Tag Archive | "from"

How to Optimize Your Conversion Funnel, from ToFu to BoFu

Posted by OliviaRoss

No matter who your customer is or what you’re selling, it’s more likely than not that your customer will have to go through several steps before choosing to buy your product or service. Think about your own shopping habits: you don’t just buy the first thing you see. The first thing you do is note that you have a problem or a need, and then you research a solution online. Once you find that solution, which could be a product or service, you then decide which manufacturer or company is the best fit for your needs based on price, features, quantity — whatever it is that you are looking for.

The sales funnel is a drawn-out process, so it’s important for you to understand your customer’s pain points, needs, and intents as they go from learning about your company to deciding whether or not they want to pay you for your services or products. The goal is for a customer to not only choose you but to keep choosing you over and over again with repeat purchases. By understanding where your customer is in the funnel, you can better move them through that funnel into a reoccurring sale.

What is the conversion funnel?

The “conversion funnel” (also known as the “sales funnel”) is a term that helps you to visualize and understand the flow through which a potential customer lands on your site and then takes a desired action (i.e. converts). This process is often described as a funnel because you’re guiding the customer toward your conversion point. And these prospects come from a gamut of methods such as SEO, content marketing, social media marketing, paid ads, and cold outreach.

Conversion rate optimization can occur at every stage in the funnel to improve the number of people you drive towards the most important action. To do this effectively, you need to think about the user experience at each stage — what they want, and how you can give it to them.

A typical conversion funnel has several stages: awareness, interest, consideration, intent, and finally purchase (buy).

Here’s a quick rundown of what to offer for each step of the funnel:

Creating your funnel

Before you even bother creating different offers for different steps in the funnel, you’ll need to make sure you’re tracking these goals properly. The first step is to set up a funnel visualization in Google Analytics. In building your funnel, focus on these three things:

  • The name of your goal: This goal should have a recognizable name so you know what you’re looking at in your reports. For example, “Document capture e-book A” or “free trial subscription B.”
  • The actual funnel layout: You may add up to 10 pages in Google Analytics for a conversion funnel. This will allow you to find out where prospects are leaving before completing the goal. Without this, you won’t know which areas need the most attention and improvement.
  • The value of the goal: In order to determine your ROI, you’ll need to decide what a complete goal is worth. If 20% of prospects who download a whitepaper end up becoming customers who spend $ 1000 with you, the download value might be $ 200 (20% of $ 1000).

A very important to thing to take note of is that your potential customers will be coming from several different avenues to your site. Assuming you don’t have a very small site with very few visitors, there are several likely paths prospects will take towards conversion.

If you try to push all of your prospects through the same funnel, it may look like your site’s conversion rate is extremely low. However, these customers may be getting to you through a different way such as landing pages.

You must account for all avenues of traffic. Image Source

Awareness stage

It’s no secret that customers need to know you exist before they can even think about considering you. So in this phase, you need to focus on attracting people to your site.

For this first step of the funnel, the goal is to create a strong first impression and to build a relationship with your prospective customers. This content should impress them enough that they fill out a form showing interest by giving you their email. Creating multiple TOFU offers gives you the information (company, name, email address) you need to segment and nurture leads further down the funnel.

Blogging

Let’s say Directive wants to create lead generation content. We’ll have some blog posts around PPC, SEO, and content marketing, and we will make sure to categorize these, either in the URL itself or on specific pages, in order to more easily segment our audiences.

So not only should you be targeting people based on the categories they’re visiting, but if you send people to very specific content upgrades or exit popups based on the content they’re reading, you’re going to increase your conversion rates even more.

Let’s pretend your conversion rate is normally just 3–4%, but a blog post talking about technical SEO saw an 18% conversion rate. This is because you’re sending a very specific audience to that page.

Look at how HubSpot lays out their resources navigation. There’s tons of valuable content to learn from.

HelpScout separates their content into categories, and each post is easily scannable in the 3-column card structure.

Social networking

People use social networks for everything nowadays, from getting advice to looking up reviews and referrals. They like seeing the behind-the-scenes on a business’ Instagram, they field their complaints through a business’ Facebook and Twitter, and they look for tutorials and how-tos on Pinterest and YouTube. Social proof builds trust and helps increase conversions. Therefore, create an active presence on the networks that make sense for your market in order to meet your customers. Social media can also indirectly impact your search engine rankings.

OptinMonster – Image Source

Interest / consideration

This stage of the conversion funnel is where you must start standing out from your competitors. If you offer service A at price B but so does Competitor #3, then how is that going to set you apart? What’s going to make the customer more interested in you over a competitor? The thing that makes you different is what will generate the most interest. This is why your unique value proposition (UVP) is so important.

According to Unbounce, your UVP, also known as a unique selling proposition (USP), is a clear statement that describes the benefit of your offer, how you solve your customer’s needs, and what sets you apart from the competition.

During the interest stage, your website and content are extremely important in creating that closer relationship with your customers. However, people merely visiting your awesome site is not enough. You will want to keep them engaged after they leave. Just like in the awareness phase, we do this by capturing their email. However, we want to push a little further now.

PPC and landing pages

You can easily increase conversions with email opt-ins that only appear to your PPC visitors. Using this page-level targeting can really boost the effectiveness of your PPC campaigns.

Focus on creating attention-grabbing content like headlines, carousel images, and banners all focused around your UVP.

Here at Directive, we’re constantly coming up with strategies to help our clients get the most leverage out of their content. We created a landing page focused around demo requests. This page was not performing nearly as well as we would have hoped, so we decided to change the offer to a demo video.

By switching an offering from a full demo to just a short 5-minute demo video, we saw a tremendous lift in conversion rates. It makes sense when you realize that the people in our target audience were in the awareness stage and were not interested in spending 30 minutes to an hour with a stranger explaining a product that they’re not ready to buy. As you can see, the demo video outperformed the full demo by an increase of 800%.

Now these leads aren’t anywhere close to buying yet, but it’s better to build that interest in a larger pool of people who can potentially turn into sales than to only have two sales qualified leads to start with.

Site optimization

If you notice that you’re getting decent traffic to your website but the prospects are bouncing after a short amount of time, the problem could be that your website doesn’t have the content they’re looking for, or that the site is difficult to navigate. Make sure to focus on making your web pages clean and legible. You only get one shot at a first impression, so your site must be easy to navigate and the content must explain the unique value of your product or service.

Think about creating supporting content, including a mission statement, blog posts, great promotional offerings, a competitive shipping and returns policy — whatever drives the point home that your customers need the services that only you can offer. Your content needs to encourage visitors to want to learn more about you and what you do. If you’re creating blog posts (which you should be), include a call to action for more in-depth content that requires prospects to join your email list to receive it.

The Calls to Action on your pages are extremely important to focus on as well. If the prospects aren’t sure what you’re offering, they’ll be less likely to convert. For this client, we changed the CTA text to “Get an Instant Quote” from “Shop Now” and right off the bat, it made a huge difference. We ended the experiment in about 11 days because it worked so well and the client was so happy.

When comparing the rest of the quarter after the test was complete to the same period before the test began, we saw a 39% increase in request a quote submissions, and a 132% increase in completed checkouts.

Along with concise and clear UVP-related copy throughout your website and blog, continue using white papers, guides, checklists, and templates. These are your lead magnets to gather more customer emails in exchange for your offer.

Gather qualitative data

Use qualitative data tools such as Hotjar to find out where people are clicking, scrolling, or getting stuck on your website. You can build your conversion funnel in Hotjar to see where customers are dropping off. This will tell you which pages you need to optimize.

In this Hotjar funnel, you can see that there’s a major drop off on the demo page. What information isn’t clear on the demo page? Is there friction on this page to keep customers from wanting a demo?

If you’re still not sure what to fix, sometimes it’s best to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth. Set up user polls on your site asking customers what’s keeping them from getting their demo/trial/product/etc.

Live chat and chatbots are another way to get user feedback. Gartner forecasts that by 2020, over 85% of customer interactions will be handled without a human. People want answers to their problems as quickly as possible, so providing that live chat solution is a great way to keep people from bouncing because they can’t find the information they need.

Intent (also known as the evaluation or desire phase)

By now, you and some of your competitors are in the running, but only one of you can win first prize. Your potential customers have now started to narrow down their options and eliminate bad fits. According to HubSpot, companies with refined middle-of-the-funnel engagement and lead management strategy see a 4–10 times higher response rate compared to generic email blasts and outreach. Nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% lift in sales opportunities. Clearly, this is an extremely important part in the funnel.

Customers in the middle of the sales funnel are looking for content that shows them that you’re the expert in what you do. Live demos, expert guides, webinars, and white papers that explain how you’re better over competitors are very valuable at this stage. Use social proof to your advantage by using testimonials, reviews, and case studies to show how other customers have enjoyed your services or products. Many qualified leads are still not ready to buy. So in order to nurture these leads and turn them into real paying customers, provide interesting emails or an online community such as a Facebook group.

Email

Start educating your potential customers about what it is you do. Build trust through automated emails sent to subscribers with answers to FAQs about your services and links to new content you have created.

In this email, we offer a piece of content relevant to our subscribers’ interests

Create location- and product-specific pages

Often times, your prospective clients are searching for a very specific product, or they need a service that’s local to their area. By creating pages focused around what these users need, you’re likely to get more conversions and qualified leads than a general overview page.

At Directive, we created location pages for a client that targeted the areas they serve. We optimized the pages to reflect bubble keywords that increased their rankings and we now rank for a few different keywords on both the first and second page on Google. Since then, the amount of conversions from these pages have been tremendous.

Click to see a larger image.

Continue using PPC campaigns

Click to see a larger image.

In this example, we brought a top-of-funnel CTA into bottom-of-funnel targeting.

We created ads that linked to a gated whitepaper on the client’s website. As you can see, there are a large number of impressions with 531 clicks.

The theory was that our targeting was enough of a pre-qualification. Instead of getting a custom practice evaluation, the user was offered a map to show them how much money they could be making per patient in their state.

Continue using landing pages

A specific landing page and call to action is more relevant to the visitor’s needs than your homepage and so is more likely to convert.

Following the multi-step model designed to ease visitors into a commitment, here’s a demo example from one of our clients:

Notice the questions being asked in the step-one form:

  1. Average Monthly Revenue
  2. Current E-Commerce Pain Points

These questions allow the user to stay anonymous. They also lead the user to believe that they will get a more custom response to their needs based on the specific information they input.

Next, they’re directed to the second-step form fields:

This step is asking for the personal information. However, notice the change in headline on the form itself. “Last step: We have your demo ready to go. Who can we give this to?” This second-step language is very important as it reminds the visitor as to why we need their information: it’s for their benefit — we want to give the visitor something, not take something from them. Time and again, I see a multi-step page outperform a one-step by 300%.

Take advantage of thank you pages

Even though you’ve already captured a lead/sale/sign-up/conversion, thank you and confirmation pages are a necessary step in the funnel process. Right after people opt in for the offer on your landing page, you’ll want to ask them to immediately take another specific action on the thank you page. For example, if you have a page offering a free e-book, offer a free demo on the thank you page to attempt to push those prospects farther down the funnel. They’ll be much more likely to take an action once you’ve already convinced them to take a smaller action.

When visitors land on the report thank you page, we provide them the download link, but we also provide next steps with an option to get a demo.

It’s important to tag people based on what they’ve downloaded or what posts they’ve read. That way you can create tailored messaging for these prospects when reaching out to them through email.

Action

Assuming you’ve optimized each step of the conversion funnel, you should have some qualified leads becoming paying customers. However, your work here is not done. You will need to continue nurturing those qualified leads. After someone has taken a desired action and converted on your website, you’ll want to get these people back into the funnel in order to coax them into repeat business. Retention is such an important part of growing your customer base, since this will be revenue that you don’t have to pay for — this audience already showed a definite interest in what you’re offering.

If the lead converts into a customer, show them your other products or services and begin the cycle again. For example, let’s say you provide tree-trimming services and your customer just had you come by to trim the oak trees in their large backyard. After the job is done, continue reaching out to this customer with other services such as grass treatment, stump removals, or whatever else could be useful to them. You can do this by inviting them to an email newsletter or your social media channels. Send coupons and promotions via email. If you have an online store, include loyalty materials in their shipped order so they understand how much you value them as a customer.

Along with nurturing this repeat business, focus on optimizing your product pages by removing friction and doing all you can to encourage shoppers to checkout. Examine and improve your checkout flow by answering common questions along the way.

Key takeaways

Optimizing your funnel is a process that takes time, so don’t be afraid to experiment. It may take a few different offers before you find one that sticks and garners the most conversions. So create as many TOFU offers as you can think of to cater to the many different personas that make up your customer base. From white books and e-books to free trials, your TOFU content is the first step to building that relationship with your customers.

From there, continue creating great content and nurturing those mid-funnel leads. If your content is relevant and your website is optimized, you’ll notice that you’ll be getting many more leads than you did before optimization. The more leads you gather and keep interested, the more likely you are to get repeat sales!

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!


Moz Blog

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

Nofollow couldn’t save the Google webmaster blog from comment spam

Google’s plan of “preventing comment spam” with the nofollow link attribute didn’t work for its own webmaster blog.



Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.


Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

India is planning to achieve 50 GW of prodction from renewbale energy by 2028




style="display:inline-block;width:300px;height:250px"
data-ad-client="ca-pub-7815236958543991"
data-ad-slot="3672884813">

India is planning to achieve 50 gigawatt (GW) of production from renewable energy by 2028, in order to get to its goal of 40 per cent of electricity generation from non-fossil fuels by 2030, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy secretary, Anand Kumar said at the India-Norway Business Summit 2019 in New Delhi.

Of this 500 GW, 350 GW would come from solar, 140 GW wind, and the remaining generation capacity would come from small hydro and biomass power.

“This figure excludes large hydro. If we take large hydro into account the figure will grow to 560 GW to 575 GW. To reach this figure we have to bid out 30 GW of solar energy and 10 GW of wind energy every year,” Kumar said.

He added that India’s requirement for electricity generation capacity may reach 840 GW by 2030 if the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grows at a rate of 6.5 per cent.

“Out of 840 GW, we plan to install a little more than 500 GW in renewables. We have installed 75 GW renewable energy capacity in the country and another 46 GW is under various stages of installations,” added Kumar.

Latest solar news

More Articles

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

12 Methods to Get from Blank Page to First Draft

If you’re like me, after taking some time off from writing, you’re refreshed and champing at the bit to translate…

The post 12 Methods to Get from Blank Page to First Draft appeared first on Copyblogger.


Copyblogger

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

The Results of Our ‘Secret Contest’: 5 Winning Blog Posts from Our Certification Community

Did you know that Copyblogger certifies terrific content marketers? Well, we do, and we’ve been thinking about more ways we…

The post The Results of Our ‘Secret Contest’:
5 Winning Blog Posts from Our Certification Community
appeared first on Copyblogger.


Copyblogger

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

3 Ways to Persuade People Thinking about Buying from You

You shouldn’t think about growing your audience. Actually, let me rephrase that: You shouldn’t focus on growing your audience. Especially…

The post 3 Ways to Persuade People Thinking about Buying from You appeared first on Copyblogger.


Copyblogger

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

3 Big Lessons from Interviewing John Mueller at SearchLove London – Whiteboard Friday

Posted by willcritchlow

When you’ve got one of Google’s most helpful and empathetic voices willing to answer your most pressing SEO questions, what do you ask? Will Critchlow recently had the honor of interviewing Google’s John Mueller at SearchLove London, and in this week’s edition of Whiteboard Friday he shares his best lessons from that session, covering the concept of Domain Authority, the great subdomain versus subfolder debate, and a view into the technical workings of noindex/nofollow.

Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high-resolution version in a new tab!

Video Transcription

Hi, Whiteboard Friday fans. I’m Will Critchlow from Distilled, and I found myself in Seattle, wanted to record another Whiteboard Friday video and talk through some things that I learned recently when I got to sit down with John Mueller from Google at our SearchLove London conference recently.

So I got to interview John on stage, and, as many of you may know, John is a webmaster relations guy at Google and really a point of contact for many of us in the industry when there are technical questions or questions about how Google is treating different things. If you followed some of the stuff that I’ve written and talked about in the past, you’ll know that I’ve always been a little bit suspicious of some of the official lines that come out of Google and felt like either we don’t get the full story or we haven’t been able to drill in deep enough and really figure out what’s going on.

I was under no illusions that I might be able to completely fix this this in one go, but I did want to grill John on a couple of specific things where I felt like we hadn’t maybe asked things clearly enough or got the full story. Today I wanted to run through a few things that I learned when John and I sat down together. A little side note, I found it really fascinating doing this kind of interview. I sat on stage in a kind of journalistic setting. I had never done this before. Maybe I’ll do a follow-up Whiteboard Friday one day on things I learned and how to run interviews.

1. Does Google have a “Domain Authority” concept?

But the first thing that I wanted to quiz John about was this domain authority idea. So here we are on Moz. Moz has a proprietary metric called domain authority, DA. I feel like when, as an industry, we’ve asked Google, and John in particular, about this kind of thing in the past, does Google have a concept of domain authority, it’s got bundled up with feeling like, oh, he’s had an easy way out of being able to answer and say, “No, no, that’s a proprietary Moz metric. We don’t have that.”

I felt like that had got a bit confusing, because our suspicion is that there is some kind of an authority or a trust metric that Google has and holds at a domain level. We think that’s true, but we felt like they had always been able to wriggle out of answering the question. So I said to John, “Okay, I am not asking you do you use Moz’s domain authority metric in your ranking factors. Like we know that isn’t the case. But do you have something a little bit like it?”

Yes, Google has metrics that map into similar things

John said yes. He said yes, they have metrics that, his exact quote was, “map into similar things.”My way of phrasing this was this is stuff that is at the domain level. It’s based on things like link authority, and it is something that is used to understand performance or to rank content across an entire domain. John said yes, they have something similar to that.

New content inherits those metrics

They use it in particular when they discover new content on an existing domain. New content, in some sense, can inherit some of the authority from the domain, and this is part of the reason why we figured they must have something like this, because we’ve seen identical content perform differently on different sites. We know that there’s something to this. So yes, John confirmed that until they have some of those metrics developed, when they’ve seen a bit of content for long enough, and it can have its own link metrics and usage metrics, in the intervening time up until that point it can inherit some of this stuff from the domain.

Not wholly link-based

He did also just confirm that it’s not just link-based. This is not just a domain-level PageRank type thing.

2. Subdomains versus subfolders

This led me into the second thing that I really wanted to get out of him, which was — and when I raised this, I got kind of an eye roll, “Are we really going down this rabbit hole” — the subdomain versus subfolder question. You might have seen me talk about this. You might have seen people like Rand talk about this, where we’ve seen cases and we have case studies of moving blog.example.com to example.com/blog and changing nothing else and getting an uplift.

We know something must be going on, and yet the official line out of Google has for a very long time been: “We don’t treat these things differently. There is nothing special about subfolders. We’re perfectly happy with subdomains. Do whatever is right for your business.” We’ve had this kind of back-and-forth a few times. The way I put it to John was I said, “We have seen these case studies. How would you explain this?”

They try to figure out what belongs to the site

To his credit, John said, “Yes, we’ve seen them as well.” So he said, yes, Google has also seen these things. He acknowledged this is true. He acknowledged that it happens. The way he explained it connects back into this Domain Authority thing in my mind, which is to say that the way they think about it is: Are these pages on this subdomain part of the same website as things on the main domain?

That’s kind of the main question. They try and figure out, as he put it, “what belongs to this site.” We all know of sites where subdomains are entirely different sites. If you think about a blogspot.com or a WordPress.com domain, subdomains might be owned and managed by entirely different people, and there would be no reason for that authority to pass across. But what Google is trying to do and is trying to say, “Is this subdomain part of this main site?”

Sometimes this includes subdomains and sometimes not

He said sometimes they determine that it is, and sometimes they determine that it is not. If it is part of the site, in their estimation, then they will treat it as equivalent to a subfolder. This, for me, pretty much closes this loop. I think we understand each other now, which is Google is saying, in these certain circumstances, they will be treated identically, but there are circumstances where it can be treated differently.

My recommendation stays what it’s always been, which is 100% if you’re starting from the outset, put it on a subfolder. There’s no upside to the subdomain. Why would you risk the fact that Google might treat it as a separate site? If it is currently on a subdomain, then it’s a little trickier to make that case. I would personally be arguing for the integration and for making that move.

If it’s treated as part of the site, a subdomain is equivalent to a subfolder

But unfortunately, but somewhat predictably, I couldn’t tie John down to any particular way of telling if this is the case. If your content is currently on a subdomain, there isn’t really any way of telling if Google is treating it differently, which is a shame, but it’s somewhat predictable. But at least we understand each other now, and I think we’ve kind of got to the root of the confusion. These case studies are real. This is a real thing. Certainly in certain circumstances moving from the subdomain to the subfolder can improve performance.

3. Noindex’s impact on nofollow

The third thing that I want to talk about is a little bit more geeked out and technical, and also, in some sense, it leads to some bigger picture lessons and thinking. A little while ago John kind of caught us out by talking about how if you have a page that you no index and keep it that way for a long time, that Google will eventually treat that equivalently to a no index, no follow.

In the long-run, a noindex page’s links effectively become nofollow

In other words, the links off that page, even if you’ve got it as a no index, follow, the links off that page will be effectively no followed. We found that a little bit confusing and surprising. I mean I certainly felt like I had assumed it didn’t work that way simply because they have the no index, follow directive, and the fact that that’s a thing seems to suggest that it ought to work that way.

It’s been this way for a long time

It wasn’t really so much about the specifics of this, but more the like: How did we not know this? How did this come about and so forth? John talked about how, firstly, it has been this way for a long time. I think he was making the point none of you all noticed, so how big a deal can this really be? I put it back to him that this is kind of a subtle thing and very hard to test, very hard to extract out the different confounding factors that might be going on.

I’m not surprised that, as an industry, we missed it. But the point being it’s been this way for a long time, and Google’s view and certainly John’s view was that this hadn’t been hidden from us so much as the people who knew this hadn’t realized that they needed to tell anyone. The actual engineers working on the search algorithm, they had a curse of knowledge.

The curse of knowledge: engineers didn’t realize webmasters had the wrong idea

They knew it worked this way, and they had never realized that webmasters didn’t know that or thought any differently. This was one of the things that I was kind of trying to push to John a little more was kind of saying, “More of this, please. Give us more access to the engineers. Give us more insight into their way of thinking. Get them to answer more questions, because then out of that we’ll spot the stuff that we can be like, ‘Oh, hey, that thing there, that was something I didn’t know.’ Then we can drill deeper into that.”

That led us into a little bit of a conversation about how John operates when he doesn’t know the answer, and so there were some bits and pieces that were new to me at least about how this works. John said he himself is generally not attending search quality meetings. The way he works is largely off his knowledge and knowledge base type of content, but he has access to engineers.

They’re not dedicated to the webmaster relations operation. He’s just going around the organization, finding individual Google engineers to answer these questions. It was somewhat interesting to me at least to find that out. I think hopefully, over time, we can generally push and say, “Let’s look for those engineers. John, bring them to the front whenever they want to be visible, because they’re able to answer these kinds of questions that might just be that curse of knowledge that they knew this all along and we as marketers hadn’t figured out this was how things worked.”

That was my quick run-through of some of the things that I learned when I interviewed John. We’ll link over to more resources and transcripts and so forth. But it’s been a blast. Take care.

Video transcription by Speechpad.com

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!


Moz Blog

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

SearchCap: Delisted from Google, Cyber Monday paid search & JavaScript SEO

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.



Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.


Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

What SEOs Can Learn from AdWords – Whiteboard Friday

Posted by DiTomaso

Organic and paid search aren’t always at odds; there are times when there’s benefit in knowing how they work together. Taking the time to know the ins and outs of AdWords can improve your rankings and on-site experience. In today’s edition of Whiteboard Friday, our fabulous guest host Dana DiTomaso explains how SEOs can improve their game by taking cues from paid search in this Whiteboard Friday.

Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high-resolution version in a new tab!

Video Transcription

Hi, my name is Dana DiTomaso. I’m President and Partner at Kick Point, and one of the things that we do at Kick Point is we do both SEO and paid. One of the things that’s really useful is when SEO and paid work together. But what’s even better is when SEOs can learn from paid to make their stuff better.

One of the things that is great about AdWords or Google Ads — whenever you’re watching this, it may be called one thing or the other — is that you can learn a lot from what has a high click-through rate, what performs well in paid, and paid is way faster than waiting for Google to catch up to the awesome title tags you’ve written or the new link building that you’ve done to see how it’s going to perform. So I’m going to talk about four things today that you can learn from AdWords, and really these are easy things to get into in AdWords.

Don’t be intimidated by the interface. You can probably just get in there and look at it yourself, or talk to your AdWords person. I bet they’d be really excited that you know what a callout extension is. So we’re going to start up here.

1. Negative keywords

The first thing is negative keywords. Negative keywords, obviously really important. You don’t want to show up for things that you shouldn’t be showing up for.

Often when we need to take over an AdWords account, there aren’t a lot of negative keywords. But if it’s a well-managed account, there are probably lots of negatives that have been added there over time. What you want to look at is if there’s poor word association. So in your industry, cheap, free, jobs, and then things like reviews and coupons, if these are really popular search phrases, then maybe this is something you need to create content for or you need to think about how your service is presented in your industry.

Then what you can do to change that is to see if there’s something different that you can do to present this kind of information. What are the kinds of things your business doesn’t want? Are you definitely not saying these things in the content of your website? Or is there a way that you can present the opposite opinion to what people might be searching for, for example? So think about that from a content perspective.

2. Title tags and meta descriptions

Then the next thing are title tags and meta descriptions. Title tags and meta descriptions should never be a write it once and forget it kind of thing. If you’re an on-it sort of SEO, you probably go in every once in a while and try to tweak those title tags and meta descriptions. But the problem is that sometimes there are just some that aren’t performing. So go into Google Search Console, find the title tags that have low click-through rate and high rankings, and then think about what you can do to test out new ones.

Then run an AdWords campaign and test out those title tags in the title of the ad. Test out new ad copy — that would be your meta descriptions — and see what actually brings a higher click-through rate. Then whichever one does, ta-da, that’s your new title tags and your meta descriptions. Then add those in and then watch your click-through rate increase or decrease.

Make sure to watch those rankings, because obviously title tag changes can have an impact on your rankings. But if it’s something that’s keyword rich, that’s great. I personally like playing with meta descriptions, because I feel like meta descriptions have a bigger impact on that click-through rate than title tags do, and it’s something really important to think about how are we making this unique so people want to click on us. The very best meta description I’ve ever seen in my life was for an SEO company, and they were ranking number one.

They were obviously very confident in this ranking, because it said, “The people above me paid. The people below me aren’t as good as me. Hire me for your SEO.” I’m like, “That’s a good meta description.” So what can you do to bring in especially that brand voice and your personality into those titles, into those meta descriptions and test it out with ads first and see what’s going to resonate with your audience. Don’t just think about click-through rate for these ads.

Make sure that you’re thinking about conversion rate. If you have a really long sales cycle, make sure those leads that you’re getting are good, because what you don’t want to have happen is have an ad that people click on like crazy, they convert like crazy, and then the customers are just a total trash fire. You really want to make sure you’re driving valuable business through this kind of testing. So this might be a bit more of a longer-term piece for you.

3. Word combinations

The third thing you can look at are word combinations.

So if you’re not super familiar with AdWords, you may not be familiar with the idea of broad match modifier. So in AdWords we have broad phrases that you can search for, recipes, for example, and then anything related to the word “recipe” will show up. But you could put in a phrase in quotes. You could say “chili recipes.” Then if they say, “I would like a chili recipe,” it would come up.

If it says “chili crockpot recipes,” it would not come up. Now if you had + chili + recipes, then anything with the phrase “chili recipes” would come up, which can be really useful. If you have a lot of different keyword combinations and you don’t have time for that, you can use broad match modifier to capture a lot of them. But then you have to have a good negative keyword list, speaking as an AdWords person for a second.

Now one of the things that can really come out of broad match modifier are a lot of great, new content ideas. If you look at the keywords that people had impressions from or clicks from as a result of these broad match modifier keywords, you can find the strangest phrasing that people come up with. There are lots of crazy things that people type into Google. We all know this, especially if it’s voice search and it’s obviously voice search.

One of the fun things to do is look and see if anybody has “okay Google” and then the search phrase, because they said “okay Google” twice and then Google searched “okay Google” plus the phrase. That’s always fun to pick up. But you can also pick up lots of different content ideas, and this can help you modify poorly performing content for example. Maybe you’re just not saying the thing in the way in which your audience is saying it.

AdWords gives you totally accurate data on what your customers are thinking and feeling and saying and searching. So why not use that kind of data? So definitely check out broad match modifier stuff and see what you can do to make that better.

4. Extensions

Then the fourth thing is extensions. So extensions are those little snippets that can show up under an ad.

You should always have all of the extensions loaded in, and then maybe Google picks some, maybe they won’t, but at least they’re there as an option. Now one thing that’s great are callout extensions. Those are the little site links that are like free trial, and people click on those, or find out more information or menu or whatever it might be. Now testing language in those callout extensions can help you with your call-to-action buttons.

Especially if you’re thinking about things like people want to download a white paper, well, what’s the best way to phrase that? What do you want to say for things like a submit button for your newsletter or for a contact form? Those little, tiny pieces, that are called micro-copy, what can you do by taking your highest performing callout extensions and then using those as your call-to-action copy on your website?

This is really going to improve your lead click-through rate. You’re going to improve the way people feel about you, and you’re going to have that really nice consistency between the language that you see in your advertising and the language that you have on your website, because one thing you really want to avoid as an SEO is to get into that silo where this is SEO and this is AdWords and the two of you aren’t talking to each other at all and the copy just feels completely disjointed between the paid side and the organic side.

It should all be working together. So by taking the time to understand AdWords a little bit, getting to know it, getting to know what you can do with it, and then using some of that information in your SEO work, you can improve your on-site experience as well as rankings, and your paid person is probably going to appreciate that you talked to them for a little bit.

Thanks.

Video transcription by Speechpad.com

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!


Moz Blog

Related Articles

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

Happy Thanksgiving from Copyblogger!

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the U.S.! If you’re taking some time off, have a happy and safe holiday — and…

The post Happy Thanksgiving from Copyblogger! appeared first on Copyblogger.


Copyblogger

Find More Articles

Posted in Latest NewsComments Off

Advert