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Is SEO a Necessity? Understanding the Cost of Ignoring Search Engine Optimization

If you’re involved in running a business, whether it’s your own or for someone else, chances are pretty good that you’ve at least heard of search engine optimization, also known as SEO. Considering that there are more than 3.5 billion searches a day conducted on Google alone, it’s easy to understand why businesses would want to invest in a strategy to help them build visibility and traction online.

But what happens if you don’t do SEO?

Well, if you ask this question out loud you might hear crickets at first, and then an onslaught of chatter from digital marketing mavens who claim you’re making the biggest mistake of your life. All that noise won’t do you a bit of good in deciding if SEO is necessary for the success of your business, so let’s cut through all the chatter and get down to the basics of what might happen if you don’t make search engine optimization a priority.

Missing Out on Organic Traffic

One of the most important outcomes of an effective SEO strategy is that it increases organic traffic to your website. While it’s true that you’re going to rank “somewhere” with search engines whether you devote any resources to SEO or not, the position of that ranking matters from a traffic perspective.

Although numbers and statistics are constantly shifting, we do know enough about the behaviors of internet users to say that 60% of clicks go to the top 3 listings of a search engine results page and that about 75% of users never bother clicking past the first page of results. Chances are they’ll either find what they’re looking for or attempt a different search.

Never say never, but it’s near impossible to earn a priority ranking spot without a conscious effort on SEO. This means that there’s a really good chance that you’re going to miss out on massive amounts of traffic, which translates directly to missing out on revenue.

Do you know who won’t be missing out on traffic or revenue? Your competitors, which brings us directly to our next point.

You’ll Be Left Behind in Your Competitor’s Dust

Even with the importance of a digital presence being well known, it’s still not all that uncommon for a small, local business to think that SEO just isn’t worth the time and effort. After all, they’re operating on a smaller scale and they’re not all that worried about the competition down the street.

But they should be.

You can’t assume that your competitors aren’t invested in SEO just because they’re small like you. In fact, small businesses are often the ones who benefit most from a targeted SEO strategy. Even small actions, like optimizing a Google My Business page for local SEO returns exponential dividends to the businesses that put in the effort.

The simple fact is that your audience is almost always going to look online before visiting a new location. If they spot your competitors first because you’re nowhere to be found, even in local search results, then you’ve just lost a major competitive advantage. Also keep in mind that local customers like to remain loyal to businesses, so the chances of winning them over decrease dramatically each time they visit your competitor.

You Like Wasting Your Budget

Ok, maybe “wasting” is a bit of a strong word. However, there are plenty of businesses out there that choose to skip over SEO altogether in favor of using a paid ad strategy instead. If you’ve got an unlimited budget that provides enough room for lots of trial and error and you don’t mind the revenue loss, then this could be an option for you.

For the rest of us, SEO is essential for getting maximum impact out of a pay per click budget.

When you take a step back and view your digital marketing from a holistic perspective, it becomes easier to see how PPC and SEO actually work better together to produce results. SEO can not only help provide valuable insights to maximize the ROI of your PPC strategy, but it also helps to nurture the leads you generate from paid ads and has the capacity to turn them into lifelong customers. Considering that it costs significantly less to keep a customer than it does to acquire a new one, SEO becomes important for keeping your marketing and customer acquisition budget in line.

Lack of Reputation Can Cost You

Remember that number we mentioned earlier about the millions of searches that Google performs every minute? That’s a lot of people using the internet and many of them are looking to connect with the millions of businesses that are also online.

This means that your customers aren’t suffering from a shortage of options and they have the luxury of being choosy about the businesses they invest in. Considering that you can purchase practically anything online, there’s no need to settle for the shop down the street when there’s a better option.

You audience knows this, which means they’re looking for more from you than just the product or service you provide. They want proof that you’re the quality business that they should invest in – in other words they’re looking for social proof, validation and transparency, and it’s up to you to provide it.

Investing in SEO puts the gears in place to start building a reputation online. For example, a focus on local SEO can help generate positive reviews about your business. You can also generate an equally impressive reputation by leveraging SEO to help you build a digital presence by generating more traffic to your website and social media pages where there’s visible proof of your validity and your willingness to engage with your customers.

Businesses that are missing this type of social validation often get looked over for someone who does.

Contact an SEO Expert

To go back to our original question of what happens when you don’t do SEO, well a lot happens and none of it is good for your business. If you want to thrive in today’s digital marketplace then SEO is a must. We’re the SEO agency that would like to help you realize your potential through a proven strategy of search engine optimization. Contact JLB Florida today and let us show you how our SEO services can propel your success.


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