SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, has become one of the most critical digital marketing strategies. But, as a small business owner, you might wonder if it’s worth the investment. In this post, we’ll explore the importance of SEO for small businesses and whether it’s a viable marketing strategy for you. By the end of this post, you should be able to answer the question: Is SEO Worth It For Small Businesses?

What is SEO

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a method of enhancing your website to increase its visibility for relevant searches. The more visible your site is in search engine results, the more likely you are to attract potential and existing customers to your business.

SEO involves numerous strategies, actions, and best practices, all aimed at improving your website’s position in search engines. It’s the process of optimising your online content so that a search engine likes to show it as a top result for searches of a certain keyword.

What Are the Different Types of SEO?


There are three main types of SEO: On-page, Off-page, and Technical SEO.

writing - on-page SEO

On-page SEO

This involves anything you control on your own website to improve rankings. This includes keyword presence, header text, site speed, URL structure, and more.

link building off-page seo

Off-page SEO

This involves anything done on other websites that may influence your rankings. Generally, this only refers to links. It’s about building a network of high-quality, relevant backlinks that point back to your site.

technical seo, website speed

Technical SEO

This relates to non-content elements of your website, such as site speed, mobile-friendliness, data structure, and security. It involves the process of optimising your website for the crawling and indexing phase, helping search engine spiders crawl and index your site more effectively.

How Can SEO Help My Small Business

SEO can help your small business in numerous ways. Firstly, it improves your website’s visibility in search engines, which increases your chances of attracting potential customers. It also helps establish your brand’s credibility – if you rank highly in search results, customers are more likely to trust your business.

Furthermore, SEO is cost-effective compared to other forms of digital marketing like pay-per-click advertising. While PPC may drive more revenue, and social media may be more essential for your image, your organic SEO, in many ways, remains a bedrock of your online presence.

Does SEO Work?

In short, yes, SEO does work. Your site’s SEO strategy can be a significant factor in the increase (or decrease) of your website traffic and business sales. It can take some time to see the results, but with the right strategy in place, SEO will lead to increased visibility, conversions, and revenue.

However, it’s important to note that SEO is not a quick fix. It’s a long-term strategy that, when done correctly, can significantly benefit your business.

Can I Do SEO Myself?

SEO is certainly something that you can learn and implement yourself. There’s a wealth of resources online that can help you understand the basics. However, SEO is time-consuming, and as a small business owner, your time might be better spent on other tasks.

Additionally, SEO is complex and ever-changing. It requires a deep understanding of search engine algorithms, which are continuously updated. Making a mistake in your SEO strategy can result in penalties that harm your site’s rankings. Therefore, while it’s possible to do SEO yourself, it may be beneficial to enlist the help of an expert.

There are things you can easily implement yourself if you are familiar with your website’s CMS. Below are a list of things varying in complexity that can be executed if you have the know-how.

  1. Keyword Research: Understand what your potential customers are searching for online and incorporate those keywords naturally into your website’s content.
  2. Clear Page Titles and Headings: Make sure all your pages have unique and clear titles and headings that include your keywords.
  3. Meta Descriptions: Write informative and compelling meta descriptions for each page. This is the short text that appears under your page title in search results.
  4. Alt Text for Images: Add alt text to all your images. This helps search engines understand what the image is about, and it’s also useful for visually impaired users.
  5. Optimise Images: Ensure your images are not too large as this can slow down your page loading speed. Use image compression tools if necessary.
  6. User-Friendly URLs: Create short, readable URLs that include your target keyword.
  7. Improve Site Speed: Page loading speed is a ranking factor, so make sure your site loads quickly.
  8. Mobile Optimisation: Ensure your website is mobile-friendly as more and more people are using their mobile devices to access the web.
  9. Quality Content: Regularly publish high-quality, original content that is useful to your audience. This could be blog posts, articles, videos, or infographics.
  10. Internal Linking: Include links to other pages on your website within your content. This helps search engines understand the structure of your site and can improve its ranking.
  11. Regularly Update Content: Keep your content up-to-date and relevant. Regularly updating your content can improve its ranking in search results.
  12. Create a Sitemap: This helps search engines understand the structure of your site and crawl it more efficiently.
  13. Use Schema Markup: This is a type of microdata that helps search engines better understand your content and enhance your search results.
  14. Secure Your Site with HTTPS: Google prefers sites that are secure. Make sure your website uses HTTPS, which encrypts data for safe transfer across the internet.

How Expensive Is SEO?

The cost of SEO services can vary widely depending on the nature of your business, the level of competition, and your objectives. On average, small businesses in the UK might spend anywhere from £250 to £2500 per month on SEO services.

However, it’s important to view SEO as an investment rather than a cost. While it may require an upfront financial commitment, the long-term benefits, such as increased visibility and conversions, can result in a substantial return on investment.

seo agency costs

How Long Will It Take to See the Rewards of SEO?

SEO is a long-term strategy, and it can take time to see results. On average, it can take four to six months to see noticeable changes in your site’s ranking. However, these are just averages, and the actual time could be shorter or longer depending on various factors.

It’s important to remember that while you might start to see results in a few months, these are likely to be incremental. SEO growth is typically exponential rather than linear, so the biggest rewards are often further down the line.

Is It Worth Employing an SEO Agency as a Small Business?

The decision to hire an SEO agency largely depends on your business’s specific needs and resources. If you have the time and capacity to learn about SEO and implement strategies, you may choose to handle it in-house.

However, employing an SEO agency can bring numerous benefits. An agency will have expert knowledge and resources that you might not have access to. They can implement advanced strategies and avoid potential pitfalls, ultimately speeding up the SEO process and delivering better results.

So, Is SEO Worth It For Small Businesses?

In conclusion, SEO is a valuable tool for small businesses. It can improve your website’s visibility, attract more potential customers, and increase your sales. While it does require an investment of time and money, the potential for a high return on investment makes it a worthwhile strategy.

However, SEO is complex and ever-changing, and it may be beneficial to hire an SEO agency to manage it for you. Ultimately, the decision will depend on your business’s unique needs and resources. Regardless of the path you choose, with the right strategy in place, SEO can significantly benefit your small business.