What Not to Expect From SEO

As businesses look to increase sales, they immediately think of the need to increase web traffic, which usually results in them hiring an SEO copywriter or SEO service provider. For smaller companies they may task the SEO functions to a web savvy director or producer. Their goal and assumptions are always the same, increased SEO increases traffic which increases sales – but that’s not necessarily true.

Most companies, and people in c-level positions, don’t actually understand what SEO is or what it accomplishes. In reality many companies will hire an SEO “person” with misconceptions on what they will do, only to find themselves unhappy with their ROI.

The Sales Challenge

Increased web traffic does not guarantee more sales. If you’re a publisher who sells advertising based on pageviews, you may see an increase in sales, however the perception your online assets have will carry more weight than the actual number of pageviews you can generate. Likewise, if you’re a retailer or produce a product, an increase of web traffic does not guarantee that you will increase your sales. While you may cast a bigger net, you still need to rely on a product that people are willing to buy. Bottom line is you still need to “sell” your product or website, increased traffic won’t do it alone for you.

SEO Isn’t Instant

Most search engines will not crawl your site daily unless it’s a news outlet that is updating constantly throughout each day. Reworking your content to target key terms and having new pages indexed takes anywhere between a couple weeks to a couple months worth of time. Avoid any SEO content writers that promise this. Also keep in mind that Google changes their algorithms every so often and what worked last year may not work this year. Also avoid anyone who guarantees your search rankings, that’s not actually possible, as just because you’re number one for a day doesn’t mean you’ll stay top dog forever without constant content production.

SEO is Not Marketing Speak

SEO writers are trained and learned to target their use of wording so that search engine robots can assimilate and organize their content in a relevant way to users. SEO writers are not marketers and will not write flowery description heavy text to appeal to your marketing team. They will however, write content that utilizes your targeted keywords and phrasings to better help search engines understand what your page content is about (or what you want it to be about).

There is No Magic Bullet

Lastly it’s important to note that there is no magic in SEO. Both Google and Bing have put out extensive guidelines on how their engines like to view content. For the most part the basic foundation of matching up your domain to the url path to the title tag to the headings and content on a page – making sure they all coincide with each other will ensure your page does well with those terms. When you start to have a page named dogs that talks about fish and lists links to bird products, it doesn’t make sense to a crawler, and it probably won’t to your web visitors either, which is why it wouldn’t rank well in search engines.

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