What a difference a year makes. If the corona virus has taught us anything, it’s that things can change on a dime, and with little to no warning.

Website health has changed as much as the pandemic was declared in recent timers, the world struggled to adapt to the “new normal.” While Quebec found itself in the unenviable position of being the hardest hit province in Canada, Montreal soon emerged as the province’s coronavirus epicenter. The human toll the coronavirus pandemic exacted on the city of Montreal, the province of Quebec, and the entire world has been horrifically immense.

Aside from suffering the ravages of the virus, staying home to flatten the curve and save lives has left most people with severe feelings of isolation.

Proper SEO for Your Montreal-Based Business

Strict COVID measures and a rotation of lockdowns have definitely helped curb the spread of the virus, but have also been the financial ruin of many Montreal companies. With everything from retail to food service being shuttered and consumers staying at home for all but essential services, the pre-pandemic shift from in-person to online shopping has been accelerated.

The once-familiar Montreal landscape littered with small-to-medium-sized businesses and corner mom-and-pop-shops has been decimated, with many stores closing for good after losing revenue to giants like Walmart and Amazon.

Now more than ever, it’s important to have a strong online presence for your business. To survive and compete, local businesses have to be visible to their fellow Montrealers, and within the current climate of online consumerism, that means being the first link found on a Google search. To make sure that’s the case, Montreal businesses need proper SEO.

Be First On the List

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) helps you stand apart from your competitors by ensuring you rank the highest on web searches related to your business and location.

Let’s say, for example, someone was looking for the best burger in the city. They’d type “best burger Montreal,” into their search engine (most likely Google) and come up with a bunch of links to different websites.

Optimizing your website health and content with keywords so Google recognizes it as the most relevant to a user’s search makes sure your site is the first link on that list, increasing the flow of traffic to your business and maximizing your potential sales.

Of course, SEO isn’t just for the restaurant industry, but also helps businesses in all domains from retail to service and beyond. If consumer habits were trending towards e-commerce before the pandemic, it’s only been heightened, as home-bound shoppers have been forced to buy everything from baby clothing to electronics to cleaning services from their desktops and mobiles.

Ignoring SEO just isn’t an option anymore for conscientious medium-to-small-sized business owners. This is especially true for local businesses attempting to compete with large, multinational corporations. Ensuring Montreal businesses have SEO for their websites is a crucial first step towards financial success.

No Need for Ads or Banners

Most online businesses believe that in order to establish a visible online presence, they need to invest in ads. While it’s true that banners and pop-up ads may marginally increase traffic on a site, it may not be affordable for many small-to-medium-sized businesses. After all, paying hundreds and in some cases thousands of dollars a year in advertisement just isn’t possible for businesses struggling to keep their doors open in the middle of a global pandemic.

Besides, website health that’s been crafted with proper SEO pays for itself. A one-time or annual investment in a digital marketing agency’s services to periodically update your SEO is definitely more cost-effective than a monthly or “by-click” cost for a banner or digital advertisement. Also, since Google’s keyword algorithms will stay stable for months, your site is guaranteed to stay at the top of the search list for that time, stretching your hard-earned dollar to the maximum. And in truth, most people tend to ignore banners or ads anyway, when compared to a targeted word search on Google.

Think of it this way- everybody in the city knows iconic locations like Schwartz’s Restaurant or Decarie Hot Dog. Do they know it because they saw an ad for it, or because when they were looking for the best smoked meat sandwich or late-night serving of burgers, fries, and hot dogs, their search brought them there? Those word-of-mouth referrals from friends and family operated like a Google algorithm, directing your search with the keywords “best Montreal smoked meat” or “Montreal 24 hour burger” to those restaurants like an organic and informal “Montreal SEO.”

Optimize Your Online Presence with SEO

In the face of shifting trends towards online shopping that’s been accelerated due to the coronavirus pandemic, small-to-medium-sized businesses in Montreal need to engage in SEO to not just survive but thrive.

Contact us to get your free website audit and consultation today!