Since the creation of Google in 1996 numerous search engines have emerged, which resulted in a “boom” of web pages and the awareness that you could make money with them.
It wasn’t until then when the competition to reach the top positions began. Many of the companies competing in a market as competitive as this one, faced the same dilemma with their digital marketing campaigns, and more specifically with the tools they should be using.
The main cause of this problem is that the wide range of tools available make it is difficult to choose which one fits perfectly with each business.
Most companies, especially small and medium-sized companies that do not have the same resource as large multinational companies are looking for an easy and inexpensive sources, like SEO (Search Engine Optimization). As its name suggests, this tool improves the visibility of a website in the organic results (unpaid) of the different search engines.
It sounds like a joke, but SEO is one of the disciplines that has changed the most during the last few years, becoming one of the most used positioning tools for websites and companies. Now, is SEO really useful for your business? Is it useful enough to invest your time and resources in it?
To help you decide whether to focus on SEO as your premier digital marketing channel let’s study the advantages and disadvantages of SEO.
This is by no means a complete guide, but a few tips for beginners. Sara Lopez, Computer Engineering student and Trendhim Country Marketing Manager shares with us her experience and her debut with SEO.
Advantages of using SEO in your business
1. SEO continuously studies free and targeted traffic
Have you ever wondered how many annual, monthly or daily searches you have on Google? Studies estimate that annually there are approximately 2.5 trillion searches in this search engine. This implies approximately 6,849,315 searches per day. SEO can help you take advantage of this gigantic source of continuous flow, free and targeted traffic.
Free meaning that you cannot pay directly for traffic in the same way people pay for advertisement. The cost will be greatly reduced if you perform activities such as link building and content generation.
2. SEO gives your business the necessary exposure
One of the main reasons why people use the internet and more specifically Google is to find immediate solutions to a problem. To find a solution users click on different results found all over the Internet, being 70% of these organic results and 30% paid results. Usually, around 40% of users click on the first results (paid) and 60% go directly to the search organic results.
3. SEO can help you with the growth of your business
The internet world is gigantic, and the key to surviving in this market is having a good presence on the search engines and different social networks. SEO is responsible for maintaining a good image of your website, allowing your business to be more visible among 60% of possible consumers who are looking at different search engines like Google brands or businesses.
In the internet, if you don’t have good visibility consumers will never be able to find you. That is why SEO ensures that this does not happen and provides you with a good image and visibility that will help the growth of your business.
4. SEO gives you authority within your business niche
Having strong online presence and good content can give you access to the top positions in the keywords related to your field of interest.
Once you achieve good rankings it is time to establish yourself as an authority in your business and get the trust of your audience.
Disadvantages of using SEO in your business
1. Results take time and effort.
The biggest disadvantage of SEO is the slowness in which your effort will match your results. Everything has to be said, succeeding in digital marketing is not just creating a web page, but achieving a good position in the search engines. The process of rising your content in the search engines can take several days, weeks or even month. So if you are looking for immediate results, SEO may not be the right tool for you.
2. Investing results take time
If we have said before that getting results takes a lot of time and effort, then it will also take a long time if we want to get investing results. Which means that this is not very favorable for small businesses that need immediate income in a short period of time.
3. SEO requires a great investment to make your business a competitive business
Unless your SEO is based on replicating your content and attracting backlinks, it’s not really a free marketing tool. SEO requires consistency, which requires external staff to help your business get organic links and other marketing activities necessary to have good rankings. At the same time, it is necessary to study the competitors’ market, to know which techniques are the ones they use and which ones they are missing. That will allow you to implement they weaknesses and improve your rankings.
4. Risk of being penalized
So important is the role that SEO plays on websites that many have used it as a weapon to defend themselves against their competitors. This weapon is well known as Negative SEO.
Negative Seo consists of sending link bombs to competitors so as to lower their rankings. Generally one of the most frequent actions is to send backlinks under the term “porn“.
We ourselves have experienced it. Last August, as every other Thursday we were reviewing our marketing analytics, everything looked normal, except for our backlink profile. The number of websites that had been linking to us during the last 7 days was extremely huge. Suddenly, it looks like our 38-degree office was frozen. We had been attacked by more than 8500 “link bombs” coming from web pages that were telling Google our web is about “porn“.
Most of the anchor text of the domains that linked our Danish domain “.dk” were related to “porn”. Maybe our cravats, cufflinks and other accessories are sexy, but they are definitely not pornography.
Five years ago you could manipulate Google buying links, but now it is not based on quantity but on quality. We have assumed that when you send more links than normal to a page Google gets suspicious, due to Google’s mechanisms used to penalize other pages that try to improve their rankings with false links.
This is not the only way you can be penalized, if the anchor text of the links that link to your website have no relation to the content of the website, Google’s algorithm will know.
That’s why Negative SEO attacks are not very sophisticated, but sometimes works and it does affect your rankings.
As stated above SEO is one of the main marketing tools used by businesses and it certainly has to be part of your digital marketing campaign, that’s why these pros and cons will help you know in which context it is better to use SEO.
Sara Lopez – Contact: sara-lopez.com
Country Marketing Manager Spain/UK Trendhim
Student at VIA University College, Denmark