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Can Your Business Click Online? July 21, 2007

Posted by seonotes in SEM.

This has been a most ignored question among business owners who are overly excited in launching their marketing strategy, or to those who got brainwashed by some marketing guy who wants the money out of people’s pocket. Read these 2 truths:

Truth no.1: The Internet is fast becoming the most popular and widely-used medium for advertising/marketing.

Truth no.2 (and of greater importance): Not every kind of business can make it online.

So before shelling out the money, it is imperative that you check if the kind of industry that you’re in is something that people search for online. There are a lot of establishments or businesses that have significant niches in the offline market. Take for example the motor inns and motels. There is a good market for that catering to travelers going by the highway in need of easy, along the road accommodation. But if you’re the motor inn owner, is it reasonable to go online? Are your potential guests search for you first over the Internet to make a booking? Do they even ask Google what’s the “nearest motel at Highway 66?”, for example. No, they don’t. So, can your business click online? Before diving into the Internet Marketing world:

1. Think of your customers. Do you think they’ll first go online to find you? Do they hang around the Internet?

2. Competitor Check. Know who your competitors are in your area and see if they have an online presence. A website isn’t the sole indication of this. See if they rank, or even appear in the search engine listings when you type in keywords, search terms related to their business. If you do not see them, check out the sites that appear in the search pages. Do these businesses target the same market as yours? Are these direct competitors? Are they as large/small as you are? If you answered No, then it’s not a good idea to be online. These websites could be owned by 1) webmasters of directories related to your industry, 2) the big players that are probably of a different, larger niche.

2. Brand Name Popularity. This is easier if you wanted more accurate results by launching a simple, time-framed PPC Adwords campaign. Use your brand as search keyword then check out the number of impressions it generates. Ad impressions reflect the number of times your brand name has been searched, or used as search term. If having an ad campaign is costly on your part, do keyword research using the most trusted keyword research/suggestion tools. Check on the monthly searches for your brand name. You now get a clue if people are searching for you online.

3. Industry Popularity. This is where keyword research also comes in handy. Apart from your brand name, check on the relevant search terms (or even your competitors’ brand name/key phrases), and the amount of traffic or monthly searches it generates from search engines. This data will tell you if your kind of industry suits the online market.

Now, I agree to Rand that yes it still is an Internet < Real World ratio we have here. Quality traffic is normally driven by offline campaigns because this traffic comprise of the people who have actually gained interest in your brand/product/service prior to checking you out in the world wide web. Yes offline advertising can lead your customers to check on your website, but the most important thing to ask is if going online will be of service for them.

Determine if launching a marketing campaign will add value to your business by finding out if your customers are really looking for you on the web, and if it is of service for them.

That’s the only way to know if you can click online.



1. Seasonality in Search « SEOnotes - January 28, 2008

[…] has something to do with the traffic a website receives from the search engines, regardless if your business will or will not click online. Search behavior varies in certain seasons, in certain industries. When talking of seasonality of […]

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