Few things are more important than SEO when it comes to driving traffic and sales to a website. Search engine optimization not only makes it easy for search engines such as Google to know what your website is about and rank you accordingly, but it forces you to think about the experience that the users will have when they visit it.
SEO goes far beyond using certain keywords in your content. Ten years ago, you could write a 500-word blog post with some relevant keywords in the title and subheadings and receive a substantial amount of traffic, but with each passing update to the Google PageRank algorithm, new levels of quality standards are imposed upon webmasters who wish to put their content in front of an audience. Today only the best of the best can make their way to the top.
To think SEO is to think quality
Think about what your clients expect to see when they’re considering making a purchase or hiring a service from you through your website: a clean design, good quality content with correct formatting, a clear structure, relevant images, graphics, etc. These elements inspire confidence and trustworthiness in your brand and there’s nothing more important than that.
If your text provides hyperlinks to other places on your site, visitors will find it easier to obtain additional information that will improve their experience and help them to make an informed decision. If your pages are organized in a silo structure for example, with more prominent pages being at the top and providing links to smaller, more specific pages, users will be able to navigate your website easily without having to use the search function so much.
Behind every SEO strategy there’s a logic that promotes the user experience. SEO does not exist to make your life harder, but to make sure that the websites that rank on searches are good quality, well-designed, informative and reflect the users search needs.
Organic search traffic is the most cost-effective type of traffic
There are some businesses that get by without relying on organic search traffic. They often have a very strong social media presence or YouTube channel that they use to attract subscribers and customers. Another strategy is paid advertisements to boost traffic such as Google AdSense or Facebook ads.
These are all important and valuable strategies, but they can be hard to master and too costly for smaller companies. SEO is relatively simple to understand and, although it takes time to get your website to rank well on search results, once it does the amount of traffic you can attract in the long term is invaluable for the specific audience you want to target.
SEO allows you to understand your audience
Thanks to Google Analytics and other free and paid webmaster tools, you can obtain very deep insights about your clientele. Which keywords do they search for? How do they behave on your website? Which time of the day are they more active? What demographic do they belong to? These are only a few of the many insights you can get from your website traffic. Based on this information you can build an effective marketing strategies and target your specific audience much better. This information can also be the knowledge base you need when you decide to implement some paid traffic methods.
SEO can provide a solid foundation on which you can build your brand, therefore the importance of organic search engine results and optimization should not be disregarded. Other forms of traffic generation can be built upon your SEO efforts but none of them will bring you the long term organic results, relevance and brand value that a thorough SEO strategy can provide.
How important is organic traffic for your business or blog? How have your SEO efforts changed over the past years? Tell us about it in the comments section, we love to hear from you!
– Esteban Villanova