When you’re developing your marketing plan, attaining a page 1 ranking on Google and other search engines needs to be one of your top goals. When you show up on page 1, searchers (aka potential customers) are far more likely to see your company, associate you as the leader in your space, trust your brand, and click through to your website as a hot lead.
No matter what stats you review, it’s clear: most of the coveted purchase ready sales leads are generated by websites that rank the highest on page 1 of their search results. It’s as simple as this: if people aren’t finding you, you’re losing business and even worse you’re losing them to your competition!
Here are 7 reasons why ranking page-one should be your marketing priority:
ORIGINATION: Everyone and everything starts with search.
Whether people are looking on the internet for products, services or information, everything starts with a search engine. Potential customers can find whatever they’re looking for by opening Google, Yahoo or Bing, typing in some keywords and sifting through a wealth of information. The results that appear on page 1 of our users’ search engines act as a bridge, a catalyst that propels them from simply wanting something to taking definitive action. Even when the searcher knows the name of the company they are searching for, 93% of the time they type the name into the search box rather than typing in the complete domain address. So if you don’t rank page one, you might be losing business even when the searcher is specifically looking for your company.
That’s why effectively harnessing the power of search engines to optimize your website so your organization lands on page 1 is a major priority for modest and advanced marketers alike, and it will be a huge key to attracting potential customers who are actively searching the internet for your products and services.
Using effective Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices will enable you to create a site that’s both popular and very easy to find by search engines, thus placing your organization in front of prospects precisely at the right moment during their online search.
TRACTION: 91% of searchers never make it to page 2.
It’s important to realize ‒ most people won’t go past the first page of search results, even though there may be millions of additional results to their queries.
Forbes reports that “the first page of Google captures 71% of search traffic clicks and has been reported to be as high as 91% in recent years. Second-page results are far from a close second, coming in at below 6% of all website clicks.”
Effective SEO has to be goal-oriented: your website must land on page 1 after a search for the products or services you offer, or we’re talking about exponential losses of potential customers, sales, and profits.
Search engine algorithms are largely responsible for sending one site straight to the first page of the searchers’ results while relegating others to not-page-one limbo where they will likely never be seen. Great SEO incorporates keywords, links, structural coding and design that signify how search engines should index the page while simultaneously adding value to the humans that are searching.
Using the proper mixture of SEO tactics is the key to your website achieving page-one status and achieving a significantly higher clickthrough rate, thereby getting the traction you need to attract sales qualified leads and grow your revenue.
BRANDING: When you appear on page 1 organically, your brand is perceived as the trusted authority.
When people search for solutions in your industry, they use specific keywords. When your brand consistently shows up on page 1 of their search results, you become the dominant brand in their minds, a brand they feel they can trust.
You want to use organic search traffic to build your brand. This approach centers around the fact that people find your content and website when they search using relevant keywords. When the search engines rank you page one organically you are essentially receiving their unbiased seal of approval and searchers immediately identify that as a sign of trust and market leadership.
According to Salesforce, because it takes an average of six to eight touchpoints with brands before a customer is ready to buy from them, it’s important to create multiple touchpoints to give your target audience every opportunity to discover your business, earn their trust as the brand with authority, and become viable sales leads.
To create those critical touchpoints, start by targeting all the relevant keywords for your industry. You can find these niche keywords by using specialized apps like wordstream.com and then use a keyword planner like the one offered by Google to determine the competitiveness of each keyword. This will help you connect with people who are looking for exactly what you’re offering.
You’ll also want to make sure your branding is consistent throughout your messaging so that, each time a potential customer sees your content, they associate it with you and start to recognize you as the industry leader. Additionally, once they choose to click on the link that takes them to your website, make sure the user experience is simple, intuitive and speedy.
By following the steps above, you’re doing the right things to establish yourself as the definitive trustworthy brand in your industry and you’re helping the people who are searching for your solutions to choose your organization above everyone else.
COMPETITION: People view organic search as a benchmarking report.
Companies that appear on page 1 of search results earn the perception of having market superiority over their competitors. That’s important because the sooner visitors perceive your company as offering the superior solution to their problems, the sooner they’ll choose your company and start buying from you.
The links they find organically, after typing in keywords and getting results, gives you higher credibility than paid ads that appear at the top of results pages, according to countless studies. Conversely, with Pay-Per-Click (PPC) traffic (aka “paid traffic”), you pay for your ad to show up in search results. Searchers identify paid ads, with just that and recognize that anyone can pay for that positioning therefore doesn’t have the same trust associated with organic search results. To that end, more people click on organic search results than on paid ads, organic traffic is the most valuable and results in more qualified leads for you to turn into loyal customers. When potential buyers find you on the top page of their organic search results, it’s perceived as a legitimate benchmark and, in their minds, it places you ahead of your competitors.
How do you gain the necessary foothold above your competition? It’s those three beautiful little words — Search Engine Optimization. There’s an art and science to getting your SEO right and many companies choose to hire SEO experts to help them achieve the sought-after page 1 search-ranking they need to compete, but if you’re doing it yourself, you’ve got to understand the importance of:
- Publishing unique and intelligent content – Sharing helpful blogs and information with potential customers is a powerful way to attract new buyers and creates a great archive of helpful content targeted to specific prospects.
- Writing for a variety of buyer personas – Creating quality educational content that resonates with each of your ideal buyers is a sure way to improve your SEO, because they’re finding exactly what they’re looking for to solve their specific pain points.
- Incorporating specific and long-tail keywords – Honing in on what keywords your target audience is using to find solutions to their issues is where the magic happens because search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo will identify your website or pieces of content as destinations for those particular subjects. This will boost your company in the search rankings and encourage your ideal customers to find you and visit your website.
- Using internal links – Linking your existing content to your archived content can keep visitors on your site longer and this helps give a boost to your search rankings.
- External link building – All search engines take notice of what external directories, associations, businesses that you associate with through external links. The popularity, value, and relevance of these external sites have a significant impact on your rankings and should be regularly monitored, evaluated and adjusted.
- Nailing the UX on your website – Remember to optimize your site for users first, then for Google’s requirements because user experience is a hugely important ranking factor for all search engines.
Of course, there’s much more involved in achieving optimal organic search results by using tried and true SEO tactics, but these basics are essential elements to get right when you’re competing to win at the organic search game.
EXPANSION: Ranking on page 1 after an organic search provides you with the unique potential to expand your reach to a brand new market that isn’t currently in your contact database.
One of the best results you can get from achieving page 1 ranking with a killer SEO strategy is attracting new customers. Providing relevant, engaging content is especially effective in boosting your SEO, page-ranking, and ability to get new eyes on your solutions.
By implementing SEO strategies like generating great content, including long-tail keywords that are very specific to your products or services, and linking to additional content on your website, you can achieve that glorious page 1 ranking you’re dreaming of. This new prized position will get the attention of vast numbers of new qualified sales leads so you can convert them to customers and grow your business quickly.
TRAFFIC: When your page 1 ranking starts generating a significant number of new visitors and traffic to your website, you’ll reap many benefits.
After you’ve started converting all these new visitors to paying customers, you’ll notice there are additional benefits to reap as well. You’ll have more people and companies to provide valuable feedback, activity on your site, and opportunities for additional sales and necessary improvements to stay in sync with the needs of your prospects and customers.
Customer feedback is important for several reasons. You can gain helpful information about which aspects of your products or services are working well and which need improvement. You’re also letting your customers know their involvement and feedback are important, which appeals to today’s digitally-savvy buyers.
When customers are happy, they recommend you to others, and this increases your potential for further expansion. When they’re satisfied, they become valuable loyal customers who want to keep returning for more. Additionally, feedback, especially in the form of customer reviews, is a fulcrum for growth because most customers read online reviews before visiting a website, and they tend to trust the opinions of reviewers as if they were personal recommendations.
Additionally, every new prospect that clicks on your page 1 link boosts the activity level on your website, which Google factors into their ranking algorithms and this increased activity can help you stay on top. And, of course, every new visitor is a potential new customer, which is the biggest benefit of all from increasing traffic to your site.
SALES LEAD VOLUME: Everyone is searching for organizations to help solve their challenges, so when you achieve page 1 ranking due to outstanding SEO practices, you can generate a significant volume of sales leads.
Let’s face it – the main reason we employ digital marketing strategies and techniques is to generate new leads. Getting your SEO right is the key to landing on page 1 and the key to steadily increasing your lead volume, expanding your customer base and fattening up your bottom line. The quality of leads generated through search is the highest quality because they are actively searching for the product or service that you provide. Let’s face it, it’s a lot easier to sell a product to someone that knows they need it and that’s the precise quality sales leads that are generated through search.
The hard truth is that SEO is really difficult to get right. As you can tell just by reading this blog, there are a lot of elements involved and getting even one wrong can be disastrous for your brand. It takes years of experience to fully understand the complete SEO framework but once you get it right, it’s quite thrilling and profitable.
If you’re tackling SEO on your own, I wish you the best. If you need a team of SEO experts on your side to help achieve page 1 status and elevate your visibility and ignite your sales growth, reach out to us. We can help.