If you want to grow your business, you need to increase your web presence online and show them that you are the leader in your niche or industry. You need to get in front of your customers in any way you can, and two of the best ways to do that online is by having a search engine optimization (SEO) plan integrated with a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign.
1. Why is SEO and paid search important to a small business?
While SEO has gotten a bad rap the past few years, don't think all kinds of SEO are inherently bad. If you need proof, you can see why you can trust SEO agencies again.
Think of PPC as renting space on the first page that you have to pay for. This can make you a lot of money and you can split test landing pages and keyword groups to determine which are making you the most money.
Then once you have enough data to determine where you can spend more money in your PPC campaigns, you can up your spend to increase your profits.
On the other hand, SEO is like owning real estate. It may be more expensive up front and take some time, but as you get more and more keywords on the first page of search results, typically they should stick around as long as you follow Google's guidelines and continue to create great content for your industry.
Then you no longer have to rent or pay for PPC, but instead can organically rank, gain more traffic to your site, and generate leads and more business.
2. How do SEO and PPC integrate with other marketing
While integrated marketing like offline campaigns such as newsletters and brochures are still useful and beneficial, businesses are moving towards the digital age of the Internet. SEO and PPC play a huge part in marketing as you can now get more customers and business than you ever could before in a physically restricted area.
SEO, mainly content marketing, helps to identify you and your brand as being experts in your niche or industry. The more compelling and resourceful content that you have on your website that can help people will gain their trust and they will remember you when it comes time to make a purchase decision. This increases your brand awareness and customer loyalty, as well as your authority with Google.
3. What are the general rules for setting up campaigns?
First, you want to do keyword research and determine all the keywords that are applicable and profitable towards your business. Then you want to optimize your site to naturally include those keywords throughout the relevant pages of your website.
For PPC, you can begin to test keyword groups targeting certain landing pages and services or products that you offer. You can set budgets so you only spend so much a day or month. After a few weeks, you can analyze the data to see what is working the best, and where you are getting the most leads, conversions, or sales. Then up the spend for those campaigns working the best and pause or lower your spend for the other campaigns.
With SEO, it can take 4-6 months depending on the competition until you start seeing results, so don't look at your rankings on a daily basis as it will fluctuate. In less competitive markets you can start to see results in the first few months. Look at your traffic, analytics, and rankings once a month to see how you are doing overall with your campaigns.
4. Recommended tools to use
- Google's keyword planner is a helpful free tool, but we also use SEMRush as it dives into data a little bit more and we can analyze competitors very easily.
- Majestic, Ahrefs and Open Site Explorer from Moz are all great backlink analysis tools to keep track of your backlinks as well as what your competitors are doing.
- Screaming Frog helps to identify issues with your site that you need to fix to optimize your website, such as duplicate tags, 404 pages, and other errors.
- Advanced Web Ranking or some other ranking tool or software to keep track of your rankings and your competition.
- Buzzstream is a great contact management tool that helps to organize your outreach efforts for content marketing and SEO. You can import a list of domains you want to get mentioned on and build a relationship with, and Buzzstream will find their contact info, e-mail, social profiles.
- IFTTT (If This Then That) is a great online automation tool where you can create recipes to help automate efforts. For example, you can take a competitor's RSS feed and any time a new post is added you can get an e-mail or add it to a notebook in Evernote to check once a month or so.
So when you integrate PPC and SEO you get the best of both worlds. It can double the effects of your marketing and show you some really great and actionable results.