It’s been said that the best place to hide a dead body is on the second page of Google search results. Or the first page of the results of any other search engine. That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but once the name of your company fails to appear on that first Google page, WWW might as well stand for wide, withering wasteland. And that’s why search engine optimization (SEO) is so important.
SEO by the numbers
While results vary depending on what people are searching for (and who is doing the searching), there are some ballpark figures that apply so online searches:
- Roughly 75% of all searches are done using Google
- More than 33% of people click on the first link on the first page of results
- About 50% of all people click on one of the top two results
- Only about 10% ever get to the second page of results
These figures are not supposed to discourage companies from using SEO. Instead, they are meant to encourage them to really think about their SEO strategy and then implement it the right way.
Another key takeaway from these figures is that anybody who wants to use search engine optimization has to really commit to it. There is no way to successfully dabble in SEO.
Gettting started – SEO for small and medium-sized businesses
For small and medium-sized businesses, one key strategy to success is focusing on the right search terms. Aiming too high is counterproductive. For example, a company specializing in high-end gowns should not try to optimize its site for the search term “clothing” or even “women’s clothing.” Go for something like “high-end eveningwear for women.”
As with all other aspects of marketing, it helps to know your company, your products and your audience. While that sounds like a given, many businesses spend way too little time and effort on finding the answers to questions such as “What are our customers are looking for?” or “What are the best features of our products?”
If you have not thought along those lines for a while (or ever), do so now and try to answer the two questions above in five words or less. Whatever you came up with would be excellent candidates for SEO optimization … and the first step out of the barren wasteland that is anything not included on the first page of Google search results.