Online Marketing Budgets Just Keep Growing—Is Yours?

While advertising budgets worldwide will experience steady if unspectacular growth for the next several years, a new study suggests that online advertising will see double-digit growth every year through 2015. The increase in online advertising will be even stronger in the United States, and will continue to make up a bigger and bigger portion of total advertising budgets.

What does this mean for you as a small or local business owner? It means that your competitors have probably already realized the importance of the online advertising market, and if they haven’t yet, they soon will.

If you’re not committing a significant part of your advertising budget to online marketing, you’re going to be in trouble. You might already be.

Search engine result pages (SERPs) are the life blood of your business’ online presence. Without a good SERP position, no one is going to find your business.  Face it, the Yellow Pages might as well be the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The fact of the matter is there are only 10 spots available on the first page of search results for Google, Bing, and Yahoo (which combined account for almost 97% of search engine use). If you’re not on that first page, you’ll find yourself at a huge disadvantage—because some of your competitors will be there, and they’ll be taking your business.

Since there are only so many slots for “Albuquerque plumber” or “Chicago Accident Lawyer” on the first page of the SERPs, you need to do everything you can with your online advertising budget to ensure you get one of them. Online advertising doesn’t mean buying banner ads. Sure, that can drive a little business your way, but it won’t help with your SERP rankings. What it really means is seeking professional SEO services.

With a comprehensive SEO strategy, including social media management (Google is increasingly using social signals such as Facebook “likes” as part of their ranking algorithms), you’ll see a world of difference. Because customers will see you.