A Short Beginners Guide to SEO and Lead Generation for Small Businesses
Agree or not, lead generation is a form of art. Creating a steady flow of leads is not easy: we already know about Outbound and Outreach marketing and how effective they can be, but when it comes to generating organic leads, we face some issues.
So what’s the problem?
Outbound marketing was great and cheap back in the early 2000s, and is still a solid choice if you need to build a strong and less expensive marketing strategy. But today cold emailing, media buys and email spam aren’t as effective. People learned how to distinguish spam from mail, and so did software systems. US Government took a step further and passed the CAN-Spam Act, which restricted spam usage in e-commerce.
Outreach marketing is the new mainstream method, taking a more personalized approach to lead generation. We went back to our roots, focusing not on quantity, but on quality. But it comes at a price. Outreach is simply too expensive, both time and money wise. Building your marketing purely on outreach would inevitably limit your targeting scope.
And while the two methods above are still relevant and can be used for lead generation, creating a stream of organic leads requires a completely different approach.
Here comes SEO.
Part I: SEO or How To Tame Google
SEO (aka Search Engine Optimization) is a process of increasing traffic by optimizing keywords used in search engines on your platform. Every online marketer has probably already worked with search engine optimization, but in case you haven’t, let’s see how it works:
- Search engine optimization allows you to rank up your platform in the search results by using business keywords related to your targeted audience.
- Prospects will use those keywords to search for an interest and will be offered your platform in the search results, leading to a natural stream of customers.
- If customers find value in your content or product, they may consider becoming your true sales.
With SEO the only thing you need to care about is the end quality of the content and the solutions you are offering.
Other approaches will demand a lot of your time and money, which, if you’re a small business, you simply do not have. SEO opens up multiple doors:
- Quality Assurance – search engines promote quality content, which will allow your platform to rank up in the search results.
- Low-cost promotion – SEO is cheap and requires one specialist at best to get your platform promoted.
- Credibility – unlike emails, people fully trust Google and other search engines when it comes to offering them solutions. Anyone who’s ever used Google knows – if it’s at the top of Google’s search results, it’s trustworthy.
SEO turns your web-platform into an instrument in itself, meaning the more you invest into the platform, the more leads you’ll get. That’s the beauty of search optimization – you don’t need to create email campaigns or buy hundreds of ads. Simply focus on your product and the content for your users. These leads will be much more receptive.
SEO vs Ads
The problem with ads is they tend to hurt user experience or even block the content with annoying pop-ups. Lead generation though ads is on its way out.
Just look at the stats – 70% of ads are getting ignored by visitors. That, with added poor user experience leads to low return rates on the platform.
Another problem is people started installing more ad blocking extensions, and new browsers like Brave started appearing to combat privacy violating ads. According to researchers, ad block usage in 2017 grew by 30%.
Ads are losing their effectiveness in modern marketing, and SEO is pushing towards creating both quality content and generating healthy leads.
Part II: Precise Audience Targeting
The first thing to understand about SEO is it’s not about mass marketing. You won’t be marketing towards everyone, instead, your strategy must be specific.
You will need to build a profile of your ideal sale. This profile should include:
Key information (for keyword building)
- Basic characteristics (first and last name, gender)
- Geographical location (country, city, address)
- Behavioral statistics (preferences, dislikes, habits)
- Company information (name, position, experience)
Depending on the type of businesses you’re dealing with, you can collect statistics to target a specific type:
Business-to-Business (B2B) – collect data like Company Information in order to precisely target the desired businesses.
Business-to-Customer (B2C) – consumer type relations rely heavily on Behavioral statistics, showing us what consumers expect from our product/content and what their dislikes are.
Targeting your audience requires significant effort, but in the end it will help you and make it easier to start building your keywords. Targeting will also lead to a much better experience for your users content-wise.
Part III: Who Is Your Lead?
Not everyone who enters your page is automatically your lead. To identify your lead, you should first establish what exactly a person must do to become one. This is best done by creating a list of actions:
- Fills in the Sign-up form on your platform
- Goes to a specific page
- Interacts with certain features
To measure the statistics from the above actions, use analytics tools. The most popular analytics tool is Google Analytics. It tracks all data related to your platform from Google search. You can also try other tools:
- New Relic
These tools come as plugins that you can integrate into your platform. If you are using WordPress, you can easily customize your analytics tool. Custom build platforms will require a developer to implement them.
In most cases, Google Analytics gives you enough data to work with. But if want to conduct a much deeper research, try one of the tools suggested above.
Once you’ve identified your leads using the data you got from your page, you can start optimizing the content on your website to fit the needs of the core audience.
However, optimizing content won’t help if clients can’t find you in the search. And so we come to the most important part of SEO.
Part IV: Building Core Keywords
Keywords are used both in the content and inside the landing page code. The content on your page can be split into two categories: generated and core content.
Core content is what your landing page consist of: general information about the product or services you are offering, title referring to the name of your solution and your company. Basically, general information, which stays unchangeable for a long time.
Generated content is various written or promotional material. Creating new content boosts your platform in the search results. Generated content is delivered in a form of:
- Blog posts (an announcement or a piece of news regarding your product or service)
- Articles (tend to cover other fields related directly or indirectly to your solution)
- Guest posts (written by a third party as a promotion for them, done if you need to generate more content and don’t mind third party involvement)
- Long Reads (fully cover a topic regarding your field, consist of several subtopics, structuring the main topic)
Core content is the foundation of your platform, you should invest enough effort to make it associate with your solution. Without it you won’t be placed correctly in the Google search feed.
Besides content, you need to focus on the very heart of your platform – the HTML code. In order for Google to understand what your platform is about, it parses the HTML code, specifically the <head> part of it.
The head tag contains meta tags, which directly affect your platform’s presence in the search results. You need to take care of the meta tags with description and keywords attribute. In the description give a brief explanation of what your solution is about. In the keywords attribute insert the keywords related to your platform, that you’ve created based on the data gathered by your analytics tool. Please note: don’t try to abuse this attribute, or your platform can be banned from Google’s search results forever.
What if I want to generate some leads right now?
If you need to generate some targeted leads within minutes, we have another suggestion for you. You may have heard about Snovio, but not many people are aware of the multiple marketing tools this platform has to offer.
A goldmine for any marketer, Snovio offers the following tools:
- Domain Search
- Company Profile Search
- Emails from Names
- Technology Checker
- Email Finder
- Email Verifier
- Email Tracker
- Drip Campaigns and many more.
This platform is a one-stop-shop with multiple Chrome extensions. Collect highly targeted leads from any website, enrich your leads, and start your drip campaign – all on one page, in less than an hour. Give Snovio a try, but don’t forget about SEO. It’s by combining the two that you will get the best results.
Search engine optimization doesn’t stop at keywords. You should constantly generate new content to push your platform up in the search results. Don’t forget to optimize your existing content, so when Google parses your page, you get ranked higher than your competitors. This will attract organic leads and save you money.
Author: Yaroslav Panyok