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Why should you care about SEO for Lead Generation?
Implementing a successful Lead Generation SEO campaign is becoming increasingly important as each day passes. When you are in need of a particular product or service, where is the first place that you go? That’s right, straight to Google. Where do you think your potential new client is also going when they are conducting their research? You guessed it, they are also going straight to Google. So what can you do about this?
Luckily there are many different ways that you can optimize your website in a way that makes Google recommend your site over other sites.
Google has over 200 ranking factors (don’t let that scare you as they all carry different importance), but here are 20 important ones to give you a boost in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). The goal here is to get you to page #1 of Google, otherwise, you practically don’t exist.
1 - Ensure your website is technically sufficient
The structure and navigation of your website matters. It’s important for SEO for many reasons. Users are more likely to stay on a website for longer and find what they’re looking for faster. The benefit of this is that search engines can understand and index your website more easily.
A common mistake that many webmasters make is while they’re optimizing their websites for conversions, they forget about navigation and site structure, accidentally damaging their SEO. A classic example of this that we see all the time is websites that have dead (404 error) links.
However, it is inevitable that somebody will reach your 404 page at some stage, so you should make sure to have a custom 404 page created. Take a look at the 404 page from the Lego website. It has humor as well as navigational aspects to get the user back on the correct path.
2 - Use the keywords that your clients search for
The easiest place to start finding your keywords for SEO is to start by thinking about what people are typing into Google if they’re looking for products or services like yours. For example, if you sell office furniture and supplies, you’ll be working with words such as the following:
- Office chair
- Office furnishings
- Printer paper
- Ink cartridges
Always remember that customers use many different terms on Google to search for the exact same thing. Try to use the truly relevant ones. Think about it, how many ways do you think they could mean chair? What about seat? Do they mean a sofa? Recliner? Or what about a bench?
Luckily, Google is becoming increasingly clever when it comes to automatically discovering (& correcting) spelling mistakes on a daily basis. Just look at the sheer volume of keywords that Google has on the variation of the search term for ‘Britney Spears‘ in their spelling database.
3 - Make sure that your website is mobile-optimized
A huge proportion of website traffic now comes from mobile devices, including phones and tablets. As of March 2021, Google will only rank websites that are mobile responsive, so you need to take it into consideration when you’re updating your site or creating any content for it.
Review your site on mobile devices. Make sure you use a responsive design that will change for different screen sizes. Check that text is readable on small screens, and that any links are easily clickable. Check images or CTAs (Call-To-Actions) haven’t been shifted out of place. Can you easily navigate your website using only a mobile phone? Use Google’s Mobile Friendly-Test tool to see how they view your website.
4 - Build individual pages for each of your services
Create individual pages for every service that you offer. By doing this, you have a lot more space to be very informative, and really expand on what you do. With a whole page, you have more opportunity to naturally use your keyword or keyphrase and can rank for related terms too.
Get your keyword in the H1 title of the page, in the URL, in H2 subheadings, throughout the copy, and in the alt text for your images. You can do this without overdoing it if you have a service page. If you want to improve your WordPress SEO, the Yoast SEO plugin will help with this.
5 - Build your perfect client persona/avatar
Create client personas that cover key information about your target audience. You should know their age, location, gender, job title, how and when they’re using your site, and what tasks they’re trying to complete on your website when they get there. This is all very important data.
Personas help to hyper-target your content. Each person who lands on that content should be saying to themselves “Wow, it’s as if this content was created just for me!”. Use it to generate your keywords, for creating your link building strategy, and arranging guest posting opportunities, to build a well-targeted audience. By targeting this way, you can be sure you’re reaching the right people with your SEO efforts.
If you’re wondering how to create your perfect client persona, take a look at this great blog post from CloudApp that should help you with it. The image below is from that same blog post, and as you can see, they’ve made it really easy to understand each of the elements to consider.
6 - Create content that relates to your ideal client
When you’ve built your client personas, you can create content that is highly targeted to those personas, whether video content or blog content. Sprinkle your important relevant keywords throughout this content, which will be searchable, shareable, and helpful to your audience.
When creating content, remember to write for humans, not just Google. Overly-optimized content reads badly, and Google can see this as a spammy tactic, which can result in a penalty, and that is the absolute last thing that you want to receive from Google regarding your website.
From your keyword research, you should have a list of terms and topics that you know your ideal client is interested in and is looking for answers about. Use that keyword research for content inspiration, and create unique content that your target audience wants to read.
7 - Get backlinks from trustworthy websites
A backlink is a link to your website from another website. Backlinks from reputable sources tell search engines that your content is trustworthy, knowledgeable, and helpful. You need to get links from trustworthy sources. Focus on quality over quantity for this section.
Create content that is helpful, and it’s naturally more shareable, or arrange to guest post on high quality, relevant websites. Providing quotes or information on relevant press stories can help too. For example, if you offer financial services, a backlink from the Financial Times if you give context to a story is very valuable, but a link from a brand new website with no reputation is not, but that’s not to say it won’t be in the future.
Want to know who is linking to your competitors? Luckily, ahrefs have a free backlink checker that allows you to see that sort of useful data. They also have a few other incredibly useful free SEO tools so make sure to check out the video below to learn more about what they can do.
8 - Offer an awesome lead magnet they can’t refuse
A lead magnet is an offer from you that persuades clients to give you their email addresses. If someone is willing to let you into their inbox, you know they’re already engaged with you so you can further nurture that lead, eventually converting them from a lead to a paying client.
Offer something like a checklist, exclusive offers, eBooks, or other content that will capture their attention. Once you have their details, you can send them targeted emails to move them further down your funnel and convert them into loyal clients who see the value in what you offer.
In fact, this content that you’re reading now is actually one of our lead magnets, because you have the option to download the PDF version.
9 - Don’t make it difficult for people to become a client
What happens when people land on your website and decide they’re interested in what you’re offering? Is it easy to sign up or contact you? If it isn’t, you’re losing leads. This will differ depending on where they are in the process, and you can have different forms for each level of this.
There’s a lot of competition out there, and if someone can’t find any contact information, or the link to book a call doesn’t work properly, they’ll just click off and go somewhere else. Make it easy, and you’ll drive down your bounce rate and hold onto those all-important leads instead of sending them to your competition, because at the end of the day if your website doesn’t function correctly, your competitor will win the client.
Important note: Every website owner thinks their website works perfectly, because they were shown how it works… Put your website in front of somebody who have never gone through it or even seen it before and that will be the true test of how user-friendly that your website really is. Sorry to be so blunt here, but we’ve seen this time and time again and it, unfortunately, costs those businesses several valuable future clients.
10 - Obtain positive reviews and testimonials
Social proof can be a great way to generate leads. If you know you’ve delivered a good service to a client, ask them to leave a review or a testimonial, as their word is going to seem much more trustworthy than you telling a potential customer how great you are (even if you are).
You can display testimonials on your website, or ask for reviews on social media, Google, or industry-relevant review websites. Customer feedback also gives you more keywords, so you’re boosting your SEO in that aspect too. Google trusts reviews, so make you’re getting them in order to rank higher and show you’re the best option for potential clients to work with. However, we would never recommend faking reviews.
Have a look at the testimonials for 3Dental that we have placed below. They have done a great job because you can filter to see testimonials relating to the exact treatment that you are interested in from them. They are also using videos, with clients who now have a wonderful smile.
11 - Utilize internal linking from relevant pages
Both site users and search engines use internal links to find more relevant content on your websites. For example, if we write a blog article about inbound marketing, and a month later we write a post about social media marketing, we can include a link between the two posts.
Linking between relevant pages helps Google to find more of your website, so it has more to content rank, and keeps people on your website for longer, as they stay to read more content. This is good for SEO as it helps website visitors find their next logical step on your website.
12 - Create content for every level of your funnel
You should have relevant content for every level of your client funnel. There’s no point in offering a newsletter sign-up form to someone who has only just found your website, for example. Why would someone who has never been to your website want to immediately sign up for that?
By creating content for every stage of your client’s journey, you can create optimized landing pages that have the right information to move someone on to their next stage. Use keywords that will drive conversion and move people from awareness to the onboarding stage. Deliver content that is relevant and helpful to the buyer, wherever their relationship currently is with you. Take a look at the example web pages below:
- What is Causing the Pain in My Back?
- Back Pain Home Remedies for Women
- Chiropractor in Boston
Can you see how as we progress to the next search the user is closer and closer to becoming a client as they are in need of your service? Luckily, you have now shown up in Google for all of these searches, and have built incredible brand recognition and authority with that person.
13 - Stand out in SERPs with magnetic meta data
Your metadata tells Google what your page is about, and is what will appear to a user in the search results page, so it needs to be well written.
You need a clear meta title that expresses what the page is about, and a short meta description that adds more detail. Both should use your keywords, but in as natural a way as possible. Your meta description needs to be magnetic enough to draw interest from searchers, so they choose to click on your website instead of one of the competition’s websites. Bonus: If the keyword is in your metadata, it will appear in bold.
14 - Use your target keyword throughout page elements
When you’ve done your keyword research and chosen the keyword that you’re trying to rank for, you can thread it through different elements of your page, as naturally as you can. Remember to use it in a way that reads well to humans, as well as Google. Your website is for humans first.
Use your keyword in your URL, in your page title, in sub-headings, as an image title, in image alt-text, in your metadata, and of course in the copy. Long-tail key phrases can be easier to do this with, and you can also work in related keywords in the same way. Avoid keyword stuffing.
15 - Build out relevant FAQs and include Schema
Google has changed the way it ranks content to better match how people search (also referred to as ‘searcher intent’), especially as voice search becomes more common. People often search by asking questions, so Google looks for content that answers their questions.
Rank higher by creating relevant FAQs on your website, and use proper website Schema markup (a small and not at all scary snippet of code) so that Google knows it is a set of FAQs. You can do this in the page structure, and it makes it more likely that you will get a featured snippet at the top of SERPs. These display in the form of ‘people also asked’ on page #1 of Google. These results are larger and more enticing to click.
By utilizing this method correctly, you can actually appear above position #1 in Google for the search term. How’s that for an SEO top-tip?
16 - Reverse engineer your competitor’s success
SEO competitive analysis involves looking at the keywords, content, and links that are working for your competition. You can see what’s working for others and reverse-engineer their organic (and paid) digital marketing tactics in order to improve upon your own success.
Start doing this by searching your top keywords in Google and then looking at the websites that are currently ranking on page #1. If you have access to any of the industry-standard SEO tools, this step of obtaining all of this information on your competitor’s will be much easier.
17 - Use industry-relevant keywords on service pages
Service pages can be difficult to rank in Google, depending on the competition (amongst other factors). For most businesses, homepages and blog posts are what is most likely to rank. Getting service pages to rank should be a main goal, as this is usually where you make your money.
With all your research, you know which keywords are relevant for your industry, so make careful use of these on your service pages. Optimize your service pages by writing quality content, with strong metadata, correct formatting, and keywords that have been proven to be searched on Google every single month. Make use of internal links and optimized images too to push your service page higher in search engine results.
18 - If you’re strictly local, optimize for your area
If you only work in a dedicated town or city, there’s no point in trying to rank nationally. Local SEO can be very effective to find customers in your local area. For example, instead of trying to rank for ‘bookshop’, aim for ‘bookshop in Chicago’. This will help obtain targetted site traffic.
A Google My Business listing can help too. Use these listings to put in your key information like contact details, opening hours, and any offers, so that people local to you can easily find your business and check the information that they need, like what time you’re open in the morning.
19 - Make sure your content is easy on the eyes
Make your content easy to read and nice to look at (in a way that lets you slip in more lead-generating SEO). Break up your content with quality images. Make sure they’re relevant and don’t look like cheesy stock photos. Remember, use alt-tags on your images to get in your keywords.
Break up the text with subheadings, bulleted lists, and FAQs, as these make it easier to read. Make sure to implement Schema markup to help Google to read your page and understand the content too. Using a structure like this is good for SEO purposes, and for the person reading it.
20 - Review positive acquisition data in Google Analytics
The biggest mistake that we see again & again by people putting any effort into digital marketing is not reviewing the data to see what worked. Google Analytics is completely free, easy to add to your website, and provides you with really crucial information to inform decision making.
You can even set up ‘goals’ in Google Analytics, such as monitoring how many people managed to see the ‘Thank You’ page on your website. If somebody saw that page, they more than likely completed an important action, such as filling out a contact form or booking a call with you.
Each of the tips mentioned in this article will give your lead generation a nice SEO boost, but using them together is pouring fuel on the fire.
If you (or a team member) can implement these tips within your organic digital marketing then focus those efforts on this in the near future. Don’t be overwhelmed by trying to implement all of these tips at once, proper SEO (that actually gets results) takes time to perform correctly.
Thanks for taking the time to read through these lead generation SEO tips. We hope you gained value from going through them. Good luck!
– The team at Launch Site Boost.
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