Net Neutrality: The Impact on Inbound Marketing and SEO

 In Content, Marketing

Net Neutrality: The Impact on Inbound Marketing and SEO

Inbound marketing and SEO serve as the tools that build small businesses online. That is the most obvious statement in the history of the Mouse and Man blog. But the next sentence may be the scariest statement you’ll read today.

Inbound marketing and SEO might disintegrate.

For this, the threat to net neutrality remains chiefly responsible. As it stands, companies like us ensure entrepreneurs have the resources to communicate with audiences and achieve maximum online visibility.

And that’s because—for now, at least—we have a free and open Internet that works the same for your Uncle Sal and Queen Elizabeth alike. Net neutrality enables you to go anywhere and do anything.

Google your heart out, watch cat videos, rant on social media, and listen to nearly any radio station in the world. You have the freedom to do that. Your customer base has the freedom to do that, as well.

But for how long?

Net Neutrality Explained

If your existing customer base found your website through organic search, that happened because the Internet is a free and open arena. The tenets of net neutrality state unequivocally that users can find the information they want without corporate bigwigs and lawmakers deciding who sees what content.

Net neutrality means no pay-to-play censorship. And that’s meaningful for small business owners, digital marketers, and even major corporations.

Imagine this: your prospect plugs in relevant search terms to find your website. They are a motivated prospect who wants to learn more about your service offerings prior to making a financial commitment.

And then, when they click the link to your website, they see something like this:


This can really happen.

In other words, you can’t find an audience unless they pay to see your marketing content. It’s exactly like cable companies treat HBO—you have to pay to play.

How the Death of Net Neutrality Impacts Your Business

SEO means that you have the content and technical precision that heightens your online visibility. Inbound marketing means that you have the information that helps your constituents navigate complicated issues and make buying decisions.

These pillars remain competitive in terms of visibility but free for public consumption. Your website and marketing content needs to remain completely free of charge. With a stranglehold placed on your ability to connect with target audiences, the death of net neutrality will stunt your growth.

It’s a phrase echoes through the halls of congress and in corporate boardrooms.

Pay to Play

Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council, and Todd Park, the nation’s chief technology officer said it best. “Absent net neutrality, the Internet could turn into a high-priced private toll road that would be inaccessible to the next generation of visionaries.”

At Mouse and Man, we work with that next generation of visionaries. And we’re keenly aware that our clients require a vehicle to deliver information. It just so happens that the Internet is the platform that most small business entrepreneurs require.

The absence of net neutrality means a lack of competition. And that’s because, in a pay-to-play arena, money means power.

—Amazon has the capital to make sure that no one finds an independent bookseller online.

—Yankee Candle has the cash to pay Internet gatekeepers, and make independent candle makers invisible.

—Verizon, AT&T, and Comcast can make sure you see only what you’re willing to pay for. And that goes for your customers, too.

Will your customers pay to view inbound marketing?

Chances are, no.

And that’s why net neutrality is so important to you, the business owner. Without, SEO becomes moot and inbound marketing vanishes inside the digital ether.

Learn more here.


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