You can’t consider inbound marketing without a strong SEO program in place. When you’re starting out with digital marketing, ranking for your target keywords might seem a long way off - but by using proven methodologies and sticking to the plan - you can do it!
With search engines playing such a big part in our day-to-day lives, SEO is more or less essential - Google organic searches are responsible for almost 60% of total web traffic.No business can afford to miss out on so many customers, but how can you implement SEO in your inbound marketing program, and what benefits does it have?
1. Matching User Intent
If you’re ranking well for an important keyword, then it’s a pretty good sign you’re matching user intent. Google is so ubiquitous because it’s unbelievably good at understanding what people are asking it and presenting them with the information they’re looking for. If you’re ranking number one, then you must be doing something right.
The same isn’t necessarily true with paid ads. You can get clicks even if you wildly misunderstand user intent - the problem is, they’re not going to come to anything.
SEO is all about the consumer - much the same as sales. Good SEO allows you to understand user intent, and be there for people with the valuable information they need. If you can do this, then not only will Google reward you with traffic, but your traffic is going to be more engaged and more likely to fill out your lead capture form.
When you’re bringing substantial traffic to a page through SEO, you know you’re matching user intent. The next step is to tailor your CTAs to that audience and get them to take action and become a lead.
2. Increased Buyer Intent
Not all clicks to your website have the same value. You’ve got to factor in things like where the person is in the customer journey, and how they came to your site.
It’s a very different thing when someone puts a specific search into Google and clicks on your link to them stumbling across your post on social media. When someone makes a Google search, they’re taking action and showing intent.
The great thing about SEO is you’re there exactly when the person needs you. We talk about reaching the right people with the right message at the right time, and that’s exactly what SEO allows you to do. are looking for it.
Naturally, this means people are motivated to engage with your website, and they often show an increased buyer intent.
All this means more leads and more sales.
To maximize the impact of your SEO, it’s important to pay attention to where each piece of content fits within the buyer journey. If you understand where the user is in the buyer journey, then it’s easier to understand what action they’re likely to take next and guide them in the right direction.
For example, a search for “what is SEO” is very different from “local SEO companies.” “What is SEO” is early in the customer journey, and people are looking for information, so perhaps your CTA might ask people to sign up for a beginner’s SEO blueprint. The search for “local SEO companies” shows greater intent to buy, so your CTA might suggest a free consultation.
Your visitor has already shown a willingness to take action because they’ve made a search and clicked on your listing, now you need to guide them into taking the next action - becoming a lead.
3. Organic Relationships Are Stronger
If you’ve ever watched the movie Inception, then you might remember a scene where the characters are discussing the idea of incepting someone with an idea. The difficulty, they say, is that the person can trace the source of the idea - they know it didn’t come from them (a rough synopsis).
It can sometimes be a similar story with marketing. The strongest responses come when the thought was all the idea of the customer. This is exactly what inbound marketing, and SEO especially, is - the idea originates with the customer, and then your content takes over to help shape the idea and guide action.
You’re reaching the customer by offering them something they need, and this is a powerful way to start a relationship. It’s a very different story when you’re using paid advertising to interrupt someone’s day to plant the idea yourself.
4. Access to Important Data
SEO is informed by a huge amount of data. Getting to the top of the rankings and staying there is no easy task, so it forces you to stay on top of your analytics and keep optimizing what you’re doing.
Not only does it help you understand keywords and user intent, but it also gives you a great picture of how people use your website and the target audience you need to be appealing to.
When you can see how people move around your site, it makes it easier to understand how to get people to take action (become a lead). If you have certain pieces of content that have high-engagement rates and get lots of sign-ups, then it can inform your entire content strategy.
Not only will this improve the results of your inbound marketing, but it can also make a difference to your outbound marketing. It’s much easier to target ads and create focused landing pages when you have access to all this data.
5. Unlimited Reach
Outbound marketing is all about your budget. Yes, there are ways you can bring your cost per click down, but ultimately, you’ll always be paying for every click.
This is where SEO has the ability to supercharge your inbound marketing - you have unlimited reach. If you do great work with your SEO, then there’s nothing holding you back. You can bring tens of thousands of visitors to your website each month, all without having to spend a single penny on acquisition.
We all know it’s not easy (otherwise everybody would be doing it), but if you work hard enough and follow the right steps, then it is a possibility.
This is part of the reason why 49% of marketers report that organic search has the best ROI of any marketing channel.
You’ve got to put a lot of hard work into dominating the rankings, and once you’ve got the traffic, you’ve still got to convert it, but the potential reach of SEO is enormous.
Conclusion: SEO is Vital for Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing is about letting people find you, and one of the most organic ways to do this is through SEO. When you rank number one for an important keyword on Google, you’re able to reach the right people with the right message at the right time, and this is invaluable.
By matching user intent, and offering high-value content that answers people’s questions, you give yourself the best possible chance of creating leads. All you’ve got to do is use your data to optimize your lead generation and you can ensure your sales pipeline is regularly being topped up without having to spend money on each click.
If you want to take your inbound marketing to the next level, then call the SEO Inbound Marketing experts at KeyScouts and get a free consultation.