Search engine optimisation, often abbreviated to SEO, is fast becoming one of the crucial aspects of whether a business succeeds or not. If your business has a website or any online presence, then you need to be thinking about SEO.
Put simply, SEO is any steps taken to improve a website’s ranking on the Google search engine. When you type any search into Google, it is highly likely that you are going to click onto one of the websites that are on the first page, and most likely in the top 5 listed.
But how does Google decide how to put these websites in order, when some of them may look very similar?
Well, that is where SEO comes into play, and there are hundreds of little ways that you can improve your website’s rank on Google. Some of them are simple and ones that your company should be aware of any employing on a daily basis, for example having your own blog is a must. Others are more complex and time-consuming. This is where a great SEO company can work wonders for your business, and really get your website ranked highly. If you want increased sales and traffic, then you want to get a good ranking.
Over the past few years, there have been a plethora of SEO companies offering their services to increase your ranking. Not only does this show how important SEO is, but how many business are investing in this and seeing its benefits. But with so many companies it can be hard to know which one to choose.
Are you thinking about investing in SEO and don’t know who to work with? Ask yourself these 5 questions first to help you decide.
1. What Type of SEO Services Do I Need?
If you are new to SEO, you might not have any idea how SEO works. In reality, some parts of SEO are relatively straight forward and some are more complex. However, there are many different types of SEO services available. As with anything, it always good to do some research first.
For example, there are specific types of SEO specialised for local businesses. It might be easy to see that a medium sized restaurant in Bangkok or a hotel would need difererent services than a huge online retailer.
For a local business, the SEO services will be tailored around getting your business to be the first to show up on maps. When a customer searches for a service in a local area, you want your business to show up.
However, a business such as an online clothing distributor does not need local SEO as they ship all their items.
2. Who Are My Customers?
Most businesses will know who their target audience is and will tailor their advertising to them specifically. One of the wonderful advantages of the internet is that it allows the whole world to be your potential customer. Again as with the point above, your SEO needs will depend on your customer demographic.
One prime example of this is the use of blogs. They are now an active part of creating sales and gaining new customers.
Current research shows that 61% of consumers in the U.S.A purchase a product after they read about it in a blog post. Almost 3/4 people online now read blogs. If you consider that there are over 1 billion people now online, that is a very large number. Blogging is quickly becoming the most effective way to attract new customers.
To create blogs is free for most websites, but some thought and research should be put into them. Once you have created an excellent blog to show off your product, SEO will ensure that your blog gets read by your target audience. They will make it so it is easy to find when people search for that topic.
3. Do I want To Create My Own Content?
Some websites will have the time and knowledge to create good quality content. However, others will need to divert all their attention to other areas of their business. They simply won’t have the resources to create great online content. Either way, an SEO company can help you with this.
One of the services that SEO companies offer is to provide the high quality content for you. Not only will the blog be well written, but it will score highly for SEO. This will get your blog read by the right people. After all, there is no point having the best written blog ever if no one can find it to read it.
4. Do I Need To Be On Social Media?
The short answer to this is yes. The longer answer is yes, what on earth are you waiting for? Social media started out as a way for friends to connect and share memories or photos. However, it has now merged into a whole new beast. Companies and brands are now realising the potential that social media can have for their company.
Equally, the type of social media that may be best for your business will vary depending on your product and your target audience. For example Facebook is used by an older demographic than Instagram. But both are being used to advertise and increase brand awareness.
An SEO company can manage your social media account for you. Alternatively, they can provide support while you manage your own. Either way, they will use social media to increase your SEO ranking.
5. How Often Can I Meet With An SEO Company?
As with almost every industry, many SEO companies never meet their customers and have a strictly online relationship with them. This does work for a lot of businesses as they will know the SEO tricks to get your business better ranked. They do not need to meet you in person or share paper files. Skype calls and the different programs that allow data sharing have meant that our office is now global.
One thing you need to know is how much time you would like to devote to SEO. Do you want to give 99% of your SEO tasks over to a company? After all this is the field they excel in. Or would you like a more 50 / 50% partnership where they complete SEO tasks along side you. The answers to these questions will not only determine the type of SEO services that are best for you, but what type of SEO company you should choose.
Another key part of an SEO company’s role is analytics. They work with your specific brand and target audience to analyse trends and patterns. They can work out, for example, what is the keywords to be using in your blog or website that people search for.
Again, you want to be asking yourself how much of these analyses do you want to be using in your own marketing and strategy? Do you want to understand and use these yourself? Or do you want to let them take control and manage this, giving you regular updates instead.
There is no doubt that SEO is a key factor into whether a business becomes successful. Investment in SEO is fast becoming one of the highest spends for a company, and with good reason. They are really seeing the increase in traffic, sales, and new customers.
Investing in a new product or service to improve your business can seem daunting. But if you do your research and have some idea of what would benefit your company, you are going to be able to get the correct services for you.