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SEO Basics: Using SEO to Generate Leads Throughout the Pipeline
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SEO Basics: Using SEO to Generate Leads Throughout the Pipeline

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Visualize a successful sales funnel. It’s wide at the top or beginning of the sales process and narrows as you go through. While it’s great to have leads enter at the end of the funnel for a fast …

Visualize a successful sales funnel. It’s wide at the top or beginning of the sales process and narrows as you go through. While it’s great to have leads enter at the end of the funnel for a fast sale, the reality is that a funnel that consists of bottom-only leads is not sustainable. Instead, it’s narrow at both ends. A predictable and full pipeline comes from a regular flow of leads at all stages throughout the sales pipeline.

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  • 1. SEO Basics: Using SEO to Generate Leads Throughout the Pipeline Visualize a successful sales funnel. It’s wide at the top or beginning of the sales process and narrows as you go through. While it’s great to have leads enter at the end of the funnel for a fast sale, the reality is that a funnel that consists of bottom-only leads is not sustainable. Instead, it’s narrow at both ends. A predictable and full pipeline comes from a regular flow of leads at all stages throughout the sales pipeline. I recently attended the webinar An Introduction to SEO hosted by HubSpot. They discussed how your Search Engine Optimization or SEO influences how a visitor searches, finds and enters your site and how these website leads feed into the sale funnel. Below are a few of the SEO highlights from the HubSpot webinar. Also, be sure to review slides from a recent webinar presented by our VP of Marketing & Digital Services Michelle Krier on A Winning Website in 2013: Mobile, Social & Ranked. Marketing Isn’t Marketing Without Content Marketing Search engines have one goal: to serve the right content to the right person at the right time. To do this, they rely on website content to determine a company’s trustworthiness. A website that has a high search ranking is basically given a vote of confidence by a search engine that says “This site is great!” or “This company is an authority on the topic on which you searched.” Remember the 90/10 Rule of Content For your website to get the search engines’ vote of confidence and ultimately drive top-of-the-funnel leads, you need to show—not tell—visitors that you are an expert in your field. To do this, it’s important that you structure your website so that you have both branded and non-branded content. Branded Content: Content that defines who you are, what you do and what you have to offer. This is the content that will rank well for your name or other “branded” phrases. o Examples of branded content include: mission, bios, about pages, company history, product and services pages, achieved e-newsletters, etc.). Non-Branded Content: Content that doesn’t reference the brand name, but instead is more general, informational content about what you do and not about you or your business per se. This content shows that you are an authority on a topic and typically ranks well for non-branded search terms (resources). o Examples of non-branded content include: FAQs, case studies, white pages, home page, blogs, presentations, webinars, etc. In most cases, non-branded content is responsible for a significant percentage of new visitors while search results based on branded content mainly relate to returning
  • 2. visitors. Therefore, your website should primarily consist of non-branded content (90%) to help attract new visitors who can become leads or customers. Prevent Bounces Introducing services or products pages too early in the sales pipeline can result in a bounced visitor from your website. While these pages might be a great end result for web visitor, they won’t be a good first step in the sale pipeline and won’t answer visitors’ immediate questions. Instead, you want visitors to start with the non-branded content pages and drive them to the branded pages. In other words, start the problem and end with how you can help. Success = Leads at Each Stage Generate leads at each stage of the sales funnel by creating SEO branded and non- branded content that pulls new visitors into the top of the funnel, nurtures them into the middle, and sets expectations for a bottom of the funnel offer. To learn more about SEO, check out the following resources from HubSpot. Top 10 Most Egregious SEO Mistakes Free Guide: Introduction to Search Engine Optimization