Are You Converting Your Traffic? Conversion Optimization and SEO are Two Sides of the Same Coin
A near endless amount of information floods the internet about getting more traffic, but seldom do you hear people talk about what you need to do with that traffic.
Someone once said traffic without conversion is a traffic accident. Likewise, Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) without traffic is futility. Traffic is great, but it has to be quality traffic which can be converted into paying customers—that is the most important bit. In other words, traffic in itself is useless unless it is converting thus, CRO is the holy grail of online business.
If you can combine SEO and CRO into a formidable marketing strategy, your business will experience the growth you have always desired. The two are good friends that can complement each other to produce tremendous results when done properly. SEO and CRO can join hands to boost site rankings, reduce bounce rates, improve click-through, improve engagement and grow conversions.
How do the two work together?
SEO brings in the traffic, or the leads, by:
- Boosting your site ranking in search engines
- Increasing brand awareness
- Provide niche domination
- Provide viral potential
- Grow social following
- Increase page views
CRO on the other hand converts traffic into the leads that become paying customers by:
- Increases your revenue
- Potential customers become paying customers
- Improves ROI
- Deals with the competition
- Reduces costs per customer acquisition
- Increase product appeal
- Increases the effectiveness of your landing page/website
As you can see, SEO and CRO are meant to complement each other. They can play well together to improve results. Simply stated, CRO is the logical point of SEO. Let us look at 6 ways you can use SEO to improve CRO.
6 SEO Methods that will Complement Your Conversion Optimization
At Invesp, we help passionate business owners to optimize their traffic and maximize their revenue. One thing that repeatedly comes on top of clients’ worries is how to convert their traffic into paying customers or subscribers.
Having a website with a lot of traffic and low conversion rate is like carrying water in a bucket with a hole. The bottom line is to bring in traffic that is more targeted and likely to graduate from visits to buys, subscribes, downloads or signups.
1. Target Long Tail Keywords
If you are not targeting the long tail of search traffic, you are missing out on quality traffic. According to SEOmoz, long tail search traffic contributes 80% of total search traffic.
There is so much traffic in the long tail territory that it is hard to comprehend. Even if you had the monopoly of the top 10,000 keywords, you’d still be missing out on 81.5% of total search traffic.
People that enter very specific search long tail terms are most likely to end up in your website and most importantly, they are the people who are most likely to convert. The best way to know which keywords are going to perform well is by using PPC software such as AdWord. It gives you search volume and competition of particular key phrases.
Remember, the real goal of keyword research is to find a keyword that is closest to exactly what you are offering. You must also understand your visitor intent when deploying your keywords. An effective landing page uses keywords that let the customers know they are in the right place.
2. Tags and Meta Descriptions
All the pages of your website should contain keyword-rich title tags as well as meta descriptions. These are useful because they often form the first impression when the visitors come to your website. They also help in ranking in search engines. The work of tags and meta descriptions is to interpret the page to the search engines in order to increase click-throughs. In order to make your tags and meta descriptions effective, focus on doing these two things:
- Make each tag and meta descriptions unique. Each page in your website serves a unique purpose and that should be reflected in the Meta description and tags. Also include keywords in your metas.
- Make them short. Your page meta descriptions should be short, about 150 characters or less, and your title tags should be no more than 70 characters. Be thoughtful when coming up with metas and tags.
Tip: Try to focus on transactional keywords as well as informational type keywords. The type of keyword you choose is still important.
3. Use Attractive Headlines
The headlines of your posts or products are very critical when it comes to influencing the number of visitors that come to your site. Spend time thinking about catchy headlines. Expert marketers say you should spend as much time writing headlines as writing the content. Yes, that is how important headlines are! If conversion is a house, then the headline is the outward appearance of the house. To lure people into the house, the appearance must look attractive.
Headlines and subheadings should be:
- Useful to the reader
- Convey the idea that the content is unique
- Have a sense of urgency
However, sometimes there is no way of knowing which headlines are going to perform the best. Split tests can be used to test the most effective headlines. Many marketers commit the cardinal sin of regurgitating common headlines that have value to the customer.
Read this article from Mashable and learn how to optimize your headlines for google and humans.
Improve the relevancy of your H1 tags by using compelling keyword-rich text. Apart from being an important element of SEO, H1 tags can greatly improve your conversions.
4. Optimize Content and Map Out Your Call to Action
When a visitor comes to your website, it is obvious they are looking for something; either they want to buy something or they want to gather some information.
Whenever possible, make sure your content is not only useful but also optimized for action. Spotlighting important information above the fold is obviously a great conversion strategy. Make sure your layout emphasizes the uniqueness and importance of your content. It should define a clear value proposition. Use organized and clear structures to make your content scanable.
Many websites leave their visitors confused as to what to do next. Therefore, you should map out the best answer path for the customer queries. This is another way of saying you should include a clear call-to-action once your visitor has found what they are looking for. For instance, if a visitor was looking for information on how to format his windows, you can include a subscription form on the page for more tips. The call-to-action button should be clearly visible.
The CTA should be obvious and should lead the customer to your conversion funnel. Don’t lose your visitors by introducing so many pages, but lead them to your CTA. The idea is to seal all the holes that might act as an escape route for your visitors.
5. Social Proof
Did you know that consumers trust social reviews more than the sellers’ claims? Social proof is an important SEO and CRO element for any business. It is easier to trust others opinion than to follow your own path. Others will always be more believable, more persuasive and wiser than you. Social proof can be any the form of product reviews, social media mentions, celebrity endorsements and user comments on your website. Don’t forget to include social proof in your site.
6. Speed-up Your Website
A slow website can drive away valuable traffic and deny you the opportunity to convert your visitors. Google has now started taking page load speed into consideration when ranking sites. There is no point in making a big investment in other aspects of SEO and CRO when the page takes an eternity to load. Use this Google tool to analyze your website speed.
The tool will give you suggestions on what areas you need to improve in order to increase your speed. The above site definitely has room for improvement.
Why should I care about page speed?
You should care because low page speed results in higher bounce rates. Unfortunately, page speed is still an issue for many website owners because they are probably ignorant of the fact that the average person expects a page to load in less than 2 seconds. 40% of visitors will abandon a website if it takes more 3 seconds to load and 52% of shoppers say a fast web page is an important factor for their loyalty to a site.
To put this into perspective, a study by TagMan on the effect of page load speed on conversion rate showed that conversion rate was at its peak when the page load speed was between 1 and 2 seconds and lowest when it was between 30 and 40 seconds.
In order to know how to speed up your site, it is important that you know what is slowing it down. Here are six quick reasons why your site could be slow:
- Bloated HTML: this increases the amount of data that must be transferred to the users
- Unoptimized images: reduce the size of images.
There are other culprits for slower sites. Here are 20 reasons why your site could be slower.
Image by QueryClick
About Benard Mokua
Benard Mokua is an experienced freelance writer with over 4 of practical experience. He spends his time blogging and helping clients to achieve their digital business success.