Too many businesses still seem to be hung up on the drive to appear on the first page of Google as a result of searching for their brand, product or service. Although not as prevalent as it has been, this objective is often driven by vanity rather than business purpose.
Clearly there are enormous benefits in being close to the top of Google’s search results. However this is of limited value if subsequent visits to your website do not result in the completion of at least one of your conversion goals.
So how do you go about turning your visitors into customers, when they visit your website? To start, ask yourself the following questions:
1. What is your objective?
By this I do not mean a nice comfortable statement like ‘get more business’. I am talking about an ‘outcome’ that will lead to more business for your company. Think about this in terms of measurable actions that you know will lead to getting more customers. This might be a telephone conversation, a request for information, a request for quotation etc. etc.
2. Establish what you will measure
Patently, if you receive a telephone call you will know about it! However if this is a result of your web based marketing strategy, it is as well to have this defined as a goal in your analytics. This will allow you to find out a lot more about what triggered the event, and thus enable you to refine your marketing strategy accordingly. For example you can see which of your campaigns works best, and which traffic mediums deliver most goal conversions.
3. Design your calls to action…
… well actually, design your landing page, ensuring that your calls to action are clear and encourage the visitor to complete them. This is something that will require a few iterations to get the best results. Try positioning your calls to action in different locations, and experiment with the overall page layout and design. The new ‘experiments’ feature in Google Analytics can help you to test different designs. You should also checkout the excellent articles from hubspot.com and copyblogger.com, see related articles.
4. Build your campaign
Now you can build the campaign that is going to target your landing page. This may simply be a case of optimising your landing page for your ideal keyword, but you might also consider using paid search. The main criteria are to select meaningful keywords and ensure that these have a strong relevancy link to you landing page title tag, descriptor tag and page content. In this context the title tag and descriptor tag are what is displayed in the search engine results page (SERP). In their own right these should behave similarly to the heading and content elements of a Google AdWord, in other words they are the initial call to action which will hopefully result in a visit to your landing page.
Now with all of that in place you have a real purpose in aiming to be on the first page of the search results, and a real prospect of turning the effort into measurable business benefits.
I have skipped over lots of the detail, but if anyone wants to fill in the gaps or simply comment, please do.
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