Speaking with a client the other day, and got to thinking about how expectations and financial exposure combine together. The age old dilemma of having to chase a result without putting in the resources required is one that will never cease to raise it’s head when it comes to SEO. But how does this differ from business to business?
Considerations a business owner or website marketing manager will have to face revolve around the famous acronym ROI. Getting the best return on investment for your marketing spend is crucial. But what about timeliness?
Of course depending on the financial cloud of a company, the issue of timing is an issue of elasticity. Consider the following statement: “I can get you top of Google in 10 months at £x per month, but until then you have no traffic. After this point you’ll receive around 300 unique visitors per day”.
This would scare off many small business owners but excite others. Knowing the potential result of having top spot for a very difficult and sought after word is undeniably appealing. However, whilst for some investment is not an issue, for others their budget would run out before their website had a chance of realising the SEO efforts.
Sole traders who are looking to boost their online performance usually won’t be competing for extremely tough keywords, but in the event they are then pricing and expectations should be kept in check. For example, the sole trader making Jewellery from home should probably forget about competing for the 100 most generic terms- unless they have deep pockets. A sole trader offering a bespoke or unique service can look to target longer-tailed phrases (more words in the phrase) and get quicker results.
Small to medium sized business SEO is usually a more considered approach, with a small to medium sized budget to match aspirations. Again the chicken and egg situation arises when the industry related phrases are particularly competitive, and the expectations of performance and timeliness become all important. The bigger the prize, the bigger the SEO input, the bigger the result, the bigger the costs involved. For SME’s it’s possibly the toughest call; the investment into long-term organic optimisation success, with a continued stream of new sales, against the leap-of-faith whilst waiting for top spot on Google.
So how do we get around the SEO chicken and egg scenario? As a dedicated SEO company concentrating on building a portfolio of clients in every type of industry (beit primary, secondary or tertiary), we have to be both realistic and flexible; we also need to perform. Success with any campaign is built on the basis of hard work and by integrating the latest and smartest practice methods, neither of which come cheap.
Ultimately we decide to offer a blend of staged SEO campaigns (in terms of keyword results), pay on results (when it’s viable) for sole traders, and a good deal of historical data to ensure clients feel secure with their budget allocation. The gentle reminder that without joining the race you cannot win, is one which will rattle around the heads of all business owners and marketing managers.