Ah, search engine optimization (SEO). If you’re a marketer or business owner, its often either your pride and joy or the bane of your existence, but here’s the thing: it’s really just a tool. A crafty, ever-changing tool. It can feel daunting and often leaves business owners wondering whether it’s worth it, whether they’re using it correctly, and whether SEO can actually help their sales.
These are reasonable doubts, but it’s important to keep in mind that even the best SEO practices take time to show results. SEO can only work as quickly as the Google overlords allow (and, you know, those other search engines and such). With that in mind, here are a few ways a thoughtful SEO strategy can help your sales efforts.
Making sure your sales data is informing your SEO strategy
Anytime you or your marketing agency or team are planning your marketing and sales strategy, be sure to consider things like:
- Your buyer personas
- Your sales cycle and buyer’s journey
- How will these inform your content strategy and SEO?
SEO is a perfect example of why inbound marketing is smarter than traditional marketing methods. It doesn’t matter if your web page or blog article pops up as number one on the search engine results page (SERP) if that material is irrelevant to your ideal customer, product, or service, does it? No.
Now, if you’re taken directly to a page with relevant information and appropriate links to acquire the books you’re looking for, you’re more likely to purchase from that site, right? This makes you a more qualified and more valuable lead. Your customers are no different. Make sure your SEO strategy aligns with what your audience really wants and what you’re prepared to provide.
Pay attention to search intent
So, back to those books. If you’re shopping for books online, do you want a list of prices and places to buy them or do you want a definition of the word “book”? Understanding the significance of search intent when doing your keyword research and developing your marketing strategy is vital to making sure your SEO strategy is connected to your sales efforts.
If you’re selling a product or service, be sure to tailor your SEO strategy to help you connect with folks who are searching to purchase a solution to their inquiry. If you’re trying to educate your audience, align your SEO strategy with keywords that show intent to find a definition, explanation, or direction regarding your area of expertise.
Attracting quality over quantity.
As with most marketing and sales strategies, the key lies in understanding your ideal buyer and crafting an SEO strategy that appropriately targets the audience you’re after. When your SEO strategy helps you connect with your ideal buyer, you’re more likely to attract qualified leads.
For example, if you’re searching for the “best books for small business owners” and you click on an article that ranks well only to learn that it’s actually a webpage about the best dog groomers stuffed with keywords related to your search, you’re not likely to stick around, are you? No, you’re going to bounce to the next relevant page. Now, the designers behind that page get to count it as a page view, but you weren’t very valuable for their dog grooming business, were you?
Two qualified leads who convert down the line are worth more than twenty random visitors. The right SEO strategy can help you do more than generate leads. It can help you connect with qualified leads. Most people don’t assume that SEO is so closely connected with their sales processes, but it’s a pretty crafty way to generate leads. For more creative ways to attract and engage with leads online, check out our ebook: