For many years, one method was best for generating website traffic. No longer. Google has changed the game, and chosen a new king.
What’s the best, most cost effective way to get relevant traffic to your website?
Well, it used to be search engine optimization (SEO).
Not anymore (at least for many businesses).
Forbes magazine featured a fascinating article recently on “the death of SEO.” In it, they revealed what Google was doing to marginalize and make obsolete this popular method to get website traffic.
While I don’t agree in total with the obsolescence of SEO, I do believe there has been a major shift by Google in a different direction.
At the end of the day, if your business relies on leads and sales from the internet, it is imperative that you know what to do next.
Should my business continue to use SEO?
Up until the last year or two, most companies would spend $500-$2,500 a month for 6-18 months paying an SEO company to do all sorts of things to get a website noticed by Google (and ranked higher).
But, Google continues to adjust their algorithm so this method is increasingly ineffective.
The most Google friendly, cost effective, long-term way to get new leads, customers, and sales for many businesses is no longer SEO.
What is effective? Solid, informative, relevant, fresh content.
In particular, the approach Google strongly favors is the kind promoted by Hubspot. This methodology is called “inbound marketing,” where a company posts new and relevant blog articles every week.
Does this approach work?
Absolutely. The statistics are quite compelling. I personally use this approach (and the Hubspot platform); I also use it for several of my clients.
Is this new approach what I should use for my business?
Here is “the rest of the story”— Inbound marketing works great… for certain types of businesses.
But, not so much for others.
I have some clients that I have NOT recommended inbound marketing. Why? Because it wouldn’t be cost effective.
At the end of the day, you have to be able to generate significant ROI for your efforts. In other words, spend $1… but make $2 (or $5… or $10). Inbound marketing does that for many businesses… but not so much for others.
What types of businesses can effectively use inbound marketing?
1. A business that has at least a 60 day sales cycle. If you are an emergency plumber, or a roofer, for example, you are not a good candidate. Inbound marketing works well for those businesses that have decent lead time between the time the prospect begins exploring your product or service… and the time they decide to buy.
2. Some educational component to what you sell. If what you offer is considered a commodity (think of rice, or salt… all your choices are about the same) then you are probably not a good candidate. If, however, what you offer requires some level of research or education by prospects on the options out there, inbound works quite well. An example would be getting a pool. Should you get an in-ground or above-ground pool? Concrete or fiberglass? Etc.
3. A high (or at least healthy) customer value. This means what you are selling has both a good profit margin and a good gross profit amount. If, for example, you are making $50 on what you sell, the cost effectiveness of doing inbound marketing is not there. I recommend at least $300 in gross profit from each customer/client.
How to know for sure what is the best approach for your business?
If you don’t want to waste your marketing dollars on either an obsolete approach (that is less and less cost effective), or a new approach that might not really work for your business… what can you do?
Simple. Contact us at 2nd Mile Marketing.
We will offer you a fair and unbiased assessment of your options. No… we won’t try to sell you on something. We will only offer you options— then let you decide. That’s our promise to you.
Keep in mind—this is what we do for a living: help small-medium sized businesses maximize their online leads, sales and revenue. We can help you determine what method would work best for your business (whether or not you use our “do it for you” services).
Go ahead… contact us today. We really can help.
For further research, review the Forbes article, “the death of SEO.”