Business Owners: SEO is an Investment, Not a Cost
By Andrew Broadbent
Bottom line…if you want your business to rank for very competitive search phrases or “money terms”, expect your content marketing Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaigns to take time. This means patience is key if you want rankings, leads and sales. Incredible search rankings can definitely be achieved but companies need to realize that, particularly for highly competitive industries and phrases, these high rankings may not appear in the first month.
Quality and profitable SEO campaigns can take anywhere from 6 to 9 months to realize the return on investment (ROI) you want. Some business niches are easier to rank for, but for highly competitive industries like insurance, diamonds, jewelry, travel, jet charter, you are looking at a longer timeframe. This is because competitive industries often witness competitors having higher budgets for advertising.
Being “Page 1 of Google” is usually what our customers want to see immediately for their services and products. Here at Vab Media, we have to explain that short-term SEO campaigns are not the best marketing mechanism because they generate short-term results- this is just an instant gratification that will not ultimately lead to a sustainable ROI. SEO is a craft, not a science- and every SEO venture is unique requiring time consuming, extensive and consistent research.
It would be interesting for us to see the long-term results of an SEO firm that promises immediate results. Usually, that means essential aspects of a company’s SEO campaign will probably be missing because this SEO firm is taking some major shortcuts. If you don’t go with the right firm, your site could be top ranked one day, and not ranked at all the next day. Just to use Google as an example, they operate a search engine that is relentlessly changing, adding and improving their algorithms in an effort to provide the most reliable results. On average, each member of the Vab Media team spends hours each week to keep up with Google’s never ending and evolving process changes, tactics and reasons for updates.
The only way a company can see these immediate results is with Pay Per Click (PPC), but even this is an extremely expensive, not to mention unreliable and risky, investment and venture. Keyword competition is paramount and competition research is just as difficult. The structure, quality score, look and feel of a PPC ad also is a huge priority.
Vab Media SEO Case Study as an Example
Our client, V1 Jets international, a private jet charter brokerage, came to us last year looking to increase their charter quotes and sales via an improved web presence and search rankings. Although V1’s Jetcharter.com website had significant brand recognition within its industry, and ranked number 1 for the search phrase “jet charter”, they were only on the 4th page for the more specific and competitive phrase “private jet charter”(see first image below). Fixing this problem was not simple considering some of their major competitors like Blue Star Jets have been investing thousands per month in SEO for the previous seven years. V1 hired our team to address weaknesses in both the site’s content and its overall architecture in order to drive additional traffic from both search engine results pages and popular social networking sites.
V1 Jets International now ranks number 2 on the first page for many important search phrases like “private jet charter” and “private jet charter quote”.
Our approach to increasing V1 Jets’ inbound traffic relied on the use of several different white-hat SEO best practices. Our Marketing efforts were focused on crawling / indexing issues, duplicate content concerns, on-page optimization improvements, increasing calls to actions, network leverage and social media marketing.
Don’t just take our word for it though- look at the praise we received from V1’s James Matta, V1 Jets owner and investor. “The SEO job you guys did, as you said took time but with tremendous success. Thanks for the great job and anytime you need to provide a recommendation to a new client it will be my pleasure to do so.”
Don’t give up hope if you don’t see the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) results you want right away. SEO is a long-term process and a balancing act with constantly changing methods for success- what was considered “good” SEO a few years ago, will not work for you now. SEO best practices are always changing, and so is general industry news. Though this might seem like a lot of time consuming effort, it will pay off in the end. It’s critical that you look for three things if you want your SEO endeavour to be successful: brand level, domain age and competitiveness.
Keep in mind that the goal of a good SEO and social media marketing campaign shouldn’t just be rankings and traffic- it should also be be new leads and sales closed! While high rankings and tons of visitors are great, you’ve wasted your time and energy if this traffic isn’t putting more money into your companies bottom line. Also keep in mind that SEO is an ongoing process if you want to maintain your desired results- and you need a reliable team for this to be achieved.
Contact Vab Media for a consultation and quote on your next inbound marketing SEO campaign. We can help you develop a plan that works and will continue to provide a good ROI for the long term.