SEO solutions when used effectively can enable business enterprises to create a profitable digital business model. With so much happening in the world of digital business, the internet is probably the only market that comes closest to the scenario of free entry and exit for business enterprises. Unlike marketplaces that are often governed by institutional mechanisms, geographical terrain and economic policies that cap industries making it difficult for business enterprises to enter a market, the internet has democratized the market like never before. It is stating the obvious that business enterprises all have the freedom to enter the online market. It is also obvious then that these enterprises are all on the same footing and thus stand an equal chance of doing robust business. Unfortunately, the latter statement does not always hold true. Search engines and search engine optimization services make all the difference between business enterprises that enter the market and those that sustain themselves on the online marketplace profitably. In this context it makes good sense to suggest that an SEO service can be a game changer for business enterprises. The Utility of SEO in Staying Relevant in Business While search engine optimization has been here for a long time and a lot has been written, discussed and said about it, the crux of the matter remains that many business enterprises are still in search of tangible economic benefits of SEO services. In fact most business enterprises that have embraced SEO already, and those that are yet to do so, are primarily concerned about the efficiency that can be achieved in business in the short run and tend to compromise on the effectiveness of SEO in the long run. Metrics of web analytics, clickthrough rates and other KPI’s (key performance indicators) make for great decision making to achieve business efficiency. But there is a more stable and steady aspect of an SEO solution for business enterprises. This is the aspect of staying relevant in business. Many business leaders may again question the impact of SEO on staying relevant in business but there are empirical evidences that conclusively prove the pitfalls of underestimating the significance of a great SEO service to business. While there are examples galore of robust business enterprises turning into corporate dinosaurs, here we take up the harsh lessons that we get to learn from the tragic closure of multiple retail outlets of Barnes & Noble. Some Insights on the Tragic Shutdown of the Barnes & Nobel Store at Forest Hills There is no arguing with the statement that the book retailer Barnes & Nobel was, is and always will be one of the greatest emblems of the great American intellectual heritage. As a matter of fact the delight that it brought to millions of customers in the U.S and across the world with its digital content was unparalleled. The brand value that Barnes & Nobel commanded was great and there is no denying that customers not only in the U.S but across the world will greatly miss the ecstasy of visiting a Barnes & Nobel bookstore. The closure of the Forest Hills outlet is probably a marker of things to come. Given that the enterprise has diversified into digital publications and is expected to focus on its digital portfolio with renewed vigor in the absence of its brick and mortar platform, it is way too foolish to write the obituary of this legendary brand. Yet there are some harsh lessons to be learned by business enterprises the world over from this latest episode of the click and mortar overpowering the brick and mortar. Cynics will point to the substitution between the marketplace and online business models but an insightful SEO service company will tell you the converse. There is a strong complementary relationship that exists between the two models. Here are the lessons explained in greater detail. The Impossible Trinity of Asymmetric Information, Adverse Selection and Moral Hazards Between the consumer’s behavior at the marketplace and the online market lies the common factor of search. While nobody denies that Barnes & Nobel did not require a brand positioning and announce its arrival to readers, perhaps it could have done better to reach out to the modern tech savvy generation of consumers through the web and smart phones to market their offerings aggressively. Mere knowledge of a legendary brand’s existence does not trigger actions from the consumers. There has to be a digital marketing campaign that revolves around a science of measurement of efforts and results followed by the power of storytelling. The last mile connectivity between a business and its consumers is the toughest to cover. Do consumers pay attention, take interest, show desire and finally take the pains of reaching out to their wallet to purchase your offerings? There is this simple and yet powerful algorithm that defines consumer actions and the worth of digital marketing solutions lies in drawing the consumer closer to purchase with every step along the way of attention, interest, desire and action. SEO enabled marketing campaigns are essentially communication programs that solve the issue of asymmetric information that exists between the buyer and the millions of sellers. A seller does not acquire a customer by just being in existence. It has to acquire a customer by clearing the clutter effect caused by the existence of millions of sellers that exist online. A business enterprise appearing on the first page of a search engine has the competitive edge of announcing information of its offerings to consumers better than its contemporaries. There is a transitivity of choices that defines the actions of a consumer. In the online marketplace with a thousand options to choose from, sliding down the pages of a search engine is equivalent to moving further away from being the most desired preference of the consumer. The consumer on his part may be taken for a ride for his adverse selection of a seller. In other words the lack of visibility on a search engine drives a wedge between the buyer and the seller that is in the best position to fulfill his demands. In a highly technology driven world of internet knowing that the consumer may flip over to the next best alternative he has and yet not making an effort to reach out to him through the use of internet marketing services is a moral hazard on the part of the business enterprise. The Concluding Note on an Internet Marketing Service and the Case of Barnes & Nobel Threats from competitors on the online platform can eat into the revenue, customer base and market share of much more illustrious brands if the digital disconnect persists. Barnes & Nobel stores did not lose out to the agile and speedy models of eCommerce. They lost out to brands that chose the right platform to market their products. Consumers are willing to research on search engines and yet buy from the marketplace provided that they are cuddled and showered with information that they need. Online searches and better search engine results will entice the consumer to reach out to the seller either online or offline. 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