The SEO landscape is evolving, especially over the last few months. Most changes center on how SEO and social marketing are becoming a cohesive effort.
With the emergence and growth of Google Plus, particularly Google’s Search plus Your World, social media is starting to have a profound impact on SEO. In essence, these evolutionary changes in Google search are redefining the best practices of SEO. Instead of optimizing a website for great rankings, SEO’s must optimize a web presence. Many are calling this unified approach web presence optimization.
Below we highlight what truly defines this unique practice called web presence optimization, and how your marketing team can prepare for the merge of SEO and Google Plus social engagement.
SEO is Not Dead. It is Only Evolving.
Many Internet marketers strongly feel that SEO is dead. This belief may be true if your definition of SEO centers on writing keyword-stuffed webpages and manually building backlinks. That form of SEO is indeed dying off.
With respect to the evolutionary changes that are merging Google Plus social activity with Search, the fundamentals of SEO are only evolving. Newly formulated SEO strategies are holistic in that they integrate social engagement and real relationships.
Instead of working effortlessly to manipulate Google’s search engine results with a more technical, keyword-focused strategy, SEO should emphasize the creation of meaningful connections supported by a community approach.
In short, the best practices of SEO are evolving to be more like real marketing. This is the foundation of web presence optimization.
Web Presence Optimization is Brand Building
A major aspect of the evolving SEO standards is that search engine optimization is less solely an Internet marketing and advertising medium.
The integrative approach to SEO is now growing to be more like a branding tool. With Search plus Your World, the more Google Plus followers a brand can earn (thus increasing its social authority,) the more momentum a brand can gain for its SEO efforts. And the fact that Search plus Your World is a community-based concept that promotes relevant with search engine users, it’s sign that SEO is evolving into a more a branding effort.
As a result, SEO is being redefined, and “web presence optimization” is an emerging buzzword that defines it well.
In the game of Internet marketing, increasing the amount of traffic from qualified searchers is only the first step in a successful search engine marketing strategy. The most telling benchmark of a successful SEM strategy is the number of conversions that come from your SEM efforts.
All companies have different online objectives and different definitions of what a “conversion” is. For some companies, a conversion is a sale on their ecommerce website. For others, the conversion is collecting an email address or a phone number so they can add them to an email list. For some companies, simply getting a website visitor to contact them for more information on their product or service is only the first step and that visitor is only just entering the conversion funnel.
No matter what your definition of a website conversion is, Internet marketers and website design teams alike have been brainstorming new ideas and split testing marketing pitches on their clients’ websites in an effort to increase their clients’ conversion rates and, in turn, their return on investment. This practice of Website optimization is called Conversion Optimization.
One widely used ways that Internet marketing firms have been optimizing for conversions is offering a call to action via a “giveaway” or something of value to entice website visitors to convert. Below we give 3 examples of giveaways that help increase website conversions:
Who doesn’t like discounts on things they purchase online? Ecommerce marketers have used discount or coupon codes to entice website visitors to make a purchase for years.
The site visitor gets a certain dollar amount or percentage off their order (or an item) by typing in a specific coupon code that is tied to the offer. This is still a tried and true method of converting visitors into sales and is a great way for ecommerce stores to increase conversions.
Free eBooks or Whitepapers
Offering a free eBook or Whitepaper in exchange for a web user’s email address is a common and effective conversion optimization technique.
The user is far more inclined to submit their contact information if the eBook or Whitepaper provides valuable information or takeaway points that will benefit them.
In turn, the person offering the free eBook or Whitepaper gets the go-ahead to add the user’s email address to his email list, where he can market more information, deals, services, etc. to that person while they are on the list. If done well, the eBook also provides more credibility to the website owner giving it away, because they are offering their knowledge/expertise to web users that will benefit them – in a hard copy format.
Free Advice or Consultations
Expert advice is something that all consumers covet when deciding on making a purchase. One website conversion optimization technique that companies use is offering a free consultation on their product or service offering if they reach out and contact that company through the website.
Such is the case for an SEO strategy firm offering free SEO assessments of a potential client’s website or offering a free quotation for their services.
There’s no obligation to the website visitor, but there’s a greater chance of the visitor converting into a sale/client because of the free information that the firm gave that visitor. It helps build trust and rapport with the visitor and ultimately leads to higher rates of conversion.
Feel free to leave your website conversion optimization strategies below in the comments section. Thanks for reading!