Search engine optimization is a complex and fascinating industry, it is constantly evolving and changing. Since mobile phones are an extension of ourselves and the ability “to Google” something is ever present so SEO has become crucial to businesses everywhere. Achieving a high search ranking is the goal of many business who work with digital marketing agencies to reach that coveted spot. While all that is true a big part of an SEO agency’s job is to manage client expectations so they understand why they need SEO and how it really works.
Here are 5 hard truths about SEO you need to understand.
1. Results don’t happen overnight
As much as you’d like for your business to show up at the top of the serps (search engine results page) almost immediately you’re going to be disappointed. Real results…results that stick can take months to happen. Bear in mind that an SEO campaign is about more that visibility it is a long term strategy designed to get you ranking and keep them. The good news is that SEO has one of the best ROI’s in marketing so waiting six months for results will be worth it.
2. Results change all the time
The industry is ever changing and every Google updates send ripples through the community. Google, Bing, YouTube update algorithms all the time to offer better results. The end user wants faster and more accurate results, and search engines have responded by coming more intuitive. For the business owner that means that the page one ranking that you’ve worked so hard for could be gone at the drop of a hat.
3. The shortcut rarely works long term
The SEO community has guidelines that have been set forth by Google and some companies follow these guidelines to the letter, on the other hand there are agencies that will ignore them completely. This is referred to as white hat and black hat SEO. Black hat tactics use things like spam and other tricks to achieve quick and high rankings, however these results won’t last. The temptation might be there to use black hat methods to rank, but the results will be very short lived. You will find your website penalized before you know it.
4. SEO means more than rankings
If and when you land at the top of the search page, you need to be ready for that. That means that you need a website that has been built to convert those visitors into actual customers. If you aren’t prepared to handle that then you’ve wasted your time and money on an SEO campaign. Before one link gets built to your site it should be fully optimized and ready to handle whatever traffic will come your way.
5. Market for your audience
You can follow every Google guideline to the letter and still have miserable results. Your website and in fact all of your marketing efforts should be done with your customer in mind. You need a good easy to navigate layout, engaging content and a clear call to action.
You can’t think of SEO as an individual thing it is a melding of different tactics and strategies that work congruently to give you results. There are limitations, but that being said it is still offering tremendous value to your business.