With the economy continuing to struggle, many Americans are seeking help for a variety of things from making ends meet to reducing their debt and new figures show that companies that can provide those services may be best suited using search engine optimization (SEO) to attract these clients.

A study released this week from the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that 88 percent of internet users – 69 percent of all Americans – have turned to the internet over the past 12 months in an attempt to help deal with the recession.

According to the report, the searches that consumers are making range from finding a new job and upgrading their skill set, to looking for bargains and coupons.

But in addition to seeking help, Americans are turning to the web to find news and information about why they – and the country – are in the position they’re in economically.

"They are seeking highly practical advice about how to survive. And they are going online to gain understanding of what went wrong, and what policies might fix the economy," said Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet & American Life Project. "In many cases, the internet is also a pathway to contributing ideas – and rants – about hard times and a source of expert commentary."

With so many people searching for information related to the recession, companies might be best suited creating content related to that news on their websites for better search engine optimization (SEO).

The recent mid-2009 Client-Agency Economic Outlook Report from Reardon Smith Whittaker found that 32 percent of clients said they have increased their spending on search engine marketing so far in 2009 when compared to last year, with 9 percent of that group calling the increase "significant."

Katherine Griwert is Brafton's Marketing Director. She's practiced content marketing, SEO and social marketing for over five years, and her enthusiasm for new media has even deeper roots. Katherine holds a degree in American Studies from Boston College, and her writing is featured in a number of web publications.