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Technology and the Internet have become indispensable aspects of our daily lives. The Internet has grown to become a primary source of information, a platform to promote two-way communication, and a reservoir that provides unlimited business opportunities.
With the advancement of technology comes increasing methods for marketers and business owners to publicize their products and services. Despite the plethora of apps and software that are designed specially to help corporations gain the publicity they seek; many businesses are still relying on traditional methods such as advertising to promote their products or services. Unfortunately, these conventional methods are not as effective as they used to be once upon a time.
Why is Advertising Less Effective than Before?
Advertising strategies have always been an integral part of a marketer’s arsenal. However, there are a variety of factors that have caused advertising to be less effective as a marketing approach than they once were.
The Existence of Ad-Blockers
Every day, while we are surfing the Internet, we are assaulted by hundreds of advertisements. This can be quite irritating as they disrupt our online experience. With that said, there are a variety of ad-blockers that users can install to prevent any information that resembles an advertisement from reaching them. Due to these software and extensions, advertisers have defeat the primary purpose of advertising which is to disseminating information to target demographics.
Advertisements are Perceived as Less Credible Sources
Due to the nature of advertisements being a paid source of publicity, advertisements are deemed as not credible. The information featured on them will only be beneficial towards the advertiser. Advertisers will not be truthful and include information that is detrimental to their businesses, hence users will no longer trust advertisements as a reliable source of information.
The above factors explain why advertisements are not the best marketing approach, which is why businesses today should explore alternative methods to market themselves. One of the most useful techniques that can be applied today is search engine optimization, also known as SEO.
No Pay, No Gain
Unlike SEO, advertisers will need to constantly pump in a certain amount of money to ensure that the ads remain online. Once the allocated budget is exhausted or if advertisers have decided to stop advertising online to cut costs, then the advertisements will also be taken down. On the other hand, SEO does not require constant maintenance and financial commitment compared to advertisements. As long as your content remain relevant and your website is optimised for search engines to identify, your online presence will still be retained.
What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
Although it is one of the best methods with the most potential today, SEO is still heavily underutilised. SEO is a way for businesses to create better brand awareness in the digital atmosphere. According to Sam McRoberts, CEO of VUDU Marketing and an expert in the subject matter, SEO is the process of enabling websites to be more accessible and understandable to search engines such as Google, Yahoo Search, Bing, et cetera, so that they can rank well on search engines. Many e-commerce companies such as Amazon, Lazada, and iPrice, have benefited by optimising their websites and content for search engines to identify them easily.
Hence, SEO, when used properly, can increase the amount of online traffic and visitors to a company’s website, which increases potential prospects and profits. This is because when consumers nowadays are planning to purchase a product service or looking for information, they will turn to search engines to look for related details.
Why is SEO Relevant?
Businesses looking to venture into the digital sphere should consider investing in SEO techniques as they can help to drive potential sales and increases a business’ visibility much more than online advertising can. An article published by Enquisite supports SEO’s effectiveness by concluding that the click-through rates for organic results from SEO are 8.5x higher than paid search results. Here are a few reasons why SEO should be the new marketing approach for online-centric businesses:
- Firstly, the techniques that have been employed by marketing experts to improve one’s ranking on search engines remain useful even today, as proven by many SEO-based case studies. Joshua Guerra, CEO of marketing firm BIZCOR claims that as long as companies are focusing on optimizing user experience while executing SEO strategies, businesses will be able to achieve higher position in search engine rankings as well organic traffic. Furthermore, these techniques are unlikely to stop working in the foreseeable future.
- Secondly, SEO can also provide a good for ROI for businesses because it costs less than any other forms of online marketing methods such as social media marketing, lead purchasing, online advertising, and so on. Although advertising might generate higher revenue, organic SEO increases and retains a business’ presence online.
- Furthermore, search engines are becomingly one of the most popular functions online. According to MediaRidge, the number of searches daily have quadrupled since 2007 and Google handles billions of searches every day. Based on statistics mentioned in New Media Campaigns, 81% of users find their desired information and related websites via a search engine, and the number is expected to increase in years to come. Hence, companies should be focusing on their positioning on search engines or else users will be diverted to their competitors instead.
- Moreover, utilising SEO is also a way for companies to keep up and identify the strategies used by their competitors. More and more companies are realising the importance of SEO and are already channelling their efforts and focus towards building exposure for their products and services online. If a company is not implementing SEO as part of their online strategies, they are bound to lose ground to their competitors for relevant keywords and search terms.
Without a doubt, SEO is the way to go for businesses who are planning to build solid online presence to reach out to more target demographics. SEO is not only a cheaper alternative to other online marketing tactics, it is also a trustworthy method for businesses to build a long-lasting presence digitally. SEO is not exactly rocket science and there are a variety of free tools online that can help you in your SEO initiatives.
Written by Jonathan So and images compiled by Jeremy Chew from iPrice Group.