You may ask, “Can I just pay for a high ranking?” and the answer is YES! It is called Pay-Per-Click, but the downside is that you have to pay for every click. In the short-run, Pay-Per-Click Advertising can be profitable, but SEO is better in the long run because the cost per acquisition diminishes as you achieve higher rankings. It takes time and money to do what needs to be done in order to rank well in the search engines, but after you establish some traction, then it is relatively easy to keep a high ranking and continue to grow.
Two years ago a Lawyer I knew in Tulsa, Oklahoma worked really hard to be number one for Tulsa Personal Injury Lawyer. He invested a lot of effort into his website, but then he got really busy and stopped. Fortunately, he built good authority with Google and outranked his competition by more than enough to keep sufficient leads flowing into his law firm after he stopped. Now he was essentially getting free traffic, free sales and the ROI on his effort is through the roof. He won’t be able to rank number one forever without adding additional effort, but the acquisition cost for clients is extremely low when you are at the top.
SEO is exciting because it provides results. It also gains a lot of attention because it is difficult. People are burned every day from bad SEO companies and marketing agencies who don’t know what they are doing. They read a few articles on the web about SEO and think that they can provide a service worth thousands. The issue is that most small businesses do not have funds to pay for an in-house SEO marketer. However, they can really get a good ROI if they outsource to the right company.
Imagine you are on a bicycle and riding up a hill. If you get to the top, there is a prize waiting for you that will affect you, your family, business and everyone around you. You want to get to the top, but it is not easy. To get to the top it requires a massive amount of energy and time. To pay someone to cycle up the hill will cost you more money than you have in your pocket. You can pay them, but when they come up short, you shouldn’t expect results simply because you didn’t have enough money.
The only way you are going to get to the top of that mountain is to cycle up yourself. You are going to have to go all in and put the effort in. You won’t see returns at first. It won’t be easy, but if you look at your metrics you can see that you are getting somewhere. You are building something and the idea of building something has got to motivate you. Your competitors chose to pay a marketing agency and now they are sitting on the sidelines thinking they did their part and thinking that SEO doesn’t work.
When you do what it takes then eventually you will start to see results. You will reach the top of that mountain and then it will be smooth sailing. Cruising down a mountain is much easier than cycling up.
It is not a smart idea to spend your time and resources doing something that doesn’t work, but I’m telling you that it can work if you are willing to compete. It doesn’t pay to be 2nd, third, fourth, and fifth. Those rankings may mean something if you are shooting for short-tail keywords, but over 40% of all searchers will click the first results. That is where you want to be folks. When you get to the top, then you will begin to join the hype and let people know that SEO is great. 60% of the people you talk to will think your crazy and 90% will doubt your effectiveness, but it doesn’t matter because if you got a decent conversion rate and committed to SEO, then you will be on your way to the bank and that makes cycling up that hill worth every drop of sweat.