Will SEO carry the same weight in 2023?
It’s hard to say, given the ever-evolving nature of web technology.
But one thing is certain: As long as websites care about their search engine visibility and ranking, SEO will continue to be a significant consideration for many businesses.
The stats below are very enlightening in that regard.
68% of online experiences start at search engines, and 75% of users never look past the first page of search results. (BightEdge)
Google search, maps, and images account for 96.96% of global traffic. (Spark Toro)
Google controls more than 91.94% of all global organic search traffic. (Stat Counter)
70% of global desktop search engine traffic comes from Google. (Net Market Share)
It’s followed by Baidu (13%), with Bing coming third (12%).
It’s estimated that the #1 organic position on Google’s search engine results page (SERP) receives 34.2% of the clicks. (Sistrix)
As you can see, SEO remains an incredibly valuable tool for online success.
What Are the Pros of SEO?
SEO has one obvious but weighty upside: It can help you increase your online visibility and website traffic. Google’s algorithm is designed to prioritize websites with helpful, relevant, and accurate content for the user.
Not only will SEO help you achieve a better ranking, but it will also provide potential customers with what they’re looking for and thus increase your chances of getting their business.
Other advantages of SEO include:
#1. You’ll Generate More Website Traffic
On average, Google processes over 99,000 searches per second. That’s about 8.5 billion daily searches and over 3.1 trillion searches annually. That’s a lot of potential organic traffic for your website if you optimize your site correctly.
Google’s organic search position 1 hogs more than 28.5% of clicks from the SERP (Search Engine Results Page).
The second position receives about 15.7%, while the third capture 11%. The click-through rate continues to decline after that, meaning if your website is not in the top three spots, you’re missing out on more than half of organic traffic.
|Google Search Organic Position||Click Through Rate|
|Search Position 1||28.5%|
|Search Position 2||15.7%|
|Search Position 3||11%|
|Search Position 4||8%|
|Search Position 5||7.2%|
|Search Position 6||5.1%|
|Search Position 7||4%|
|Search Position 8||3.2%|
|Search Position 9||2.8%|
|Search Position 10||2.5%|
The struggle to rank higher is real, but with smart SEO strategies and patience, you can get your website in the top search results.
#2. Ranking on First Page Will Increase Your Brand Visibility and Credibility
SEO is one of the most effective ways to gain visibility in search engines.
Plus, search engine users are more likely to trust and click on a website that appears at the top of their search results page.
That’s why SEO should be an integral part of your marketing plan.
It increases your brand visibility and credibility, directing traffic and potentially more sales or leads to your website.
Having a top spot on Google SERP also instills trust in potential customers, making them more likely to click on your link and visit your website.
#3. You’ll Start Closing More Sales
SEO doesn’t just drive more organic traffic to your website. It drives already qualified leads that are more likely to convert into customers.
That’s because SEO helps you target specific keywords and phrases related to your product or service, making it easier for potential customers to find your website when they search for the specific product or service you offer.
Targeting these keywords helps you attract more qualified leads to your website, thus increasing your chances of closing more sales.
#4. SEO Helps you Become an Authority Figure and Market Leader in Your Space
Customers prefer buying from businesses they trust. They want to buy from an expert who knows what they are talking about and has a good reputation in their industry.
SEO allows you to sell your expertise, not just your product.
It allows you to guide customers on their journey, building trust and credibility along the way.
That way, they can make informed decisions when buying your product or service, making them more likely to choose you over the competition.
And when customers trust you, they are more likely to become repeat customers and tell their friends about your business.
The higher you rank on search engines, the closer you’re to dominating your market through the internet.
#5. SEO Allows you to Create a Resourceful Website
You don’t just want to sell your products and services and end the relationship there. Your customers will appreciate it even more if you can guide them on their buying decisions, walk them through a product, or provide them with valuable information about their purchase.
With SEO, you can create helpful content and resources to help customers make informed decisions about buying from you.
You can also include images and videos to enhance the content and make it easier for visitors to comprehend.
You want to visualize your customers from every possible angle and provide whatever help you can to make their purchase a good one.
SEO enables you to create an information-rich website that answers customers’ concerns, pre-emptively addresses their doubts, and helps them make informed decisions.
#6. You’ll Attract Potential Clients from All Around the World
SEO makes your website (leave alone business) discoverable. When potential customers search for terms related to your company or product, they should be able to find you.
Think about all the possible keywords potential customers might use to search for your product or service.
You want to optimize your website for these keywords and probably entice potential customers enough to make a purchase.
You’ll be helping them solve a problem and expose your business to the world.
You never know who’s waiting for a solution you’re offering — SEO might just make them find you.
#7. You’ll Generate a High Return on Investment
SEO isn’t an expense — it’s an investment.
With the right strategies in place, you’ll generate a good return on your investment.
It may seem like a lot of work to optimize your website and create content that meets the needs of your target audience, but it rewards in spades.
And the results are long-lasting. Unlike Google ads or Facebook ads, SEO continues to work for you long after the initial campaign is over.
You’ll see a long-term ROI on your website for years to come.
#8. Avoid Being a Nuisance to Others
Ads are annoying. No one likes seeing a pop-up ad or being bombarded with messages from a brand they don’t know.
SEO allows you to attract visitors who are interested in what your website offers so you don’t annoy anyone.
Instead of pushing content to people who don’t want it, you can focus on creating content that speaks directly to those who need your product or service.
SEO allows you to build relationships with potential customers without being intrusive.
In other words: no more annoying ads!
#9. You’ll be the Last in the Market
That one article you’re writing today will cover you for years.
Once you’ve put effort into optimizing your website, it will take a while for another player to overtake you in the rankings.
It allows you to stay ahead of the competition and enjoy the fruits of your labour for a long time.
SEO isn’t just about getting to the top of search engine rankings — it’s also about staying there and leveraging the position you’ve earned.
With SEO, you should be able to dominate the market for years.
#10. You’ll Be Ready for Any Changes in the Industry
Search engines like Google keep updating their algorithms to ensure they display the best results to their users.
Websites suffer if they don’t keep up with these changes.
With SEO, you can ensure your website is always up-to-date and follows the best organic search engine optimization practices.
That means you’ll be ready no matter what search engine changes occur in the industry.
You won’t have to worry about reworking your entire website or losing out on traffic.
The Cons of SEO
But SEO isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. There are a few drawbacks, including:
#1. SEO Takes Time
Unlike Google Ads or Facebook Ads, SEO isn’t a quick fix.
Optimizing your website and producing content that will rank in the search engine results pages (SERPs) takes time and effort.
You won’t see results overnight — it could take weeks or even months before you start noticing an increase in traffic.
So, how long does it take before you start seeing SEO results?
The definitive answer is — it depends.
It could take weeks or months to see an increase in organic traffic.
It all depends on the level of competition and how much time you put into SEO efforts.
And even then, there’s no guarantee that your website will rank first in the SERPs.
Here are a few tips to help speed up the process:
- Research long-form content topics
- Link to other high-quality websites
- Monitor your progress and make changes as needed
- Focus on user experience
How long your website takes to rank depends on factors such as:
- How big is your budget
- What tactics do you use
- How new is your website
- How competitive is your industry
SEO takes much time, research, and effort to get results. But with the right strategies in place, you’ll generate a good return on your investment.
According to Ahrefs, the average website takes four months to rank in the top 10 search results.
But with a little bit of patience and some hard work, you’ll be able to get your website ranked higher.
#2. SEO is Constantly Changing
Search engines are constantly updating their algorithms, which means what works today may not work tomorrow.
The only way to stay ahead is to keep up with all the changes and adjust your SEO strategies accordingly.
Otherwise, you’ll be stuck in the dust – or worse, penalized for using outdated tactics.
SEO isn’t a one-time effort; it’s an ongoing process that takes time and commitment to get the results you want.
You need to be prepared to make changes regularly if you want your website to stay ahead of the competition.
#3. SEO is Competitive
The competition in SEO is fierce — you’re competing with the rest of the web to get to the top of search engine rankings.
And with so many websites vying for attention, it can be challenging to stand out from the crowd.
Optimizing your website and producing content that will rank in the SERPs takes time and effort. Unfortunately, there’s no secret formula or shortcut to success.
The only way to get ahead is to outwork your competitors and stay on top of the latest trends in SEO.
It’s not an easy task, but with the right strategies in place, you should be able to make a name for yourself in organic search.
#4. Results Are Not Guaranteed
You can only do the work and hope for the best — there’s no guarantee your website will rank in the SERPs.
Search engine algorithms are constantly changing, and you never know what strategy will work best until you try it.
So, even if you put a lot of effort into SEO, there’s still no guarantee that you’ll see results.
Think of everything as a court case: you can only do your best to present evidence that supports your case, but it’s up to the judge (or search engine) to decide if your website is worthy of ranking.
Plus, your competitors (or other websites) may be doing a better job at optimizing their websites than you, so they could easily outrank you in the SERPs.
Any SEO agency that promises to deliver the following is lying to you:
- We’ll increase your website’s search engine rankings in no time.
- We guarantee you’ll be in the top ten Google search results within a few weeks.
Bottom line: SEO results are never guaranteed, so it pays to be prepared for any outcome.
#5. SEO Requires Constant Vigilance
SEO is an ongoing process that requires constant vigilance.
You must keep track of your website’s performance and adjust your strategies accordingly.
That includes monitoring search engine algorithms, analyzing data, researching keywords, creating content, and optimizing for mobile devices (just to name a few).
In other words, you can’t rely on yourself to stay up-to-date with all the changes.
You also need to keep an eye out for other websites and ensure they’re not outranking you in the SERPs.
If you’re not careful, your website could slide down the rankings or get penalized by search engines.
#6. As Tempting As Blackhat SEO Is, It Could Get You Penalized
It’s tempting to use Blackhat SEO tactics to get quick results. But they can be risky, as they violate search engine rules and could get your website penalized.
Penalties can range from reduced visibility in the SERPs to outright banning of your website.
Not only that, but Blackhat SEO doesn’t provide long-term success, so you’ll have to go through all the work again – with no guarantee of ever recovering your rankings.
So, it’s best to stay away from Blackhat SEO and focus on producing high-quality content that will help you get organic traffic and better search engine rankings.
At the end of the day, SEO is a long-term commitment that requires dedication, hard work, and constant vigilance.
#7. SEO Requires a Heavy Investment at the Beginning
SEO isn’t a one-time job — it requires an ongoing investment of time and money.
You need to invest in the right resources (like SEO tools, content creation, link building, etc.) and hire professionals if required.
So, while you could get quick results by investing heavily initially, you’ll still need to dedicate time and money over the long term to maintain your rankings.
Also, remember that SEO isn’t a shortcut to success — Google rewards websites that provide high-quality content and user experience, so you’ll need to focus on producing great content if you want to stay at the top.
How to Get the Value of Your Google First Page Results
You can calculate the value of your Google first page ranking result. And it’s not just about how much traffic it brings to your website.
Moz shared a way to calculate the value of the first-page ranking result, considering its estimated clicks, click-through rate, purchase intent score, and more.
Some businesses calculate the ROI by assigning a value to each new website visitor they get. Others estimate the value of the organic traffic by comparing it to their PPC campaigns.
You can also just assume your page ranking and estimate the value of the leads you get from it.
At Media One, we use a mix of all these methods to calculate the ROI of our SEO campaigns.
#1. Look at Its SERP Position and Estimate the CTR
First, you must establish the particular webpage’s position in Google’s SERP.
The higher the position, the higher its click-through rate (CTR).
So, find out if the page is in position #1, position 5, 10, and so on.
#2. Establish The Number of Searches that Particular Keyword Phrase Receives in a Month
The next step is establishing the estimated number of keyword searches that particular phrases receive in a month.
You can use the Google Keyword Planner Tool or any other keyword research tool to find this information.
If you have a Google Ads account, you can find this information in the ‘keyword planner’ section. Just click on “Tools and Settings” and go to “Keyword Planner.”
Next, click on “Get Search Volume and Forecasts.”
Google will return keyword data on parameters such as monthly keyword searches, three months’ change, year-over-year change, competition level, and cost per click (CPC).
Google even allows you to change the date range, data source (Google or its search partners), and language.
Once you have the keyword data, you can calculate the estimated clicks for that particular web page.
#3. Calculate Estimated Organic Clicks and Potential Revenue
That is where it gets a little trickier.
To calculate the estimated organic clicks and potential revenue, you’ll first have to get the following information:
- The CTR for the first page positions
- The CPC (Cost per click)
- Your rank position
- The potential search volume
- Revenue Per Click (RPC)
Once you have all this information, plug it into the formula below to determine the estimated clicks and potential revenue.
For example, say a particular keyword receives 500,000 searches a month and has a CPC of $1.
If you’re in position two and the CTR for the second position is 15.7%, then your estimated organic clicks would be 78,500.
With that information, follow this formula to calculate the potential revenue:
You can calculate your Revenue Per Click (RPC) by dividing your total estimated revenue by the total estimated number of clicks.
So, if your estimated organic clicks are 78,500 and your total estimated revenue is $100,000, then the RPC would be 1.27 ($100,000/78,500).
Now, if you climb through the ranks and reach the first position, your CTR will increase to 28.5%, and your estimated organic clicks will be 142,500.
Multiply the 142,500 by the 1.27 RPC, and you will get a potential revenue of $180,250.
So, as we can see from this example, SEO has the potential to increase your website’s organic clicks by almost 80% and double your website’s estimated revenue.
And that’s why SEO can be a great investment for your business.
Achieving good organic rankings takes time and effort, but the rewards are worth it.
Nevertheless, before you start investing in any SEO campaign, be sure to do some research on the pros and cons of SEO — in 2023 and beyond.
Some Final Worlds
SEO is a game of patience and persistence.
You won’t always see immediate results, but if you take the time to build a good SEO strategy and commit to it long-term, the rewards will come.
Sure, some risks are involved, but with proper planning and calculated decisions, you can mitigate these risks while extracting maximum value from your SEO efforts.
The bottom line is: if you’re serious about driving organic traffic to your website in 2023 and beyond, SEO should be a fundamental part of your strategy.