Small Business SEO
Welcome to SEO your Website. My name is John Shearer. I created this website to share what I have learned about search engine optimization, I have been blessed with great mentors and friends who have helped me with SEO and business in general, this is my way of giving back,. I am not a professional SEO and I am not for hire. I am a small business owner and I share the same concerns any business owner has how do I find new customers how should I spend my marketing dollars. I own a local painting company in Seattle, I have been in business for 20 years, my entire adult life, I love my work and I plan to be growing my business for the next 20 years. My company (Shearer Painting) is ranked first or second for the seven most important keywords in my market. In 2011 we received 650 requests for painting estimates from our web presence, accounting for 70% of our total bid requests..the other leads coming from referrals and repeat customers. A nearly 400% increase in bid requests from the previous year, in this down economy. It is an understatement when I say a high organic ranking in internet search has changed my business.
Here is my brief history with SEO:
As I told you, I own a painting company in Seattle Washington and I watched a steady decline in calls from tradition print advertising, most prominently the yellow pages, starting in 2005. This is of course is because people looking for services, including painting contractors, began using internet search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo in lieu of traditional search techniques. The yellow pages are not dead, but internet search has so effected the reach and utility of the old printed yellow pages that the City of Seattle became the first city in the United States to create a Phone Book Opt out program in May of 2011.
I realized in 2009 that being visible on the web would become increasingly important to small business. I first advertised with Google adwords; This was my internet strategy. But I learned in short order that
first, it is expensive..I spent nearly $20,000 in 2009 ($7.50 per click in the summer)
second, as soon as you stop paying for adwords, no one searching for your service can find you (unless you have a highly ranked site)
third, people really don’t trust the paid ads vs. the organic results.
In my opinion, SEO is 70% creating content that teaches or entertains and 30% technical stuff and promotion. Anything worthwhile is difficult. Its like loosing weight, learning a foreign language, or hitting a golf ball 300 yards..it takes persistent, determination, and time.
I hope this website serves to teach and inspire you to do your own SEO or better prepare you to hire a professional. Where possible I will share the resources I learned from and the techniques I used.