One of the most cost-effective ways to amplify your lead generation efforts is through Search Engine Optimization (SEO). In this post, we’ll provide a comprehensive guide to the fundamentals of SEO. We’ll also cover one simple trick to increase the leads you get from organic search traffic by up to 40 percent.
This blog post aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of SEO, its types, keywords, and how it works. By the end of this post, you’ll learn the importance of SEO marketing, content marketing, and the tools and techniques required for effective implementation.
Table of contents
- What is SEO?
- Why is SEO Important for Lead Generation?
- How Does SEO Work?
- How to Do SEO
- How to Choose Your Keywords
- How to Rank for Your Keywords
- How to Turn Your Organic Traffic into Leads
- Improve Your SEO to Generate More Leads
What is SEO?
SEO is an integral part of digital marketing. Put simply, it’s the things you do to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
By optimizing your website you’ll improve its visibility. That means you’ll be generating greater brand awareness with your target market.
Why is SEO Important for Lead Generation?
SEO is important for lead generation for several reasons:
- Improved Visibility and Organic Traffic. When you rank higher for relevant keywords, more customers will see your content.
- Targeted Audience. Good SEO targets specific keywords and phrases that your ideal customers search for. This targeted traffic often results in higher-quality leads.
- Cost-Effectiveness. Unlike paid advertising, SEO focuses on earning traffic through organic methods. This makes it a more cost-effective approach in the long run. You don’t have to pay for each visit. And, as your organic traffic grows, your cost-per-lead decreases.
- Enhanced Credibility and Trust. You’re not only generating leads but also building your brand’s reputation. Websites that rank highly in search results seem more credible and trustworthy.
- Better User Experience. SEO involves optimizing your website to provide a better user experience (UX). As a result, you’ll keep more visitors on your site. That will increase your chances of converting them into leads.
How Does SEO Work?
Search engines use ranking signals to determine how to rank a webpage. SEO works by making changes to your content and website based on those signals.
Some of the most important ranking signal categories include:
- Content. This refers to the quality, relevance, and structure of the content on your website. It includes the use of keywords and readability.
- Links. This category refers to the number and quality of backlinks to your site. It also covers factors like whether your site has a clear internal linking structure.
- UX. This category covers the user-friendliness of your website. Is it easy to navigate? Does it have low bounce rates? Does it load quickly?
- Mobile. This refers to the mobile-friendliness of your site. Is your website optimized to look good on all devices?
How to Do SEO
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s talk about how to get started optimizing your site.
Types of SEO
There are four types of SEO:
- On-Page SEO. This involves optimizing individual web pages, including content, meta tags, and HTML code.
- Off-Page SEO. This refers to external factors that impact your website’s ranking, such as:
- social shares
- brand mentions
- Technical SEO. This refers to your website’s backend structure and performance. It includes:
- site speed
- mobile optimization
- Local SEO. This targets users searching for businesses or services within a specific geographic area.
On-page, off-page, and technical SEO are essential for any business. But local SEO is only necessary if you’re trying to attract customers from your immediate geographical.
Types of Keywords
Keywords are the terms or phrases users type into search engines when looking for information, products, or services.
There are four primary types of keywords:
- Short-tail keywords. These are short, general phrases (1-3 words) with high search volume. Thanks to their high search volume, they are usually competitive.
- Long-tail keywords. These are longer, more specific phrases (3+ words). They generally have a lower search volume. But that usually comes with less competition, so they’re easier to rank for.
- LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords. These are related terms or synonyms that help search engines understand your content.
- Geo-targeted keywords. These include location-specific terms to attract local customers.
How to Choose Your Keywords
You have to choose the right keywords for your website. Otherwise, you won’t generate enough traffic or the traffic won’t be in your target market (or both).
That’s where keyword research comes in.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing keywords for SEO:
- Relevance. Your keywords should be relevant to the content on your website. If you’re selling shoes, you don’t use keywords like “how to make a cake” or “how to fix a car.”
- Competition. At first, focus on keywords that have a decent amount of search volume, but low competition. As you develop domain authority and begin to accumulate backlinks, it will be easier to rank for competitive terms.
- Intent. Keep in mind the intent of the searcher when choosing keywords. Are they looking for information? A product? A service? When you understand the intent of the searcher, you can create content that is more likely to meet their needs.
- Pillar Pages and Topic Clusters. Aim to create pillar pages that dive deeper into a topic. Then create clusters of content on subtopics and use internal links to show search engines that they’re related. Your pillar pages will likely target keywords that are more competitive. Don’t worry about ranking for them immediately. The context and internal links will still give the rest of your content a boost.
How to Do Keyword Research
Keyword research is the process of identifying and evaluating keywords for SEO. The goal of this research is to find keywords that are relevant to your business and not too competitive.
There are many different ways to do keyword research.
- Use Google Trends. Google Trends will show how popular a keyword has been over time. This can help you identify keywords that are on the rise in popularity.
- Use social media. Check to see what keywords people are using in their posts and comments. Forums and online communities are also good sources.
- Use Google Keyword Planner. Google Keyword Planner is a free tool. It allows you to search for keywords and see how much search volume they have.
- Use a keyword research tool. Paid keyword research tools, such as SEMrush, Ahrefs, and KeywordSpy, aren’t mandatory. But they can speed up the process. These tools give you more detailed information about keywords. They provide search volume, competition level, keyword difficulty, and other data. However, it’s important to remember that this data is not 100% accurate.
- Use Visuwords. Visuwords is a visual dictionary and thesaurus. It can be helpful for finding related topics.
- See what you’re ranking for now. If your website has been around for a while, use your existing keyword data. You can do that with tools such as Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools. These tools show how your site is performing in search results. If there are some relevant terms you’re already ranking for, great! You can focus on improving their rankings. Optimize that content for the keyword or create new content to focus on it.
- Look at your competitors’ websites. Look at your competitors’ websites and see what keywords they are using. This can give you a good idea of what keywords are popular in your industry. Tools such as Ahrefs can make that easier. Ahrefs has a content gap tool that shows keywords your competitors are ranking for and you aren’t.
You can’t rank for everything, and it’s important to focus your efforts. So once you have a list of keywords, you need to decide which ones to use on your website.
Which keywords you choose will depend on many factors.
- Goals. What’s your goal right now? If it’s sales, you might want to focus on bottom-of-funnel, purchase intent keywords. If it’s brand awareness, low-competition keywords with relatively high search volumes would be best.
- Resources. If you have the resources to develop a lot of great content, you can afford to focus on more competitive terms. Otherwise, identify less competitive terms that will make an immediate impact.
- Business Value. Estimate the impact the content will have on your business.
- Keyword Difficulty. How hard will it be to rank for the term? Depending on your goals, resources, and the keyword’s business value, it may or may not be worth the effort.
Here’s a free keyword research template to help you get started.
How to Rank for Your Keywords
Once you have chosen your keywords, it’s time to start using them in your content.
You can add them to your titles, headings, and body copy. You can also use them in your meta descriptions and alt text.
But don’t just insert them randomly across your website. Create valuable content that will meet the needs of the people searching for the term.
Important On-Page and Technical SEO Considerations
As you’re creating a piece of content, Yoast SEO is a WordPress plugin for on-page and technical SEO. It has a free and a premium option.
Here are some key ways in which Yoast assists with SEO. Even if you don’t use Yoast or WordPress, you can find other tools to do this (or handle it yourself).
- Focus keyword analysis. Yoast allows you to enter the focus keyword for each page or post. It analyzes your content to ensure it’s used in your titles, meta descriptions, headings, and body content. (It also makes sure you don’t use the keyword too often which some search engines penalize.)
- Readability analysis. Better readability contributes to a better user experience and better search rankings. Yoast looks at various factors to evaluate readability. It considers factors such as sentence length and paragraph length. It also looks at whether you’re breaking up your content with enough subheadings.
- Title and meta description optimization. Yoast helps create SEO-friendly titles and meta descriptions. It ensures that they are the right length and that they include your focus keyword.
- XML sitemaps. Yoast automatically generates XML sitemaps for your website. That makes it easier for search engines to crawl and index your content.
- Canonical URLs. Yoast helps you set canonical URLs to avoid duplicate content issues. Duplicate content can negatively affect your search rankings.
- Breadcrumbs. Yoast will set up breadcrumb navigation. This can improve the user experience and help search engines understand the structure of your website.
- Schema markup. Yoast can add structured data (Schema markup) to your content. That makes it easier for search engines to understand it. It also increases the chances search engines will display your content in rich snippets or other search features.
- Social media integration. Yoast allows you to customize how your content appears when shared on social media platforms. You can optimize titles, descriptions, and images for better click-through rates and engagement.
- Internal linking suggestions. The premium version of the plugin offers internal linking suggestions. This helps create a more robust site structure and improve the overall user experience.
- Redirect manager. The premium version of Yoast includes a redirect manager. It allows you to create and manage redirects, which is essential when updating or removing content from your website.
Important Off-Page SEO Considerations
When it comes to off-page SEO, link building is the name of the game.
Link building involves acquiring high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites. This boosts your site’s credibility, visibility, and search rankings.
To execute a successful link building campaign, begin by creating valuable, shareable content. that appeals to your target audience, as this will naturally attract links.
Of course, gaining backlinks that way takes time. If you want to take a more proactive approach, here are some suggestions:
- Guest blogging. on reputable platforms within your niche, as it not only provides exposure to new audiences but also earns valuable backlinks.
- Networking. Forge relationships with influencers and industry experts. You can do that through social media, blog commenting, and attending industry events.
- Broken link building. Identify relevant broken links on other websites and offer your content as a replacement.
- Resource pages and link roundups. Getting featured on resource pages and link roundups is a great way to win backlinks. First, find websites within your niche that have resource pages or post roundups. Then, reach out to the site owners and showcase your high-quality content.
If you need to reach out to many people at once to request a link, you can automate the process. This free link building tool will help.
How to Turn Your Organic Traffic into Leads
Once you have people on your website, you need to convert them into leads. There are a number of different ways to do that. Here are a few tips:
Use lead magnets
A lead magnet is an offer that you give to visitors in exchange for their contact information. This could be:
- a free ebook,
- a white paper,
- a checklist,
or anything else that would be of interest to your target audience.
Make it easy to sign up for your email list
Your email list is one of the most valuable assets you have as a business. It allows you to stay in touch with your leads and customers. It also gives you a way to promote your products and services.
That’s why it’s important to make it easy for visitors to sign up for your email list. Lead magnets can help here. Starting a newsletter that’s chock full of value for your subscribers is a great lead magnet.
Use a Lead Generation Tool
A lead generation tool is a software program that helps you collect and manage leads. Website visitor identification tools are one option. These tools allow you to track who is visiting your website and identify which pages they are visiting.
Some visitor identification software just tells you the company your visitors work for. Others will only tell you where your visitors go on your site if they’re already in your database. LeadPost will tell you the name and email address of your website visitors (along with other data).
Improve Your SEO to Generate More Leads
Improving your SEO is an effective strategy for generating more leads. It enhances your website’s visibility in search engine results and attracts more traffic. Optimize your content to reach a broader audience and drive targeted traffic to your site.