There are more than 3.9 billion internet users, 1.3 billion websites, and 2.1 billion Facebook users in the world and the numbers are still counting?
Are you aware, whatever activity you do on the internet, it might be from browsing websites to signing up for a newsletter, each click, search, and view gets recorded in a parameter which is absolutely beyond analytics of Google or any other webmaster in the marketplace. These statistics clearly shows us the level of effect, digital technology has on both – Marketing methods and User base.
Digital marketing definition ? ?The process where the businesses and potential customers use the internet for value creation and products, as well as interchange them.? It?s a process of advertising through digital channels. Types of channels include ? Social media, mobile applications, website, email, search engines and any other related digital mediums.? Digital marketing can be defined as a subset of Marketing. It utilizes internet and online based technologies like mobile phones, computers, tablets and other digital media platforms in promoting a product or service of a business, through implementation of strategies such as ? content marketing, social media management, search engine optimization (SEO) etc.? The evolution of digital marketing has taken place during the years 1990s and 2000s, completely changing the process of using technology for marketing by various brands and businesses. It enables people in maintaining rich connections with large number of people. marketing is an integrated process that businesses use in value creation for the customers and build solid customer relationships in return for a reciprocation of value from their customers.
Digital technologies had revolutionized the way marketing is being done. Any type of information around the globe, can be accessed through distinctive mediums available online with just a click on compact devices like mobile phones, tablets. The share of people spending time on electronic devices is showing a steady rise each day. For example, Digital marketing strategies plays an essential role in the gaming sector, as companies invest millions in developing their products and marketing them. In 2019, the gaming industry has spent approximately $152.1 billion, illustrating an increase of 9.6 percent year on year. That is a huge amount to invest, as there are about 2.5 billion gamers globally, it is the responsibility of the gaming businesses to convince them in purchasing the products.?
Let us clear this once and for all, traditional marketing approaches like ? print ads, cold calls, billboards, radio, newspaper etc, are tangible in nature and are considered to be one-way communication. Whereas, digital marketing takes place electronically and has the ability to have wide reach of audience through various online channels, enabling two-way communication.? So, when both these mediums are compared in terms of impact ? In traditional marketing, the probability of targeting specific audience groups is comparatively less and there is no instant feedback received. Whereas, in digital marketing, as a business you will be having endless opportunities in promoting your brand and get to constantly communicate with your customers, providing them with a personalized service. This helps in improving the value for the customers in relation to the brand. Speaking of digital strategies impact, each online medium has distinctive marketing techniques for implementing, this will enable you in reaching global audience, identification of untapped targeted groups and obtaining long term & loyal customer base for the brand.? The share of people spending time on electronic devices is showing a steady rise each day. In this stream, you will be implementing strategies, you can predict the result in reaching certain groups of target audience, but you can never define the exact result in financial terms. You can never really tell how many of these people will approach your company, turn into potential customers and generate sales.
What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
SEO can be defined as ? ? Process of increasing online visibility of a business from non- paid organic keyword search, through search engines like Google, Bing etc.? You might have heard of the term SEO a lot of times and might have a basic understanding of what it entails. To have a solid grip on this complex and multifaced concept, you need to understand the different elements and concepts that supports the concept. It?s a process of making a web page easy to find, and easy to categorize online. It is made up of multiple elements and plays major role in generating organic and non-paid user traffic for a brand online. To be on constant radar, when customer searches for some product/service that your brand offers then you need to make sure that, your brand shows up on the top-result of user?s search engine result page (USERP).? This can be achieved by putting right content incorporated with most searched ?keywords? in either your company?s website, blogs, social media, or any other online platforms.?
Before detailing into the concept of SEO marketing method in detail, let?s have a quick glance over the other types of digital marketing techniques apart from SEO, that are commonly used and proven to be effective:
Content marketing: Delivering quality piece of content through online platforms, for the purpose of generating sales and new leads to the business.
Social Media Marketing: Accommodates interaction with potential customers and helps in receiving instant feedback and online user outreach for a product or service.
Affiliate Marketing: Process of a business rewarding the affiliate (Ex: Blogger) in getting customers to their website, by affiliate?s own marketing efforts. It?s more of performance ? based marketing and both the parties benefit in this process.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM): Paid user traffic from search engines like Google AdWords, Bing etc. In here, the business purchases an advertising space to make their ad appear on user?s search engine web results page.
Influencer marketing: Businesses hire people online, with enormous customer reach in promoting the product and service of the company through these influencer?s posts and blogs.
Email Marketing: Businesses send in information through emails to subscribed users list by fostering a relationship with potential customers.?
Mobile Marketing: Providing customers with new updates, coupons, offers etc through mobile app notifications, SMS, MMS etc., which could count as local marketing efforts of the business.
Viral Marketing: Posting a video, photo or GIF that is either trendy, out-of-the box or never-seen-before, by businesses, to garner attention of online base and increase the followers list for the business.
Among all of these, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) marketing is found to be very effective, non-paid, and beneficial technique for any business in conducting their marketing activities online. The reason for all the ?What, Why and How? regarding this topic, will be explained further.
What is the role of SEO in digital marketing?
For suppose, there are two companies ? Company? A and Company B, working under similar industry. Company A doesn?t have any specific name or product images, whereas the other company does. Which one do you think customers go to or are curious to know more about it? Obviously, it would be Company B. Because, when you have something that identifies you from others, then customers are inclined towards learning more about your organization and the products or services you sell. Also, at time some of these customers would start spreading word-of-mouth to other potential targets about their purchase or service experience with your company.?
You might be wondering, why have I discussed a whole paragraph about the importance of having specific name and image for a company. Well, they act as essential ?keywords? in the SEO process of representing and making your business easy to be found online by users. They will be identified by the search algorithms when searched online. If the search keyword and your company keywords (Name, product image, content, etc.) are found to be similar, then it puts your organization?s website or social media platforms on the first page whenever someone searches for your company, product, service or something similar to it. It?s the most powerful form of digital marketing that will help your business for long-term growth. It is the first form of digital marketing technique, that allows your business in passing your message to the target audience without any extra costs. Businesses optimizing SEO to appear on top of the search engine list have relatively more clicks, compared to the ones who ignore the importance of this strategy.? Unlike other channel strategies, this one stands out to be long-term and reliable. Though it is observed to be time consuming, it really pays off, with web marketing specialists ensuring that there are high chances of getting brand name to the top of the list, ahead of your competition. Even social networks have a search engine component as one of their specialities of internal system. Users utilize social media networks for various purposes, such as ? for research of products or services they are interested in, surveying information on certain brands, etc. To drive high organic search results, your business can create social profiles and make regular postings with high-quality content & visuals that allows you to interact with your potential customers. If managed regularly and properly, there are high chances for your business?s social media pages listed among the top result in the search listings.?
Crucial elements of SEO
A Keyword can be defined as a word or concept of great significance.? They are considered crucial for forming an SEO strategy. In todays trend, keywords must be well-researched, cautiously selected, and to be wisely used in your online platforms content, in order for them to be effective. In simple terms, keywords are the words used by potential prospects to find online content, and organizations can use to connect with prospects who are looking for similar content or their products and services. When your company is using keywords as a part of the strategy, then it is important to look for the ones that have search and engagement rates. You can use keywords to work into your website, social media content, or optimize all your titles, URLs, and other on-page SEO elements. . SEO keywords can achieve brand awareness by specifically targeting people looking for what you do. Once you have managed to reach on Page 1 of google search, then it is easier to stay there.? SEO uses various methods, such as ? link building, content marketing, social marketing, etc. to help your business in getting better positioning online.?
Content is considered to be the backbone for online marketing.? It is said to answer your audience?s queries, builds consumer trust and generate new leads. In today?s age, users expect consistent and high-quality content from their favoured companies, as it creates a sense of reliability for the user in the process of building connection with the company. It is considered both essential online marketing channel on its own, and one that supports many other online digital marketing channels present for a brand. It has the power to blend the concepts of social media with more traditional digital marketing mediums like online publications, blogs, etc. in order to encourage engagement with both potential and existing customers. For instance, if a user has some queries regarding a topic, and is looking for more information or solutions regarding specific product or service online, and your blog comes up on search based on the similar keywords search. With your content, you will be building relationship with that specific prospect by providing valuable information.? When the actual time arrives for the prospect to make a purchase, then you would be the first one to strike in their mind. Today?s content come in various forms, such as ? website content, infographics, video, podcasts, social media posts, blogs, etc.?
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
SEM in digital marketing is said to be SEO?s paid sibling. Many of you while searching on Google might have seen this feature of top resulted search queries with a small box ? ?Ad? placed next to them or in the right hand column of the result page. In this marketing technique, we will be placing relevant keyword text, graphic or video ads on their favourite websites, while the users are browsing online. . In here, the business purchases an advertising space to make their ad appear on user?s search engine web results page. It is a form of internet marketing that includes promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results page primarily through paid advertising. Your ads will only be presented to your best prospects and customers, the target demographics to whom the ad will be visible can be selected, and the ads are most likely to be displayed only during the times when your target audience are most likely to be looking online.?
More and more people use mobile devices for browsing online, and half of these searched have local intent. For suppose, if you owned a hotel, then local SEO would make sure that when prospects in your area went looking for the best hotels in town, they will come across your website. Along with utilization of local keywords, other practises like claiming directory listings, creating location-specific pages for your website, and creating pages for your business on Google maps, Google+, and Google My Business.?
This process involves external optimization, that occurs away from your website rather than on it. The main elements used in here is the backlinks building. Because, backlinks to your site from external sites tells the search engines like Google, Bing, etc. that your website is both high-quality and valuable, ultimately building website authority. There are various similar techniques to backlink building and some of them are:
Guest blogging: doing a guest post of posting your brand?s refined content on other person?s blog to gain more leads to your business. When your guest publishing then the content should define your brand and create a memorable impression, as you will be introduced to new audiences and make a lasting impression.
Infographics: Graphical representations of information, or data intended to present information clearly and quickly. These contents are easily sharable online, also they create a sense of customer engagement. If your brand?s infographics stands out to be unique from the designs available online then there are high chances of it being shared across all social media networks, by reaching millions of users worldwide along with your branding.?
Influencer marketing: Company pays an influencer (person with huge following on social media channels) to get out the word. Influencers are expected to promote on all their social channels with viable content. The content is either provided by the company or created by the influencer itself, it all depends on the creative freedom of the company.?
Why is SEO important in this modern business era?
Increased visibility is the simplest answer that could be provided for this question. SEO makes it easier for users in finding your company online when they search for something that is similar to that you have to offer. Fun fact, visibility is directly related to search engine ranking.? The higher your website ranks on a search engine result page (SERP), the more likely users are to see your business and click through to your website. Some of the other reasons that builds foundation for SEO importance are as follows:
It is very important for any users online, that the website they are entering is trustworthy, high in quality, relevant, and has something to offer them in return. Though this concept has been an increasing addition in recent times, it has become more important to web users. Your authority defines, your ranking on the search engine results page, and customers will come to trust your business.?
Better user experience
SEO is critical, as it puts into generating quality content and optimizing your website with on-page SEO, which ultimately improves both usability and visibility, by creating a positive user experience for the customers online. Take for an instance, when you optimize your website according to both desktop and mobile users and increase in the page load speed can reduce your overall bounce rate and encourage more organic traffic into your site.? Almost half of your user base, will expect the pages to load in just 2 seconds, the patience level of users online is very low, and you need to make sure cater to their needs and requirements, and provide them with a valuable user experience.? This process can help in gaining loyal and long-term customers for the business, resulting in word-of-mouth marketing.
Organic Traffic for Website
Its free traffic and is obtained from the appearance of a site in the results of a search that users perform in search engines. Increased organic traffic is one of the main goals of SEO, and traffic is automatically achieved with increase in visibility and website rankings. Nearly 33 percent of the clicks, go to first ranking page, and the first five listings get over 75 percent of all clicks. It helps the website in functioning correctly and can increase the popularity of the site, if your business ought to sell varied products or services then organic traffic helps in producing more visibility and sales for the business.?
Throughout this article, we have discussed the What, Why and How of the concept of SEO. As you can see, this concept is slightly complex in nature, that involves many different techniques in practise. All these practises keep on evolving based on the user behaviour, external changes in market trends and invention of new technologies. The plus point in this strategy is that it generated non-paid traffic and gives a business outmost visibility for long-term. Apart from the above mentioned tips, it also helps in accomplishing goals, such as ? web traffic, conversion rates, brand awareness, customer experience, and so on. Only advice in utilizing strategy for your business would be, to get a solid grasp on the elements, process and tools used while implementing, so that your efforts would be worth it in the end.?