I'm going to discuss why I believe SEO is still the most cost effective way of generating new business.
Why use search engine optimisation?
The internet is still the most cost effective way of generating new business. If you have a business website it is visible 24 hours a day. If it is set up correctly it can generate new business, without having to go out and sell face to face, over the telephone, through networking or other traditional means.
There is an upfront cost in get your website developed and there is a cost involved in search engine optimisation. But the cost is very little compared to the amount of business you can generate through a successful business website.
Inbound vs Outbound
Ultimately this is given to you for free! You don't have to pay to advertise your website. Simply by having a website which is search engine optimised. You can bring customers to your business. This is why search engine optimisation is still vitally important.
SEO for the long term
One of the problems a lot of business owners don't realise is SEO should be viewed as long term goal. If you want to generate business quickly then SEO may not be the best route. It will cost a lot of money. Some of our client with websites which take months in some cases years to actually get quite high in the Google results.
But when they do get there the amount of business they generate, the amount of regular business that comes on a daily basis proves it is worth it. I would challenge anyone to give me a better way of generate that level of business in a cost effective way.
The main factors when it comes to optimising your website is the amount of content you have on your website, and how old or long your website has existed for. So over time your website naturally be more trusted by search engines as long as you do things right.
The problem with not understanding this as a long term goal is many business owners don't see results and therefore don't commit to SEO. The only reason everyone is not succeeding with SEO is because they are either not doing it right OR they are not doing it at all. I think the majority of small to medium businesses fall into the category of NOT DOING IT AT ALL.
There are a lot of business owners who view website's as a traditional marketing tool. Thinking of their website like a brochure/advert. They put it up once and forget about it. Your website should be evolving all the time while your business is evolving. In order to get the most from it.
SEO is like a marathon
Once you see SEO as a long term goal, then slow and steady wins the race. SEO is like a marathon. You wouldn't go out to run a marathon next weekend and expect to run the full 26 miles. You have to train your body, train your muscles to run that kind of distance. It takes commitment. It takes effort. It is the same when it comes to optimising your website.
What are the results?
A steady stream of new business Just think for a moment, what it would be like if while you are reading this you have had 2 or 3 enquiries come in from your website of which 1 or 2 could turn into potential new customers.
Think what it would be like to come into your office EVERY morning and find 2 or 3 email enquiries or leads you can follow up and actually spend time generating business. Rather than spending time trying to chase leads.