More search engine marketing strategists are bringing up Google RankBrain again when trying to create a strategy that will draw more organic traffic that converts well. But really, RankBrain should have never fizzled away from the forefront of our conscious.
Google’s artificial intelligence (AI) system is what enables the delivery of search results, and if the right strategy is grounded by a savvy Los Angeles SEO agency or search engine marketing team, the algorithm can play a role into traffic conversion.
How an SEO Strategy Aligns with RankBrain to Generate High-Conversion Traffic
Ultimately, RankBrain measures multiple factors to determine how satisfied people are with their search results. In other words, if people go to a landing page that funnels them to an area where they can convert, it means the content resonated with them. This means when people visit multiple pages, engage in lengthy session durations, and engage with the content, the signals go to the RankBrain component of Google’s core algorithm to let the search engine know the user is having a good time.
Enter the SEO strategy: when your content hits upon these fulfillment points, you can expect to see the type of organic traffic that hikes up your conversion rate:
- Ranks for the right search phrases
- Speaks to intimate consumer pains through the buyer’s journey
- Funnels organic traffic towards making a purchase
- Combines a growth stack
Now you need to ask yourself what this means for your business. How can you apply these four tips to optimize your website to get more high-quality traffic that will likely result in buyers, as opposed to meaningless clicks? The key is to create well-organized, researched, content that offers value to your buyers. When you can do this, your content will rank well because it will be appeasing RankBrain, and when the strategy is top-notch, your delighted readers will convert into buyers.
1. Rank Content with Keywords Reflecting Buyer Needs
In order to convert organic traffic, you need content written for people as opposed to blogs stuffed with high-search volume keywords. One sign of an ignorant SEO agency is when they rank content for high-search volume keywords without any target audience in mind. Sure, they might rank for “Japan vacations” or “baseball hats”, but with broad keywords comes broad clicks resulting in a low conversion rate. When this happens a business must ask themselves what the point is to rank well if nobody is converting.
Keywords that speak to buyers at a more intimate level will help rank broad keywords anyway while ranking for those low-hanging fruit keywords. Here are some examples of SEO-friendly keywords based on the two above examples that would garner paying customers:
- Japan vacations for honeymoons
- Senior citizen Japan vacations
- Affordable Japan flights for students
- Fitted baseball hats size 7
- Adjustable Dodgers hats
- Red Sox hats for children
By using these keywords in content explaining why these baseball hats or Japan vacations are the best options for people who apply to the niche, businesses will see fewer visitors BUT the conversion rate will go up while better equipping companies to hit their revenue targets. And as people from the low-hanging fruit cohorts engage with the site, the content will eventually rank the site for those broader keywords with higher search volume. It’s an SEO win/win.
2. Write Content that Speaks to Buyer Pains
There’s no point in ranking content that doesn’t convert. After all, your business makes money by selling products and services, not by showing up on page one of Google. Here’s the thing: when you write content that addresses buyer pains, you delight your buyers, and as they engage with your content, it will rank extremely well.
The first step is to do some research and create detailed buyer personas. These are semi-fictitious representations of actual buyers that help search engine marketers target the right groups of people who are more likely to convert after landing on the content. Buyer personas generally include things like age, career, job title, how success is defined at that role, how these people consume information relative to your products and industry, family status, and more. Once you have a detailed, clear idea of who your buyers are, you can better understand their needs and pain points. And once you have this insight, you can create content that presents your products as solutions to those needs.
Before you can reach the right customers with the right content, you need to understand how they engage your content in each of these three buyer’s journey stages:
- Awareness Stage
- Consideration Stage
- Decision Stage
In the awareness stage, the buyer realizes they have a problem or a desire to fulfill, but they aren’t too sure what that may be. For example, someone may have been recently diagnosed with depression, and in addition to taking meds and seeing a therapist, they know they need to take additional steps but just aren’t sure what that would entail.
In the consideration stage the buyer defines their problem and are researching ways to solve it. In continuing with this example, the person with depression does research and reads that they should find outlets to be active and meet new people.
In the decision stage they find multiple solutions, and decide on the one that best resonates. For example, our depressed customer has contemplated joining a cycling club, travel groups, and scuba diving. The customer decides that cycling is not the best option because it is too hot during most of the year. The travel group doesn’t appeal to him because his boss won’t give him enough time to take off from work to make his joining the group worth it. Scuba diving sounds ideal because he can do it every weekend, it is cost-friendly, can be done regardless of temperature, and allows him to meet new people while enjoying nature.
Our depressed person reads an article posted by a scuba diving business promoting open water certification as a great way to challenge yourself, join an active lifestyle with groups of like-minded people, and gain a new perspective on life by entering an atmosphere of diverse life. The article continues to say that it is an ideal activity for people battling depression. The customer decides that scuba diving is the best solution, and proceeds to contact the dive shop to get more information.
This is the type of content that converts. The dive shop likely created a buyer persona looking at data from past customers discovering that many of them came through their doors because they were looking for ways to fight depression. Following this example, other buyer personas could be empty-nesters looking for an activity to fill their lives, travellers who want to do more things on their trips, and nature-lovers looking for greater opportunities. If this dive shop is savvy (or if their digital marketing agency is good), a cluster of articles that speak to every buyer persona, at every stage of the buyer’s journey, would be created in order to rank content likely to convert.
3. Funnel Organic Traffic
Once you are able to gain organic traffic through niche audiences that come in at various stages of the buyer’s journey, you will want to have internal linking that takes customers to the right content addressing the next stage in their buyer’s journey.
If you rank a landing page designed to attract organic traffic from the awareness stage, be sure to include a link within that content that takes readers to a blog speaking to shoppers in the consideration stage. And from there, a link to content addressing people in the decision stage with a CTA to make a transaction.
This strategy borrows from the inbound marketing methodology but uses an SEO framework. Remember, as people engage your content and click through to other blogs, the RankBrain component of Google’s algorithm will take notice and award businesses with getter domain and page authorities, as well as overall ranking improvements. More importantly, the strategy helps brands hit high-revenue goals by taking the time to nurture organic visitors with targeted content.
4. The Best SEO Agencies Evolve Organic Search into a Growth Stack
When mastering the first three tips, an organization is sure to see an increase in organic traffic, and in the conversion rate. But what about the leads that slipped through the cracks, as well as missed targeting opportunities. Even though a modern approach to SEO using strands of the inbound marketing methodology can help brands increase their revenue, there is still a significant amount of sales opportunities left on the table.
This is when SEO services evolve. Rather than existing as a single service, SEO becomes part of a Growth Stack where various marketing services work together to achieve the same goal.
Most Growth Stacks consist of a marketing automation solution to reach niche audiences with the right messaging. They also tend to have a paid media outlet for attracting traffic from yet another channel, in addition with organic traffic. The portion of an agile SEO strategy designed to appease RankBrain often applies to strategic points in an inbound and paid media campaign, and if the growth marketing agency is truly top form, they will be able to create one comprehensive strategy, using multiple approaches, to close the gaps that SEO alone simply can’t do, regardless of how amazing the strategy is. All in all, the Growth Stack is the Rolls Royce of revenue-generating mechanisms that rely on SEO as one of many building blocks to manifest measurable business growth.
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