For those of you who instinctively think that because you sell widgets, you need to throw everything you’ve got at getting to number one in Google for “widgets”, here’s another good article to make you realise that you can spend your time more productively. How to make money with SEO on Seth’s Blog says that you’re wasting your time, for two reasons: you’ll probably never get to number one, and anyway, do you really want all that traffic from such a general enquiry?
Unfortunately, search engine consultants can make more money out of you trying to get you to number one in Google for “widgets”, which they (rightly) warn you will take a lot of time and investment. They’re not going to get much work getting you to number one for your company name. So they may not always give you the best advice here.
To take a related marketing exercise, if you create a magazine advert for your latest product range, you go to the effort of describing the product in detail, so you get enquiries from people who are specifically interested. You don’t say “we make widgets, ask us about them, we might have something to interest you, possibly” (well, I can think of a few ways of wasting your advertising budget that don’t do any more than that, but you get the point). It’s much the same with search engines: you want to own specific product names, classes and applications. So the argument seems to be: create the search term, “own” the search results for that term, and you’ll see some real business.