Is Your Business Getting Customers From The Internet?
Because it is 2016 we can assume that all businesses in Calgary have a website. However, just having a website doesn’t do you much good if it is not bringing in new customers, patients, or jobs, depending on what your business is.
The old days of relying on the physical yellow pages phone book are over. Some of the old school methods such as radio ads and printed flyers still work to some extent, but nothing works as well as having a continuous supply of new customers that have found your website on Google and have contacted you to book an appointment for your product or services.
That is where SEO (search engine optimization) comes into the picture. Also known as online marketing or internet marketing, SEO is the practice of getting your website found on the first page of Google, Bing, and Yahoo. How do we do that? There are two parts to SEO.
- On page SEO is where we optimize the pages and content on your website to make it obvious what your website is about.
- Off page SEO is where we get other websites, directories, and social media pages to link to our website, share it, and like it.
It all sounds pretty complicated and it is. That is why online marketing is not something you should tackle yourself as a business owner, unless you are prepared to invest hundreds of hours in learning and experimenting. Even if you do that, you may not be successful because if you learn from the wrong person, you could be taught outdated techniques and end up harming your website ranking instead of helping it. Google has several penalties for websites that violate their rules. In addition, the methods that are used to get your website on the first page of the search engines and keep it there, change all the time, so what worked in 2014 will not work today.
Of course nothing beats getting a referral from a previous customer, friend, or family member because that person already trusts you and your business because they trust the person that referred them. However, if you are not getting enough referrals, then online marketing and SEO are the next best thing. This is because the person going to Google and typing in “Calgary roofer” is in a buying state of mind because they took the effort to search for a roofer while they were thinking that they needed a new roof. If you had a roofing company and your website was ranking on the first page of Google, you could get the phone call to schedule a quote. This is much better than radio, print, and TV advertising which are known as interruption advertising because they are interrupting you when the ad comes on or you receive the flyer. You were probably not thinking of hiring a roofer at that time so you forget about the company that interrupted you and carry on with your day.
There are many companies that will handle your online marketing or SEO for a monthly fee ranging from $200 to $1000 per month. Almost all local businesses that try online marketing get an outstanding ROI on their monthy investment. That is of course provided that they hire a reputable company that can prove that they have already gotten great results for other companies in Calgary.
Never hire a company that is based overseas because they will use techniques that may get you results for a while but will inevitably get your website penalized. Stick with a local company that you can meet face to face.
Here are some questions that you can ask a company that are straight from Google https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35291?hl=en