There are two different approaches businesses can take to help increase their sales and build a brand that is recognizable in their industry when it comes to search engines. We tend to focus on the way eCommerce SEO works, with the end goal being to promote a product or group of products to guide a customer through the buyer’s journey from start to finish. For some businesses, it isn’t a product, but a service that is being sold. The best method for companies trying to put SEO to use is not to get people to make the purchase, but to gather people who are interested in a potential purchase, people who may require the services and inquire about them as they make their decision. This is lead generation.
Obviously, these are two very different end results with SEO, but the approach can be rather similar, even if the goals set for each type of campaign are not. Today, we will define eCommerce SEO and lead generation SEO, their differences, how SEO can generate leads and more.
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process used to create more opportunities to generate organic traffic, people who come from search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Every time you use a search engine, you enter a term or phrase that produces a list of results. The higher you are in the results, the more likely people are to click through to your page.
There are two reasons for this. One, ranking higher is more convenient. People want to find information and the products they are looking for quickly. If you rank on the first page of Google, you have a better chance of getting the traffic because people will likely not want to scroll through multiple pages of results. The other reason is that it gives you more authority, showing that you are a trustworthy and legitimate source of the solution to the problem being searched.
In eCommerce, ranking is all about beating your competition to the punch, being higher on the search engines for specific products so people will come to you, find them and complete their purchase.
Lead Generation SEO
When comparing lead generation SEO to eCommerce SEO, consider this scenario. Say you are selling a product like clothing or accessories like watches, jewelry, and other small fashion items. You get customers to come to your website from Google or social media and many other avenues. The customer arrives having searched for a term like “gold watches for women,” finds a watch they like and completes the purchase.
Or maybe you are selling a subscription for a website platform, a SaaS platform that is a subscription as a service. A visitor comes to your website through a search term like “monthly website platform subscription” and browses your site’s features, pricing and more before completing a call to action, like signing up for a newsletter or filling out a contact form requesting more information from a sales associate. While no purchase was completed, the desired task still was successful.
These are two very different ways of generating business based on what your products or services are, what your business objective is, and the way people will connect with your business. The process behind both is very different, too.
eCommerce SEO is all about timing because chances are a customer is looking for a product that solves a problem. If you sell cleaning supplies like vacuum cleaners or floor mops, someone will likely be searching for the product out of need. They will look to make a purchase quickly. With lead generation SEO, awareness is the objective, connecting the potential customer to the business. This can take some nurturing before a decision is made by a customer to use the services of a business.
Leads can take several months to take that final call to action. Your short-term goal in regards to lead generation SEO is for initial contact, a reason to put out a call to action even if the need isn’t urgent. The long-term goal is to build a relationship with these potential customers and eventually get them to use your services.
SEO Tips for Building Leads
With the understanding that generating leads is very different than eCommerce SEO and the quick nature of trying to convince a customer to make a purchase for a product, it’s important to know why leads are important to any business, not just ones that rely on lead generation, but even eCommerce businesses.
Consider leads to be browsing customers who are on the fence. There are people who will approach a business that offers services and do their research on a company and get as much information from outside sources — like reviews — or from competition to choose the best fit. It really is no different in the eCommerce space when documenting the buyer’s journey. Working with leads is all about reasoning. You have to give them reasons why you are the best fit and the best option. This could be pricing, the benefits of your service, the communication you provide in setting up the service or maintaining the service, or just what your previous customers have to say.
Showcasing these advantages is what will help you turn leads into sales.
How can you do this?
Let your content promote your value. In eCommerce, content can promote an offer that may force the action sooner than usual. Anything you can do to provide value to the customer, no matter what you are selling, can help shorten the buying journey, and that goes a long way in transforming leads into business.
Whether you are targeting leads or eCommerce sales, on-page SEO is important. All of your pages should be optimized, whether they are product pages in an eCommerce store designed for selling or informative and educational pages that provide value to the customer in their journey.
In lead generation, it’s all about keeping the customer connected to you, so do everything you can to provide as much information and make it as easy to access as possible so they continue to research you and your business and view more than just your services, but also your story, your background, your history and the reasons why they should choose you.
For a 1Digital Agency client like XINSURANCE, building leads is important. Most SEO campaigns are related to eCommerce clients, businesses that use the boost in organic traffic and keyword rankings on search engines to improve conversion rates over time. But this is for businesses that usually have multiple products and a large inventory. XINSURANCE is a unique client as a lead generation SEO client. The approach to achieving results is different. It is not measured in conversion rate, but in the building of awareness through lead generation.
XINSURANCE was placed on a 25-keyword starter campaign. At the beginning of the campaign, they were ranking for 12 of the 25 keywords, with none of those rankings in the top 20. Within the first three months of their campaign with 1Digital, XINSURANCE started ranking for 28 keywords in the top 100, including 27 in the top 20, 22 in the top 10 and 10 in 1st position rankings on the 1st page of Google.
In addition to improved keyword rankings, XINSURANCE also saw an increase in organic traffic of 42.66% following the second month of the campaign and an additional 36.32% increase after the third month. Bounce rate has decreased by 5.50% and average session duration is up 21.13% in the first three months of the campaign. In comparing the results at the two-month mark to the three-month mark, one of the top classes of XINSURANCE had a 101.83% increase in organic traffic.
To conclude, you may look at SEO and think about it in the eCommerce sense, thinking about how it can promote boosting organic traffic to sell products. But that’s not all SEO can do for a business. For businesses that rely on generating leads and require a process to build a client base for a service they provide, lead generation SEO that brings more organic traffic and creates opportunities for these businesses to sell services is a necessity, as much as SEO is needed to bring in traffic for products in eCommerce SEO.
If you are looking for SEO services that can improve keyword rankings, build authority with search engines and produce consistent and relevant content that helps you generate leads, turn to the experts at 1Digital Agency. Contact us today for more information on how to get started on your SEO campaign.
- Kevin Durso
- May 7, 2019
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