As the saying goes, “if you’re not paying for it, you’re the product.”
The great thing about free and easy do-it-yourself websites is that they are free and relatively easy, so long as your only goal is to check a box somewhere that says “get a website.”
The problems is when you need your website to perform in a competitive local search market.
We hear from people regularly who took either the free or cheap overseas labor route to getting a website for nothing or very little. They want to know why it’s not driving business, and they want us to fix it.
They don’t necessarily like it when we recommend doing an entirely new website.
“But I already have a website,” is always the refrain. Unfortunately, when you use a proprietary system for deploying websites, we won’t always be able to get into the back end and make the code-level fixes we need. There may be so many problems that it’s simply not worth it.
“Look, I just want to rank well, okay?” Sure you do. Everyone does in a competitive search space. The difference is that the people who are ranking well on Google searches didn’t go the free or easy route.
The question is what Internet marketing can do for you. If it can be a profit center, then why not invest in something that will pull in that profit?
In the end, this is an industry where if you buy cheap, you buy twice.
Search Engine Optimization is essentially the art of being found on Google. It is an ever-changing series of best practices that the industry of SEO professionals works tirelessly to define. Because nobody knows the details of Google’s search algorithm.
SEO should never be an attempt to scam or game Google’s algorithm just to achieve great search engine rankings and higher traffic. That goes against Google’s overarching mission.
This may be a vague answer, because the term very broadly encompasses everything you can do to try to earn better search engine rankings, more qualified traffic and ultimately convert on your goals.
We get this question a lot, and it’s for a good reason. Nothing is better than achieving premium search engine rankings.
The standard long-view is that quality SEO can take up to two years to achieve. Some clients accomplish better results within 6-12 months. We have had a local firm receive their first phone call driven from their website within two weeks of going live with their new campaign targeting other regional markets.
It just depends.
Factors that influence this include how large your search market is, how stiff the competition is, and how competitive your SEO efforts are.
If you’re looking at signing on with us, we will give you an estimate that, while still conservative, shines more light on how we think your specifics will affect the end result.
It would be a mistake to believe that a local business will have thousands upon thousands of people searching for what you do in a market with a local population of 30,000 people. Even in a city with several million local residents, people’s number one priority is not going to be to fuel you traffic.
The purpose of our campaigns is to identify what people are searching and to position you to compete to earn the business of that potential customer when they do search.
Instead of hoping to see thousands of visitors per month – a focus on quantity – we want our clients to focus on traffic quality.
Perhaps you’re like a client who only sees 100-250 visitors per month on average. 30% of that traffic may be mobile users, where we can track when they click a button from your website to call your office straight from their phone. We use this to measure the intent of a client’s visitors. And when nearly a third of all mobile visitors are calling you from their phones, that’s a website that is doing it’s job.
Another example: we have markets with multiple clients across various industries. No two website does the same in monthly traffic. Some attract multiples of the next highest client in terms of monthly searches.
The more directly connected your business is into high customer demand, the more volume capacity you have. The less in demand your product or services are, the less volume you will get.
We certainly hope you ask this question, because there are many large national brand-name companies who sell websites and other internet marketing services, where you never own a thing.
Let’s say you pay for phone book advertising, and they offer a “free” or otherwise ridiculously cheap website to accompany your overpriced phone book advertising investment.
Your domain name, website, content, etc is not yours. Read the footer of a lot of these phone book websites. It reads “copywrite 2014, PhoneBookCompanyName, LLC.”
Read the contract. It says you’re “leasing” the product, not owning.
Whenever you’re buying website services, just make sure to ask who owns it. And then read the contract to make sure that it verifies their claim, especially if you’re dealing with a salesman.
With us, there are no salesmen. There are no tricks. You own everything, and you pay us to do good work for you. You don’t pay us to “lease” to you what you think is supposed to be your property.
If you’re seeing a trend with the “it depends” answer, we’re not doing it to cause you frustration!
The cost does depend. The cost elements are almost entirely labor when it comes to what we do.
We don’t have salesmen. We don’t farm our labor to cheap overseas shops. Therefore our pricing is not padded with commissions.
We work hard to get our clients results. The harder we have to work, the more we are going to have to charge.
Most clients fit into several different tiers, so we can put together some preliminary info and pricing relatively easy for many people.
Just give us a call and we can discuss further details without any commitments or hassle for you.
Studies show there are 480,283 reasons to choose Horizons Web Marketing over everyone else.
In all seriousness, there are at least 1,582.
You can go to our “Why Us?” page to see what we wrote there, but we’re going to include a bullet list of a few random thoughts that come to mind:
- WE DO NOT USE SALESMEN
- You will only ever talk to a professional who does Internet marketing for a living
- We’re a local business.
- Our clients can call us any time and get answers.
- Our focus on outcomes primes our clients for success.
- We have never failed to achieve premium rankings for our clients.
- Customer service is important to us.
- Our SEO is effective.
- We do not practice dangerous “black hat SEO” methods.
- We make our clients awesome.