SEO is the process of optimising your website for search engines (for the UK, that means prioritising Google) to make sure your content and products are found by users searching for related search terms. It affects the visibility of your website or web page in the search engine results page (SERP) which is the list of organic search results underneath the paid-for ad spots.
The goal of SEO is simple: make it easy for people to find and interact with your brand and product, without you having to pay for direct inbound leads.
Google uses its proprietary algorithms (computer programs) to determine what pages to list and rank for a given search query. SEO is a strategy and set of techniques that un-pick what the algorithms are after and thus enable your website to rank higher for relevant key terms and capture existing search intent that will turn into sales.
Unlike paid advertising, it's a slower process with a latent payoff - but you keep what you've built. Stop spending on ads and poof they're gone. Investment in SEO at the start of your businesses journey will help you build digital real estate for your company that will yield larger traffic and revenue numbers further down the road. Get the foundations right and let it build over time so it's there when you need it... like when a pandemic hits, retail disappears over night and everyone is doing all their shopping online.
Unfortunately, a lot of companies don’t understand or don’t realise the importance of SEO as part of their broader digital marketing strategy. Or that it needs attention early to build up to something significant by the time other avenues of growth are levelling-out. Instead, what we often see is DIY SEO without direction or proper research and analysis, which then doesn't render results and, in the end, SEO is chucked on the compost heap - labelled (unfairly) as a, "waste of time".
We understand that Start-ups generally operate on lean budgets, but that doesn’t mean you should take shortcuts with your approach to SEO and organic search. Google is one of the best ways for customers to find new products or services, meaning SEO is key part of your customers' journeys. You can learn more about this by checking out our article D2C SEO for Decision Makers.