One of the biggest challenges for the owners of growing businesses is online lead generation. They know there is a demand for their products and services, but they are just not getting the volume of enquiries they should from their website.
Online lead generation is a multi-step process.
There are a number of places to look at when identifying the problem. One is, of course, the website's content and design. If the website is not correctly optimised to convert traffic into enquiries, then leads and enquiries that should be landing in your in-box will just be leaking away.
But the step BEFORE that is the SEO strategy, and with changes to customer behaviour in recent years, this often has to be reassessed.
Many businesses miss out on leads because they are using old-style thinking with their SEO, where the focus was on the high volume 'primary' keywords.
And who can blame you for going down that path?
Those high search volumes in the Keyword Planner look pretty appealing, and can have you salivating at the thought of the money-truck rolling up to your door.
But the game has changed with search and SEO.
In our experience, the money-pot may not be where you think it is, and when you dig deeper and look past those primary keywords, there are untapped opportunities for lead generation.
Want more online leads? Then listen... really listen to your customers.
When it comes to online business lead generation, your website must be visible for the REAL searches that your potential customers are making, NOT just for those primary keywords.
To figure out what they are, stop thinking like a business owner… or a sales manager… or a salesman who is looking at what you do and what you offer.
Instead, take a minute to think like a customer. Walk in their shoes for a bit. Think about the problems they face and what they want. Think about the pain they have that would make them turn to the Internet to find an answer.
Most of all, think about the EVERYDAY LANGUAGE they use when they are looking for answers. If they were talking about their problem at a barbecue, what would they say to their mates? Or if they were in the boardroom, what would they say when discussing a problem you can solve?
Online lead generation isn't about the products you sell. It is about the problems you solve.
Let's quickly unpack this with some examples, with a business that sells packaging products.
1. When looking through your eyes at WHAT YOU DO...
When looking at your business through YOUR eyes, you focus on what you SELL. Things like: bags, wrappers, cartons, inner cartons, POS displays, cartonboard, folding cartons, packaging.
Accordingly, you might set up your SEO strategy to target keywords like:
- printed shopping bags
- paper shopping bags
- plastic shopping bags
- shopping bags
As we said earlier, at first glance, that would seem like a reasonable approach. Those are all 'primary' keywords, and the numbers of monthly searches in the Keyword Planner look impressive.
2. When looking through your customers' eyes at WHAT THEY WANT...
When people type things into Google, they look at it through THEIR eyes. They are in THEIR world. They may not even know the technically correct names for the products you sell. All they know is that they have a problem and they need an answer!
To illustrate the point, here are some real search queries from Google:
- wholesale shopping bags
- shopping bag supplier
- shopping bags with own logo
- shopping bags with shop logo
- carry bags with shop logo
- packaging for product samples
- packaging to make products look good
- packaging to protect the product
- product protection material
- cartons that open for product display
See the difference?
The first keyword list is business (or 'me') centric.
The second keyword list is customer (or 'you') centric.
The first keyword list is about you and what you sell.
The second keyword list is about your customers, and what they want.
The numbers show you where the money is.
This second group of searches are from prospects who know EXACTLY what they are looking for. They are further down the track in the buying process. They are ready to buy.
We cannot emphasise the importance of this strongly enough. You'll breathe new life into your website when the content talks to people about the most important thing in the world: their problems and how you can solve them!
Let your sales team be your earpiece.
We strongly encourage you to explain this strategy to your sales team. Bring them into the picture, so they understand the importance of listening for 'clues' from potential customers when they receive enquiries.
Often, people who do not know your industry jargon may talk about your products or services using 'incorrect terms'. But guess what? That person who just used what you may see as an incorrect terminology may well be one of hundreds who use the SAME words. And those people are using those same words when searching online.
Clearly, if your SEO strategy is structured so as to make your website visible for those searches, you'll have a significant competitive advantage.
Looking for help with increasing your online leads?
We'd love to help you to grow your business, and you can be sure we will take a genuine interest in you, your ideas, your objectives and your challenges. So get in touch with us today by arranging a no-obligation chat about lead generation and your overall marketing needs.