While reading One Degree’s recap of the recent Search Engine Strategies Conference in Toronto one thing really struck me – “78% of Canadians will turn to search engines to research a product or service.” This means nearly 80% of Canadians are doing their consumer research online. This is good news for Canadian businesses, confirming the Internet is a vital place for you to reach potential customers. Although the Internet landscape is very crowded, Canadians have an advantage and opportunity with search engine marketing and optimization, as this conference showed that most Canadian businesses are still are not utilizing these strategies to increase customers and market share.
Search engine optimization is a vast topic, and it is difficult to know where to start. Luckily there are many sites online ready to provide you with the types of information that will help you create an SEO strategy and capitalize on search engine marketing. Here are a few of our favourites at Webnames.ca:
SEOmoz is a great starting point for an SEO newbie and is still one of the best resources for the more experienced user. Read their blog and free articles or become a premium member to access more content.
Search Engine Land
If you only have time to read one site, this might be it. The site breaks down into categories like Google Land, Yahoo Land, Marketing Land, so that you can find the most targeted information.
Search Engine Watch
Great articles, great insight, billed as “the source for search engine marketing” for a reason.
Google Adwords Blog and Learning Center
The learning center is very helpful and if you have a question not in the resource bank, you can email Adwords Support directly (they usually respond in less than a day).
Search Engine Roundtable
Search through multiple forums to find answers to practically anything you’d want to know about search engines and search engine marketing.
One Degree had many other interesting tidbits in their wrap up:
- Martin Byrne from Yahoo! Search Marketing made the interesting observation that companies who have top ranking organic search results convey a “perception of [brand] leadership.”
- 82% of Canadian businesses with Websites engage in online advertising, but only 36% of them use search engine advertising or search engine optimization.
- In general, Canada is a less competitive search engine advertising market, which means there is still a great opportunity for advertisers.
- When it comes to having an impact on an online purchase, running search engine advertising alone can have a 20% lift, running online display advertising alone can have a 20% lift, but combining the two can have an 83% lift!
So whether you start with a Google Adwords campaign targeted locally or in Canada, or you decide to jump in and create your own longterm search marketing strategy, hopefully these resources will provide you some additional insight and help you learn more about SEO.