Almost every lead generation campaign can benefit from improved Search Engine Optimization results. Organic search traffic funneled to your landing pages will yield a higher volume of leads over time. If a quick Google search of your business’s name isn’t yielding much of anything about your company, you’ve got some catching up to do on your search engine optimization, or SEO.
Adding search-friendly elements and keywords to your site to improve your company website’s visibility in search engine algorithms can be a huge asset to your lead generation strategy, not to mention your business and profits.
SEO optimization takes skill, but before you run out and hire an SEO team, here are a few essential tips you can try are your own and start generating more leads through SEO right now.
Find your business’ common search terms
The most basic, yet crucial step is to familiarize yourself with the search terms your customers are commonly using to find your business and other businesses in your industry.
Danny Dover, author of the bestseller SEO Secrets, recommends first going straight to the source—your customers. Listen to the kinds of things they’re asking for or ask what they’re searching for to get an idea of the terms you should include.
Furthermore, Google AdWords offers a few tools that can be a useful starting point for brainstorming terms to optimize a site, such as its Keyword Finder, which allows users to find the most searched keywords by industry.
Put those terms to good use
What search engines see on a website and what humans see are more often than not two very different things–especially if a website is designed poorly and without search in mind.
Try checking your website through a search engine’s lens by loading your URL into a tool like SEO-browser.com or the W3C Markup Validation Service, which can give you some hints as to where you might be going wrong
One of the most common places businesses fail to put keywords that could improve their rankings is in their webpage’s title, which appears at the top of the web browser. Search engines use titles to categorize your website, so it’s important to have a descriptive one that people would search for, not just your company’s name.
It’s important to be concise however, because search engines will only display up to 70 characters in their results. Anything over that maximum will be cut off with ellipses.
Improving your homepage tag won’t be enough, though. Make sure each page of your website has its own unique tag, which can only help improve your website’s ranking. The same goes for the URLs for your pages, which can be changed to include more SEO-friendly terms. But be mindful of length here too—users want to get an idea of what’s on the page fast and don’t want to copy and paste long links.
Claim your Google listing
What most business owners don’t know is that they can claim their Google Places listing and edit it. By doing that you improve your businesses’ chances of appearing on the first page of Google for relevant searches.
If your business is focused on a particular local customer base, this can be a very easy way to improve your rankings and exposure. When a user searches for a general business in a particular city, such as “pizza” or “doctor,” Google will list the top seven places on its first page. Unless the listing is claimed by the business, the information given comes from public business databases.
But, if you claim your business’ listing, you control the information that appears—likely improving your rank in the search results. Add important information, photos and contact information for the best results.
Keep your content fresh
What good is SEO optimization if you’re sending people to landing pages that haven’t been updated in three years? To stay relevant and keep up to date, you must constantly add new content and generate new links. Each time your add some fresh and unique content to your site you are giving search engines new ways of finding you. Create compelling content that is useful to your audience will improve your SEO once users back-link you from other webpages.
An easy and effective way to do this is by keeping a company blog. Post as often as possible, and at least once a week. Most blogging software, like WordPress and Tumbler, let you schedule posts in advance, so even if you can’t write every day, you can create some short posts ahead of time that will post without you having to think about it.