SEO: The Long-Term Investment That Keeps on Giving

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Businesses these days make sure that they are properly represented online. With use of the Internet a common and necessary part of doing business, just being online is no longer a special edge. In fact, this has become a requirement for the success of almost any business. With the intense global competition where we all now have to survive, just having an online presence is not going to help. Competition is high in all industries and in all markets. With all the advancement in the communication means, people get their needs fulfilled easily and quickly. Whoever is capable of handling their needs in the best manner is going to do business.

Just like in the ‘olden days’ when the company had to seek out the customers in the real world and present its offerings to them, in the virtual world this is true as well – one has to seek out the customer and ensure that they get to learn about the offering. The best way to do this is to invest in SEO, search engine optimization.

Before any company can provide its product or service, the customer gets to know that a specific company is in the business in the first place. Google is now second nature to people – they don’t search anymore, they Google. Whenever they are looking for something, this is the place that they are going to go to. The general rule that the majority follows is that they are going to stick to the results on the first page. Those who are interested in some in-depth research will go to a maximum of five pages and skim through the information provided there. When it comes to business organizations, if they are not on any of these pages, then they are not going to be close to the customers or in their mind.

SEO is the system through which the organization can ensure that when a customer enters the key words in the search engine bar, their website will come up in the top results. Only then are they going to ensure that the customer checks them out. From there on, the website and its quality are going to play their respective roles in building the long-term relation with the customer which is further going to result in customer engagement and positive word of mouth.

As the saying goes, there are no free lunches in this world. Likewise, SEO does not come for free. The organization is going have to make an investment. Generally companies of small to medium size are reluctant to invest in SEO. This is a flawed strategy. It’s even more important for small and medium business to invest in SEO as early as possible in order to develop an online presence and history.

In many ways, organic SEO growth is a waiting game. Building credibility in the search engine’s algorithm has become more weighted on long-term authority standing, that is, results over time. It’s important to remember that the search engine is focused on providing the best possible search results so as to keep individuals continuing to utilize the service.

The most affordable way for small businesses to invest in SEO is by creating high-quality, compelling and industry-related content. High-quality content creates repeat readers as well as encourages sharing. This content will increase the chances that other websites in the industry will refer and link back to the original content, causing an organic growth to the business’s backlinks. The appropriate content producer can be outsourced for an affordable price. A content portal such as Yahoo Voice (formally Associated Content) is a great place to find reliable content producers. Small monthly content contributions to a business website will yield great results many months down the line but

Don’t expect an instant increase in business or customer awareness. The idea here is not short-term gains. Instead, the focus is on the long-term benefits and thus investing in SEO is a long term strategy that is going to produce consistent, measureable results over time.

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