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3 Reasons Why Businesses Will Always Need SEO

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Published: December 4, 2014

Famed writer and humorist Mark Twain once wrote that “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Like Twain, SEO was also prematurely pronounced dead yet has continued to confound the critics. While SEO has radically evolved over the years since its first obituary was announced in 2005, it is likely to remain a valuable tool for digital marketers for a good many years to come.

Why is SEO so Susceptible to Death Rumors?
Change is probably the most significant factor behind the SEO death rumor industry. Once upon a time, it was a relatively simple task to harness the power of Google to do your bidding. Stuffing your website with keywords, buying thousands of inbound back links, and marketing identical content all over the web are but a few of the techniques that once ruled the search results pages but have since fallen from favor.

Google realizes that its key to business survival is tied to the quality of the results it returns for search engine users. The more useful and relevant the results, the more likely that users will continue to use Google. The more searchers that use Google, the more revenue that Google stands to make.

Each change that Google has initiated to provide better search results has resulted in the “death” not of SEO in general but of a particular technique that was being exploited to manipulate the results. When the top recommended web pages represent those sites that are the most skilled at bending the rules rather than presenting the most relevant and informative content, it’s bad news for the consumer and bad business for Google.

Why SEO is Likely to be Around for a Long Time

  • Good SEO makes for a better website that delivers a better experience for the user, which in turn helps make Google look better.
  • Good SEO helps search engines understand what a web page is all about, and how it may be useful to searchers.
  • Good SEO delivers quality website traffic with one of the highest ROI rates of any online marketing method.

Why People are Saying SEO is Dead
Many of the people who have declared SEO to be dead have an ulterior motive behind their actions. Here is a look at some of the primary groups who stand to benefit from SEO death rumors:

Web designers. Because web designers are involved at the very beginning of the web marketing process, clients tend to look to them for help with their SEO. The truth of the matter is that web designers frequently have little expertise in current SEO practice, and tend to resist anything that would detract from the design budget.

Pay-per-click (PPC) gurus. Many AdWords gurus are former SEOs who found an easier path to riches by simply convincing clients to open their wallets. The more organic search results that are replaced with paid ads, the more money they stand to make.

Businesses who bought low-value SEO services. Local businesses who bought into a “$99.00 for Page One Google Rankings” scam are understandably quite vocal about proclaiming SEO to be a dead-end scam and a waste of money. Unfortunately, they never learned enough about proper SEO practice to know that good SEO, because of the required skillset and investment of time required, is simply not a cheap proposition.