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The sheer number of searches conducted each day would boggle the mind if we were not so busy looking for product information, reviews, research, jobs, entertainment, services, long-lost family and friends, and the multitude of other topics that engage our interest. Despite the clear and demonstrable value of search rankings, many marketers vastly undervalue organic search, says a report from Slingshot SEO. Why – and how does this affect their marketing efforts?
The Slingshot research focused on more than 23 multi-step conversions across 30 different domains; that is, a customer went through several steps before purchasing or opting in. The data was analysed with a “flat multi-touch attribution model.” What this means, quite simply, is that each step in the process was weighted equally. Too often, though, marketers only look at that “last click.” For instance, if a consumer started at point A, organic search, went to referral, to social media, to email, to direct sales, then direct sales were given “credit” for that conversion.
That, in fact, was not the case at all. It was not direct sales or interaction that initiated the sale. Marketers overwhelmingly devalue organic search, paid advertisements, and referrals and put too much emphasis on direct approaches. Slingshot reports that a consumer takes an average of 2.79 interactions before conversion; those steps are crucial.
Slingshot SEO, using a methodology advocated by Microsoft, concluded that organic search is actually worth 77.25% more than previously thought, while non-branded organic (containing keywords that do not include any variation of your brand name) “should have been worth as much as 81.59% more.”
Undervaluing organic search is a dangerous game because the overwhelming majority of consumers make their first contact with a business via search engine. It is essential that you maintain high visibility and take steps to rank well. By not emphasising organic search enough, businesses are not building the chain that will lead to conversions.

Posted by Vadym Gurevych, Business Development Director at Bullseye Media

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