5 Ways to Use SEO in Inbound Lead Generation
Updated: Jan 17, 2022
They say if your business is not on the internet, then you’re out of business. But these days, the competition is incredibly tough that it’s not enough to just be online. You need to be seen – and more.
Presently, there are a staggering 130 trillion pages on Google. It’s overwhelming, we know. Add that to the continuously decreasing attention span of internet users, and it might feel like the game is over and small businesses have lost their chance of gaining inbound leads online.
Obviously, we’re writing this blog because that’s not entirely true. You still have a chance! Actually, you have a really good chance of still making it. The key is SEO.
Search engine optimization or SEO is the strategy of using keywords in your content and applying effective techniques that will increase a web page’s ranking on search engines. With SEO, you can be on top of Google’s results – the very first step to attracting your prospect towards your business. This is called inbound SEO.
Inbound search engine optimization offers a more refined way of generating and producing highly-qualified leads by prioritizing the establishment of meaningful connections.
1. Prioritize quality using long-tail keywords
SEO is not just about getting traffic to your website. It’s about generating high-quality leads that are easier to convert.
To do this, we need to talk about the 3 types of keywords: short-tail (single word-search), mid-tail (2 words), and long-tail keywords (3 words or more).
Short-tail keywords are commonly used for general topics. Long-tail keywords are phrases that are used to get more specific results. It brings the highest quality leads because they are used by prospects who are in the deeper part of the marketing funnel.
To enlighten you better, let’s try searching for the keyword “staffing” on Google. If you can see the generated results, you will notice that they are mostly definitions of the term. The volume of users who search for short-tail keywords is higher but they are not yet ready to engage because all they want at the moment is general knowledge of the topic.
On the other hand, try searching for “staffing agency for nurses in California.” The results are a combination of local business listings and relevant websites. The volume of searches for this keyword is not as high as the former, but those who use this are specifically looking for nursing jobs in California. To put it simply, these prospects are more interested and are ready to act.
Long-tail keywords may not generate as much volume as short-tail keywords but it produces more quality leads that are easier to convert into sales.
2. Stay current and provide value with blogs
The freshness of a website’s content is one of the factors for ranking on top of Google. But we all know that no one updates their website information all the time. Hence, we use blogs.
Blogging does not only give your website fresh content, it also puts your expertise into a display and gives you a chance to truly connect with your prospect by educating, appealing, and providing value.
By putting yourself in the shoes of your audience, you can use keywords that they will be searching for. For example, one of your key phrases is “Sales Supervisor positions.” You can use the title “Top 10 Qualities to Look for when Hiring for Sales Supervisor Positions.” Follow through with helpful content and your blog will not just gain credibility, it will generate highly-qualified leads.
3. Create a wave of social signals
In 2014, former Google Head of Webspam, Matt Cutts, stated that social shares have nothing to do with Google search ranking, but in 2018, Hootsuite conducted a test on the effects of social media shares on the search engine results pages (SERP). (Turn the blue words into a hyperlink that directs to this page: https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-media-seo-experiment/)
The result showed that links from a website that are shared on social media had a positive impact on its Google ranking. But remember, to create a wave of shares and recognition on social media, you need valuable content and you should never bombard your audience with redundant and uninteresting content. Doing so will damage your reputation and might cause your followers to unfollow. The lesser following you have, the lesser chance of getting your message over to your prospects.
4. Be mobile-friendly
Most Google searches are now done on mobile devices. In fact, the numbers have risen to 63% in the past two years. But even before that, Google has foreseen the increase in mobile usage and announced a penalty for websites that deliver unsatisfactory mobile experiences back in 2013. Penalties are mainly based on faulty redirects and smartphone-only errors. (Turn the blue words into a hyperlink that directs to this page: https://developers.google.com/search/blog/2013/06/changes-in-rankings-of-smartphone_11)
Faulty redirects happen when a smartphone user gets redirected to an irrelevant page on a smartphone-optimized website. To put it simply, a user gets directed somewhere he doesn’t want to be. It will cause confusion and may stop the user from continuing his search.
Smartphone-only errors are misconfigurations that prevent mobile users from accessing web pages that are available on the computer.
In 2015, Google launched a mobile-friendly update that boosts the rankings of mobile-optimized pages when searches are done on mobile devices. This shows how serious Google is when it comes to delivering a quality user experience.
If you really are interested in ranking on top, your website’s mobile-friendliness should be one of the firsts on your list. Chances are you will find most of your prospects on their mobile devices.
5. Get listed on citation websites
Remember the old, bulky Yellow Pages Directory? It’s now online, and so as many credible business listing websites that have surfaced over the past two decades. The most notable ones include Google’s very own Google My Business, along with Yelp, Bing Places, and Better Business Bureau. (Please turn the blue words into hyperlinks that direct to their respective landing pages)
Business listing websites are also called citations. Citations include the name, address, and phone number of a business (NAP). Most of the websites offer an option to filter results based on the user’s current location which benefits local small businesses.
Make sure that you are listed in the top citations and your information is correct. If you are changing phone numbers or any crucial information, don’t forget to update your business list.
Google continues to dominate the search engine market. But even with multifold webpages, you can still attract highly-qualified leads.
Focus on quality, be empathic, aim to educate, be seen on different platforms, and provide convenience especially by being mobile-friendly – all these are little steps but, if combined and executed properly, they will place your website on the first organic results of Google where prospects will find you at the moment that they are ready to take action, turning them into high-quality leads.