Search engine optimization, or SEO, is often proclaimed to be the best marketing tool any business can have in their overall marketing strategy.
It’s easy to see why. With over 90% of online experiences beginning with a search engine, businesses that show up on the front page of Google tend to thrive while those on the second page may flounder.
It may even be vital to determining where you are on the first page because 67% of the clicks happen on the first five results on a page.
But what exactly is it optimizing and how can it affect your business? Is it optimizing the links, the design, or the writing? Or perhaps it optimizes all three.
According to Neil Patel, “search engine optimization is the process of optimizing your online content, so that a search engine likes to show it as a top result for searches of a certain keyword.”
By having a product, blog, or article that shows up on the first page of the search engine, a business will receive more traffic and ostensibly more sales because of that traffic.
However, there are some times when SEO should NOT be used for your business.
You might be wondering how that could be possible if that’s what brings in all of your online traffic. It’s clearly a powerful tool to have in your marketing strategy. So why would you ever want to leave it out of your marketing blueprint?
Here are the top 3 times when you should avoid SEO.
1. You Need to Make Sales Happen Quickly
Optimizing your website takes time. If you are looking to make a quick financial turn, this might not be the marketing strategy for you.
Looking to make a quick profit quickly by ranking quickly and getting a ton of traffic at lightning speed has often led marketers toBlack Hat techniques.
Black hat optimization techniques are used to a get-rich-quick scheme. The content on the websites is created only to rank highly, without considering the people who will be reading it at all.
For example, a website may use keyword stuffing in order to rank highly for a specific keyword by overusing the keyword throughout the website, making it obnoxious and creating a high bounce rate.
Other times, websites will use invisible text, putting the keywords into the background of the website so it is invisible to viewers but still read by the search engines.
Or the website may use link farming, which is a trade of links between one website and another, even if they aren’t related or useful to the audience.
This creates “spammy” pages which can have dire consequences for your business. Though these techniques may guarantee a lot of visitors to your site, they tend to have high bounce rates because the content isn’t useful to them. If there are enough spam reports, Google will look at your backlinks and site and will reduce your ranking.
Most search engine optimization experts agree, that although using these methods might sound appealing in the short term for businesses, they aren’t worth the risk. On average sites that use these techniques only have a 3-6 month lifespan before Google blacklists them
Your Website Content is Off
Content marketing and SEO go hand in hand. In order to rank successfully, a business needs to be constantly providing useful information to their audience that is optimized for the keywords they are looking for.
When the content is off, it doesn’t matter how many times your keywords are present in your content. It will simply create high bounce rates and no sales.
You can tell if your content is off if you:
Don’t Create Useful Content
Useful content is paramount for optimization. Google will trust your content when you are posting consistently high-quality blogs and articles that your audience spends time on.
Don’t Promote Your Content
If you aren’t spending any time promoting your content, you may as well not post it at all. People may be searching for the information your business is providing, but if they don’t have an access point like through social media or other blogs they are already reading, they won’t find it. You should spend at least as much time promoting your content as you spend writing it.
Not Getting Quality Backlinks
Quality content leads to quality backlinks. But if you aren’t asking for them, you won’t get them. However, it isn’t just about getting any website to link back to your site. You need quality links from high authority sites to link back to yours. Google rates your backlinks based on the authority of the site, so if you can only get low authority sites to link to you, your optimization won’t work.
You Don’t Have the Time or Money to Invest
Optimization requires time and money, like all marketing strategies. Keyword research can often be a job in itself. If you don’t know how to do it, it may take several courses for you to learn. If you are willing to hire someone else to do the research and the promotion, be willing to spend the budget. Like all other things, if you want the quality, you must be willing to pay for it.
If you aren’t willing to create quality content that has been optimized for specific and high value keywords, SEO is not the right marketing strategy for your business. However if you have the time, patience and follow the SEO Best practices, then you’ll soon find your website ranking well, and traffic flowing smoothly.