Small businesses face a variety of challenges in the marketplace and with the increasing need for creating a web presence there’s yet another obstacle. Many small businesses probably have heard of SEO and know that it’s important, but don’t really know where to start when it comes to incorporating it. They might be wondering if they can afford SEO, how long the process takes, and if it’s so complicated, is it really necessary. Here’s some of the challenges small businesses have to take on when looking at SEO because they will play an important role in marketing strategy and the business’s future.
Less Time & Money
Less time and less money aren’t exclusive problems to SEO in the small business world. Almost with everything, small businesses have to stretch time and money, making compromises to accommodate for the limits. Businesses would do well to remember that money must be spent in order to make money. SEO isn’t a place to cut corners because spending more for a quality job will get better returns, says Adam Stetzer in an article on Search Engine Watch. Time is also limited, especially if there are few people working in the business, and SEO can be a time consuming process. However, rushing the process or not doing it at all will result in less traffic and poor rankings.
Harder to Keep Up with Changes
Yet another resource issue for small businesses is keeping up with the changes that take place in the technology game. The fact is that SEO isn’t a stagnant area and with Google releasing yet another significant update to the rankings, it’s time to rework strategies again. Someone who is working exclusive on SEO will undoubtedly have more time that a few people running a small business, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t try and keep up with the latest trends.
Big Business is More Established
The big businesses have been working on SEO for some time now, so they’re already ahead of the game, but the good news is even they started small. It’s harder for newer websites to grow in website rankings and rank high, especially on competitive keywords. It is, however, not impossible and though Google tends to favor older domains and brands, small companies can slowly build their rankings by incorporating SEO and adding strategies like blogging to give a constant flow of content.
Harder to Get Links & Media Coverage
Having been in the game less time also puts small businesses at a disadvantage because they don’t have the same leverage when it comes to building links and getting media coverage. For the big companies, sometimes links just come to them without any effort because their names already carry a great deal of weight. Small businesses don’t have this advantage and it’s another reason that SEO is challenging to dig into. Just because they’re at a disadvantage, doesn’t mean small businesses can’t become masters at the SEO game, says Eric Layland, co-founder of Point It Digital Marketing in a webinar.
Is SEO Worth the Effort?
Despite all the hurdles small business may have to jump over, working on SEO is still worth the effort. The results are already in on whether or not SEO is worth the time and money for small businesses. In fact, companies that let their SEO marketing efforts slip or stopped with them altogether saw their traffic and keywords plunge. According to Megan Haley on the Pear Analytics Blog, up to 30 percent loss in top-ranked terms, in just the space of a year.