Investment in search engine optimisation (SEO) for retailers is the key recommendation to store operators across the UK from a leading business research group.

Analysts from Gartner, a global information technology research and advisory firm, warn retail companies that they are throwing money down the drain if they fail to focus on attracting new visitors and would-be customers to their websites.

A respected annual SEO consultancy report just published reveals about 55 per cent of companies are planning to invest more business budget into natural search engine optimisation this coming year.

A little less than half of firms also plan to increase their pay-per-click (PPC) budgets. Both natural and paid search are seen as important areas where companies can achieve return on investment that is measurable during the current credit crunch-led financial downturn.

SEO for banks, financial services - and dentists

SEO for banks, insurance companies and accountants, as well as search engine optimisation for other financial and professional services firms, can significantly boost revenue. Even cosmetic dentistry has benefited from skillful application of SEO techniques. One dentist has reported revenue growth of about £700,000.