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May 9, 2008

SEO: The Market and Competitive Advantage – Know Your Enemy!

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It is easy enough to figure out who occupies a dominant search position with a clear competitive advantage for a number of pivotal phrases in your industry. What may not be clear is how they got there or how they maintain that position.

It is important to know your enemy, and it is not always the competition.Those who blindly base their existing marketing campaigns on ghosts from the past are facing a harsh online reality (dwindling sales, a minuscule online presence & mounting tension and frustration).

The mere thought of your competitors dominating prime online real estate unchecked is enough to light a fire under companies still entrenched in traditional marketing channels (Television, Radio, Print).

The time has come for off-line giants and small businesses alike to embrace internet marketing and what intrinsic value it provides as an alternative, or at least hire an SEO company to represent their interests online. Success in one arena does not guarantee results in another.

Colossal corporations that thrived in the past using traditional marketing channels are now seeing many of those wells run dry. Faced with opportunity and the potential to hone their wares online, many are jumping into internet marketing with both feet.

Unfortunately, not all off-line efforts translate into online success stories, as appeasing the new breed of target consumers is not as easy as their predecessors. This can be a challenge for larger enterprise clients, who are more likely to spend more to brand, rather than create content that bridges a gap to engage their target audience.

For example, did you know that over 80% of enterprise clients receive traffic from visitors typing in their brand name as the search modifier. If you have to depend on such a narrow range of keywords, then it is not necessarily how much traffic they receive, it is how much they are missing that should be their concern.

In the present tense, consumers have been conditioned to abandon the hard sell (which was founded on the premise of a captive audience watching television and being bombarded with ads).

Quite simply, the marketing strategies that essentially prevailed in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s lack the appeal to interactive persona’s that comprise the the crux of the web.

Now, as it appears, online marketing leans toward viral marketing, compelling offers, context and contextual references. If I am reading something about automobiles on a blog or website then I wouldn’t mind a targeted link or ad to something more useful (such as an article about a new combustion technology or electronic car hybrid).

The key here is the ability to opt in and follow the ad or link, users deserve choice, it is what makes us all unique. It is also the driving factor that determines why nearly 80% of online traffic that uses search engines prefer organic search results over sponsored ads, because of relevance and the value of collective opinion (link popularity).

They say that which does not kill us makes us stronger. Obviously, that statement was predicated prior to being exposed to tactful competition and savvy search engine marketing. Residing past page 9 in search engines may as well be digital death for any business. Positioning, value from your proposition, enticing design and impeccable content are a prerequisites to create a positive user experience and thrive on the web.

Aside from gathering the facts on your competition, you can either model aspects which have proven their worth or plot your own course to the top 10. In either case, you may need some tools or strategies, which is why we have included links to posts on the subject below.

You may not have control over what your competition does, but one thing that you do have control over is how you manage your online resources to mount a worthy counter attack to acquire a top 10 ranking.

Attaining competitive or lofty search results is a full time responsibility (the more competitive a term, the more likely your result is to get churned). Top 10 results are acquired as a result of providing useful content, solutions or engaging content worth sharing. From there, merely focusing on building enough authority internally for your pages or externally through gaining enough inbound links to your content that you eventually outrank the competition.

Author:

Jeffrey Smith is an active internet marketing optimization strategist, consultant and the founder of Seo Design Solutions Seo Company http://www.seodesignsolutions.com. He has actively been involved in internet marketing since 1995 and brings a wealth of collective experiences and fresh marketing strategies to individuals involved in online business.

One Response to “SEO: The Market and Competitive Advantage – Know Your Enemy!

    avatar Katie says:

    Hi,

    Thank you for such a wonderful tips, i like ti and it will help me boost the SERP of my site

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