Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Business

What Kind Of Business Does SEO Work Best For?

nichebusinessAs the world moves online, search engine optimization seems like the obvious way forward. What better way to find new customers than to engage with people who are actively looking for your services? In theory – absolutely. In practice, some business are better suited to SEO than others. In this article, I will outline some characteristics which might be worth considering before hiring a search engine optimization consultant.

  • Niche Businesses: From cat beds to kosher washing powder, we have some weird and wonderful things on our wish lists. Thankfully, this type of niche business can use the Internet to engage directly with small pockets of customers spread across the globe. By using search engine optimization to rise to the top of the Google results, businesses can engage with kindred spirits who are actively looking for their specialized services. This avoids inefficient advertising to broad audiences who are not likely to be interested in the product e.g.: billboards or print adverts. However, there are also some potential pitfalls which businesses must strive to avoid before forking out for an SEO campaign. For example, businesses must be sure that there is enough of an online demand for their obscure offerings. Google’s Adwords Keyword tool is a great way to gage the size of an online market and judge whether it is big enough to be worth investing in.
  • Young Markets: According to a report by Webvisible and Nielsen, over 80% of people have searched for a local business online before making a purchase offline. This figure is likely to be even higher for under 25’s, making a search engine visibility a valuable asset for businesses who are targeting young people. However, for product or services which are primarily aimed at older markets e.g.: hearing aids or elderly social centres, search engine optimization may not be the most efficient way to engage with target markets.
  • High Value Products and Services: Search engine optimization always includes an element of risk. As nobody beyond the Google labs can say with any certainty what makes the rankings tick, SEO can take several months to take effect. Once a website has secured high rankings, there are no guarantees that they will be able to maintain these positions and fend off unexpected setbacks such as SEO surges from competitors. This is why SEO is particularly well suited to high value products and services such as private medical practitioners or bespoke jewellers, where an SEO campaign can pay for itself with only a few conversions.
  • Dynamic Brands: Although SEO is often marketed as a mysterious and slightly shady bag of tricks, it is in essence a form of marketing. This means that the businesses who can really build a strong portfolio of high quality back links will be those who can convert existing professional relationships into SEO juice. A dynamic brand with a strong network of relationships, a buzzing events calendar and a genuine stream of fresh news will necessarily do better than a brand which relies on ‘SEO tricks’ to pull their weight and drag them up the rankings.

So to summarize, I think SEO works best for niche businesses who are sure to have significant online demand for their products and services, businesses targeting young, computer-savvy markets, businesses selling high value products and businesses who already do a lot of exciting marketing. Best of luck!

Written By

I am a London based SEO consultant who specializes in affordable Search Engine Optimization services for small businesses. I started my career in journalism before moving into online marketing. From there, I worked at a leading SEO agency in Soho, London with some of the UK's largest brands. Since then, I have since then set up a small consultancy called SEO Consultant London, which helps small businesses in South West London to secure top ranks in search engine results.

20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Josh

    March 25, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    I am confused, do you only believe that SEO will work for niche websites? I believe this is completely false. The essence of SEO is in everything from the optimization of a website to the links that you build to it. Even big retailers can benefit from SEO, if you do not believe it look at the failed attempts by many of the companies that have been buying and selling links in the news. If it didn’t work for big sites then they would have no need to do this.

    • Amanda Lemon

      March 26, 2011 at 3:31 pm

      Hi Josh,

      Of course SEO is of great value to any business trying to connect with their consumer base. Most big companies with a presence on the marketplace also have a presence online and run intensive search engine optimization campaigns to compete for valuable top ranks. It is of course well worth competing for huge traffic driving terms if a company has a big online marketing budget to invest in this.

      However, in this article, I am referring to smaller companies who are thinking of hiring a freelance seo consultant to build an online presence. When I write about certain types of companies being more suited to SEO than others, I mean that some small businesses can make quick wins with SEO whilst others may struggle more to get a return on investment.

      I hope this answers your question 🙂

    • Amanda Lemon

      March 26, 2011 at 3:34 pm

      Of course SEO is of great value to any business trying to connect with their consumer base. Most big companies with a presence on the marketplace also have a presence online and run intensive search engine optimization campaigns to compete for valuable top ranks. It is of course well worth competing for huge traffic driving terms if a company has a big online marketing budget to invest in this.

      However, in this article, I am referring to smaller companies who are thinking of hiring a freelance seo consultant to build an online presence. When I write about certain types of companies being more suited to SEO than others, I mean that some small businesses can make quick wins with SEO whilst others may struggle more to get a return on investment.

      I hope this answers your question 🙂

  2. Maggie

    March 25, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    SEO can really be used for any type of business, if you know how to capitalize on it correctly. Everyone uses the internet and search engines for means of business and finding business today. But there is definitely a difference between good SEO and the spambots that flood a lot of blogs. Would you say though, that businesses that offer a service and not a product tend to do better with SEO?

    • Amanda Lemon

      March 26, 2011 at 3:41 pm

      Hi Maggie,

      Thanks for your message. I think you are right – SEO can indeed be used for any type of business and it can be made to work in any niche however mainstream or obscure.

      My article is aimed at businesses who are considering launching a small scale campaign. For people in this position, I think it is worth considering the points which I outline in the article, to consider how hard it might be to secure a return on a relatively small investment and whether SEO is the most efficient way for businesses to spend their marketing budgets.

      I hope this answers your question 🙂

      • Amanda Lemon

        March 26, 2011 at 3:47 pm

        To answer your question about whether products or services are better suited to SEO, I don’t think it makes a difference. What counts is the quality, creativity and rigour of an SEO campaign rather than the nature of the product or service that it is marketing.

  3. fanatsic sams

    March 26, 2011 at 2:53 am

    For the promotion of any type of business, SEO is playing role of back bone.

    • Amanda Lemon

      March 26, 2011 at 3:49 pm

      Hi fantastic sams,

      Thanks for your message. I think SEO can indeed be very effective for promoting any type of business. However, for businesses who are considering a more small scale investment and SEO campaign, I think some businesses will find it easier than others to secure a return on investment.

  4. Umair

    March 26, 2011 at 3:44 am

    This is a very interesting read. Apparently, I was under impression that SEO is for everyone (as shown by the comments before me) but you post has opened new dimensions to the thought process.

  5. Amanda Lemon

    March 26, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    Hi Umair,

    Thanks for your message and I am pleased that you found the post useful.

    SEO can be made to work for anyone but some markets take a considerable investment of time and money. For business owners who are considering a small or medium sized scale campaign (with a freelancer rather than with an agency), I think that my points can help them to evaluate if SEO is the best way for them to reach their potential customer based and secure a return on their investment.

  6. Admin

    March 27, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    Very interesting article Amanda. I would take if from a slightly different dimension and ask – what kind of businesses does SEO not work best for and what are the alternative should a medium to large scale business want to have an online business? It would also be interesting to find out what percentage of small businesses are responsible for spamming – I’m sure the figure will be quite significant considering that a lot of these freelance seo consultants that many are hiring are only interested in link building any which way.

    • Bishakha

      February 26, 2012 at 8:32 am

      Thanks for ur reply.

  7. Steve at digital first aid

    March 30, 2011 at 4:33 am

    It is all down to retail unit cost. Can you imagine selling someting with a retail unit price of 30pence or 50cents? That is a lot of visitors to your website and a lot of conversions to meet the costs of a SEO strategy. Not to say there is no place for seo within such companies but it must be a carefully placed to take advantage of such niche markets.

    • Admin

      April 14, 2011 at 5:47 pm

      I wouldn’t put it all down to the retail unit cost. How about value? I can imagine selling something with a retail unit price of 10 pence without making any sale at all due to its relative lack of quality.

  8. Samantha

    March 30, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    Knowing your Young Markets is a must especially now that the trend of the use of technology is fast changing. Potential customers look for reviews before deciding to buy anything so their money won’t be putted into waste.

  9. Jack

    June 11, 2011 at 1:53 am

    What do you recommend for products that do not fall under those categories? Pay-Per-Click ad campaigns? Thanks for any input!

  10. Jared

    June 30, 2011 at 1:25 am

    I personally think that niche businesses and young ones do very well with SEO. Brick and mortar companies have an added advantage with local results as well.

    eCommerce seems to have the best potential for growth with a complex cms. Since they already have brand recognition, they naturally pull in links.

  11. Dan

    December 2, 2011 at 4:08 am

    Any online business that relies on visitors for revenue can benefit from SEO services. For a small business just starting out, a full blown campaign may not be possible. Keyword competitiveness plays a big role in how much time needs to go into it so businesses that want to compete in these fields will typically pay more to rank well. The best thing to do is contact a few SEO companies and see how they can help you and your unique situation.

  12. Stephen

    December 31, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Amanda-great post and for those who are unsure whether or not SEO can work for their business, this post is certainly helpful. I think that most SEO’s will agree that SEO can work for ALL businesses, and a well executed SEO campaign has the potential to increase a company’s bottom line as long as the right keywords are being targeted. However, I will say that the success of an SEO campaign completely depends on the tactics and strategies involved in that SEO campaign. There are many, many ways to build back links and drive organic traffic via SEO, but not all links are created equally. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Lisa Chaves

    February 23, 2013 at 8:51 am

    If you have invested in researching for the best niche or keywords you want to venture online. Then pretty sure you will succeed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

You May Also Like

Digital Marketing

Blog posts are informative, engaging, and provide high value. Businesses can use blogs to connect with customers and meet their needs. Additionally, blogs act...

Business

How can a startup business improve it efficiency and increase ROI? All businesses should be running at their most efficient, but many business owners...

Finance

Well, business in all forms is not at all easy to run, whether it’s a small sized firm or a large scale enterprise. Especially,...

Digital Marketing

If you want to make your business grow, you need to master digital tools. The world is relying on technology, social media, and digital...