Business owners who just can’t seem to bring in enough traffic to their websites may question if search engine optimization (SEO) benefits businesses, and if it even still matters.

But SEO is more necessary than ever and will continue to be important as technology and the landscape for online searches changes.

Why does SEO still matter?

SEO still matters because it enables businesses to prioritize the needs of internet users and online shoppers, two groups of people that see continuous growth. Research shows that today, ninety percent of American adults use the internet and twenty percent of American adults rely on their smartphones alone to use the internet.

SEO improves the way companies can take advantage of this widespread internet usage to increase their business. In 2018, there were approximately 1.8 billion digital buyers globally. As this number is expected to increase, companies should continue working to optimize their websites and internet presence to service the needs of online customers.

Search engines are designed to focus on the content that people enjoy viewing and investigating. For this reason, businesses should still put effort into optimization. Large and small businesses alike can benefit from having their companies become more visible in search engine results. Businesses should use a trustworthy SEO digital marketing company such as LinkGraph to improve their internet visibility, ranking on search engines, and increase their web traffic.

Keywords and links still matter

Implementing keywords is a great SEO practice that can help businesses increase their search engine ranking and internet presence. When internet users are looking for specific products and are in the mood to make purchases, they will conduct very specific internet searches.

According to Google, 64 percent of people performed an internet search for products they wanted to buy in 2016; 71 percent of people consulted the website or mobile application of a retail company or business. Furthermore, 65 percent of people conducted internet searches on their smartphones when they were in the mood to take action and make a purchase.

If companies optimized their websites to be high ranking on search engine results pages and to be quickly accessed by users from a variety of technological devices, they can reap the benefits of users’ purchasing moods.

A company’s search engine ranking can be improved by using keywords. Using focus keywords helps search engines determine if the websites included in search results pages are actually relevant to the searches users make. To make keywords impactful, business owners should choose frequently searched for terms and terms that trend online to be keywords.

This way, content from their company website will show up frequently when users make searches containing those keywords. For the most successful impact, the keywords chosen should be relevant to the industry the company does business in, and should be related to the products and services the company offers.

In addition to keywords, including links on your website — both internal and external and branded anchor links — can benefit a company and improve their online presence. Branded anchor links increase the likelihood of a company showing up in web content and articles over the internet when a user searches for their brand.

Including links to relevant sites as references in web content can also improve a company’s search ranking and reputation. By referencing other credible sites, companies can be viewed more impressively as an authority in their industry because of their ability to recognize other reputable sources of information. 

When sites rank higher on search engine results pages, content becomes more visible and accessible to internet users. In turn, users, especially those who make specific searches that lead to purchases, are more likely to trust the site and treat the company as a credible source in their industry. Once this good impression is made, internet users are more likely to return to websites and become loyal customers, and refer others to the site.