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Confronting the Basics of Search Engine Optimization

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SEO specialist working on computer in office

Congratulations, you’ve undoubtfully decided to introduce your business to online marketing and have now been subjected to perplexing terminology like Search Engine Optimization, or SEO.

Thankfully, there is an abundance of resources and material at your disposal to master this ever-engrossing topic and, with any luck, this article will provide you with a proper foundation in SEO.

So, what is SEO?

SEO is the digital marketing strategy that determines where you rank in a google search.

Google’s primary focus is to deliver useful content to their users, through credible (and FAST) resources.  When confronting SEO, be sure to ask yourself these questions to help ground your focus:

How popular is my site?

  • Do people reference my site’s content?  What does my organic traffic look like per month?

How relevant is my site to a user’s search?

  • Is your content useful to the end user? Is the content geared towards fulfilling a need for the user?

How reliable is my site?

  • What does my bounce rate look like? Are there any broken links? Is there a Sitemap.xml file? What about a Robots.txt file?  What does my page load speed look like?           

Interested in learning the basics of SEO? Visit here read a free beginners guide to SEO!

Do SEO Services Work? How Will they help my business?

Think about your own habits when searching for something online.  How many links are you likely to click through?  Do you even consider going to the second page?  Most users do not.  In today’s market, where you rank in a google search query is pivotal to the digital success of your business.

SEO is the best way to organically push your company to the top of search engine rankings. It is reliable, effective, and inexpensive. 

Time to throw some stats your way:

  • 93% of online experience begin with a search engine. Google currently holds about 90% of the total search engine market share.  The other ten percent is divided up between Yahoo!, Bing, Amazon, and YouTube, which is also owned by Google.
  • 0.78% of Google searchers click on the results from the 2nd page. ​
  • Bounce Rates (the rate at which a visitor leaves your site after entering the initial page) increase by 50% for websites that take longer than 3 seconds to load. Site Health is Important for SEO!
  • Conversion rates fall by an extra 12% for every extra second that it takes for your website to load.
  • 53.3% of all website traffic comes from organic search.  

In short, where your site ranks in a google search has a direct correlation to quantity and quality of organic traffic your site will receive in a given month.  SEO is vital.

How much should I plan on paying for SEO Monthly?

If you want to unload your SEO burdens on some poor chap glued to a computer for a living, no one will blame you.  Proper SEO management is tedious and time consuming.

Although, shopping for a professional SEO Company also comes with its fair share of challenges.  To see your site increase in rank could take months.  Ranking for a keywords, for example, could take up to a year depending on the keyword and its difficulty.  Proper SEO maintenance usually comes at a cost upwards of $750+ a month.  At this price, an expert SEO specialist may devote 8-10 hours of their monthly work toward your site. Contracts typically range from 3 months to a year with an initial setup fee.  The more money you are willing to spend on SEO, the more hours and quality content you are likely to get and the more organic traffic you will have to your site.

Okay, I get that SEO is important and complex. But where can I buy SEO Services? Where should I look?

There are several services to find online, but buyers beware! Any company that advertises SEO at a cost lower than $750 a month should be questioned.  What will be done on the site per month (get specifics!)? How many hours will be put into their site per month?  What access will you be given, so you can track their progress?

Interested in a chat about an SEO contract? Visit here to learn more!

How do I know which option is right for me?

My advice is to start small and grow.  How much can you afford?  See where an affordable package takes you after a three-month period, monitor your sites progress and decide to move to a more costly package from there.  Compare your site’s performance with reliable competitors. Track your progress over time. With the right SEO monitoring tools, you will be able to easily track these metrics, and translate your results into actionable SEO for your website.

Closing Thoughts…

Deciding on the right SEO specialist, or SEO package for your business is a daunting task.  Hopefully, this post gave you a very basic overview of what SEO is, why it is useful and some actionable tips and resources to explore. When starting anything new, you will probably feel overwhelmed with the information provided and progress will feel slow.  My advice to confronting the plethora of information on the internet is to start small.  You don’t need to be an expert on Search Engine Optimization overnight, but you will need to have some background on the topic if you plan to hire a team to manage your SEO for you.  Ask questions, don’t be afraid to be wrong, and continue to build your brand.

If you’re looking for a more in-depth synopsis of SEO, feel free to visit my other article: The Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimization

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