Once upon a time, Search Engine Optimisation consisted of putting keywords into key areas that Google would look for. You could essentially use black hat SEO to spam Google with keywords in order to appear higher in search results. This is no longer the case. Businesses have had to change their SEO strategy in order to get any results whatsoever and it takes a lot more work than writing a bunch of keywords. Why is this though? Does this make SEO a waste of time and money?
What Has Changed?
There are two big reasons for businesses having to change their approach to SEO in order to see results. The first is that there are literally over one billion websites live today, meaning you’re likely to have a lot more competition getting to the top of search engine results, regardless of the industry you operate in. The internet and, therefore, web design has become increasingly popular since the turn of the century. Businesses are now forced to have websites and promote them just so they can compete with their competitors.
The other reason would be that Google has become very intelligent. Google aims to deliver the best possible user experience to its customers, meaning it won’t put websites with ludicrous amounts of keywords that aren’t needed near the top of the search results. Essentially, Google has certain demands that websites must meet in order to appear at or near the top of their results. Additionally, Google knows if you’re trying to cheat them. If you overuse keywords and even put invisible keywords on your site, for example, Google will find them and penalise you for it. There have been certain trends that have changed the way we use SEO and there are likely to be more. Check out this article to find out more about some possible future SEO trends - 4 SEO Trends To Look Out For In 2018.
Looking At The Competition
So, as you can see from the above reasons, SEO requires a lot more time and effort to utilise effectively. In fact, it requires such a large amount of dedication that many businesses would rather hire marketing agencies to carry it out for them. However, if you think paying a marketing agency will get you to the very top of search results, you are wasting your money. The thing to remember is there are so many digital marketing agencies in the world all trying to get their clients high up in search results.
Another thing you have to consider is the larger companies you can’t compete with. For example, if you run a local gym, you’re not likely to beat the big name gyms to the top of the search results when someone types your chosen keywords into a search engine.
Is The Cost Of SEO Really Worth The Results You Get?
Of course, if you’re paying for your SEO, you have to see a return on investment (ROI) as it simply wouldn’t be worth it if you didn’t. For many attempting to utilise SEO, they will fail to see the results they want. So, by this logic SEO is a waste of money, right? This couldn’t be further from the truth! The simple fact is that many of the businesses that don’t see positive results from SEO simply aren’t using it correctly.
SEO works best as part of an inbound marketing strategy in which you would optimise your website according to Google’s guidelines as well as using keywords, making your website mobile friendly, creating original, informative and engaging content, getting links back to your site through directories and promoting using social media to name a few. This will help you to rank higher in search engines. There are a number of other things to consider as well:
- What are you doing to nurture potential customers that visit your site?
- What sort of content do your customers want to see – what can you create to help them?
- How many links are you getting back to your site and how much content are you creating?
- Are the links from other websites to your site as well as the content you create of good quality?
These are all important factors to consider when utilising SEO. By considering all of this, you are more likely to see good results from SEO.
Are You Taking Advantage Of SEO Or Wasting Your Money?
In conclusion, SEO is definitely not a waste of money, as long as you know how to make it work for your business. Additionally, you have to consider it as part of a marketing strategy and not the marketing strategy itself. Using it alongside email marketing and Pay per Click, for example, can allow you to see better results. Here at JDR, we have years of experience utilising SEO, PPC, SMO and more. For more information, please feel free to get in touch. Also, check out this article to find out more about why SEO still works and why it still matters - Why SEO Works And Why It Still Matters.