In this article, you’ll learn about the advantages of SEO.
As you’ll discover below, there are many SEO benefits that apply both directly and indirectly to the growth of your small business or company. And if you want to stay competitive with your startup or organization, then it’s important to understand how you can use the strategic advantages of search engine optimization to improve your digital marketing efforts.
Consider this your ultimate guide to the top benefits of search engine optimization that you can review and reference when developing your own inbound marketing plan for success.
What Is SEO?
As explained on this other page about what does SEO mean, it stands for “search engine optimization” which is the process of optimizing a website so it performs better in search engines for specific queries. SEO targets unpaid organic search traffic rather than paid traffic as a marketing strategy to increase the quality and quantity of website visitors. And it’s a powerful marketing strategy that offers many advantages for your business, which we’ll cover throughout the rest of this page.
Advantages of SEO
1. SEO Promotes Your Business 24/7
One of the top advantages of SEO is that it promotes your business all day, every day, on the Internet without you having to actively be at your office or desk. You can literally have your company promoted 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, while you’re working on other parts of your business.
Once your website ranks high in search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing for specific keywords, those results often do not disappear overnight. So your business can attract new customers, leads, and sales on autopilot by focusing on SEO techniques.
2. You Get More Customers Through Organic Search
Another important benefit of SEO is that you get more customers through organic search rankings. This means your small business or company can acquire new customers without having to pay for them. As explained in this other guide on organic SEO, this digital marketing strategy generates more clicks to your website from search engines that are a result of unpaid traffic. Therefore, you’re essentially getting more customers for free by having content that ranks well on Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
3. SEO Works for Any Budget
Next up on our list of the best benefits of search engine optimization is that SEO works for any size budget. At its core, SEO can be a relatively inexpensive inbound marketing strategy to implement for your website. Sure, there are advanced technical SEO strategies you can try, but you don’t necessarily need to pay a high price for an SEO specialist or agency to have successful search engine marketing campaigns.
As long as you know the basics of on-page SEO and write high-quality content that satisfies the search intent of your target audience, you can gain more organic traffic from the search engines with minimal costs. In fact, if someone on your team writes the content and optimizes it for SEO, then those costs can be absorbed into the existing job role. Otherwise, you can outsource the content for an average of $0.03 to $0.10 per word (or $30 to $100 per 1,000-word article) depending on the level of expertise you need for the content.
4. Benefits Other Marketing Initiatives
If your business uses other digital marketing strategies, then one of the other important advantages of search engine optimization is that it can benefit those initiatives. SEO is a key factor for your content to get found on every digital marketing channel. And once you know how to follow SEO best practices, they can be applied to those channels as well to increase organic reach.
For example, you can use the tips outlined in this social media link building guide to improve the off-page SEO factors for your website to help drive more traffic to your business from platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Medium, Quora, Pinterest, Reddit, and Twitter. You can also use the power of SEO for video optimization to help increase visibility and traffic on YouTube, Vimeo, and Dailymotion for your video content.
SEO can also reduce your business’ cost per acquisition (CPA) and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising fees as you’ll discover later in this guide.
5. SEO Gives You a Competitive Advantage
As mentioned in this other article on why SEO is important for your business, not all businesses focus on SEO. This is especially true for small business owners who lack the knowledge about how beneficial SEO techniques can be for their success. Therefore, good search engine optimization can give your company a competitive advantage in the marketplace through online search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Plus, once your site ranks high in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for profitable keywords for your business, those results can last for many months and/or years; making it hard for new competitors to overcome your ranking positions.
6. Decreases Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
Cost per acquisition (CPA) is a marketing metric that measures the aggregate cost for a business to acquire one paying customer on a campaign or channel level. And the cheaper the CPA, the more profit a company makes.
Fortunately, search engine optimization can help to decrease your CPA which is another top reason why your business needs SEO.
In an article by Forbes entitled, “Using SEO to Lower Customer Acquisition Costs“, the author explains: “A page that answers a question to a common problem is going to rank higher [on Google] than an article that simply pitches your website’s services or products.” This means you can acquire top-ranking positions in Google without having to pay for those spots with paid search campaigns.
Statistics show that the average yearly cost of paid search campaigns is between $108,000 and $120,000. And for every dollar you can reduce in your ad budget by using the advantages of SEO for organic marketing equals more profit for your business.
7. Results are Trackable and Quantifiable
With SEO, you can track changes in your website’s keyword rankings, customer conversions, and website traffic on a daily, monthly, and yearly basis. This means you have key metrics you can quantify for your business that you can work to improve using various on-page and off-page SEO strategies.
What’s also nice is that Google provides a whole suite of free Google SEO tools you can use for this tracking and optimization work. Platforms like Google Analytics give you the tools you need to better understand your customers and how they interact with your website while Google Search Console gives you tools and reports to help you measure your site’s search engine traffic and performance.
8. Helps Your Business Break Into New Markets
SEO is the most cost-effective way to test out new markets for a business and then break into the areas that provide the highest return on investment (ROI). You can test out SEO new keywords to target based on new products or services you would like to offer. And if organic search engine optimization drives qualified traffic with a high ROI to your new offerings, then you can put more resources into those areas and/or scale up profits with paid search campaigns.
9. SEO Gives You Market Share Advantage
SEO is a great way to capture more market share for your business. Companies that make SEO a top priority find that their websites rank higher in the search engines and for more total queries than their competitors. This puts SEO-focused brands at the top of the minds of more potential customers.
A good example of this search engine practice is HubSpot, which is a business that ranks for hundreds of thousands of keywords on Google that are related to digital marketing. HubSpot has gained so much market share from SEO that its website attracts millions of visitors per month while also growing organically through word-of-mouth marketing and people sharing the content they found through search engines.
10. Proven Long-Term Marketing Strategy
One of the clear SEO advantages here is that search engine optimization is a proven long-term marketing strategy. As mentioned before, once your website ranks high in the search engines for target keywords, those results don’t usually disappear overnight. As long as you’re focusing on good SEO practices, you can keep those top spots in Google, Yahoo, or Bing for many months, and even years.
Unlike social media marketing and paid marketing strategies that stop working as soon as you stop posting on social platforms or paying for ads, SEO continues to work day in and day out to bring more traffic to your website.
11. Targets Every Stage of the Buying Cycle
One of the top SEO benefits that every business can take advantage of is producing optimized content that targets every stage of the buying cycle. This strategy helps your business acquire at every stage of the sales funnel as well as retain customers for long-term growth. With SEO, you can publish optimized content that captures people where they are in the buyer’s journey: awareness stage, consideration stage, decision stage, and purchase stage.
12. Increases Touchpoints with Customers
Similar to the last benefit mentioned, SEO increases the touchpoints with your customers which makes it easier and faster to make a sale. According to Rain Group, ““It takes an average of 8 touches to get an initial meeting (or other conversion) with a new prospect,” That’s why most sales and outreach efforts are structured in three phases: interest, consideration, and commitment.
By using SEO for your business, you can increase the number of touch points you have with potential customers. The more content you have online that’s well optimized for target keywords, the more touch points you can tap into to help close deals.
13. SEO Generates Higher Conversion Rates
Next up on this list of search engine optimization advantages is the increase SEO can have on conversion rates. As mentioned in the previous two benefits, SEO makes it easier to target people at every stage of the buying cycle and increases the number of touchpoints your company has with its potential customers. And earlier on this page, you learned how SEO can improve the overall market share of your business.
With those three factors combined, SEO tends to increase conversion rates because website visitors are already familiar with your product, service, or brand. Therefore, it doesn’t take as much effort to convince people to close a sale because you’re products, services, or brand are top-of-mind.
14. Maximizes Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Campaigns
A common fear some business owners have is that SEO could reduce the effectiveness of their pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns. However, a research study by Google on the Impact Of Ranking Of Organic Search Results On The Incrementality Of Search Ads reported this: “We find that having an associated organic search result in rank one does not necessarily mean a low IAC [Incremental Ad Clicks]. On average, 50% of the ad clicks that occur with a top rank organic result are incremental…”
When a website has a strong SEO strategy that achieves high organic search results, it can help maximize the click-through rate (CTR) of its PPC ads on the same SERP.
15. SEO Benefits Local Marketing Efforts
Search engine optimization benefits local businesses that depend on in-store purchases. By optimizing for local SEO keywords, you can increase the number of customers who walk into your establishment versus the competition. Check out these related guides on the top benefits of local SEO and the benefits of Google My Business, which is an important type of SERP listing you should have for an organization that relies on local customers.
16. Good SEO Increases Trust for Your Business
Websites that rank high on search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing are typically considered to be higher quality and more trustworthy than sites that are in lower-ranking positions. Users trust search engines to filter the results for them by eliminating spammy websites from the first page of SERPs. Therefore, good SEO can help your business look more trustworthy to potential customers.
17. Improves the User Experience
Businesses that focus on SEO often have websites with better user experiences. That’s because good SEO-focused content aims to satisfy users while also being optimized for search engines to rank high for their target keywords. And with frequent Google algorithm updates, the practice of mixing good search engine optimization with people-first content is becoming more important each day for success.
18. SEO Increases Brand Awareness
Sales and conversions aside, SEO also helps increase brand awareness. As people see your company’s brand name come up more in the search engines while looking up information, the more your business will become attributed to those topics. Therefore, search engine optimization can lead to more brand recognition and direct searches for your business online related to your industry. See this related guide with a list of online marketing tips for more ideas on how to increase brand awareness.
19. Enhances Credibility
SEO also enhances credibility for your business. Having a high-ranking website on Google, Yahoo, and Bing can increase the perceived value and credibility of your organization. Therefore, SEO is a well-worth investment for any business that’s trying to succeed on the Internet.
20. SEO Is Scalable for Any Business
Similar to the previously mentioned benefit of SEO being good for any size budget, you don’t need to invest a lot of money or hire a big team to get started with SEO for your company. SEO is scalable at any stage of your business. You can start with one person in your company to be responsible for publishing and optimizing content for SEO. And over time, you can scale up your efforts by hiring more staff to ramp up production or outsource certain elements as your budget allows.
A basic search engine optimization team would include a content writer, editor, link builder, and SEO director. And a good resource to help your employees maximize their results is this list of the best books to learn search engine optimization.
Benefits of SEO Summary
I hope you enjoyed this guide on the advantages of SEO.
As you discovered, there are many benefits of SEO for both large and small businesses. Here’s a quick recap of the top advantages of search engine optimization:
- SEO Promotes Your Business 24/7
- You Get More Customers Through Organic Search
- SEO Works for Any Budget
- Benefits Other Marketing Initiatives
- SEO Gives You a Competitive Advantage
- Decreases Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
- Results are Trackable and Quantifiable
- Helps Your Business Break Into New Markets
- SEO Gives You a Market Share Advantage
- Proven Long-Term Marketing Strategy
- Targets Every Stage of the Buying Cycle
- Increases Touchpoints with Customers
- SEO Generates Higher Conversion Rates
- Maximizes Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Campaigns
- SEO Benefits Local Marketing Efforts
- Good SEO Increases Trust for Your Business
- Improves the User Experience
- SEO Increases Brand Awareness
- Enhances Credibility
- SEO Is Scalable for Any Business
Hopefully, these benefits of search engine optimization encourage you to make SEO a priority in your business so you can have better long-term growth and success with your digital marketing efforts.