Lead nurturing campaigns are key to building client relationships during the long, complex B2B sales cycle. This type of campaign gives B2B marketers the ability to move leads through the buyer journey from their first interaction with the business through to the final purchasing decision. Lead nurturing can also continue to be used throughout the entire customer lifecycle after purchase to create customer loyalty, advocacy and even generate referrals. It is the most effective way to ensure you are making the most of your marketing lists and are not losing valuable leads, sales opportunities or customers due to a lack of communication.
As sales funnels are getting longer and buyers are becoming more independent, effective lead nurturing is becoming more and more important. However, more digital marketers are becoming aware of the strategy, so if your brand isn’t currently nurturing prospects, your competitors probably are. If you’re not currently using lead nurturing in your b2b marketing campaigns, it’s time to consider it.
What Exactly is Lead Nurturing?
According to Marketo, a leading provider of automated marketing services, 50% of leads are not yet ready to buy. In addition, a study by MarketingSherpa found that around 80% of new leads don’t convert to sales. Lead nurturing is the most effective way to combat these statistics.
As mentioned above, lead nurturing is the process of developing relationships with prospects at every stage of the sales funnel to move them through the sales journey. It focuses marketing efforts on listening to the needs of prospects, and providing them with the information and answers that they need at different stages of their buyer journey. As relevance and efficiency are improved with lead nurturing, companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at a 33% lower cost.
How Lead Scoring Impacts Lead Nurturing
Lead scoring is a vital element of any lead nurturing campaign. In fact, there’s not much point in running a lead nurturing campaign without it.
The importance of lead scoring should not be underestimated. Without it, you don’t know which prospects are most engaged and it’s more difficult to identify where they are in their buyer journey. However, despite the overwhelming reasons to implement lead scoring, currently, only 21% of B2B marketers are using it.
If you are not familiar with lead scoring, it is a process that is used to rank prospects based on the perceived value of the lead to the company. Most marketing automation platforms offer a lead scoring functionality that can be implemented by assigning numeric values to certain actions such as clicks, events, or even social media interactions. The score is then used by digital marketers to determine which leads are sales qualified and should be followed up by the sales team, and which leads need more nurturing to move them further through the sales funnel to purchase.
In order to effectively develop a lead nurturing strategy, digital marketers have to implement a strategic lead scoring system. To do this effectively, it is vital to get input from both the marketing and sales teams. Consider the following questions:
What is the lead scoring threshold where a lead becomes sales qualified?
What actions are most valuable to your company and as such, hold a higher weight for lead scoring?
Should certain actions result in negative scoring?
Once the scoring system is in place, you can start to develop your lead nurturing tactics.
The Most Effective Lead Nurturing Tactics
The key to effective lead nurturing is to identify which targets are interested in your offering and when to connect with them. It’s about a marketing conversation: communicating with your customers and prospects regularly with content from your company so you leave an imprint on their mind until they need you. The following are some of the best ways to do this.
However, many B2B marketers struggle with this. A Forrester Research report stated that 33% of B2B marketers said “targeted delivery of content” was their biggest challenge to lead nurturing. In order to effectively get the right content to the right people at the right time, you need to first understand your target audience. Once you have identified this audience, you need to create a range of content that engages the audience based on their interests, goals, objectives, and motivations. The content should also line up with their specific point in the buyer journey.
While automated lead nurturing can help you reach large groups of prospects quickly and efficiently, a follow-up phone call or personal email is the most effective way to convert leads into sales qualified leads. In addition, a timely, well-researched call to a warm lead is much more effective than spending your time on outbound telemarketing. In order to really make the most of the sales opportunity, make sure you know exactly what the prospects is interested in and how they have interacted with your business online. Before you call them it can also be helpful to do a quick Google search of their company so that you know exactly what they do before calling them.
3. Don’t Restrict Lead Nurturing to Email
59% of B2B marketers say email is their most effective channel in terms of revenue generation. While the channel is undeniably effective for B2B marketers, it’s important to ensure that your campaign incorporates more than just email. Many lead nurturing strategies consist of setting up an email drip campaign that regularly sends emails to prospects. However, with so many digital options now available and programs that can help streamline campaigns across them all, there’s no excuse to stick solely to email. In fact, your campaign will be more effective with the addition of more channels.
The most effective lead nurturing tactics span channels, with a combination of marketing automation, email marketing, social media, remarketing and sales outreach. This will obviously require a bit more effort in terms of set up and ongoing maintenance of the campaign. Your sales and marketing teams will also have to have to work together to execute it effectively. However, when done right, your business’ bottom line will reap the rewards of multi-channel lead nurturing.
4. Use Multiple Touchpoints
Prospects have to receive, on average, twelve marketing touches from the time they are introduced to the top of funnel until they convert. As such, any lead nurturing campaign should really have 12 or more touchpoints. Ideally, you should be communicating with your prospects through a range of different types of content such as email, social media posts, blog articles, whitepapers, interactive surveys and even direct mail, to nurture your prospects into customers. The content that you send should be aligned to their point in the buyer journey, addressing common questions and concerns at that specific stage.
5. Align Sales & Marketing
When sales and marketing teams share the responsibility of lead nurturing, businesses see a significant increase in conversion rates. The most important thing to make sure sales and marketing are on the same page with, is the identification of a ‘sales qualified lead’. Sales and marketing should agree on the point where a prospect should transition from being ‘marketing qualified’ to being ‘sales qualified’. This comes down to lead scoring. Both parties should work together to agree how valuable certain actions are in the lead nurturing process, for example opening an email or interacting with a social post, and assign a score to each. By ensuring both teams work together in this way, you can create more defined roles and shared expectations for the campaign.
Personalisation is key to an effective lead nurturing program. It’s also not too difficult to implement, particularly in the email component of the campaign. Personalised emails can generate up to six times higher revenue per email than non-personalised emails. Emails can be personalised in a number of ways, for example, you can set up triggers to send emails when a visitor clicks a link in your email, visits a certain page on your site, or downloads a piece of gated content. It can also be useful to send a personalised email when a prospect is highly engaged with your brand.
At the Lead Agency, we’ve worked on a number of successful lead nurturing campaigns. Get in touch with our experts today for more information.
You’ve set up your Google Ads, but for some reason, they’re not achieving the results you hoped for. So, what went wrong?
Get the most out of your advertising investment and reach your performance objectives by avoiding these common mistakes.
Your Ads Aren’t Showing in Relevant Contexts
Are your advertisements receiving a high number of impressions, but still have a relatively low Click-Through-Rate (CTR)? In such circumstances, your ads are likely being shown in contexts that are not actually relevant to your product or service.
Take, for instance, a brand that specialises in truck wheels. If the reach of their campaign hasn’t been accurately defined, it’s possible that a number of the ad impressions they’re getting are actually from people with no interest in their offering. Audiences who are searching for everything from go-kart wheels to bike wheels could be viewing your ads, so it’s crucial that you create highly targeted ad groups. It’s no surprise that, even if you’re getting lots of impressions, an irrelevant ad isn’t going to generate clicks.
So, how can you ensure that your ads are reaching the right people?
Start by looking at the advertisements themselves, ensuring that all of their content is appropriate, engaging and easy to comprehend. By completing thorough keyword research for each ad group, you’ll be able to include well-ranking terms and phrases that are specific to your offering. For instance, the brand mentioned in the above example could benefit from using the keyword ‘truck wheel’ as opposed to ‘wheel’ which is relatively broad. You can also refine your search appearance by specifying which keywords you would like to focus on and defining negative keywords (terms you want to avoid).
Your Landing Page is Poorly Designed
If your current Google Ads have a high Click-Through-Rate but a low number of conversions, it’s unlikely that the ads themselves are flawed as people are actively engaging with them. Instead, this often occurs when the content of the landing page doesn’t match that of the ad so, when people click to find out more, they are met with information they weren’t expecting.
Even if you’ve created a wonderful advertisement, individuals who are met with a confusing, overwhelming or complicated landing page will likely be deterred from pursuing your business any further. For this reason, it’s important to consider ways you could improve the overall readability of your landing pages. When designing your layout, keep it simple. Focus on enhancing usability and making converting easy. By including your contact details and an enquiry form on the page itself, you can keep the entire process as clear and straightforward as possible.
It’s also important to analyse where most of your clicks are coming from in terms of devices such as mobile, desktop and tablet. If your ads are achieving a high CTR but very few people are actually converting, it’s possible that most of these clicks are coming from mobile users and that your landing page isn’t optimised for small screens. It’s estimated that, worldwide, more than 2.7 billion people own a smartphone. By ensuring that your online domains are mobile compatible, you can tap into this market and make the most out of any clicks your Google ads receive.
Get Your Ad Headline & Description Right
Recently, Google released an update increasing the length restrictions of their Expanded Text Ads. Before its introduction, your advertisements could only include two headlines and one description of up to 80 characters. However, with the new and improved Expanded Text Ads, you can use up to three headlines and two descriptions that are 90 characters each.
If you’re yet to update your advertisements, now is the time.
“Using custom title tags and meta descriptions doesn’t require a high level of expertise, but it contributes to a higher click-through rate from search results” – Rhianna Taniguchi
By changing your copy to include three headlines and two descriptions, you can improve your ads search ranking and Click-Through-Rate. In fact, Google found that those who were responsive to their larger ad update received 20% more clicks than those using older formats.
It is, however, important to ensure your new ads are performing well before pausing those you created prior to the update. Rather than immediately making the transition, you may find it beneficial to compare the results of each ad group and continue to make adjustments until you’re confident.
Prospects Are Seeing Your Ads Outside Business Hours
If your advertisements are being displayed at all hours of the day, it may be worth restricting their appearance exclusively to when you have people to manage enquiries.
Depending on your business context and organisational goals, conversions may be highly reliant on prospects actually calling you to speak with a professional. If this is the case and they’re seeing your ad outside of business hours, you could be missing out on a number of potential leads that simply fail to get in contact. Once they’ve unsuccessfully tried to get in touch with you there is, of course, the very apparent risk that they’ll seek out assistance from one of your competitors.
Luckily, Google Ads gives you the option to only run your campaigns when you would like to. This means you can ensure that they’re being viewed by your target audience at relevant times, so there is always someone there to take their call.
You’re Not Making Use of Extensions
Ad Extensions expand your advertisement, providing users with additional information. By using extensions, you can ensure that all of your ads include crucial information about your offering and brand. The best part? There are a variety of Ad Extension options readily available to you, cost-free.
So, which ad extension is right for your business?
1. Callout Extensions
When you enable callout extensions, descriptive text is pulled into the bottom of your advertisements. Typically, Callout Extensions describe the attributes of your product, service or business.
2. Sitelink Extensions
Sitelink Extensions highlight specific pages of your website that you believe potential consumers will be particularly interested in. By using sitelink extensions, you’re able to make highly relevant pages easily accessible to prospects. You can also measure the Click-Through-Rate for each link, collecting valuable data about consumer preferences.
3. Review Extensions
Review Extensions are an excellent way for your business to evidence previous success, which can lower customer uncertainty. These extensions are automated by Google Ads and, to be shown, require that your ratings meet certain conditions. For instance, there must be at least 100 unique, relevant reviews from users in your country. You also need to achieve an average rating of 3.5 stars or higher.
Since including reviews in their paid advertisements, organisations have reported achieving a 19% increase in their Click-Through-Rate.
4. Call Extensions
By ensuring prospects have direct, convenient access to your contact information, your business can lower potential customers’ search costs. For organisations that rely on phone calls to generate conversions, these extensions can be a particularly useful tool.
Speak With an Expert
At the Lead Agency, we have extensive experience helping businesses like yours create exceptional B2B digital marketing campaigns. For more information, or if you’d like professional assistance improving your Google Ads strategy, get in touch with our team today.
Remarketing has been proven to increase conversions, improve brand recall, and reduce lost prospects. If you’re not currently using it as part of your digital marketing strategy, it’s time to start considering it.
Prospects are unlikely to convert the first time that they come to your business’ website. Remarketing gives you a second, third, or even fourth chance to make a sale or capture a lead.
The premise behind remarketing is that it targets users who have already interacted with your business online. As such, these prospects are already aware of your company and the products and services that it provides. Bringing them back to your website moves them further through their buyer journey to conversion.
Remarketing is particularly effective for B2B businesses due to the longer sales cycle and complex buyer journey.
What is Remarketing?
Using technology such as marketing tags and tracking pixels, remarketing delivers highly personalized ads to people who have already been on a website but have not converted.
Remarketing is a great method for building brand recognition, by keeping your business in front of your prospects long after they have left your site. If your creative is compelling enough, your remarketing campaign will also generate clicks back to your site when the customer is further through their buying journey and more likely to convert.
Why are Remarketing Campaigns Important?
As digital marketers, we focus a lot of our efforts on generating traffic to our website through a number of different online channels such as Social Media, Search Engine Marketing and SEO. However, 96% of the visitors that come to a website are not ready to buy. If you don’t capture their email address or any other piece of contact information, following up with that 96% is almost impossible. That means that you are missing out on opportunities to turn your prospects into leads.
This is where remarketing comes in. Remarketing gives digital marketers the ability to target these visitors with specific ads that convince them to come back to your website and find out more, without them having to part with their contact information.
Remarketing ads are particularly effective because they are targeting people who have already shown an interest in your business offering. As such, conversion rates are proven to increase as more online users see remarketing advertising campaigns.
Are There Different Types of Remarketing?
There are a number of different strategies and channels that you can use to implement a remarketing campaign, from search engines to social media and email. The right channel for you will depend on your audience and the specific objectives that you have for your campaign. The following overview may help you work out which could be the most relevant for your business.
This is the most common form of remarketing, where display ads are shown to website visitors as they browse online. Most advertisers use Google Display Network for this type of remarketing. With over 2 million sites and reaching over 90% of Internet users, the Google Display Network is an extremely effective way to reach your audience. Ads are displayed on websites in the Google Display Network, acting as a passive reminder of your business while the user browses online.
Another option for this type of remarketing is to use a Social Media platform like Facebook. Facebook remarketing gives advertisers the opportunity to reconnect with website visitors when they are using Facebook. This is done by installing a pixel on the website that sends information back to Facebook. As long as the user is signed in to their Facebook account while they are browsing online, the pixel will be able to track them.
Dynamic remarketing is a hyper-targeted version of remarketing, where previous website visitors are shown ads related to the specific page that they viewed on a website. This type of remarketing includes personalised messaging and images for the visitor, which increases the ad’s relevancy and, as such the chances of the visitor returning to the website to find out more.
This type of remarketing is most often used by e-commerce websites, where they generate ads that include the exact product that a visitor put in their online shopping cart but did not buy. When the visitor sees the ad again, they remember their intentions to buy and are more likely to click through and purchase. This method can also be used in B2B, for someone who has read a particular blog or visited a certain section on your site. Remarketing ads for this audience can link to other informational materials on the same topic, or to a landing page with a downloadable resource or sign up form for an informational webinar.
Remarketing Lists for Search Ads
Also abbreviated to RLSAs, remarketing lists for search ads is a feature offered by Google Ads that allows advertisers to customise search advertising campaigns for visitors who have previously visited their website. With this feature, you can adjust bids, ad copy and ad extensions so that you can specifically target previous visitors. Your ads will then show to visitors after they leave your site if they search again on Google for keywords and phrases that you specify.
To get the most out of this feature, consider increasing bids for existing keywords for the visitors on the remarketing lists. If they are searching again for your products or services, they are more likely to be closer to purchase and as such, may be worth a higher bid. Alternatively, you can add more keywords for visitors who have been on the website, or have previously purchased something. Going a bit broader on keywords for this audience can also be an effective strategy in re-engaging them as they are already aware of your brand and as such, are more likely to come back with their new search queries.
As its name suggests, video remarketing involves using video ads to remarket to people who have previously been on your website. You can also set up video remarketing for people who have watched a video on your YouTube channel. These ads can be shown at the beginning or in-between the videos that your audience are looking at on YouTube. Alternatively, you can show your remarketing ad on the YouTube homepage where users see video suggestions.
There are two different techniques for email remarketing:
Showing display remarketing ads on different websites to users who have opened an email from you. In order to do this, you can use a retargeting agency called AdRoll. AdRoll gives digital advertisers the ability to reach out to users who opened an email from their business and clicked on a link but didn’t complete the purchase.
Following up on visitors who have left your website without purchasing with targeted emails that aim to convince them to come back to your site. This is most effective if you show the user the exact product that they were looking at in the email that you send.
Whichever type of email remarketing you choose to run, make sure you segment the audience properly so that you can send extremely targeted, relevant ads. The more personalised an ad, the more likely it is to convince a visitor to come back to your website and buy.
Remarketing Best Practices
In order to get the best performance out of your remarketing campaign, the following best practices can help.
Reduce List Membership Duration: The default list membership on Google Ads is 540 days. Google offers this option to advertisers so that they can have flexibility in the ways to use their lists in future. But, the reality is that it probably won’t be beneficial for your business to send communications to users 540 days after they have been on your site. Choose a more relevant time frame depending on your business sales cycles and the services you offer.
Implement a Frequency Cap: This is an extremely important thing to do with any remarketing (or display) campaign. You don’t want to show your audience your ads so much that they get annoyed. Set a limit that will serve as a reminder for the audience, without being in their face too much.
Only Remarket to “Quality” Visitors: With a bit of technical know-how, you can narrow down your remarketing lists so that they only target users who have had a quality interaction with your site. In order to refine your list to quality visitors, exclude people who have bounced and people who have spent less than twenty seconds on your site. This can be done in Google Analytics.
Don’t Show your Ads on Low-Quality Content: There are some content types that you may not want to show your image ads on. These can be excluded by specifically naming the sites that you don’t want your ads to appear on or by listing the site categories to avoid. It is also advisable to exclude error pages, parked domains and forums as placements, as they typically contain low quality content that you don’t want to associate with your brand.
Ad Creative: Your image ads should look similar to your website design and always include your logo so that the user can see that they are from a website that they have already interacted with.
Lead nurturing is an essential component of any B2B marketing strategy, helping organisations like yours convert prospects into loyal customers.
By effectively nurturing your leads, you can offer consumers unique value during every stage of the customer decision-making journey. This will, in turn, help your business build and maintain mutually beneficial, meaningful relationships.
“Almost 80% of new leads never become sales” – Marketo
The B2B purchasing process is long and complex, so it’s no surprise many organisations struggle to generate sales. There’s often a plethora of individuals who are directly involved in the buying choices of a B2B business. In fact, it’s estimated that in corporate workplaces 6-7 people will be present when such decisions are being made.
Don’t let the time and money you invest in lead generation go to waste. By understanding how to nurture prospects strategically, you can start getting the most out of your marketing efforts.
Attract New Prospects
When it comes to nurturing leads, understanding your target market is essential. If you’re going to attract new, relevant prospects your business needs to be creating highly targeted content and campaigns.
Not sure where to begin? Creating a comprehensive customer persona is a great starting point. By clearly defining your target audience and their distinct characteristics, you can construct accurate strategies that reach them in memorable ways.
So, you’ve figured out who your target audience is, but how can you make your brand known to them? There are, of course, many approaches that you can try depending on your specific goals and budget. When you’ve successfully broken through the clutter, that’s when the real lead nurturing begins.
1. Build Ongoing Interest
Once members of your target audience have been made aware of your brand, you need to convince them to stick around. This stage often involves offering prospects access to useful content that is not only relevant to your product or service, but also highlights the unique value you can deliver. To build greater interest, organisations can use case studies, short helpful videos, manuals or guides and the like.
It is, however, important to make sure you don’t bombard potential customers with an excessive amount of information. There’s a fine line between providing resources your prospects are thankful for, and completely overwhelming them. If you don’t understand your target audience, you’ll likely encounter difficulty when trying to find the perfect balance. This is why, from the very beginning of your lead nurturing process, it’s crucial to have a sound comprehension of who you’re trying to reach and their distinct needs.
2. Become The Preferred Option
Your business prospects know who you are and have started interacting with your content, but this doesn’t mean they’ll choose your brand over competitors. During the evaluation stage of the customer buying journey, you need to show potential consumers why your product or service is superior to others. Lead nurturing is crucial here, and there are numerous tactics you can use to become the preferred choice.
While members of your target audience have commonalities, it’s important to remember that each prospect isn’t completely identical. By personalising the customer experience, you can ensure that your potential buyers feel their distinct needs are recognised and catered for. In B2B marketing, this may involve segmenting your customers into the type of industry they work in, their location or company size and developing a specific campaign for every one of these sub-sections.
3. Manage Conversions
When one of your leads has provided you with their contact details, it’s time to get in touch with them. They may have filled out a form to join your newsletter or to access a certain resource and, now, you have the opportunity to speak with them directly.
At this point, you’ll likely have your first one-on-one conversation with them. As such, you need to establish a clear idea of how best to convert your promising lead into a valuable sale. This may involve offering them a cost-free initial consultation, one-month subscription and the like. By doing this, you can demonstrate that you’ve noticed their ongoing interest and connect with them on a more personal level.
4. Foster Customer Loyalty
You’ve converted your prospect into a customer, but the lead nurturing process doesn’t end here. By establishing a strong relationship with your new consumer you can encourage repeat purchase, foster customer loyalty and build brand advocacy.
Here, providing genuine support and advice is crucial. You need to assure customers that, when they chose your business, they made the right decision. Welcoming them to your community, offering exclusive privileges and making specialist assistance easily accessible are all great ways you can do this. Give your consumers a reason to stick around, so they can continue working with your brand in confidence.
Speak With an Expert Today
At the Lead Agency, our marketing experts have extensive experience helping B2B businesses like yours generate leads and nurture prospects. Build a comprehensive, effective B2B marketing strategy and start getting exceptional results today.
With over 17 million smartphone users Australia-wide, if you’re yet to optimise your website for mobile, now is the time. The mobile market is expanding at speed and, if you’re unresponsive to this change, you’ll likely lose an abundance of potential leads.
“When someone is mobile, they’re expecting an entirely different experience from the one they’ll get on your standard website” – Social Media Examiner
When navigating your website on a mobile device, people do so in an entirely different way than those using a desktop. This is because, typically, a mobile visitor is searching for the core information about your business, such as a click-to-call phone number or store location.
While lengthy content delving into the intricacies of your product, service or people may be sought after by desktop users, often, when converted onto the small screen of mobile this text can become overwhelming. It’s important that, when optimising your website for mobile, you keep this in mind and ensure your layout and formatting is user-friendly.
Improving the accessibility of your digital domains across numerous devices that all have different screen sizes doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, by following a few core tips you can get your website up and running on mobile devices and start reaping the benefits in no time.
Get Your WordPress Theme Right
It’s important that, when designing your website, the WordPress theme you select is responsive to mobile devices.
Although most available themes are now optimised for use across numerous screen variations, this is still a crucial step in creating your website. It’s a simple way for you to form a reliable foundation and ensure that your content can be properly rendered, regardless of the device being used. When deciding on a WordPress theme you can also preview how your website will appear on each device and make any required adjustments.
After selecting a secure, responsive theme, you’ll be able to customise your website as you please. While designing an appealing and stylish online domain should, of course, be a priority it’s also essential to consider how your layout and content will adapt on different devices. When it comes to mobile, focus on minimising clutter and maximising functionality.
Finding the right responsive theme for your business may take some time but, in the end, having an optimised, high-quality website will likely benefit you immensely.
Keep Your Site’s Loading Times Low
Generally, smartphones don’t have the same loading capabilities as desktops. A delay that is hardly noticeable on a desktop could be significantly magnified on a mobile device. Even though a loading interruption of a few seconds may not seem like much, it may be all it takes for users to abandon their efforts.
“There are 3 billion people with smartphones, and 1.3 billion who own computers” – DreamHost
With such a large proportion of today’s consumers turning to smartphones, if your website takes an excessive amount of time to load on mobile devices, this could be detrimental to your success. By reducing the amount of content on your loading pages, using a reliable caching plugin and the like, you can improve loading capabilities. In doing this, you’ll be removing potential barriers from the consumer experience that may have otherwise deterred them from inquiring further.
Feedback is Key
Once your website has been finalised, testing its functionality is crucial. You need to determine whether it is, in fact, optimised for usage across several different devices, and there are various ways that you can do this.
Typically, the simplest and quickest approach is to navigate the website using your own mobile device. By doing this, you can efficiently and effectively identify any obvious mistakes or flaws in your current website’s compatibility with mobile screens. However, to ensure that your website is reliably responsive it would be suggested that you take further precautions.
When determining whether your site is optimised for smartphone usage, Google’s mobile-friendly tool can come in particularly helpful. This free resource is dedicated to testing your website’s responsiveness across screens. All you need to contribute is your URL, and this tool will explicitly identify any issues that are preventing your website from being optimised on mobile.
Is your text too small to read, or are your clickable elements too close together? With Google’s mobile-friendly tool, you can find out.
Your business’ prospects and consumers are the people who will actually be viewing your website so, even if it appears to be completely functional, you should seek their feedback. This will provide you with ongoing confirmation that your website’s performance is satisfactory, while also allowing you to improve the customer experience.
Optimise Your Website For Mobile Today
In an increasingly competitive and volatile market, improving the accessibility of your website on mobile devices has never been more important. At the Lead Agency, we have extensive experience building secure, responsive digital domains. For more information, or to speak with a B2B digital marketing expert, get in touch with our proficient team today.
The difficulty with this, however, is that SEO is always changing. Search engines are consistently working to update their algorithms so that they can deliver more accurate results for their users. As these algorithms change, certain SEO approaches become obsolete, while others become more powerful. This means that SEO specialists have to keep on top of these algorithm changes and alter their strategy accordingly to keep seeing results in their rankings.
The following are some of the SEO strategies that are going to shape the latter half of 2019 for both B2B and B2C companies. Master these tactics and your website will dominate the SERPs and generate leads and revenue for your business.
Optimise for Featured Snippets & Other SERP Features
Featured snippets are a type of search result on Google’s SERPs. They provide quick answers to the queries that users are searching for without them having to click through to a website to find the information. Despite the fact that featured snippets don’t require the user to click through, research from HubSpot found that business with featured snippets actually seen a dramatic increase in click-through rate (CTR).
Featured Snippets appear below paid ads but are most often above organic results. This position has come to be known as ‘position zero’ and it’s a good place for businesses to be as they dominate the results page. As such, appearing in featured snippets results can be more effective for driving traffic to a website than reaching position 1 on the SERPs. Going forward into 2019, we’re likely to see more competition for these coveted positions as SEO specialists start to optimise their websites to rank for featured snippets.
In addition to featured snippets, Google is continuously updating its search features and recipes, the knowledge graph, carousels, and other features are always being introduced. All of these new features will impact organic traffic for better or worse, so optimising for Google’s additional search features will be more important than ever in 2019.
Look Beyond Google
Search Engine Optimisation is about ensuring your business appears where people are searching, and the way they are doing that is changing. At the moment, Google may be the dominant search engine, with almost 75% of searchers preferring the search engine to its competitors. However, while optimising for Google will still be a priority in 2019, marketers may have to consider strategies that include other search platforms, such as Amazon and Apple that are starting to cut into Google’s market. As new technologies are starting to be adopted by the masses, it is no longer sufficient to simply optimise your site for Google searches. For example, optimising content for home assistant or audio-only devices (if that’s where your audience is) can be an extremely effective SEO tactic.
According to Keith Goode, a senior SEO Strategist at IBM, this basically comes down to serving the best content on the fastest platforms geared to meet the users wherever they’re coming from. The role of SEO has evolved and in order to succeed, it is necessary to optimise the entire search experience, whether that’s on web, apps, podcasts, or other technologies and ensure the content that the user find meets their expectation and fulfils their query.
Get Ready for Voice Search
Gartner has predicted that almost 30% of all web browsing will be voice activated by 2020. ComScore also thinks that voice search is set to increase, expecting 50% of all searches to be voice activated by 2020. This will have a huge impact on the way SEO is carried out going forward. As most people do not type the way that they speak, websites that are currently optimised to rank highly on SERPs may not be as easily found by someone conducting a voice search. Another thing to be aware of going forward is that the use of voice can be very different, obviously between countries using different languages, but also the way that people speak (and search) will vary between regions, dialects and social classes.
Focus on the Audience, Not the Search Engine
If your website is optimised for the wrong audience it won’t grow your business. As such, the key to crafting a successful SEO strategy is to understand exactly what someone is expecting to find when they search for the keywords or phrases that lead to your site. In in order to keep users engaged on your site, you have to understand the intent behind their search query and deliver the information that they want, in the format that they want. For example, consider if your audience prefers content in the form of text, images, video or audio and ensure your landing page presents the key information in this way.
Considering the user’s intent behind their search query is also important for semantic search. If you’re not familiar with the term, ‘semantic search’ describe Google’s process of using additional factors, other than keywords, to determine what exactly the searcher is looking for. This includes things like the searcher’s intent, the context of the query and the relationship between the words in the search phrase. Semantic search also allows Google to interpret searcher intent based on a variety of factors including their search history, location, global search history and spelling variations. The easiest way to ensure your website is optimised for semantic search, is to create content for your audience rather than the search engine. Don’t think about matching your content to keyword phrases but rather make sure that your content comprehensively answers the questions your audience is asking when they search, while still being technically optimised for SEO.
Make Use of Structured Data
Understanding the contextual relationships between topics and behaviour, supported by structured data markup, will be vital for SEO specialists in 2019. Structured data helps Google crawl your site faster and find the information that it is looking for easier. It is the more modern version of information architecture, tags and metadata that gives search engines signals to understand the content structure of a website. By embedding structured data directly into your website, you are helping search engines generate rich snippets, which are small pieces of information that will then appear in search results.
Implementing Structured Data on your website does involve HTML code, however third-party services like schema.org, as well as Google’s Structured Data Helper, make it easier for marketers.
Invest in Technical SEO
An effective SEO strategy will cover both on-page SEO and technical SEO factors. Marketers are getting better at the on-page, content side of SEO, according to a SEMrush study, many websites still have significant technical issues. This is a problem for web owners as search engines are continuously crawling and indexing websites and technical issues make this much harder for them.
There’s no denying that websites are becoming more complex, and technical aspects are becoming more important. Some of the technical aspects that you should focus on to improve your SEO in 2019 are as follows:
AMP: Google needs to serve sites that load fast, particularly for mobile users. Accelerated Mobile Pages significantly help boost results for mobile searchers and are likely to become more popular this year.
Responsive Design: Responsive design ensures that the user experience (UX) is optimised for all devices, so ensuring your website is responsive is imperative an SEO strategy in the mobile-first era.
Continue to Optimise On-Page
On-page optimisation significantly impacts a website’s position in the SERPs, even more than generating backlinks from other sites. However, the trap that many site owners fall into, is doing on-page SEO as a one-off when they set up a page and then forgetting about it. The most successful SEO specialists are doing on-page optimisation continuously, evaluating their on-page strategies regularly in accordance with Google’s ever-changing algorithms.
Some of the key things to consider when optimising your website are ensuring the on-page content answers common user questions, developing an internal site search feature that provides highly relevant results, using a chatbot to answer common questions and ensuring users can easily find physical locations. In addition, taking steps to shorten the conversion process on your can help you to generate more online leads from your SEO efforts.
The Lead Agency is a B2B Marketing Agency specialising in digital strategies such as B2B SEO. For more information on how we can help boost your SEO results, get in touch with us today.
Keywords are phrases or ideas that relate to your business’ products or services. They will be used organically throughout your content to give users, and search engines a short cut in terms of what your webpage is about.
Keywords are essential for Search Engine Optimisation. In terms of SEO, keywords are the words that searchers enter into search engines in order to find answers to their queries. In order to be found for the keywords that are most relevant to your business and customers, your keywords should be used across your website in page content, images, videos and blogs etc. If you break down everything on your website into simple words and phrases, then these words become your primary keywords.
Why are Keywords Important?
Keywords are important because they’re the crucial factor that connects what people are searching for with the content that you’re providing to fill that need. With SEO, your ultimate goal is to rank well on search engines so that you’re able to drive organic traffic to your site from the search engine result pages (SERPS). The keywords that you’ve decided to target will determine what kinds of traffic you’ll get.
Keywords are as much about your audience as they are about your content. To create content that ranks well organically and drives visitors to your site, you need to understand what your visitors could be searching for. You should also consider using a similar type of language to the language that your visitors use to ensure yours is the content that they are most engaged with. In order to identify the keywords that resonate with your target audience this, you could talk to your customers directly or by creating forums and community groups, as well conducting some of your own keyword research with a tool like Keyword Explorer.
How do I Find Long Tail Keywords?
There are a few keyword research tools that you can use to find new keywords, build on your current ones and look at the competition levels for each keyword. It’s quick and easy to find long tail keywords with SEM Rush’s free keyword research tool. All you have to do is type in the word that you want to research, and the tool will provide you with possible long tail keywords that you may want to use.
SEM Rush has a great Keyword Magic Tool, which enables you to search for a keyword from any country you want, and it will come up with a variety of new ideas to build on that keyword. See example below for the keyword of ‘Social Media’
Another great tool to find long tail keywords is Answer the Public. Similar to the SEM Rush tool, all you have to do is enter the word you want to research, and the program responds with possible long tail keywords that you may consider implementing in your strategy.
Google Ads has another great keyword research tool, which has been designed for paid search campaigns, but it’s also applicable to keywords for SEO. To find the Keyword Planner, simply log into your Google Ads account and click the tools button on the top toolbar, you then navigate to the keyword planner from the drop down menu (which should look like the picture below).
From the keyword planner click ‘discover new keywords’ and then you can type in current keywords that you want to build on or discover where they sit when compared to competitors.
What are the Key Benefits of Keyword Research? Did you know that?
75%of people never scroll past the first page of search engines.
72% of marketers believe that relevant content creation is the most effective SEO tactic
Almost 80% of users ignore paid ads in search results
93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine
50% of search queries are 4 words or longer
Organic SEO is 5.66 times better than paid ads
Websites with active blogs featuring on them, generate 67% more leads
Rankings The use of keywords has a significant impact on organic page rank in search engines. By ranking well for specific topics, search engines will drive traffic to your site by prominently displaying your products and services, thereby enhancing your marketing effectiveness.
Increased Conversions If the content on your webpage is meaningful to those who view it, based on the keywords they are using to find it, this will lead to an increased conversion rate.
Outdoing your Competitors By doing keyword research you could possibly find new keywords to help you not only improve your search engine ranking but also help you to outdo your competitors. Finding words that have high monthly search results, which don’t have high competition will give you the opportunity to take advantage of the new keyword idea.
Tips when Searching for Keywords
Tip 1: When looking for new keywords, prioritise high– volume keywords that your competitors aren’t currently ranking for. Lower competition for paid search is typically a good indication that your competitors also won’t be using this term in their SEO strategy.
See example below from GoogleAds:
Tip 2: Geo – targeting keyword – Think about what the searcher wants to find. Most searchers like things local, so having a location as part of your keyword could benefit you. For example if someone wanted to find a lawyer in Melbourne, add Melbourne at the end of your law firm company name as a keyword.
Tip 3: Consider using long tail keywords. If you’ve decided to use long tail keywords then definitely incorporate them into blogs on your webpage. By doing this you’ll increase your search engine organic traffic.
Tip 4: When you’re coming up with a list of potential keywords, think about what your customers are looking for when searching online for your products or services. You can do this by looking at the terms that are being searched. This information is available in GoogleAds.
It’s crucial, if your B2B business wants to attract and maintain ongoing relationships with valuable leads, that you’re consistently creating quality content. This content, either shared digitally or offline is referred to as marketing collateral.
Originally, B2B marketing collateral purely involved content such as business cards, company brochures, billboard advertisements and the like. In recent years, however, technological advances have facilitated the evolution of marketing collateral and significantly broadened organisations’ promotional media options.
With this change comes new opportunities and, if your business is unresponsive to these, you’ll likely struggle to remain competitive in a highly volatile market. Marketing collateral aims to reduce consumers’ uncertainty, solidifying your brand as a reliable choice and transforming prospects into new leads.
So, what types of marketing collateral should your company focus on to achieve exceptional outcomes and reach your organisational goals?
1. Case Studies
Case studies are written content recalling real-life experiences that clients have had with your brand. A compelling case study will explain the key product or service that you provided in a distinct circumstance and highlight your company’s success. Content of this type will often also include testimonials directly from the client the case study is based on. By providing easily accessible case studies to potential customers, such as on your website, prospects are reassured of your ability to meet their unique needs.
If possible, your business would see most benefit from sharing case studies covering a range of clients that you’ve worked with across several different industries. This means that, when searching through your resources, potential customers have a greater chance of discovering a company you’ve already partnered with that they can relate to. In such instances, the case study will be highly relevant to their business context. This can, in turn, drastically lower any uncertainty preventing them from taking the next step and reaching out to your company.
2. Blog Posts
By consistently sharing relevant, valuable blog posts with your audience, you have the opportunity to demonstrate extensive knowledge in your area of expertise. When the insights you provide accurately represent your business’ core interests and personality, blog posts can also contribute positively to your branding.
In addition to this, blog posts can help your organisation effectively communicate with prospects on a more personal level. The content you’re sharing isn’t explicitly promotional and, often, uses conversational language. Readers have the option to comment on your blog posts, facilitating direct discussion between your business and engaged potential customers.
It is, however, essential to note that consistency is crucial when it comes to blogging. If your business is considering starting a blog, it would be suggested that you complete at least one 750 word post each week. This is because, if you share any less, it will be difficult to truly establish yourself as a thought leader and build a strong following.
3. Downloadable eBooks and Guides
Similar to blog posts, sharing informative information in eBooks and guides displays your expertise by delivering valuable resources and specialist insights to consumers. Such content, once downloaded, acts as an easily accessible point of reference for customers that can be viewed digitally using a number of different devices.
By creating a series of comprehensive guides and eBooks, your business can provide prospects with relevant content all while reaching them in a new and exciting way. This can, in turn, help you foster and nurture value-driven consumer relationships that generate leads.
It’s paramount that the information you’re sharing is of high quality and, importantly, adequate consideration needs to be made towards the design of your eBook or guide. When deciding on the style of your marketing collateral, it’s crucial to ensure that the graphics used are consistent with your business’ branding and represent the level of work you create.
For many B2B businesses, incorporating audio-visual marketing collateral into their content has proven to be a highly effective strategy. This is because, essentially, such an approach can help organisations present their product or service in a practical, entertaining way.
Explainer videos are user-friendly and, once integrated into your marketing strategy, can be shared across your website, social media, newsletter and the like. To optimise their effectiveness, your content should be no longer than 1-2 minutes, helping to ensure that consumers remain engaged.
Want to Find out More?
If you’re interested in creating exceptional digital marketing collateral for your B2B business, our experienced team at the Lead Agency can help. For more information, or to speak with a professional B2B marketing consultant, get in touch with us today.
They increase a user’s time on page by directing them to other relevant content
How are Internal Links Relevant?
As well as being integral to your website structure, internal links are also good for your SEO strategy as Google uses internal links (as well as other factors) to help rank your content. Google crawls websites by following links using a bot called Google Bot. When the bot arrives at the homepage of a website, it starts to render the page and follows the links to work out the relationship between the various pages, posts and other content.
This search engine itself has confirmed this method, saying ‘Google must constantly search for new pages and add them to its list of known pages. Some pages are known because Google has already crawled them before. Other pages are discovered when Google follows a link from a known page to a new page.’
Using the right internal linking strategy can boost your SEO, as internal links give Google an idea of the structure of your website. The more links you have to a certain page, the more significant that page becomes in the eyes of Google and as such, ranks higher on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
What are the Benefits of Internal Link Building?
Internal link building is an integral part of any comprehensive SEO strategy, for the following reasons.
Internal linking makes it easier for web users to navigate through your website and enables you to present them with additional useful information on the topic at hand. It also enables you to present other information (usually at the end of the page) that web users maybe interested in (e.g. locations of stores, or other product / service offerings).
Spreading Link Equity
Every link carries equity, also known as ‘link juice’. Link juice is a term that is used to express the value that is being passed through to pages via hyperlinks. Link juice is made up of a number of elements, which includes; value, trustworthiness, topic relevance and authority of a page. Links that pass equity or juice are one of the many signals that search engines use to evaluate and determine the page’s rankings.
Increase ‘Time on Page’
The longer the reader spends on your webpage the better, as a longer ‘Time on Page’ can indicate to search engines that your quality is relevant and engaging to the user. Having internal links directing them to other relevant pages can help readers stay engaged and wanting to explore more on your website.
How to Insert a Link
Inserting internal links into your pages and posts is very simple. The following provides a step by step ‘How to’ to ensure you can’t go wrong.
Step 1: Log in to WordPress and navigate to the page or post that you want to add internal links to. You should see the following page.
Step 2: Highlight the text you want to link to.
Step 3: Click on the hyperlink button from the toolbar that looks like this:
Step 4: Once you’ve clicked on the icon, something like the below will pop up and you can paste the URL in the textbox. Once you’ve done this press enter or the blue arrow. And there’s your internal link.
Step 5: Don’t forget to press publish when you’ve finished otherwise the internal link won’t save.
Remove or Edit An Internal Link
If you want to unlink something, simply click on the anchor text and the below ‘unlink’ option will come up. All you have to do is click on it and the link will go away;
If you want to edit the current URL click the pencil icon (see below)
Choosing the right anchor text is arguably, the most important part of your internal link strategy.
Anchor text is the clickable text that visitors can see in your content (usually it is highlighted, underlined or in bold). See example below:
When you are inserting internal links, its important that your anchor text is relevant to the landing page that it’s linked to. These anchor texts should be the keywords.
In the above example, this would be ‘B2B Content Marketing Strategy’ and ‘B2B Marketing Consultants’.
In most cases, don’t use one word for the anchor text. If you are unsure of the right keywords to use, conduct simple keyword research to identify the most relevant terms for your business.
8 Common Mistakes with Internal Linking
Remember to make sure that the internal link that you’re using isn’t broken, otherwise there will be nowhere for the ‘link juice’ to flow to
Try to not have too many of the same anchor texts on the same page directing you to the same landing page (one or two should be fine per page/post)
You don’t have to link the keyword every time it appears in the document; you can leave some as they are
Make sure that if you are adding in an anchor text that it makes sense in the sentence
Make sure that the anchor text that you’ve used relates to the keywords on the landing page that it’s connected to
Don’t link the same page to multiple different keywords; 3 at most is best practice, unless the keywords are all extremely relevant and make sense in the context of the article
Internal links are meant to benefit the reader, so that they can find more resources about a particular topic. As such, it’s important to ensure your internal links connect the user to pages and posts that are related and useful for the visitor.
Only link when it’s absolutely necessary, don’t link for the sake of linking, as it could be seen as ‘spammy’, which can work against your SEO efforts.