Googling the question ‘what is SEO’ returns 164,000,000 search results in a matter of milliseconds. There are many misconceptions when it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), perhaps the most common being what it actually is and why you need it. And you probably do need it, whether or not you realise it. Of all the millions of results Google finds for your customers search term – wouldn’t you want your website to be on page one – if not right at the top of the search results? Bingo!
The image below shows a typical Google SERP (search engine results page), with the first two results being PPC (pay per click) text adverts (easy to identify as they have a small ‘ad’ button), and the second being the SEO/organic results – both of which we can help you with.
A search engine friendly website means the site is easy for search engines to crawl (read) and rank your website for your target keyword terms.
Google’s algorithm will rank every website based on a number of factors, such as quality and authority, and this will determine where the website will sit on a SERP (search engine results page), with the ideal position being on page one. An SEO friendly website means web pages can be crawled efficiently and the content can be interpreted effectively. Once a website has been indexed, search engines will serve the most relevant and valuable pages to the user based on their search term.
A site which is difficult to crawl will impact its position on search engines, and as less than 5% of users actually navigate past the first page of SERPs, ensuring a website is SEO friendly is very important.
The websites which appear at the top of search engines generate far more traffic than those on page two onwards; Bing reports than websites on the first page receive 42% of traffic and those on the second page get only 11%.
Appearing at the top of these results pages will also increase a company’s authenticity as users believe the top sites are more legitimate in the relevant industry. Being in the top ten results will, in theory, mean you are well positioned alongside your competitors and this will further improve your brand’s image.
More Cost Effective
Most of the leads which inbound marketers generate are directly from search engines; the better your SERP position is, the more traffic your website will generate and leads produced. This will mean spending less on paid advertising and concentrating on maintaining a high position on search engines can be a priority.
Appearing at the top of a SERP for a specific search term will improve brand awareness as user’s will see your company’s name even if they don’t click on your link. An American study found that 60% of global consumers with internet access prefer buying new products from a brand they recognise, meaning if your brand name is repeatedly appearing at the top of the SERP then this visibility will prove valuable.
By Emily McReynolds, Digital Marketing Manager