Here at eLocal Listing we focus on small businesses in America, getting them found on the major search engines (the ones that rhyme with Poodle and BaaHoo) and we do a pretty gosh darned good job at getting thousands of our customers front page search visibility…. we typically score in the 80-90% region. Although many small businesses are in fact local offices of very large businesses (think of franchises and your local Starbucks) we have tended to work with the owned and operated rather than the small branches of huge companies. The obvious reason for that is that the large companies have huge budgets and phalanxes of very smart advertising folk who have this SEO search visibility stuff down tight.
So I was intrigued to read this post from the folks at Conductor.com which indicates that the big guys are really struggling at this. What they did was track the keywords the Fortune 500 are buying as ads on the search engines then they tested to see how the same companies rank in organic search results for the same terms. The theory is that if a company is prepared to pay for the top spot in search through the sponsored ads they should also be doing the spade work to get found in the organic unpaid part of search. Survey says …..they aren’t. Only 20% of the keywords tested also ranked well in unpaid search. Amazingly nearly half of the fortune 500 had low or non-existent visibility in natural search for their most advertised keywords.
Somebody get me Coke and GE on the phone!
You can read the full story here