In the early days of the internet, SEO - or search engine optimization - was easy. Use the right keywords, and boom… your website was at the top of the search engine results pages. Times have changed. Today, sites face enormous competition and search engines have laid down the law in terms of quality standards. SEO has evolved, and it’s important to understand what the “new SEO” is and how inbound marketing fits into the equation.
What SEO Is Now
In years past, webmasters and SEOs used keywords like Rachel Ray uses EVOO. That is, of course, both frequently and liberally. Now, in order for your business to be found online in the flood of other business that are similar, you have to do much more.
Aspects like page design, tag management, conversion optimization, content strategy, redirects, internal linking, marketing automation, paid media, analytics, reputation management and much more goes into ensuring your website is found. Without the right strategy, your website will get lost in the sea of other sites.
Many small business owners need to have help sooner rather than later, and they can’t afford to spend too much for that help. For these individuals, learning about inbound marketing is critical; it is inextricably linked to SEO and is the key to attracting search engine notice - and, more importantly, the attention of your target audience.
You know that you need great content, and you need a website that will catch the attention of a visitor in less than 10 seconds. You need someone who knows analytics and you need someone who is able to come up with fantastic marketing strategies. But how do you get all of these things at once, and do you have to pay a number of different people?
Many successful business owners are choosing to outsource their inbound marketing needs. They find that it’s a much more affordable way to ensure that the website gets the attention and the blog posts that it needs to drive traffic to it. But what is inbound marketing and can it really help your business?
Inbound marketing is completely the opposite of outbound marketing, obviously. When it comes to outbound marketing it is you, the business owner, going to the potential customer and trying to get them to work with you. With inbound marketing, however, you’re getting the customer or client to come to you. You’re getting them interested in your business and helping to take that interest and to translate it into sales.
Inbound marketing is much more successful than cold call marketing or hard sells, which no one likes. No one. It’s invasive and annoying - like an intrusive salesperson that’s constantly hounding you. With inbound marketing, however, you’re focusing on being someone who helps the client rather than someone who pushes them. You’re able to bring them knowledge and guidance, while, at the same time, gaining potential clientele that will help your business to grow.
If you turn the focus to inbound marketing that incorporates effective SEO techniques, you’ll be putting yourself, and your business, in the best possible place to succeed. Your success is going to be directly connected to understanding not only how inbound marketing works but also how to convert visitors into leads. Then, you move leads along the sales funnel, nurturing them, until they complete the desired call to action.
For many people this is asking too much. Just because you’re an expert on making furniture, for example, doesn’t mean that you’re an expert on marketing furniture. SEO and Inbound marketing can be complex, which is why there are experts who are happy to handle the situation for you. These professionals are able to explain the new rules of marketing and to build up a program that will help to get you those visitors and those leads that you need to increase your sales.
Before you go looking for an expert, however, it’s a good idea to figure out where you want your business to go. Are you content with its current size, or do you plan on making it grow larger? If you’re content than you have nothing to worry about, but if you plan on growing your business to the next level, it’s important to work with the experts. This way they can help you not only to achieve that growth, they can also help to make sure that your business is ready to handle it.