Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How a Good SEO Program can Hurt Your Business


I often find myself speaking with frustrated business owners as they search for the perfect SEO Strategist. In one recent conversation, the business owner stated "The last company promised us a #1 ranking but we're only #3." In another instance, the owner stated "The last guy charged an arm and a leg but we're still not increasing our business leads."
That explosion you heard was when marketing and SEO collided - or was it my head....

Let's break this down:
  1. Run away from anyone that promises you the #1 position on Google's search results. There is no way to guarantee this despite what they tell you. Be very leery of these types businesses as they are most likely not very reputable and likely to get you blacklisted.
  2. The goal of any reputable SEO program should be to organically appear somewhere on page 1 of Google's search results for the targeted keyword or phrase. We are always striving for the 1st 3 positions but page 1 is most often considered a success.
Appearing on page 1 is only half the battle. When someone clicks the link to your site, what good does it do if they don't stay, or even worse, if they fail to convert (take the desired action such as purchasing a product, filling out a form, etc.)? Turns out, in the example above, the website that ranked #3 was very poorly designed. The landing page was unorganized and full of keyword-stuffed copy including long run-on sentences. The navigation was not well thought out and the "call to action" (strategically placed button or link to help lead the user to your desired action.) was missing. Any user landing on this page would likely hit the back button to the search results page, and consequently, a long list of competitors. When I investigated the gentleman's claim regarding business leads, I found the same type of thing: Decent search ranking position, poorly designed website. This is a recipe for disaster. Often times, your website is the first, and sometimes only impression a prospective client will ever get of your company. Prospects have the ability to judge you without ever speaking to you. It's irrelevant if you are truly "the best in the biz." If you don't look like you have the chops immediately, or at least look worthy of further investigation, the prospect will "bounce" out of there fast. The point is, good SEO work can only go so far. It is equally important to deliver your searchers a professional website design that is content driven and easily navigable and of course, a good representation of your company.

1 comment:

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