The most important thing to know about the best SEO is that no one can guarantee position #1 on Google search results. It just isn’t realistic.
Anyone that does make such a bold promise is trying to sell you something. Chances are good that they aren’t the best at search engine optimization.
What is SEO in the Online Marketing Industry?
You can bounce all over the internet looking for answers to this question. The ultimate SEO gurus will tell you their definition, or their approach. What they won’t tell you is that SEO isn’t really just SEO.
The definition of SEO on Dictionary.com is:
“search-engine optimization: the methods used to boost the ranking or frequency of a website in results returned by a search engine, in an effort to maximize user traffic to the site”
Search engines track more than 200 different optimization factors for every website that they index. Websites are indexed on countless servers located at buildings all over the world.
Think about it like this: if you built a catalog on every grain of sand along the shore of Huntington Beach, you would find that there is a lot of sand and every grain is different. Now, imagine that each grain changes almost as quickly as you pick it up.
Rank Brain, The Artificial Intelligence Ruling Your Business’s Success
The Google search engine algorithm, aptly named RankBrain, accounts for more than one billion websites that constantly change. This algorithm is more than thirty years old and has been updated thousands of times. (Some say up to 600 or more times per year)
More importantly, the Google algorithm is essentially Skynet, the big brain behind the Terminator robots. This is because it is now controlled more by its own machine learning capabilities than by programmers. Luckily, Google has no intention of killing humanity and taking over the world… or do they?
SEO, in short, is an online marketing strategy that tries to figure out what RankBrain wants. It uses this knowledge to make websites more appealing. Better said, it is the process of optimizing web pages so that Google searches rank them as being better than others.
Why is SEO Important for My Business’ Website to Rank in Google?
The primary objective of Google’s search algorithm, RankBrain, is to show users websites it thinks they want to see the most. About 70% of everyone searching the internet on a computer uses Google. Nine out of ten people on any search engine only click on websites that show up on the first page of results.
If your competitor is on the first page of results and you aren’t, they get the business. It’s that simple. Ok, it’s not that simple. But that’s what SEO dictates.
SEO is critical for businesses who get most of their customers from the internet. The internet is where most people go to find things they need. If you want to get customers, you have to get your website in front of the most people possible. To get your business in front of the most people possible, you have to use strategies to make your page better than your competition.
How Much Does SEO Cost?
Pricing for SEO services depends on a few important factors. The most popular firms charge upwards of $60,000 per year. Being the most popular does not make them the best SEO agencies.
Cheap SEO services might only cost a few hundred dollars. If you’re paying less than $1,000 per month for your online marketing, you are probably not going to do well. You get what you pay for.
A recent survey by Backlinko’s Brian Dean shows that SEO client satisfaction improved significantly for those paying $500 or more per month. The value for your price depends on how in depth an agency optimizes your search engine factors.
For example, let’s look at two SEO agencies. Agency A and Agency B compete in the widget-doodle online sales market.
Agency A focuses on the “top ten most important search engine factors”. These include:
- Content that’s relevant to users
- Backlinks, or links to your site from other sites
- Content Headings
- Page encryption
- Anchor text, or links on your site that go to other pages on your site
- Mobile friendliness
- User Experience
- User Interaction
- Crawler friendly, or how well your site talks to other computers
Agency B takes a wholistic approach, because they know that there are 200 factors and they all need attention. They pretty much cover everything, including all of the stuff on and off the website.
So, this is a really basic example, but you should know that a lot of agencies are just like Agency A. They don’t cover everything, which makes it easy for the competition to beat them.
Now, Agency A costs $1,500 per month. Agency B costs $4,000 per month. So, you save $3,000 per month on Agency A, but you cover ten times, or more, of the factors with Agency B.
The truth is, using Agency A will cost you a lot more than what you would have paid for Agency B. The value of a wholistic, fully integrated digital marketing approach is far beyond the value of concentrating on the “most important.” It will cost you business, and it will prevent you from succeeding at the top of your industry.
How Much is SEO Worth?
An article in Forbes magazine explains how you can figure out the worth of SEO for your company. If you like math and you want to figure this out, I encourage you to click the link.
As an easier alternative, the value of SEO is all about the cost versus the benefit. If you spend $3,000 per month on quality SEO and your page ranks on the first page, you’re going to sell more product.
One of the most important factors of SEO that is often overlooked is the time it takes to make it work. The best online marketing agency will take between six months and a year to get a site in the top rankings. It can take up to two years to see the full value in the return on your investment.
If you stay on the second page of search results, you’re only going to be seen, at most, by 1 out of 10 people. Only about 1 out of 10 people who go to the second page will click on your site. If you sell something to half of those people, only 5 out of every 1,000 people will buy something.
If you get on the first page of search results, you are more likely to be seen by 9 out of 10 people. If 5 out of 10 people see your site (rather than 9), 1 out of 10 will click on it. If you sell to half of those people, 25 out of every 1,000 will buy something.
What that means is, if you look at a bad scenario, you still make 5 times as much revenue on the first page. If you make it to the top 5 results, your chances of getting clicks will at least double.
So, what is your product worth? How much money will you make from being on the second page of results versus the first? To really understand, you have to do the math. If you make a return on investment in 5 years or less, your business will probably be successful. (That’s what the numbers say.)
Hire an SEO Expert and Watch Your Business Succeed
The best SEO experts have the most experience. Andrea Lynn Drake brings more than two decades of dedicated, hands-on internet marketing experience. She uses a holistic approach that adapts with the changes in search engine algorithms.
If your business is struggling, or if you just want to see your online traffic grow significantly, hire an SEO expert who knows what they’re doing. Find out more about the value we offer by calling now, or fill out our online contact form. A knowledgeable SEO consultant will get back to you.
Call us now and get online on your own terms.A