SEO (Search Engine Optimization) focuses too much on search traffic.
But what will take your brand to the next level,
is not traffic alone - it's conversions!
In this article, you will
- find out what conversions are
- learn how conversions can be measured and optimized
- understand how conversion-driven SEO can help you grow your business
SEOLeverage is a conversion-driven SEO agency.
This means at the heart of everything we do,
we are aiming at increasing the conversions our clients - people just like you or me - are getting from their sites!
But let's start with some fundamentals ...
What are conversions?
... pretty much all your dreams coming true!
Think of a conversion as the best thing that can happen
when a user comes to your site!
For some, this might be a request for a proposal.
For others, this might be someone giving you their e-mail address
(in exchange for a checklist or another lead magnet).
Heck, for some it's a user checking out their about and contact page!
Typical conversions we encounter on clients' projects are, for example:
- Newsletter Sign-Up
- ebook download
- call scheduling
- free PDF download
- behavioral conversions
A website that only gets traffic, but no conversions,
won't help scale your business!
This isn't only a bold statement because of the font style.
Every website owner should track conversions.
They don't only help you figure out the quality of the traffic
that comes to your site - they also help you optimize for more!
Make sure you track conversions properly,
to prepare for consistent optimization of your site's performance!
"You can only optimize, what you can measure!"
How to measure conversions?
It's hard to assess how much weight you lose with a new diet
if you don't step on a scale at the beginning.
The same is true for conversions:
you need to track the data!
Google offers a free tracking tool for website statistics, Google Analytics (GA), which can be installed on websites for free.
GA keeps track of pages your visitors like to check out
- and if those happen to be specific, configured goal pages,
Google Analytics will track them as conversions.
How to calculate my conversion rate?
Conversion rate: The number of conversions, multiplied by 100, divided by the number of users visiting your site.
E. g. if 100 people come to visit your site, and 2 make a purchase, your conversion rate is 2*100/100 = 2%.
What is a good conversion rate?
The conversion rate that's reasonable to expect
is closely related to the intention your visitors
come to your site with.
Imagine people searching for height of the eiffel tower
- they will be highly unlikely to download an entire book
about the Eiffel Tower you might offer as a freebie on your site.
Their intent is just to know that one detail.
However, for people searching e-mail marketing subject lines,
a downloadable swipe file of the best subject lines recommended
by some famous copywriter might be THE most compelling thing they want!
That being said, clients at SEOLeverage - across different pieces of content - are getting anywhere between 2-50% conversion rate based on their landing pages. Many e-commerce sites will get about 1-2% of their visitors to buy.
Whatever is below 2% is probably worth analyzing more in detail,
I'll give you a set of questions further down for conversion rate optimization work.
So, now you know what conversions are, where the data comes from, and how to calculate a conversion rate ...
... how does this all relate to SEO?
Conversion-driven Search Engine Optimization
While traditionally, SEO agencies often focus on increasing traffic to your website, at SEOLeverage we are a conversion-driven agency.
Our focus lies on driving your conversions!
This clear focus hasn't only led to clients sticking to our SEO program for more than 10 years without long-term contracts.
It has also led to clients building their list adding thousands (as in multiple 1000) of e-mail addresses of qualified potential clients to their list.
SEO should only be one pillar of a multi-channel marketing strategy.
The unique advantages of getting conversions from organic search marketing (SEO) can't be overlooked:
- Organic conversions tend to be the cheapest conversions (lowest CPA) long-term
- Organic conversions lower the overall average cost per lead (CPL)
- Organic conversion rates tend to be higher (people feel they've done their own research, and they feel less "tricked" into an offer, so they convert more often).
For this reason, spending time and resources on building out this fountain of organic conversions is more than worth it!
How to optimize SEO for conversions?
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) aims at increasing the number of conversions per 100 visitors.
A conversion, fundamentally, requires 2 things to happen:
- bringing in the right people at the right time
- offering something of a higher perceived value as what they think their e-mail address or their money is worth to them
CRO has become a huge industry, with A/B Testing software, CRO agencies and CRO consultants being available at all stages of your marketing journey.
However, SEO is very often overlooked in the process:
If you bring in the right organic search traffic at the right time,
and pair this with the right conversion offer,
the most natural thing to happen will be for your clients
to actually trigger that conversion event.
Conversion-driven content marketing
Often times when we come to work on a project, a lot of content has already been created. More often than not, however, not enough research went into that process.
And I'm not only talking about keyword research.
I'm talking about a deep research on the intended target audience, what kind of long tail keywords they might be using, what an ideal landing page should be, and how to spot likely paying customers inside a search engine.
Heck, most sites don't follow an overall SEO strategy - at all.
Most sites are so focused on search traffic, that everything else in the conversion funnel gets left out. When then the product or service isn't sold via a web page, people are quick to analyze overall organic traffic and believe more traffic will be the answer.
However, search engines might just not be sending you the right kind of visitors.
See, conversion-driven SEO requires seeing the entire conversion funnel:
- from a user's mindset when performing a search
- to looking at search results
- deciding to click on one or several of them
- coming to a landing page
- consuming the content
- making up their minds
- and potentially converting into a lead or a customer.
Search engine traffic can be good or bad.
Too many site owners come to me with a bad search traffic problem.
They are getting traffic, but no conversions.
Your conversion rate will depend on your visitors' search intent.
And the search intent will vary,
depending on the piece of content that's ranking.
I'm a big believer in asking myself questions to improve.
Here's a list of questions I'd like to ask yourself now,
in order to improve your conversion rate.
(Each question needs to be answered positively,
in order for the next one to make sense!)
5 CRO questions to ask yourself
- Do you know which pages your visitors come to? (Organic landing pages)
- Do you know the mindset of users coming to each page you expect to lead to conversions?
- Do you understand the problem people are trying to solve when they reach each page?
- Have you made your lead magnet or your offer a no-brainer for each user in their particular situation, and will it help them solve their particular problem?
- Are you making it easy for them to convert by having multiple options on the page to opt-in or buy or fill in the form or do whatever would make their visit "heaven" for you as a site owner?
Asking for too much?
I often see people asking for too much.
"What, you've just told me you're a coach,
and I'm now supposed to jump directly
into your scheduler and book a discovery call with you
where you're probably going to try to sell me your 5K course?"
Not gonna happen!
Here's the secret formula for digital marketing:
The better you understand who is reading your content, who is visiting your site, and how that person's beliefs might or might not match yours - the bigger your business is going to get!
At the end of your funnel, there's a customer.
But across all stages before - and after - getting that customer,
there's marketing - and with marketing, the conversions that can be tracked
and optimized to scale your business.
This is my firm belief.
If you believe what I believe, let's have a chat.