SEO as part of the Inbound Marketing Approach

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Using SEO as part of your Inbound Marketing Strategy.

 

What is Inbound Marketing?

Professional SEO services are a vital part of Inbound Marketing Attracting customers to your business by getting the right message, to the right person, at the right time.

Marketing your goods and services is changing. Traditional marketing is expensive, intrusive and losing its effectiveness. Inbound Marketing is the New Proven Approach, to providing the right information to the right person at the right time in a non-intrusive manner.

Inbound Marketing works by researching the Buyer’s Persona in detail and generating the correct content highly optimised for specific keyphrase Google Searches to address the customer’s pain points or possible searches at each step of the buyer’s journey. Google Search Ads using carefully researched keywords is a great addition to complete your overall Inbound Marketing strategy. These paid ads are a great way to get instant results while building up your Content and SEO, or as a way to cover areas of weakness in your existing SEO and Content.

The perfect Inbound Marketing approach is when all three aspects, SEO, Content Marketing and PPC Search Ads are working in synergy to achieve optimal results.

 

The Inbound Marketing Funnel.

The Inbound Marketing Funnel

 

Inbound Marketing is all about ensuring that potential customers find you during each step in the Buyers Journey. This will involve providing content for the top of the funnel which will be quite generic in nature covering broad topics. The customer’s searches on Google may be quite vague at this stage. The client may have heard about Inbound Marketing and wants to find out more. Searches such as “What is SEO” or “What is Inbound Marketing” would be typical at this stage.

As the potential customer progresses further down the funnel the nature of their online searches will become more specific and could include “What are the benefits of Inbound Marketing vs Traditional Marketing” The nature of this search shows that the customer is seeking more detailed information and starting to compare his options.

At the bottom of the funnel, the client has now decided, based on their research, that they are going to invest in Inbound Marketing as opposed to Traditional Marketing the searches will turn to more specific searches for suppliers and pricing and may include Google Searches for “SEO Services in Cork” or “Cost of Inbound Marketing in Cork”

It may not be easy to get high Google organic rankings for every keyword in a highly competitive industry, but in-depth competitive research will expose areas in the market that you can take advantage of and develop articles that rank for specific “long-tail keywords” that bigger companies have ignored. This is something a professional SEO Agency will be able to assist you with.

 

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The Awareness Stage

The Research Stage of Inbound MarketingBuyers Awareness is the first stage in the buying process. Your prospective customer becomes aware of a problem that needs solving, or an opportunity that requires investigation, in other words, they realise they have a potential need for your products or services.

Using traditional marketing methods of TV, Radio, Print or other ads “push” your products or services into the market is expensive and not guaranteed to reach your potential client at the right time in the buying process.

Modern digital streaming services of both TV and Music and the internet make it easy for many of your potential clients to avoid these forms of advertising completely.

Inbound Marketing utilises a non-intrusive approach enabling your prospective clients to find YOU when they NEED YOU, so they are finding the right company at the right time when they are more likely and primed to do business with YOU.

 

How do we make sure your Potential Customers find YOU?

Once the prospective client realises they have a need they will hop onto their computer or smartphone and make use of our new friend Google. (Google carries well over 95% of Ireland’s search traffic.) further to this according to Think With Google 49% of shoppers use Google to discover and find new products.

This is why the effectiveness of your Online Presence, particularly your website, is so important.

At this point, you may be thinking, but hang on a minute, I’ve already got a website, I’ve had one for a while already and it’s not bringing me any customers or helping my business in any way……..Why?

 

Three reasons why your website is not working for you:

1: It could be that your prospective clients are not finding your website in Google search results. Your website is suffering from a poor ranking in Google’s index as a result of Poor Search Engine Optimisation. If your website is not ranking on the first page of Google Search Results it’s unlikely that it will receive much free organic traffic.

2: Your website has poor design or functionality resulting in a very low conversion rate, those who do find your website are “choosing” not to do business with you and moving on to your competitor’s website. Your website could be too slow to load, not mobile-friendly or may be too complicated to use.

3: Lack of sufficiently good quality relevant content on your website will also result in poor Google Search Rankings.

There are many reasons why a visitor to your website may not go on to become a Lead and an eventual Customer. It’s essential for your success that you are aware of, and overcome, all the pain points your site visitors are experiencing in order to make the buyer’s journey a Wow experience and turn your customers into promoters of your business.

A professional Digital Marketing Consultant can ensure that your potential clients find YOU when they need you by employing targeted SEO, search engine optimisation and providing a good ranking in Google Search Results, SERPs for many relevant search queries.

Paid Online Advertising, PPC/PPM such as Google Adwords is a great way to get instant results or complement your organic rankings.

 

Some Important Footnotes on Effective Web Design for Business.

If you require your website to be an effective business tool we need to immediately dispel a few myths.

A freebie, DIY, website will NOT work. A professional website that is properly designed and developed to attract maximum business WILL cost you money, how much money depends on various issues, your company, the size of your company, the nature of your products or services, how competitive your industry is and your budget. Unfortunately, there are numerous services on the market advertising FREE websites in three easy steps that require no knowledge of web design. While these websites do have a purpose, personal use, clubs, non-profits etc., they will NOT work as an effective business tool as they offer no, or little, SEO capabilities. Or they start charging for “professional” features.

Getting your business website to the point where it ranks highly and brings you lots of business is NOT an overnight process, it takes time. It’s like a savings account, every day; week or month you invest some time and effort into your website. It’s a constant process of adding to, changing, monitoring and re-doing. Even when high Google rankings are achieved there is no guarantee that these rankings will maintain as Google, your competitors and even your customers are constantly changing and you need to first be aware of these changes and keep up to date with them.

Developing an effective website is NOT a once-off process; it is strongly advised that you rather partner with a Digital Marketing Specialist who will manage your Online Presence on an ongoing basis as opposed to simply paying a web developer to develop a website and then having no further contribution. As discussed in point 2 above nothing stays the same for very long online. Google are constantly changing their algorithms in an effort to improve the “intelligence” or “understanding” of what people are searching for and what results to provide them with. A website can become outdated quite quickly. Your competitors are constantly trying to outrank you, it’s an ongoing battle for the juicy number-one spot in Google SERPS, and you need to constantly combat your competitors. How your clients use the internet changes over time as new devices are developed, just think how mobile devices have changed people’s internet habits in the last few years.

 

The Consideration Stage

The Consideration Stage of Inbound MarketingConsideration is the second stage of the Buying Process.

A total Stranger has become aware that they have a need for a certain product or service; they’ve hopped on Google and typed in a few relevant search queries.

Your clever Search Engine Optimisation, or Google Adwords, has led these Strangers to your Website – these strangers have now become Website Visitors.

At this stage, your website visitor has started to perform his Research before he makes his final decision to buy. Generally, the larger the potential purchase or the greater the risk, the more research the customer will perform so the more relevant information you need to provide on your website.

Research shows that 60% of customers already know exactly what they want to buy before contacting an actual salesperson to make the purchase, as a result of their research.

How do we as Digital Marketers take this website Visitor and turn him into a qualified Lead, how do we assist him through the Consideration Stage and turn him into a Happy Customer for your business?

This is where Quality – Relevant – Content becomes so important; it’s no longer about hard selling, but more about being effective educators.

We’ve done our homework, we’ve researched your Buyer’s Persona, we know who your prospective customers are and more importantly, we know what problems, issues or challenges they face.
We then tailor our website and online content in such a manner as to present them with solutions. We elaborate on what we can do for them to help solve their problems, and we provide the information that our prospective customers will find relevant.

We constantly hear Google saying “Don’t write content for Google, but for your customer” Quality content provides your website visitor with the relevant information he needs in order to make an educated decision.

By providing Quality Content tailored to your website visitor’s needs, and answering their questions, you are building up a level of trust as a Leader in your field. People ultimately buy from people so we need to know we can trust those people.

Cleverly mixed in with this relevant content are strategically placed “offers” with “Calls to Action”, CTA’s.

These offers are not only designed in such a manner as to provide the visitor with something useful, but we use this step to collect more information about the visitor i.e. their name, email address etc. We have now converted this website visitor into a Lead.

The bigger the “Offer” the more information a visitor will be willing to provide. We also use this step to gauge the visitors “Buying Readiness” by monitoring the nature of the content or offers the Lead is requesting. Some may be of a more general nature showing that the Lead is still in the consideration stage and requires more nurturing, while others may be requesting highly specific details showing that they are further along the Buying Process approaching the Decision Stage and should be to be followed up immediately.

 

The Decision-Making Stage

The Decision Making Stage of Inbound MarketingThe final stage in the buyer’s journey.

The potential buyer has become aware of a need and jumps on his PC and starts Googling for potential solutions. Initially, his search parameters may be quite vague and general in nature which may lead him to 3rd Party websites, but with further research, his searches will become more specific and he will find your website.

Through Search Engine Optimisation or PPC ads, we successfully attract a complete stranger to our website who has now become a visitor.
Through researching our Buyer’s Persona and understanding his needs, we carefully developed our website content and processes to build trust with and nurture our visitors into becoming a Lead. (Offers, CTA’s.)

We can now use the information provided by our Lead to assist in providing him with more specific information he may require to make that final decision and become a Customer.

At this time the Lead has realised that he has a need and what is needed to fulfil this need. He will now be considering his options.

We now need to provide the Lead with the correct information to assist him in making the final decision, he may start requesting prices or specific product details, but now is the time to follow up, and make contact with the Lead quickly…..not later or you may have lost him.

 

Contact Us for your Inbound Marketing Requirements

Take your Digital Marketing to the Next Level with ePresence

If you are looking to expand your business, reach more customers and improve the impact of your marketing, ePresence can help. We will work with you to understand your business needs, challenges and goals. Our Digital Marketing Agency in Cork and Kerry is an experienced and results-driven organisation serving companies and national brands throughout Munster and all of Ireland. We will help lighten your load and provide access to our quality digital marketing team. Get in touch with us today on +353 (0)21 2362901 or email us on info@epresence.ie.

About Author

Steven Dunlop, ePresence Digital Marketing

Steven Dunlop

Steven has a Diploma in Marketing Management and is a Certified Digital Marketing Expert. He has extensive experience of both Traditional and Digital Marketing, together with strong Sales skills and expertise. Originally from a technical background, Steven has worked in a variety of industries ranging from Telecommunications, Industrial Automation, Electrical, Lighting and Lighting Control and Audio Video but is equally at home working with clients in the hospitality, online training or other industry sectors. Steven prides himself on achieving results beyond his client’s expectations.

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