Top 3 Reasons You Won’t Do SEO.
1. It’s Confusing.
The online world exists for too many in real estate as a hazy nether world made up only of the face pages they see on their screen. Most see their Facebook page and their home pages but fail to see anything deeper. They view those experienced in the inner workings of the net to be hoody clad outcasts who spend their lives in darkened rooms huddled over whizzing computers performing some sort of electronic sorcery. The amount of emails business owners receive promising 1st page on Google attests to this fundamental, large scale naivety of the net.
In actual fact, life for a business owner is getting easier in this regard, let me explain why. Google, and other search engines, have been well aware for a lot of years now that their search algorithms have been hijacked by professional webmasters. They know that the search results have long been skewed by artificial means by users manipulating what they know about the complex mathematical equations used to rank search results. This does not suit them. Google makes its money from advertising. It makes its money by providing a free service to consumers who rely on it to generate the appropriate web pages based on the search terms the consumer uses. They want to have the cleanest, most relevant results possible and this means they want to eliminate, as far as possible, artificial manipulation by SEO experts.
How do they do this? Well, in a nut shell, they improve their algorithms constantly. The last update, Hummingbird, was crafted to specifically favour unique content. Whereas previously Google simply ignored replicated content it will now actively penalise sites that just routinely copy content that is found elsewhere. This makes the job of the professional SEO expert much harder and means spam links and the like are judged on their relevance and originality, not just the volume of key word specific information contained. This is where the second problem arises for business owners.
2. It’s too Hard.
As the major search engines move to providing more organic and clean data to its consumers it is quickly emerging that one of the best ways to rank highly for the inexperienced is to provide good, original and relevant information that is specific to the industry or field you are trying to be noticed in. For real estate as an example blog posts, videos and general property information that is unique to your site can quickly gain the attention of the search spiders of the search engines that constantly trawl the net looking for better ways to rank information for the consumer. This now means that it is less important to spend $500 – $1,000 per month on someone doing the work for you and more important that you set some reasonable time aside to create the content that is useful for your target market.
Block out some time each week and ensure that when you are creating content that it is something your target audience will find valuable. The more time people spend on your site, the more highly it will be ranked for relevance. Let’s face it, Google interprets a short time on your site as a failure. If a consumer has to do a second search for a similar term previously used it counts that as failure of its own search capabilities because it hasn’t delivered the content the user was seeking. Google doesn’t like to let its consumers down, its business model is based on being the most accurate and easy to use search engine on the planet and it’s a reputation it is trying to enhance on a day to day basis.
Do the work, create the content and this alone will put you heads and shoulders above most people in your industry.
3. The Net is Not that Important.
People have been doing business for many thousands of years and for many hundreds of years many basic activities have not changed. The overriding consensus is that what you have been doing has been making you money and kept your company profitable for 10, 20 or even 30 years so why change now? The reason you need to change now is that consumer habits are changing at a rate we have never seen before.
Next time you are in a crowded place, like a train station or a waiting room, look around. Chances are you will see a large proportion of people with their face buried in a smart phone screen or a tablet. These people are driving a consumer revolution. We now expect to be able to find what we need at a moments notice. A quick example. My lights blew in my family room the other day. 10 years ago I would have pulled out the local paper or Yellow Pages and looked for someone to fix it for me. 5 years ago I would have Googled and got a list of individual electricians for me to call. Last week I searched for electricians and got a site called Service Central. I put in my phone number and email address and they provided me with 4 local guys who were all willing and able to do the work within 24 hours. The evolution of consumer demand ensures that we must change as our customers change. What you did last year is scarcely relevant today and will be even less so next year.
In conclusion, spend some time learning how the net works. Put it as a priority to implement just some unique content on your website and take the bull by horns and do it yourself, it’s not hard, it just takes a willingness to learn and an open mind. All the information you need to get started is available at the end of a quick Google search, funnily enough.
Note: This article is a basic introduction for the inexperienced Business Owner. The actual complexities of ranking a site run much deeper than this and given the right motivation and time can be learned by almost anyone. This is simply a guide to get started and if implemented will put you many steps ahead of the majority of your competitors.
21st February, 2014