Guest post by Mathew Jade.
Digital marketing as a discipline has matured and encompasses a standard set of components, though best practices within those components continue to evolve. Looking at the future of digital marketing, it continues to consume a larger share of overall marketing budgets for publicity, advertising, and promotion.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is at the core of digital marketing success. SEO is a vital early-market strategy for new ventures and startups, as it produces cost-effective, long-lasting results. Creating high-value search-optimized content also helps established companies build their online presence and brand credibility.
Here are six elements that define the scope of SEO and digital marketing benefits and key practices.
Search Engine Optimization Creates Brand Awareness
Products or services that are more visible online naturally attain increased brand awareness. Web pages for products and services that rank at or near the top of the search engine result pages (SERPs) get a disproportionate number of clicks, views, and impressions; research shows the top three non-branded results get about half of all search clicks, on average.
Achieving high rankings not only increase website traffic but also improve brand awareness of the product or service over time. It causes searchers to associate their interests (as expressed through the keyword phrases they use) with your brand. This helps your organization build a perception of trustworthiness and expertise.
Blogging and Freelance Search Engine Optimization Services Can Extend Your Team
As SEO is at the core of digital marketing, so blogging is at the core of SEO. Worldwide, there are more than 500 million blogs (though not all are actively maintained), and 850 million new posts published each month. Timely and topically (as opposed to product or service) focused, blog posts are popular with searchers and search engines alike.
The the benefits of blogging for business are well understood and most business websites now include a blog, producing a constant stream of new posts is hard work. That’s likely why nearly two-thirds of business marketers outsource at least some of their blog post writing.
Recent research from Ignite Visibility found that, “Written content is still king. Despite the growing emphasis on video and image production, 55% still prefer to see written content in the search results.” It also discovered that most searchers will examine at least three search results before clicking, and that meta descriptions remain a crucial SEO element.
Freelancers are drawn to the profession by the flexibility in work hours and potential for substantial earnings. If your company is looking to outsource at least part of your blog posting, be sure to find an individual who not only has solid writing skills but also knowledge of SEO and some understanding of your industry.
Effective SEO Explores Customer Needs
Selling your product involves a journey where the customer starts with awareness of a problem and move through stages of action culminating in the purchase of a product. It’s vital for marketers to understand his journey as there are many steps along the way where a brand may lose the prospect’s interest. Using targeted, search-optimized content across the journey reduces the risk of diversion by up to 38%.
Organizations using SEO get better results and outcomes than competitors who are less or poorly focused on organic search. This is because SEO companies predict the needs of the customer and help them find the best solution based on their search history and the long tail of searches. This prediction has a high likelihood of transforming the searcher into a potential buyer of the product.
Digital Marketing Adds Long-Term Value to Products
Products that have been promoted through multi-channel marketing campaigns that include organic search have been able to create long-term brand awareness with customers. People naturally tend to purchase products from vendors they view as being trustworthy and providing value. In other words, to improve product sales and brand reputation, make sure SEO is a component of your marketing campaigns.
Organic optimization helps not only in direct marketing, but also plays a role in enhancing the customer experience. People who have a positive buying experience are much more likely to become repeat customers.
Content Optimization Plays a Key Role in the Scope of SEO
A well-crafted content strategy includes developing content:
- Aimed at all members of the buying team;
- Addressing a range of potential prospect pain points;
- Supporting each stage of the decisions process;
- In multiple formats (blog posts, infographics, videos, ebooks, etc.).
This type of optimization best serves the needs of buyers, but is also very effective for SEO.
Keywords still matter, of course, but content optimization isn’t just about keywords–it’s about earning love from the search engines by providing a great experience for prospective customers.
Content optimization and SEO are the best approach to creating authentic, relevant content that drives website traffic, converts website visitors into sales prospects, and ultimately leads to more sales.
SEO is an Essential Source for New Business Opportunities
Every brand needs a full spectrum of offline and online marketing activities to improve sales and enhance market value. SEO is one of the most effective, affordable, and long-lasting approaches for increasing brand aware and building a positive brand image.
Multiple studies have concluded that organic search traffic converts at a higher rate than advertising or social media visits. This makes sense, as visitors reaching your site through organic search are actively looking for what you offer,and more likely to end up on a helpful, informational post than on a salesy marketing page.
More than half of small to midsized businesses (revenue less than $50M) already spend most of their marketing dollars online. And about 70% plan to increase the share of budget devoted to digital marketing in the coming year.
A significant share of those dollars will be dedicated to producing blog posts and other “how to” content, and optimizing that content—as well as their websites overall—for organic search. SEO is highly effective at driving high-converting website traffic.
SEO is an important and integral part of digital marketing campaigns. Though it can’t provide the instant results of pay per click (PPC) advertising or the intimacy of live events, it offers growing, long-term benefits.
Mathew Jade is a business, finance and technology blogger who spends his entire day writing quality blogs. He is a passionate reader and loves to share quality content prevalent on the web with his friends and followers and keeping a keen eye on latest trends and news in those industries. For more updates, follow him on Twitter @Mathew_Jade.