The main reason why you should do SEO is to get organic traffic, the more traffic you have the higher your income potential is. Search engine optimization is a lot of work, and there are a lot of ways on how to approach it, the problem is that even if you are search engine optimizing your blog or your website you still might not see any results for a long time. Oftentimes people would rather focus only on SEO than on writing content, ideally, you should do both of them.
The benefits of SEO are traffic, better user experience, high-quality traffic, generating leads, cheaper than ads, higher CTR rate, good for branding, increase brand awareness, long term traffic, passive income, improves website speed, increased market share, and by providing credibility to your brand.
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There are two types of SEO, on-page and off-page SEO, the on-page SEO is everything you do in order to optimize your website and your articles, and the off-page SEO is everything you do off your site, usually, this is in the form of building backlinks. SEO has a lot of benefits, but no guarantees, which means that even if you do everything correctly then there is still a possibility that you won’t see any results.
Good SEO takes a long time, bad SEO, on the other hand, will take even longer, far too often beginners simply destroy their website by trying to take shortcuts, or by following some new link building scheme which doesn’t really work. The main problem with SEO is that positive results take a long time, on the other hand, negative results will come extremely fast, often pulling down the entire website.
When somebody asks me what are the benefits of SEO, I often tell them to imagine a small corner shop in the middle of nowhere, there are no people living nearby and nobody ever enters the shop. With the help of SEO, you can place this small corner shop in the middle of Manhattan, lots of people, and a lot of sales. If you are wondering how hard it is to make money with your blog then check out my recent article How hard is it to make money with a blog? ( The Truth ).
The first and the most important benefit of SEO is that it can drive a lot of traffic to your website. This is why a lot of webmasters do SEO, to increase their traffic. Generally speaking the more traffic a website has the higher the income potential of the website is. This also depends on the niche which you are targeting, some niches do not need a lot of traffic to make you a full-time income, although these tend to be high competition niches.
Getting traffic through your SEO efforts will take a long time especially if you have a brand new website. New websites tend to be placed in the sandbox for 6-8 months, and while your website is in the sandbox period it will simply not rank for a lot of keywords. If you want more organic traffic to your blog then you should optimize for Bing as well, for more information check out my recent article How to optimize for Bing ( In 11 Easy Steps ).
Better user experience
One of the aspects of SEO is optimizing for the user experience, the more time a user spends on your site the better your site will perform in the search results, and the more money you will earn. While most people only optimize their website for the search engine, they are missing out big time if they are not optimizing for the user experience as well. For a good user experience, you will need a fairly fast loading website, satisfying the user intent, and giving the information for which the user has come to your website.
A lot of webmasters tend to hide the answer for which the user has visited the site somewhere in the post. They mostly do this to increase the time spend on the site, although it usually backfires. It is a bad user experience if the user doesn’t find the answer for which he is searching for in the first couple of paragraphs. What tends to happen is that the user will simply pogo stick, which means that he will go to some other site looking for the answers.
SEO drives the highest quality traffic to a website, the users are actually interested in the topic of your website and if you have high-quality content then they will spend a significant amount of time on your site. You have probably seen websites and services selling 10k organic traffic for $5, these are all scams as they are selling bot traffic. The quality of traffic which you get from SEO will depend on your niche and what kind of articles you are writing.
If you are writing informational posts than you are better off monetizing the post with display ads, on the other hand, if you are writing reviews of certain products than you are better off monetizing with affiliate offers.
It is fairly easy to generate leads from search traffic, especially as the user is interested in your topic. There are a lot of websites only focusing on lead gen, some make a lot of money while others struggle. Generally speaking, leads tend to convert better from organic traffic than from social media traffic, and in some cases, they can even outperform paid ads. Even if your main goal is not to generate leads than you could still get a couple of leads without a lot of effort.
Cheaper than ads
One of the best benefits of SEO is that it is cheaper than ads, some niches can be extremely competitive, and advertisers pay $10-$50 per single click. Although these niches are extremely competitive but if you have done a good job at SEO than odds are that you will start getting some traffic. If you are outsourcing SEO than you might have to invest a significant amount of money to rank your website, that is if during the process you do not destroy your website.
If you are targeting an extremely high competition niche then you should target keywords with low search volume. A keyword that drives around 100 monthly searches will take you a couple of months to rank for if you would use ads to get the same amount of traffic then you will have to pay a lot of money which ultimately is lowering your profit.
Higher CTR rate
With SEO you get a higher CTR rate than with ads, most people are used to seeing ads on the search results and they simply ignore them. This is why Google is always changing how the ads look on the search results, and it is blurring the lines between organic and paid listings with each update. Around 10 years ago you could clearly see which listings are ads as they had a green background.
Today however the only difference between a paid listing and an organic search result is the “Ad” tag right next to the paid listing. This is why Google is also experimenting with showing the favicons of the websites in the search results, to further blur the line between ads and organic listings. Although with these methods advertisers do get more clicks but odds are that most people are simply bouncing off as the users which are searching for information won’t stay on a website which is trying to sell them some product as aggressively as they can.
Good for branding
SEO is excellent for branding, oftentimes new brands fail in the first couple of months as they rely on advertising and social media posts. The truth is that the respect of a user is earned and can not be bought, this is why bigger websites that have an established brand tend to do a lot better both in the search results and when it comes to conversion. Just look at Amazon, it was a struggling business at the beginning but with some extremely smart branding mostly done with SEO, they are dominating the market.
Increases brand awareness
Brand awareness can be either built or bought, although you should probably build your brand awareness rather than buy it for long term results. A lot of websites have a hard time raising brand awareness, and they will often focus on social media to build brand awareness. The problem with social media is that it is an extremely time-consuming treadmill, once you stop posting and engaging with your audience than your impressions and user engagement will go down the hill.
On the other hand building brand awareness with SEO is fairly easy, just target as many low traffic and low competition keywords as possible, the more keywords you have ranked on google the better your brand awareness is.
Long term traffic
If you have built a high-quality website than sooner or later your website will be an authority in your niche. This means faster rankings and longer rankings, usually, authority websites will rank a lot easier than new websites and you can get traffic for years to come. There are a lot of webmasters who have not logged in to their WP dashboard in years and they are still making a passive income without doing any work.
Once you are ranking in the first position then you can relax a bit and make money passively. All websites have the potential to make passive income, although there are some things which you can do to make your website as passive as possible but only after your website is getting traffic. The bigger your website is the more passive income it can generate, and by big I mean the more articles it has.
Although you should keep in mind that making passive income comes with a fairly big upfront cost either in the form of monetary or time investment. If you have the time then write as many articles as possible, they will eventually rank and they will generate you a nice passive income in the long run.
Improves website speed
The speed of your website is extremely important when it comes to SEO, the faster your website loads the better it will perform. Most webmasters will speed up their website as this is a confirmed ranking factor, and they are also making the user experience a lot better without even thinking about it. If you have a slow loading website then your website will not rank as high as it can, once a user comes to your website and he has to wait for a couple of seconds for your content to load than then it is extremely likely he will simply bounce off your website. If you want to know how to increase your website speed without spending any money then check out my recent article How to speed up my website for free? ( In 11 Steps ).
Increased market share
With SEO you can increase your market share significantly, generally speaking, the bigger your website is the higher share of the market it will have. This is why there are so many advertisers in a lot of niches, they do not have any share of the market and they just want to get their product in front of the visitors as soon as they can. The higher your market share is the easier it will convert visitors into buyers because they already know your brand.
If a user search for information in a specific niche and your website is constantly popping up in the search results than the user is more likely to consider your website as the authority and they would rather buy from your website than from a random ad. There are some people who want to take this market share with ads, this is a slippery slope as most people who use ads to make a profit are the ones who are clicking on your and your competitor’s ads, they will simply click your ads into bankruptcy.
Provides credibility of your brand
A lot of people who are relying on ads to get traffic have a massive problem, which is that people do not know their brand and they have zero credibility. With SEO on the other hand it is fairly easy to increase the credibility of your brand, all you need is content, the more content you have the higher your credibility is. A lot of advertisers tend to use a one-page website, usually just the sales page, they do this because they need the user to convert to a buyer as soon as possible.
On the other hand, if the user comes to your website and you have 100 articles on the topic then this is a clear sign that you know what you are talking about and the odds of the user buying from you rather than from a one-page ad is extremely high.
As you can see there are a lot of benefits to doing SEO, the problem is that the vast majority of people outsource the off-page SEO which might end up in a disaster. Google is always changing, the benefits of SEO will be more or less the same but how your website will get to the first position will probably change with time. Google often changes the rules, and this is why SEO is so difficult for many people.