If you’ve spent any time on small business websites or reading monthly entrepreneur magazines, you’ve probably heard the two dominant narratives about Toronto Search Engine Optimization (SEO). One narrative says that SEO is the best investment for small businesses as it helps them compete against big players. The counter-narrative argues that SEO is over-saturated with competition and a money drain.
The truth is somewhere in between the two. SEO for small business is a fantastic way to be effective in a competitive market. At the same time, you can lose tons of money by hiring a bad SEO company. So if you’re asking yourself “Should I invest in SEO?” consider the following:
Potential of SEO – The Statistics:
44% of online shoppers begin their shopping process on search engines.
59% of consumers use Google every month to find a reputable local business.
61% of internet users use search engines to research products and purchases.
The Data is Clear:
There are countless consumers looking for information online. Your customer has a question, and you create content that provides the answer. The goal is to rank each piece of content at the top of Google. By investing in SEO, your small business has the potential increase its customer base exponentially, by being front and center when they search.
Advantages of SEO: The effectiveness of SEO is easy to understand: a majority of purchase decisions begin online. With good SEO, you can be the first source of information for these consumers. Think of it as owning a store on a popular main intersection in Toronto, the more foot traffic you have, the more opportunity there is to generate revenue.
Better Quality Leads:
A well-executed SEO strategy can help you gather substantially better leads than TV, print or radio advertising. Research backs this up as well – SEO leads have a 19.9% close rate, while leads from direct mail, print, TV, etc. have just a 1.7% close rate.
It’s easy to understand why: SEO gets you access to highly targeted and motivated customers who are looking to buy, not just browse. Conventional advertising just doesn’t let you target audiences the same way.
For example, if you’re a website developer in Toronto, there is very little chance that a commuter who hears your ad on the radio would need your services. You would effectively be paying for airtime in the hope that some of the show’s audience would require a business website in the future.
However, when someone searches for ‘Website developer in Toronto’, they have already shown intent to use a web development service. If they find your website in the top of the Google search results, there is a strong chance that you’ll get a high-quality lead and potentially a new client.
Here’s is the real reason you should invest in SEO: you can access the exact audience you want.
You can start an SEO campaign with a website, a few hours a day, and a modest budget of $750 a month (our least expensive monthly package), making SEO one of, if not the most effective forms of marketing available to small businesses today.
Plenty of case studies back this up. For example, in one case study, a local catering company saw savings of 80% with SEO when compared against Pay Per Click (PPC).
My Conclusion: Are you struggling with driving traffic to your website? Search Engine Optimization is the single most important factor when generating online traffic and increasing sales on your website.
Like many other independent business owners, you are probably reading this because you made the big decision to promote your products or services online. You will soon come to realize that having an online presence alone will not drive sales through the roof—in fact, by launching your website, you are now competing against countless others who are offering the same products and services that you are.
As a small fish in a big pond, you need to make your business stand out from the rest. You know there is a market for what you are selling, but how will your market know that, when they can’t find you? You will notice the majority of top companies show up on the first page of a search engine’s results when relevant keywords.