Molly Buccini

Hey there – Molly here with this week’s Content and Coffee. This week, I came across some surprising data: 79% of marketers don’t include SEO in their budgets, and instead, the majority are spending money on paid advertising. That’s from a Hotwire study of 300 senior decision makers.

This doesn’t mean marketers aren’t thinking about SEO – which is good.  If anything, SEO is more important than ever because it’s how everyone looks for products these days.

Just this week, the Pew Research Center published a report showing that a full 85 percent of Americans are online.

Instead, it sounds like a lot of marketers are throwing money at PPC and other ad campaigns that provide instant gratification and results that are easier to measure. I’m not saying PPC isn’t important or effective – it is. But it only provides results as long as you pay for them, and most people try to avoid clicking on ads anyways.

It’s also possible that people aren’t including SEO in their budgets because they think of it as a free strategy. This is true in the sense that you’re not paying for the results, but you do need to invest in the work that fuels them in the first place. Here’s what you should be budgeting for:

  • Content to carry out SEO recommendations: You’ll find that almost every SEO best practice is fueled  by content. Meta descriptions, landing page copy, keyword-optimized titles. They all need original content.
  • The latest advice: If you hire an SEO firm that lauds best practices from the 90s – or even 2000’s at this point – you’re not going to rank in 2015 search results. Find a firm or individual who knows what to do for up-to-date SEO, or educate yourself on the latest techniques.
  • UX: If your site has a terrible user experience, it doesn’t matter how many people you drive to it from paid ads. Make sure it looks modern, is easy to navigate and lets visitors take some kind of action.

So is SEO less important? Definitely not. And marketers should reflect that importance in their marketing budgets. Thanks for watching – and check back every Monday for your weekly Content and Coffee.