Is it Too Late to Start a Search Engine Optimization Campaign?

Start climbing the search results ladder.

A lot of business owners think that just because they haven’t tried search engine optimization in the past (or had campaigns that didn’t succeed), it’s too late to get started now. After all, other companies already have the market cornered on the most important search terms and phrases, and there isn’t much chance of competing with them… Right?

Nothing could be further from the truth. Although search engine optimization plans do become more effective over time, a site that hasn’t been optimized doesn’t have old mistakes to overcome, either. Besides, millions of new sites are launched every month. If they can rank in Google, so can your company.

Here are a handful of tips to help you succeed, regardless of whether you’re just starting out, or making an effort to start fresh:

1. Do the right research up front.

Most search campaigns stall before they ever gain any traction simply because they target the wrong keywords and phrases altogether – either ones that don’t make sense for the product or service being offered, or gaining lots of traffic but not much ROI. The more you know before you begin, the easier it will be to make the right kind of progress later.

2. Be specific about the customers you want to reach.

In the end, search engine optimization campaigns aren’t about search engines at all, but the kinds of customers you want to reach through Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Put those men and women first, and structure your pages and content accordingly.

3. Speed the process up with pay-per-click advertising.

Pay-per-click campaigns can not only be set up within hours or days, but can actually be more efficient than organic search engine optimization on a per-click basis. Plus, they let you test out keywords, phrases, and marketing messages before you spend time optimizing your whole site.

4. Focus on small steps in the process.

Rather than becoming obsessed with your overall search engine optimization campaign, it’s a good idea to focus on specific steps (like page titles, or blog posts) early on in the process. Success only comes after you’ve handled the details, so keep your eyes on the road.

5. Measure your progress and set the right expectations.

Once you have your plan firmly in place, check your progress at regular intervals. Your web design and online marketing team might send you a report once a month, for example, showing how your positions are improving over time. So long as you’re taking the long view of things, you’ll start to see the kind of steady improvements that will lead to bigger profits later.

It’s never a bad time to do something great for your business, and search engine optimization can make a big impact in your profitability. 

6. Don’t look for guarantees.

SEO companies who can “guarantee” search results aren’t the companies you want to use. Google changed their algorithm over 500 times last year! Not all of them were big changes, but just because you reach a certain spot doesn’t mean you’ll stay there. Once you reach the first page for your chosen keywords and phrases it becomes a horse race. Your competition has worked hard to get to the first page and they aren’t going to get pushed aside easily.

Guarantees lead to “black hat” tactics. With each iteration of Google’s algorithm these black hat tactics become irrelevant and in some cases are punished. Instead, look for a long-term relationship, with on-going services. Or if you’re going to do-it-yourself, understand it will be a commitment. Organic search results are looking for organic growth and organic change. Long-term work gets results. Why not start building a more searchable site today?

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