If you just started reading this article, chances are good that you are struggling to achieve growth goals related to your current SEO services.
SEO is a lot like Heinz Catsup; there are many varieties. The trick is finding the one that actually works. And unfortunately, most businesses seeking organic search strategies fail to forget the most important thing when vetting SEO agencies and the services offered: their goals.
I can’t begin to tell you how many CMOs call our agency and announce they want to be number one on Google. But is ranking well organically the real goal, or is it to increase sales and hit those high revenue targets?
This article is intended to help organizations with current lackluster SEO services, and those seeking a digital marketing partner to perform them, find a solution that will actually make them money.
First Things First: Do You REALLY Need SEO?
SEO is still the number one sought digital marketing service, and if correctly executed, it can help brands hit their high-revenue targets, year after year.
Then there are instances when a company may not even need SEO but instead another marketing service. But more often than not, miz-size and larger organizations generally require SEO along with a set of other tools and strategies to truly maximize the full potential for their growth.
If You Only Need SEO, a Revenue-Generating Strategy Will Look Like This
If you speak to a digital marketing agency that takes the time to understand your business inside and out, and they recommend sticking to SEO as the only service needed to help you hit your goals, then make sure they give you a clear roadmap that shows what that looks like.
Most SEO agencies don’t do this…because they can’t. They learn the basics about your business, customers, do keyword research, and create a content strategy designed to rank your website for various search terms. Then they leave it at that.
You are ranking; so what. How is the service you are investing in helping you increase your revenue? Perhaps your SEO agency is advising you to add a CTA to your ranking landing page that puts web visitors in touch with your sales team. This is what lazy SEOs do. They wash their hands of any other responsibilities, and pass the baton to your internal team to figure out how to communicate with your visitors.
There are two problems with this: (1) today’s buyers are savvy and no longer require sales teams to educate them in their purchasing decisions. (2) Your SEO services are blindly ranking keywords with zero consideration made to how your buyers engage your industry’s content, your brand, nor do they try to understand what influences your customers to invest their money in your products and services. The best organic strategists do it different, and better.
When searching for the best Los Angeles SEO agency focused on growth-driven results, make sure they begin the conversation by learning everything and anything about your business. From understanding your sales cycle, seasonality, buyer personas, the “whos who” of your organization, how you measure success, your sales targets, and more–these are the building blocks that SEO strategists should use in building a foundation to a revenue-generating plan of action. If business discovery is not in their vernacular, walk away.
SEO Strategies that Rain Money Include Buyer Personas
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your real customers. They include a number of telling factors like age, income, job title, role, what they need to be successful on the job, what some common challenges are, where they consume industry information, family status and much more.
The research and creation of a company’s buyer personas allows SEO experts to tailor your organic approach, its content, and the funnel. Yes, SEO (just like inbound marketing) should have a nurturing funnel. Your buyers stumble onto your content at various stages in their decision-making process, and SEO should consider this. The buyer’s journey includes three stages: Discover, Consideration, and Decision. If someone isn’t even fully aware of how your product can solve their problem, then a blog written for people in the Decision stage won’t convert them. Do you see where this is heading?
Strategic Content Clusters Convert Readers into Buyers
In order to run a revenue-generating SEO strategy, you will need to create clusters of content in each stage of the buyer’s journey that designed to capture them at the right moment, educate them to the next stage, and then lead them to more content that makes it crystal clear why your brand is the ideal solution to their pain.
In addition to writing around the buyer’s journey, you will need to create various blogs that address common buyer pains and needs using a context that speaks to their persona at an intimate level, using unique titles. To help increase rankings, link to a pillar page from each blog. A pillar page is almost always going to be your homepage or main product / service pages. Each blog should also link to another supporting blog that covers a similar topic.
Not only will your customers appreciate the simple navigation within the content that enables them to find similar information, but Google will be able to see the relevancy in your content, and its structure will make it easier for the search engine to crawl your site and pair it with search intent thus increasing your rankings and improving your domain authority.
Keywords With Context
If your SEO is failing to hit revenue goals, you are likely stuck in one of these strategies: your agency has identified the keywords with the most search volume, and are ranking web pages stuffed with these words.
Now think about it: let’s imagine a company that sells watches.Some keywords with the highest searhc volume include these:
- Wrist watches
- Men’s watches
- Women’s watches
- Children’s watches
In terms of on-site content, in order to rank for these keywords you would need to write LOTS of content about these broad keywords, and it will take a great deal of time. But more importantly, would these keywords be associated with content that would likely convert to sales?
Now let’s take a look at search terms with significantly less search volume BUT that better target your buyer personas. These could include:
- Watches for water sports
- Spiderman digital children’s watches
- Men’s wood and metal watches
- Modern design watches for women
- Blue Freestyle watches
Including the brand, associated activity, design style, theme, gender and other words that reveal something about your buyer and their needs will enhance audience targeting and help you rake in revenue from the low-hanging fruit; something that offers far more value than high search volume terms with low conversion rates. After all, what good is trying to reach for the biggest apple on the tree if it is 50 feet above your head AND it isn’t even the coloration, ripeness or shape you want?
What if Your Business Needs More than SEO to Maximize Growth?
Even if a company is utilizing services from the best SEO agency on the planet and they are hitting their revenue goals, determine if there is room to rake in even greater profits from areas best reached by other marketing services? If your price point, sales cycle, and operations set the right temperature, you could be an ideal candidate for a marketing growth stack. Then the trick is to know how to find the best growth-driven SEO agency that offers custom growth stacks.
A growth stack is a set of tools and strategies in perfect synchronization to work together towards achieving the same goal: increasing your sales. From traffic generation to lead nurturing, a growth stack maximizes and stretches your capabilities by leaving no stone unturned. Indeed, SEO is a large part of a growth stack. Other strategies include PPC, social media marketing, and inbound marketing. Tools can include marketing automation platforms, a robust CRM, and an email marketing hub.
Most companies investing in growth stacks agree that the most attractive part is the ability to actually see where leads come from, who they are, and the journey they take to get to the conversion point. This collected data can be used to help growth marketers optimize SEO, paid media, inbound strategies and other services. Indeed, marketing growth stacks are the Rolls Royce of digital marketing, and if a business is a good fit, the service almost always delivers bigger and better than any stand-alone marketing strategy.
Ready to Accelerate Your Growth?
Whether you are best suited for SEO, or a fully fledged Growth Stack, the WEBITMD approach has never failed our clients. If you found value in this article, we invite you to download our FREE guide on the new approach to SEO that will help you hit your revenue goals. Want to learn more about the Growth Stack? Give us a call and together let’s explore if your organization is a good fit!