There was news not too long ago about how SEO-related spend would soar to $80 billion by 2020 in the USA alone. As more companies realize the benefits of optimizing their online presence across multiple channels and reaching customers in spend mode, the amount they are willing to dedicate to perfecting this process increases.

When you take all of that into account, it’s no wonder that a recent major study conducted by Gartner proved what we all had been expecting in our industry: budgets are going to rise in marketing. The truth is that we’ve never lived in a time where marketing was more affordable, powerful, and valuable. What used to take hundreds of thousands of dollars, months on end, and lots of physical infrastructure to deal with can now be done relatively affordably and with light-speed communication. Here’s more on the study.

The study

Gartner, a major industry research firm, conducted a survey of CMOs (Chief Marketing Officers) across the industry, asking them questions pertaining to their marketing budgets for the coming year. Marketing budgets had already increased to 12% of total revenue in 2016, and expectations are that it will continue in the same direction. 57% of the respondents indicated that they expected to spend more on marketing in the coming year than they had the on the previous one, as they continue to ramp up efforts across media channels on the web.

Some more perspective

A recent report on digital marketing spend showed that companies in the USA alone would spend $65 billion on SEO. The total world-wide spend number is even higher: $613 billion on digital marketing. To put this in perspective: that number is 3 times what it was just 8 years ago. What’s even more eye-opening is that two-thirds of that spend can be attributed to smaller businesses, a testament to the fact that local SEO and SEO in general are gaining popularity among smaller operations that have realized how big the ROI can be.

The importance of SEO for businesses

Business big and small are continuing to invest in search engine optimization because they’ve realized that optimizing their website for users and search engines, finding the right keywords to rank for, maintaining a blog, and many of the dozens of other factors that affect a company’s visibility online are extremely important to success. What’s more is that the competition is doing it. The majority of customers look online to find the products and services that they want, and if you aren’t there, then someone else will get the business.