Let me start by asking you a question: What’s the number-one business killer on the internet? The answer is obvious, but many people miss it. The answer is: not being found on the first page of Google.
This is fairly common advice, but it’s a bit misleading. Later in the article this author cites a comScore study that showed Google held 47.5 percent of the search market in February 2007 while Yahoo had just 28.1 percent. Then he justifies spending all of your time trying to please Google on these statistics. If you think about it, that’s not really good advice.
Suppose that there were three major automobile makers in the world. We’ll call them Ford, General Motors, and DaimlerChrysler. Now assume that Ford sells 47.5 percent of all cars in the world and General Motors sells 28.1 percent. DaimlerChrysler picks most of the remaining market with smaller auto manufacturers nibbling a little on the tail end. Let’s suppose that you own a business making quarter panels that fit only on one type of vehicle, which is manufactured by DaimlerChrysler. Would it do you any good to market your business to Ford? Of course not.
It helps to know your market. Google’s users are more Internet savvy than users of Yahoo and MSN services. In other words, Googlers tend to be people who have been online for awhile and know how to navigate the Web. The also tend to be more affluent. Yahoo and MSN users tend to be small business owners and people who play around or “dabble” on the Internet. They may play Yahoo Games and make an occasional search or read MSN News and browse an hour or two a night. Yahoo and MSN users may search less than Googlers, who likely make several searchers a day. Which market is more important to you?
If you have a business whose primary market is made up of small business owners or consumers who do business locally by searching online and drive over to purchase an item in person rather than buy online then you might be better suited for targeted yourself through Yahoo and MSN. That doesn’t mean you can’t learn SEO techniques that get you ranked in all the search engines. You should. But you don’t have to fret if you end up on page 1 of Yahoo and don’t rank at Google. Of course, if you are on page 1 of Yahoo and you’re not getting any business then you should look at a few other things, such as:
- Is your website content written to sell?
- Are you targeting the right audience?
- Do your keywords draw the best traffic?
- Maybe Google will work better for you
Bottom line: You need to get to know your audience.