By getting organic traffic from online search engines like Google and Bing, you can direct potential customers right to your website. When your target audience searches for keywords relevant to your brand, you want to ensure they find their way to your site rather than one of your competitors.
How are you supposed to make this happen, though?
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about using SEO for lead generation.
People are rightfully skeptical when sharing their contact information with a company online– they need to know that your brand is trustworthy and credible while also offering them something of value. Through several SEO tactics, you can help bring potential customers to your site and show them that your company stands apart from the crowd.
To capture more high-quality leads, you’ll want to be more visible in search results and gain more organic traffic to your site. Two primary ways you can create this outcome are by improving your site speed and user experience while building a site structure that Google’s algorithms can easily understand.
To the first point, sites typically win a higher search result ranking when they both work quickly and provide a good user experience. Google uses metrics to determine how usable your site is and how fast it is and even provides a tool for you to test the usability and speed of your site.
In terms of your site structure, you will want to build a structure with defined primary categories and subcategories so Google can easily crawl and interpret your site.
When creating categories, you’ll want to think about what the main topics are on your site. You’ll want these to be the umbrella subjects your site breaks down into. From there, you can get more specific with the subcategories within each category.
This is a win-win strategy, as it helps both Google and your visitors make sense of your site.
Once you have dealt with these two initial aspects of site optimization, you can use your site structure to begin building a content strategy.
The key to building a content strategy that works is determining what questions your target audience is asking and creating a plan for answering all of those questions. In order to create the most effective content strategy, you’ll want to do thorough market and target customer research, come up with a list of the most relevant keywords, and design a series of topic clusters.
Regarding researching your target customer, some common techniques involve looking at your current customers, creating detailed buyer personas, and reaching out to customers to participate in interviews and focus groups.
Keyword research involves brainstorming the most relevant topic areas you’ll want to cover, identifying frequently asked questions about these subjects, and finding the right keywords that are related to these questions. There are a lot of tools out there for this purpose, one of the most popular of which is Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer function.
Once you’ve found keywords that pertain to the common questions you’ve identified, you can pick out the keywords that are most relevant as well as delve into the search intent of the person asking the question (i.e., whether they are trying to get to a specific site, looking to buy something, or searching for information.)
When creating a topic cluster map, the general premise is that you will want to have pillar pages, sub-pillar pages, and specific content. This way, you create a natural and organized structure that is simple and easy for both search engines and humans to navigate.
When you have a map in place for how you’re going to approach creating content, it’s time to create a realistic schedule for posting new content. Consistency should be a priority when it comes to content creation– it’s generally agreed that it’s better to put out one blog article a week, for example, than to post twenty in one day and get sidetracked for several months.
If you already have some articles on your site, you can also start optimizing them to help increase your visibility on search engine results.
At the point when you are ready to write new content, it’s typically worth investing in high-quality content rather than simply trying to find the cheapest option available.
According to the State of Content Marketing 2022 Global Report from SemRush, one of the things that successful content marketing strategies shared was a focus on “improving the quality of content.” People are becoming increasingly savvy when searching for information and purchasing things online, so quality is essential when producing content that provides long-term value for your customers.
While keywords are important in content, it’s more important that the information you provide is genuinely useful and valuable to your audience. This is one of the key ways that you can establish authority in your niche.
If lead generation is your goal, you’ll also need to think about off-page SEO strategies such as generating backlinks. Backlinks are hyperlinks to your site that appear on other sites. The goal here is to have your site linked to by high-ranking, authoritative websites, as Google and other search engines see this as a sign that your website is legitimate, trustworthy, and full of useful information for visitors.
You’ll want to consider passive and active backlinks when creating your backlink strategy. Passive backlinks are when people share your articles after organically discovering them. Active backlinks occur when you request backlinks from other sites.
If all goes according to plan, you should start to see an uptick in site traffic when you engage in the SEO tactics above. Now that you have people coming to your site, you need to find ways to capture their information so you can begin to build relationships with them.
In order to do this, you’ll want to optimize your site specifically for lead capture and ensure that your contact information forms work flawlessly regardless of what device a visitor is using. Once you have that all set, you can begin to create lead magnets and encourage your readers to give you their information.
You’ve done it– you’ve captured a bunch of new leads using SEO! Now the question is– what should you do with them?
Once you have a healthy new list of leads, your ultimate goal will be to guide them through your sales pipeline until they finally close.
The first step to nurturing your new leads is qualifying them. You’ll want to take a look at the target customer personas you’ve created and compare them to the leads you’ve generated using SEO. Using your lead qualification threshold, you can determine whether it’s worth moving forward and working to establish a relationship with these new leads.
Once your leads have been qualified, it’s time to contact them. You can do this through a discovery call or personalized emails– which will be better determined by the nature of your product or service and industry standards.
As a part of your first official contact with the new lead, you can work to understand what problems they are trying to solve and confirm that they are a good fit. This is also the ideal time to get a sense of how interested they are in moving forward down your sales funnel.
Finally, you can continue to follow up in a scheduled and methodical way to remind your leads that you can help provide a solution to their specific pain points. You’ll want to work to find the sweet spot here– too few emails and your brand might be forgotten; too many emails and you can irritate potential customers to the point where they unsubscribe.
Whether you operate a brick-and-mortar store, a local service company, or an online business, you can likely benefit from using SEO to generate online leads. One of the best things about SEO lead generation is that it can produce highly relevant leads– i.e., bringing your target audience right to your virtual doorstep.
To know whether you’re a good candidate for SEO lead generation, ask yourself the following questions:
One of the great things about SEO lead generation is that people are more likely to become customers when they find you organically compared to when you purchase leads.
That being said, it’s worth understanding how much of a time commitment it is to use SEO to improve your Google rankings. Many business owners take on the task of increasing their organic traffic with SEO only to realize that it is taking their valuable time away from what they do best– running their business. For this reason, you might consider hiring an SEO agency or digital marketing agency to help generate new leads without taking your attention away from your most essential tasks.
Though Google says that it doesn’t use social signals as a part of its complex system of ranking factors, social media has many benefits that relate to your SEO strategies.
According to data from the Search Engine Journal, having active social media pages for your brand can help:
Based on the data from SEJ, it’s clear that there is a very high correlation between social signals and ranking position on search engines.
When you run a local business, it doesn’t necessarily benefit you for people all over the country to be able to find your site. What matters is that individuals in your local area are directed to your brand when they search for relevant products, services, or topics.
In addition to traditional SEO strategies, local businesses will also want to make sure their content is optimized for local search, claim their listings in online directories (and have their NAP listed correctly on each one), work to generate positive reviews, and create a Google Business Profile (formally Google My Business).
When you have a lot of positive reviews, it shows Google and the other search engines that your site is authoritative, trustworthy, and reputable.
To help encourage your customers to leave reviews, you’ll want to make it as easy as possible for them to do so. You might consider sending them a text or an email after they’ve made their purchase with a link to leave a review on Google or other relevant directories.
It’s also important to respond to all of the reviews customers leave for you– whether they’re positive or negative. People appreciate it when they see actual humans behind the business who take the time to acknowledge the reviews they leave. Likewise, professionally responding to negative reviews can go a long way regarding damage control.
While it is completely possible to take on SEO lead generation as a business owner, the combination of the learning curve, the ever-changing SEO best practices, and the time commitment required mean many brands choose to hire a team of digital marketing experts to help them access high quality leads using the power of SEO.
At Blue Pig Media, we offer a full suite of digital marketing services. That means you don’t have to search for different companies to help you with your digital marketing needs– we’re a one-stop shop.
One of our primary goals is to ensure that the money you’re putting towards promoting your online presence offers you the best possible return on your investment. We specialize in helping you get the most out of your resources and marketing budget to ensure that you can affordably and effectively achieve whatever outcome you desire when it comes to digital marketing.
Searching for the right partners to team up with to help you generate more leads using SEO? Contact us today and tell us a little bit about your business goals.