Say you’re looking to buy a house and you need a mortgage broker. What do you do? Some of us will ask our family or friends for advice. Some of us will use a search engine like Google.
Search engines like Google have become the solution to a lot of our problems. You can’t even deny it, you use Google for everything! Whether you’re looking for a mortgage broker or
looking for how to cook a steak, Google is usually the first place we turn to.
But, Google is also important to businesses. As a small business owner, you should take advantage of Search Engine Optimization (SEO, also know as organic search) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM, also known as paid search). You can generate more traffic and leads into your business with the help of SEO and SEM.
What is Organic Search?
Now, say you’re the mortgage broker and a potential client is out there looking for you. He or she has typed into Google “Mortgage Brokers, Mississauga.” How do you expect this person to find you? Have you claimed your Google My Business listing? Do you have a website that will direct people to you? Your potential client will see a list of links that appear below the ads. These links are known as “organic” or “non-paid” search engine results.
Do you want to achieve the best organic results?
You must keep in mind a few things about SEO:
1. Optimize your website’s usability and appearance
2. Create original and shareable content that is informative and captivating
3. Use the right keywords and position your keywords strategically
You must also keep in mind that SEO takes time to develop. Remember, you are trying to rank on Google using organic or non-paid search engine results. How long are you willing to wait to see results? Because it may take months or years to get high rankings on Google. Just think of your SEO initiative like growing a green and healthy lawn. Your lawn needs some “TLC” on a regular basis such as watering it and using natural fertilizers rather than pesticides.
Benefits of Organic Search
So, SEO takes time. But, is it worth it? The answer is yes. Approximately 70% of the links users click on when they search are organic. What does this mean for you and your business? Well, high search engine rankings mean you’ve built trust and credibility, which equals to a greater likelihood of users to click through to your site.
What is Paid Search?
Paid search or SEM is referred to as paid listings. These are the list of links you will see that appear above the organic or non-paid search engine results. The most popular advertising service used by businesses is Google’s advertising system called Google AdWords. Google AdWords is where you bid on relevant keywords so your ads can appear on Google’s search results.
How does Google AdWords work?
In Google AdWords, the actual position of your ad is determined by your ad rank (Maximum Bid times Quality Score). Therefore, the highest ad rank gets the first ad position. So, your Cost-Per-Click (CPC) is determined by the ad rank of the highest ad below you divided by your Quality Score (QS). However, you will pay for your maximum bid-per-click when you are the only bidder or the lowest bid in the AdWords auction.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is that AdWords bidding PENALIZES advertisers who bid with a low QS.
Does Google AdWords work?
AdWords may or may not work for your business. It is dependent on the competitiveness of the keywords you’re bidding for and the ratio of relevancy to conversions for your business. AdWords can be EFFECTIVE if you’re bidding on the right keywords. You can use Google Keyword Planner to help you identify the right keywords to target and to find which keywords your competitors are using.
Benefits of Paid Search
We know that SEO takes time, but what about SEM then? Paid search engine results are placed on top of rankings as soon as you pay for ad placement in Google AdWords. You can also tailor your Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaigns to reach specific audiences. Some examples of segmentation include age, income, and marital status.
Related Story: How Google Can Help Your Small Business
Which One is for Me?
Should I use organic search or paid search? Which one is better to use? Should I be using both? The truth is that it depends. The answer is dependent on the type of business you have and the objectives of your business. Here at Retailors Group, we believe together is better. The combination of both organic search and paid search is the best approach.
Just remember this… Organic search provides you with trust and credibility which equals to a greater likelihood of users to click through to your site. Paid search provides you immediate listings using the right keywords and reach specific audiences. And with paid search, you’re pushing your business to customers. Wouldn’t you want the best of both worlds for your business?
The team at Retailors Group has over 15 years of retail sales and field marketing experience. Retailors Group takes the time to understand your brand and align your core values into a tailor made solution that builds a long lasting relationship with your consumers.