Online Marketing is becoming an essential marketing medium for a successful business. If a business can successfully marketing their product or service online they open many new doors to potential customers and sales leads. A well structured and organised SEO consultant will suggest two avenues for online marketing, Search Engine Optimisation and Paid Online Marketing (like Pay Per Click). Ideally, you would be able to afford both paid and unpaid marketing campaigns but if you are like most businesses you are on a budget and need the proof that online marketing actually works.
The most common phrase I hear is “But everyone knows who we are and what we do” in relation to their business. This is just not true otherwise every potential customer would already be beating down your door, wouldn’t they? There is always room for growth and if you sell a product or service then there is always online marketing potential.
So, let’s explore why SEO is far superior to paid online marketing.
1. SEO is a long-term strategy for your online marketing. Should you implement pay per click or other paid online marketing then as soon as you stop paying your bills to the advertiser the traffic to your website will stop. Although you pay for setting up an SEO campaign with a reputable agency often their other client’s results are so impressive it is almost compelling to go with SEO instead. With SEO, should you stop paying for the refinements a reputable firm might charge at an ongoing rate, you might only see a slight leveling off of website traffic.
2. With pay per click marketing you pay for every visitor delivered to your website whether they like your service or not. With Search Engine Optimisation your website will hopefully appear high in the free search results and this will mean you do not pay for a click through to your website – effectively once your SEO is set up every click or visitor to your website is free.
3. False or fake click-throughs. In a study released in August 2007 it was determined that 18% of click-throughs on pay per click links on Google were false. In other words this could be competitors clicking through to your website just trying to cost you money in advertising.
4. The psychology of clicking on sponsored links. If you appear in both the paid and unpaid search results then you would see about 80% of your website traffic come from the unpaid free SEO website links. There is a psychology associated with consumers clicking on paid advertising links especially if they are labeled as such, like in Google “Sponsored Links”. Searchers see straight through this and know it is a paid advertising link. Consumer preference is placed on the freely generated results and links at a rate of 4 to 1.
5. Over the period of one year the cost of setting up the initial SEO campaign will have more than bettered the underlying website traffic that an equivalent costing pay per click campaign will have achieved. From my client examples there is about a 4 times website traffic factor weighted for SEO against pay per click. I was amazed myself!!
In a recent newspaper article in Melbourne, Australia, it was shown that holding a position in the top 3 spots in the search engine results pages for a competitive term is worth an estimated $1.5 million. It was also shown that holding the top spot generates 3.5 times the traffic that the number two spot generates.
When it boils down to it a well-executed Search Engine Optimisation campaign will get your website massive amounts of website traffic. Of course, selling the product or service is then the responsibility of the actual website so make sure you couple your SEO with good design, clear and prevalent calls to action and correct marketing principles like color schemes and layouts. In my opinion, it is vital to get this SEO campaign mix correct so talk to a reputable SEO firm and gain some information on how they can help you.