A survey I saw last month suggested that most small and medium sized businesses understand they should be doing SEO, but only a third have a strategy in place and are making efforts. As this will include many small businesses that are pleased with themselves just to have a website, I think this is quite a high figure, not a low one. For serious B2B companies, I’m sure both figures are much higher though.
It looks like most are undertaking their SEO efforts in-house, an approach I’d endorse. As I’ve written here many times before, good external SEO consultants can be extremely valuable, but SEO is not something that can be done externally on a budget. If you can’t afford to pay someone to spend a serious amount of time working on your site, don’t pay anyone at all. Learn what needs to be done and you can do thousands of pounds’ worth of SEO work a month yourself, in a few hours set aside each week.
Top places to start are ensuring you have a speedy, mobile-friendly website; identifying and targeting top searches; creating authoritative content; page optimization (titles and tags); and of course link-building. The latter is the one that you can do so much better than a consultant, because you know the organisations that could and should be linking to you. Most opportunities present themselves in everyday work conversation, and that’s why the job needs to be undertaken by someone who’s working in sales and marketing all day.