6 Reasons Small Businesses Should NEVER Do Their Own SEO
As small business owners, we have to wear a variety of hats: marketer, accountant, secretary, boss, employer, technician, web designer, lead generator, and subject matter expert to name a few. Each of those roles has its own set of learning curves, challenges, pitfalls, and rewards. The newest role in the information age, however, is search engine optimization (SEO) specialist. You’ve heard about it and think it’s great when it happens, so you spend countless hours studying it and throwing more money into it only to find out it’s a lot more difficult than it sounds to implement. I would like to give you six reasons why small businesses should never do their own SEO. They should, instead, seriously consider outsourcing their SEO tasks to people who understand the nuances and complexities of the profession.
Steep Learning Curve
As you may already know, there is a serious learning curve to SEO. At first it all seemed so simple. And it was. But just after you learned a little bit, the search engines (namely the Big G) changed algorithms on you and made the task more difficult. SEO specialists study the search engines, and when an update occurs, they discover what changed and how to re-engineer what they’ve been doing to accommodate. Because you’re not immersed in the SEO world, it may take weeks or months for you to discover the changes. Adapting to those changes may take even more time, because after all, you have a small business to run.
If you make mistakes in the SEO game, it can cost you business and reputation. Throwing 10,000 links at a website may seem attractive initially, but it is an expensive mistake (though it may only cost $10-50 to buy the links). You will be penalized for it in very short order. Don’t ask me how I know this.
More Involved Than Building Links
One of the biggest misnomers in the SEO world is that you just need to create quality links to point to your site in order for the search engines to recognize your site and to build a great web presence. There is truth to it but that’s only a bit of the equation. There’s onsite SEO, offsite SEO, keyword density, generic keywords, overoptimization (onsite), and fresh onsite content to consider. Links are definitely good but they’re not the be all end all that marketers have made them out to be.
Expensive to Learn
If you consider your time a valuable commodity, then you’ll recognize and appreciate the SEO specialist who can increase your web presence for a fraction of the cost for you to do the same. Your time is valuable. You can’t make more of it. You should be spending it wisely and providing quality (and better) products and reconnecting with your customer base.
SEO Gurus and Consultants Have Burned You in the Past
Most reading this have been burned by so-called “SEO experts.” They promised you the sun moon and stars, but only produced a crescent-shaped moon on an outhouse. And you spent thousands of dollar each month to find that out. This is perhaps the worst reason for you to try to tackle SEO. Instead, you could find modestly priced services that produce good results, which leads to the sixth reason…
Optimization is a process, not a product
SEO done right can produce great results; SEO done wrong can be disastrous. Consistency is key in the SEO world. Throwing a hundred links at your site every now and again is more of a hit or miss strategy. Of course if you want to truly dominate your market, that can happen too but there are certain risks associated with that, primarily finding an SEO partner who won’t burn you. However, stable SEO specialists can provide that consistency, and it’s completely hands off for you. Remember the adage: “slow and steady wins the race.”
As a business owner you may love the game we SEO geeks play. You love the “what changed” challenges, the “I didn’t know that was illegal” issues, and the endless search engine algorithm updates. You may even love searching for the best and most expensive SEO automation tools to play with (and there are plenty of them). Then again, you have a business to run. How much is your time really worth?