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Why SEO should be your best friend in 2014

The way search engines interpret your website content can have a direct correlation to online business traffic. That’s why search engine optimization should be an integral part of your 2014 marketing strategy.

Awareness

The easier your site is to find, the more traffic you’ll see. A significant amount of time and energy goes into crafting the perfect message and finessing the look and feel of your site, but without optimization these efforts can easily be squandered. Sure, with little-to-no search engine optimization your site will show up in results somewhere, but search bots will have a very narrow view of your web site. By engaging in an SEO program you greatly expand that perspective and create a network of resources that bots will find useful and relay to searchers. This allows the end user to find your site more easily with general search terms, because of the increased digital footprint you’ve created.

Perceived Value

When was the last time you clicked to page 8 (… or page 2 for that matter) of a Google search? If you get to the end of page 1 and haven’t found a good link yet, you’re probably revising your search terms, not going to the next page. The same goes for potential leads looking for your services. If you’re on page 2, it might as well be page 100. And even with results on the first page, the further down you are, the less likely users are to click-through. That’s due in large part to the perceived trust that visitors associate with higher-ranking links in a search.

Google SEOThere’s not much you can do to shift this perception, but you can use optimization as a valuable tactic for ranking higher. This can make the search engine results for your site more dynamic and ultimately more engaging. Some results of well-optimized content include photos accompanied with a blog post, an interactive map listed with a business’s URL or a highlight of other prominent pages within a site. These all provide added engagement opportunities for new business and can only be accomplished through SEO.

Analysis and Tracking

When marketing dollars are spread thin, being able to track and analyze your ROI in real-time is a serious value-add. By putting an SEO plan in place you can do just that. A system of trial-and-error can show how users are finding your site, where they’re coming from, why they are leaving and where improvements can be made to drive more traffic. If a keyword doesn’t resonate with your target audience, it can be changed relatively quickly compared to say, a newspaper ad that is permanent once it goes to press.

Tracking can also be used to follow along with visitors once they land on your site. It can show how they’re interacting with the layout, what draws their attention and if they’ve converted to be a customer or client. By measuring these conversions you have the power to tweak and retool your efforts over time to stay connected with shifting markets.

As e-commerce becomes more competitive, it’s crucial that you set yourself apart to influence potential audiences. Search engine optimization can be the key to increasing your organic traffic and moving ahead of competing web sites. Without it, you’re missing the opportunity to have your online presence reach its potential.

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