SEO – Online Marketing That Pays Off in Tough Economic Times

Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you’ll have noticed that there appears to be something of a “financial meltdown” happening right now. What happens in such times? Generally budgets get slashed – marketing in particular – and this is no exception for online marketing as well.

With layoffs – especially in the tech sector – happening every day now, and even heavyweights like Google predicting their revenue slowing, you’d think now is the time to save those pennies and tighten that online marketing spend. And, you’d be right.

With less revenue, businesses need to spend less, however it also means they should spend their marketing budgets smarter. SEO (search engine optimization) is perhaps the most cost effective online marketing initiative a business can make. After all, organic traffic from the search engines is 100% free once it starts rolling in, and usually it’s the most targeted and highly converting traffic you can get to your website.

Of course, implementing an SEO strategy for your website is not free to begin with, it takes a lot of research, work and implementation. You may need to hire a SEO specialist and there may be some design and development costs. None of these tasks will be easy on your hip pocket. So why bother with SEO when it too is an expenditure?

Well the best way to look at SEO is to view it as a long-term investment. Sure you may be spending money now, but in the end you will get a lot more return on your investment. Search engine optimization is also a slow process, so you really don’t want to be considering it when things might be really tough. Cut down on your more expensive marketing initiatives now, and invest a little more into SEO. Then in the future, you’ll be able to enjoy more of that free, high converting, traffic. While spending considerably less on your online marketing.

A lot of businesses – especially those that are more “bricks and mortar” orientated – still seem to “not get” the practice of SEO. With paid search engine marketing (pay per click), you can switch the “traffic tap” on or off almost instantly, and quickly determine what is and isn’t working. SEO is harder to quantify, and therefore often viewed as a more “risky” venture by some businesses. Having said that, nothing beats free, natural, organic traffic, and you’ll only be shooting yourself in the foot if you ignore the medium to long term benefits of a successful SEO strategy.

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