So you think SEO is expensive?

Chatting with a search-marketing expert

Using a search engine like Google or Yahoo is the most common way customers look for products online. Without effective search engine optimization, your business may get left behind.

In a chat with SEO expert Dustin Williams, the recently promoted senior SEO analyst offered some tips for those hoping to market their smaller companies to the next level.

He said that cutting through the cyber-clutter requires your website be near the top of the search results when people search for your product or service online.

“You can build a company, but if nobody knows where it is or how to find it, it’s not going to get business,” Williams said.

Whether you do it yourself or hire an SEO firm, Williams said businesses today cannot afford to not rank highly on the world’s most popular search engines.

The owners of some businesses probably believe that beefing up their company’s presence online will bust their budgets. If they have any money for marketing, it’s probably a very small amount.

But over the telephone, an SEO expert can assess which methods might work best for you.

“If they contact us, we can really assess their needs,” Williams said. “We can evaluate their website and we can evaluate the competition.”

A small startup company might not have the money to pay a major SEO firm, he explained.

“There are different companies that provide different services at varying costs,” Williams said.

But closely scrutinize any SEO firm before hiring them, he stressed.

“There are a lot of companies out there that promise results but don’t always get it,” he said. “You need to do some research.”

Hiring a professional is the quickest way to provide your business a noticeable presence on the Internet. One sign of a credible SEO firm is that their website ranks highly on Google.

“If their website ranks high, that’s a great indicator,” Williams said. “If you’re searching in Google and you can’t find the SEO company, then they can’t do it for themselves.”

Also examine a list of the firm’s clients.

Meanwhile, businesses with time on their hands may try themselves to improve their presence online.

“SEO takes a while to learn to the point where you do it effectively,” Williams said. “Time is money.”

Generating leads among people who are genuinely interested in your product takes patience and persistence. And staying up to speed on the most current SEO trends is critical.

More important, however, is having strong content on your website. The material should be unique and rich in keywords.

“Google and the other search engines rely on the content on your page,” Williams said.

Using keyword phrases in your copy tells “the search engine crawlers what the website is all about,” he explained.

Williams made a comparison to a book without any words.

“A book isn’t a book without content,” he said. “It’s the same idea with the crawler. It has to know what the website is about. If there is no content on the website, there is nothing to tell the crawler what the website is about.”

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5 Comments

  1. says

    Nice post! I think it’s mainly tough for small business owners to include SEO in their marketing mix because they don’t have a strong grasp of what it is and what it can achieve for them.

    I’ve worked in ad agency and other settings with small business owners who have been happy to spend $5-20k/month on newspaper ads that might generate a handful of phone calls, but who then gawk at the cost of an SEO campaign amounting to much less than that. Even when the website has the potential to generate a lot more phone calls and business for less marketing spend.

    If they had a clear picture of the qualified, relevant audience they can reach with SEO over traditional media, and the (typically) higher ROI that Search Engine Marketing can get, I think most small businesses would begin to rely very heavily on SEO.

  2. Steven TRACY says

    The post is of course only logical.

    We seos experience it in the field every day.

    A good seo is just as valuable, and probably more with the power of onine presence, as a good salesman.

    A good seo brings in business for the company.

    That’s what I show and explain every day to prospects and, slowly but surely, they begin to understand.

    Each one of my clients are on the first page of Google but, of course, it’s over here in France and the competiton is not the same as on the english web.

    Thanks for your posts.

    I have a few e-commerce projects with company owners that would like to sell in the sates so I may contact you soon.

    Best regards

    Steven TRACY

  3. Ty says

    The bottom line is that you have to find an honest SEO company. There are many SEO companies that overcharge or will only accept clients with large budgets. I recommend researching several different companies until you find one that can meet your needs at the price you can afford. It would not make sense for me to offer our $4,000 SEO service to a small business owner who does not even make $4,000 of monthly profit. Like everything else in life – do you homework!

  4. Rick says

    Finding the right SEO/Internet Marketing Company can be a challenge and not all offer the same level of expertise and types of services and/or strategies. It truly is not an Apples to Apples comparison.

    Educating the customer can be a challenge, but is essential to help them understand the impact internet marketing can have on their online business and to spotlight the value it brings to their marketing campaign.

    Like TY said, you need to do your homework and choose strategies that will increase your clients ROI and keep them happy. Happy Clients = Long-term Clients.

  5. says

    I think this posted article is mainly applicable to those who are just fresher’s. I don’t think seo is so expensive, depending upon the firm and the years of valuable Experiences Company have. Hire a master in the seo process can make wonders for any firm for sure. Thanks for sharing with me.

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