There are enormous benefits for small businesses that create an online presence, which is why many small businesses are spending more and more of their advertising dollars on the Internet. In the last few years, as web access has become increasingly common, the number of people who use the Internet to search for local businesses has shot up dramatically. Further, Internet marketing is far more targeted and can provide a far better return on investment than classical advertising options, such as print, radio and TV advertising. However, to ensure the success of an Internet advertising campaign, businesses should use an online marketing consultant.
Search engine marketing (SEM) is a very low-cost method of driving traffic to a website and increasing brand recognition for small businesses. It works by increasing the search engine ranking of websites based on particular keyword searches. Since the majority of people only view the first page of results from a search engine, if a website is not at the top of results, they are effectively invisible to most people on the Internet. One of the most common ways for businesses to improve their search engine rankings is through search engine optimization (SEO).
The reason that having a small business SEO consultant is so important to the success of online advertising campaigns is due to the complex and changing nature of SEO. While this method of online advertising is a proven way to increase traffic to websites and improve online brand recognition for a very low cost, it tends to require large amounts of research and experience to produce expected results. In addition to ensuring that a website has optimized coding, keyword content and file naming structures, SEO also requires extensive keyword research to be able to target visitors correctly.
For example, a website that sells cat food should not attempt SEM for a keyword like “cats.” To begin with, there is far too much competition to be able to gain high ranking for such a general term without an enormous amount of money, effort and time. Additionally, even if that website did manage to achieve a high search engine ranking for “cats,” it is not likely to do them any good. People searching for “cats” could be searching for information on breeding, shots, medical information or grooming services.
Instead, with the help of an SEO consultant, small businesses can discover which terms are most likely to be achievable for them at the lowest cost while also providing the targeted traffic that they need. It is important to keep in mind that the goal of Internet advertising is not simply to drive traffic to a website, but to drive targeted traffic that will improve a business’s sales numbers. Therefore, marketing needs to be very specific to be effective.
While the ideas behind SEM and SEO are easy to understand, putting them into practice and achieving results is usually not a simple task. To ensure that your business’s marketing dollars are being well-spent, submit your online request for a free SEO consultation