This week I was searching the Internet for a suitable locksmith, and Googled such phrases as ‘locksmiths in Manchester’. SEO competition for this phrase, and related phrases, was quiet fierce and some of the sites that ranked near the top of Google had obviously spent a fair amount of money on their search engine optimisation campaigns.
However, after searching through three or four websites, I decided instead to visit yell.com and look for a local locksmith there. Why I hear you ask, especially when, as our business is SEO, we should at least use websites that rank within Google’s natural SERPs and support businesses that engage in search engine optimisation.
Simply put, the websites that ranked near the top of Google were all poorly designed and laid out. They had spent an awful lot of time and effort on getting to the top of Google, but hadn’t bothered too much with their actual website’s design. They didn’t look professional, and as such didn’t inspire enough confidence to win the business.
SEO is important – you need to ensure that your website ranks in Google for phrases relating to your industry, particularly geographical phrases where potential clients will be searching for businesses offering your services in their local area, but it’s not the be all and end all. If your website lets you down, is hard to navigate, looks unprofessional or doesn’t convey the quality of your service, there’s little point ranking for any phrases in the first place.
Your SEO budget will simply be wasted.
Rankings aren’t everything; they’re a means to an end. Without successful conversions from your website, there’s no point ranking at all.