Whether you are a small business or a large business your objective is often the same: to drive people to your website.
But, investing time and money, particularly when you are a small business can be a factor that limits your opportunity to increase web traffic.
So, should you be investing your resources into SEO or Social Media? We look at the positive sides of both and then weigh in with our verdict at the end.
SOCIAL MEDIA: THE PLUS SIDE
- Once upon a time social media were platforms to communicate with our loved ones, now they have evolved to be so much more. If we look at Facebook specifically it has become a news and entertainment channel, it provides you with the ability to private message individuals and businesses with Messenger and it’s now also rivaling business review sites with Services. Services provide users with the opportunity to search for local businesses; those with the highest ratings and reviews list first. Traditionally people visit a search engine like Google to find a local and reputable organisation, but with additions like this people are finding less and less of a reason to leave Facebook.
- According to research from Informate Mobile Intelligence the average person in the US checks their social media accounts 17 times a day, this is about once every waking hour, whoa! Further to this, the research indicated that 4.7 hours per day is being spent on mobile phones on average every single day.This obsession with ‘mobile’ is further driving people to spend more time perusing social media, which in turn provides business owners with more opportunity to get eye balls on their content.
- Sites like Facebook allow you to review organisations in a public way so that all of your friends can see it in real time. Peer recommendations assist in building businesses credibility. As social media users or potential clients, we are more likely to use a service or product if someone we know and respect has endorsed it by leaving a positive public review.
- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and now even Instagram provide fantastic options for advertising to a highly targeted audience, often at a fraction of the cost of what other methods of advertising can incur As social media continues to grow in popularity the spaces become more populated making it hard to cut through the clutter. But, you don’t have to invest in a huge budget to gain results. If you do your research, understand your objectives and use the right form of advertising for your needs you will achieve results. But, be prepared to pay.
See more: Sponsored Posts vs. Paid Ads
SEO: THE PLUS SIDE
- Search engines have great tools to help you identify what key terms people are using to search around specific content ideas. This enables you to create particular content that targets those results as well as to forecast content that may be generated from those key terms. Try using the Google Adwords Keyword Planner
- If you are creating good quality content of value it will keep on giving. Search engines index the pages on your website, this means the content will continue to show up in search over time.For example, the number one blog post on the Social Concepts website is an opinion piece titled, ‘Has Social Media Made Us Anti Social?’ It was written in mid 2014, but each month it continues to be the highest performing blog – that’s a pretty good result for something I wrote in a few hours whilst on holidays!
- Getting inbound links to your website assists with reputation building and is one of Google’s determining factors when ranking your page.Inbound links signal that your site has quality content. One of the best ways to go about doing this is to provide guest blog posts to others. Not only can this help your SEO, but it can also assist you to build relationships with others in your industry or even complimentary industries.The best part of all? Depending on what kind of business you are in, it may be worth connecting with others on the other side of you world so you can potentially connect with a completely new audience.
While in an ideal world it would be nice to invest in both SEO and Social Media, if you had to pick one our vote is with social media.
Social Media has moved in leaps and bounds in regards to driving web traffic and this will continue to increase. Particularly with increasing mobile usage and Facebook additions like Facebook Services that aim to keep people within the platform.
SEO does have a role to play, but a lot of it is out of your control and it can be a long and time-consuming process that generally needs a strong level of expertise in order to achieve decent measurable results.
Do you invest in both SEO and Social Media, or have you chosen to focus on one rather than the other?
Guest Blogger: Jessica Humphreys
Jessica is the Digital Communications Director at Social Concepts. She has a keen interest in educating SMEs and using social media to create long term relationships. Jessica drinks copious amounts of herbal tea and likes to unwind from a busy work life with yoga.