In today’s world of business, it is a commonly accepted fact that a small business needs some level of SEO to compete within their respective niche. It is also commonly understood that SEO, in simple terms, refers to appearing more frequently within Google search results. However, there is a lot more to the general benefit and goal of SEO that business owners should be aware of.
In this post, I will delve into the main goals of SEO and what a business owner should pay attention to when judging the effectiveness of your SEO campaign.
Goal #1: Improved Online Visibility
The main goal and most powerful end-result of SEO is of course, online visibility.
Through an SEO campaign, your website will be visible among many different search results, websites and platforms.
Many business owners, as well as those that are only familiar with SEO at a basic level, assume this strictly pertains to Google search results. However, the reaches of SEO on online visibility are much more. These include:
- Social Media (Instagram, Facebook, YouTube etc.)
- Online Directories (Yelp, 411, YellowPages etc.) and;
- External websites (linking to your content, guest posting etc.)
The above combine to make what we know as “Off-Page SEO” and work in unison to increase your rankings within search engines.
By implementing an SEO strategy, your business will be optimized to appear more frequently throughout the internet, which will in turn bring your business more customers.
Goal #2: Good Content
Some within the SEO industry will advise that there is a distinction between “content” and “SEO”; arguing that these are two separate things. I, however, believe that SEO and content play into each other and you cannot exactly do SEO without content marketing.
Another major goal of SEO is to have content produced that is unique, in-depth, entertaining and of course, relevant to your business niche. By following these guidelines, your websites content will drive traffic through social media shares, Google searches and more.
Good content will always be part of an efficient SEO strategy.
Goal #3: Better User Experience
An often-overlooked aspect of SEO that doesn’t get much attention, is user experience. This means a website is practical, experiential, affective, meaningful and valuable to the user.
User experience affects SEO through its ability to retain and convert traffic. A potential customer is more likely to be converted to an actual customer when they land on a web page if it adheres to a few SEO principles, including:
- Fast load time
- Good website architecture
- Good content
- Website provides an answer to the customers questions or needs
When all of the above is satisfied, you will have lower bounce rates, longer session duration’s and more conversions.
Goal #4: More Traffic
Being that SEO is a marketing strategy, traffic is obviously a major goal. However, it is important to identify the types of traffic that SEO will be driving to your website.
Assuming that you have Google Analytics set up for your website, you will know that you can track every piece of traffic that goes to your website (almost too well).
Let us narrow our traffic down to what Google Analytics provides us:
If an SEO knows what they’re doing, they will drive targeted traffic to your website which will results in longer session duration’s, more page views, lower bounce rates and more overall users. It is important for business owners to realize how all of these collectively play a role in the success of your campaign and improving sales.
When it comes to SEO, your goals are much broader and encompass a lot more than a business owner generally expects.
If you decide to embark upon an SEO campaign, it is important to keep in mind specific attainable goals that are relevant and achievable in SEO, and to recognize exactly what benefits your business is receiving. This will help you understand the true value of this marketing service and its affect on your ROI.
Dylan Bergum is co-founder and SEO coordinator of Toronto-based digital marketing agency, Two in TO Media. His focus is on helping Toronto-area businesses improve their online visibility and brand recognition through digital marketing.