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July 21, 2009

Dear Business Community, the Time for SEO is Now!

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Most search marketers have seen it before. After discussing SEO strategy with a potential new client, the business owner gets cold feet. Considering today’s economic uncertainty, entering into a contract to pay for costly search engine optimization services can be a daunting commitment. The problem is, waiting any longer to implement SEO tactics on your Web site could be even costlier.

It’s important that people making business decisions are aware that not only will search engine optimization make your site better positioned for online commerce, but also, not implementing SEO might actually hurt your site. Every moment of hesitation, every day a campaign is deferred, every competitor who adds SEO to their marketing mix is raising the bar and pushing your site further out of reach of high search engine rankings.

There are seriously harmful consequences that could result from the belief that SEO is a marketing tactic that can be postponed, which is why I’d like to send the business community a message. The time for SEO is now!

Don’t Wait for the Revolution. SEO is an Evolution

Search engine optimization is constantly growing and changing as are the guidelines and tools provided by search engines. But some business owners are waiting for the SEO revolution — a time when SEO rises up and takes the title of superior marketing channel. Unfortunately, there is no such title to make obvious the value of SEO. SEO has been and will continue to play a role in the marketing mix. Don’t think you can jump on the bandwagon when SEO hits the big time. We’re already there.

Avoid the Point of No Return

A site that hasn’t been designed with the search engines in mind suffers from an illness a lot like gangrene. But when it afflicts a Web site, the illness doesn’t kill off body tissue — it kills off the site’s ability to gain search engine visibility. A weakness in a site is identified, a third-party infiltrates the rankings, scoops up potential customers, leaving the first site bloodied and hurting for conversions. The longer you wait to optimize your site for search engines, the more competitive the space becomes and the harder it will be to compete. Like gangrene, search rot can spread quickly but, luckily, it’s extremely treatable.

SEO is an Investment, Not Just a Cost

The first obvious consideration a decision maker has when choosing to begin SEO services is, “How much is this going to cost me?” But it should be remembered that search engine marketing is not just a cost, it’s an investment that can offer returns. Ask instead “How much money will this make me?” A successful SEO project actually makes money for the site, and it often adds up to more than is spent over the course of a year. Before you balk at the cost of SEO implementation, take a moment to remember the reward.

The Cheaper You Want It, the Cheaper You Get It

Those who already understand how SEO can help a business may be at the point of finding the right people for the job. While you realize that SEO isn’t a corner that can be cut, you may be looking to cut other corners, like cost. Of course, the old adage “You get what you pay for” holds as true in the Internet marketing world as anywhere else in life. If you’re trying to decide if that SEO price tag is worth it, stick with your common sense instincts and get that SEO service provider to prove their worth through past work and testimonials. And consider that a quality search marketing service could actually save you time, money and ever-precious sanity.

SEO is Survival

If the leaders in your industry have already implemented SEO, then search marketing is not a choice if you hope to stay in the competition. There are some industries in which every major player has an optimized site. If that’s the case, a site not designed with search in mind can’t even attempt to compete in the online marketplace. Search engines are a significant traffic referrer. Can you afford to give your competitors that business without a fight? For many industries, SEO is simply a cost of business.

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The Last to Enter the Race Has the Most Catching Up to Do

Any business that’s been around a while recognizes that business is a lot like a race. A race to beat the competition. A race to meet the customers needs. A race to hit revenue goals before the end of the year. Search engine visibility is a race, too. And being the last to start the race is an obvious disadvantage. Start your SEO efforts now because there’s already a pack with a big lead ahead of you.

The SEO community is currently witnessing a push for services as businesses use every opportunity to their advantage. The search marketing industry has reached a point where most businesses know what SEO can offer, but, in the uncertain financial environment, are hesitant to commit. Remember that the longer you wait, the harder and more expensive it becomes to do search engine optimization. There’s no more time for excuses. The time for SEO is now.

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3 responses to “Dear Business Community, the Time for SEO is Now!”

  1. Lydia Fabry Mazorol writes:

    Good reminder Virginia!

    Sad that it has to be a reminder for businesses who may have cut back marketing expenses due to recession or simply haven’t started SEO at all. It’s not just useful for catching up or being better able to participate with online positioning but also a means for expanding. With cuts as much as 50% for some businesses you have to reach further to recapture those losses. Online businesses can’t afford not to adjust and see the value, pay back, and future growth potential when involving SEO. SEO, as you suggested, should be “simply a cost of business”.

    Now, how do we get this information to those who don’t even get this far (to your blog)??

  2. Joseph A writes:

    Wise words. Businesses should see this as beneficial rather than just another cost. A good thing to point out is why wait for some SEO revolution, get ahead before your competitors do and as similarly said in the article, get in the race.

  3. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Thanks, Joseph and Lydia! I’m not sure how to get this message in front of business decision makers, but if you have an opportunity, maybe you could share these points with them!



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