therefore more customers and an increase in income.
The best SEO company doesn’t have to be the most expensive, however the cheapest will not likely be the best. Make sure you take a look at all of your options, in several price ranges. You may not need all of the bells and whistles of an expensive SEO overhaul, so why pay for one? You should be able to balance cost with services provided. The SEO company you hire should be one that goes out of its way to see that you get the SEO service you need at a price that you can afford.