Many marketing agencies typically assume the people reading their content already know what SEO marketing (search engine optimization marketing) is but what we’ve found is not everyone understands the basics of SEO and why it is important for their web presence. Because of the growing importance placed on social media marketing, many believe they can either implement SEO OR social media. That’s simply not the case anymore; SEO goes hand-in-hand with social media for a good website strategy. Lets take it back to basics and discuss: What is SEO Marketing?
SEO Marketing Defined.
According to Search Engine Land:
SEO stands for “search engine optimization.” It is the process of getting traffic from the “free,” “organic,” “editorial” or “natural” listings on search engines. All major search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing have such results, where web pages and other content such as videos or local listings are shown and ranked based on what the search engine considers most relevant to users. Payment isn’t involved, as it is with paid search ads.
Let’s break it down.
It is the process of getting traffic from the “free,” “organic,” “editorial” or “natural” listings on search engines.
When you do a search on Google, you typically either find what you’re looking for within the first page, or you go back and change your search query. Let’s look at a search example. Search for “seo marketing appleton wi”.
The top part of the search results are typically the paid results. You can tell because they have a small orange box with the word “Ad” next to them. The unpaid results are what are referred to as “free”, “natural”, “organic” and “editorial” in the definition. When a user clicks one of these links, the website has successfully grasped their attention and is now a potential solution for whatever it is they were searching for.
All major search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing have such results, where web pages and other content such as videos or local listings are shown and ranked based on what the search engine considers most relevant to users.
These results are shown in all search platforms, whether it is one of the major ones: Google, Bing and Yahoo; or lesser known platform options. However, none of these platforms don’t just KNOW you have the best product and automatically rank you first. You have to prove it with your online presence.
Payment isn’t involved, as it is with paid search ads.
As mentioned above, the results above the organic links are paid. That’s a topic for another article, just know that you’ll never see an organic result ABOVE the paid search results.
Why is SEO Important for Your Website?
So now that you understand what SEO Marketing is, but how is it relevant to your website? Can SEO even work for you? Why can’t you just promote your site on social media? Great questions. First off, how is SEO marketing relevant to your website? 75% of people click on one of the top five results in Google, and few (roughly 25%) will go to the second page for search results. If that is not reason enough, then also consider these SEO statistics:
- 75% of internet transactions start with a search engine
- An inbound lead (someone who finds your website and fills out a “Contact Us” form) costs 61% less than an outbound lead (a sales call)
- SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound leads have a 1.7% close rate
- 93% of online experiences begin with a search engines
Search Engine Optimization vs. Social Media Marketing?
Some say search is not limited to a search platform anymore because you can find businesses in your Twitter feed, LinkedIn, and on Facebook. This is true. However, when someone comes across your company on Facebook for example, they are most likely there to browse, or get support, they aren’t necessarily looking for you because they’re ready to buy your product or service.
Your potential customers are probably sitting on social media out of curiosity and/or boredom. When someone is ready to buy or in research mode, they are searching specifically for something you might be able to provide which increases the likelihood you’ll get a customer. This alone is reason enough not to ignore SEO in your web marketing strategy.
SEO Marketing and Social Media Work Hand-In-Hand
Becoming a brand leader on social media will show your potential customers you know what you are talking about. Search engines see how much your content is shared, how many people are interacting with you, and how well you manage your brand. This allows your company to gain trust, and therefore could bump up your website’s rankings in search engines. If you only learn one thing about SEO and social media from this article, this is it: You can’t have one without the other if you want to be competitive online.