Pro SEO Tips to Improve Your Conversion Rate
Contrary to popular belief, conversion rate optimisation and SEO are not mutually exclusive and don’t compete with each other. To be honest, they can even work in unison to improve your overall rankings and conversion percentages at the same time. The first thing that comes to mind when you hear Search Engine Optimisation is getting […]
Contrary to popular belief, conversion rate optimisation and SEO are not mutually exclusive and don’t compete with each other. To be honest, they can even work in unison to improve your overall rankings and conversion percentages at the same time.
The first thing that comes to mind when you hear Search Engine Optimisation is getting ranked higher in Google or Bing. With each passing year, SEO gets more and more complex and things get difficult. Constantly changing algorithms, rules, Google’s terms and conditions, implementation of AI-generated content, keyword rankings, mobile-friendliness, and page loading time are just some of the many things that influence the likeliness of your page’s increase in rankings.
While SEO is an inseparable part of an online business’s success, without a good CRO (Conversion rate optimisation) strategy, you are more likely to fail. Here are just a few examples of how you can tie things together and improve SEO and CRO at the same time.
#1 Combine A/B Testing for SEO and CRO
In order to see whether your page is properly optimised for conversions, you need to funnel good, adequate and qualified traffic to the page. (Your target audience). In order to do so, you need to preemptively figure out the following aspects about your ideal potential buyer persona. (Can be done empirically or theoretically).
- Behaviour. What do your visitors want to purchase?
- Persona. Who are they?
- Intent. What are their intentions behind the purchase? (Is it to solve a problem? Is it a gift? Are they a collector? etc.)
By knowing the type of personality your buyers have and the intention they have you can easily nudge them toward purchasing more. It is easy to manipulate someone if you know they are a collector or a passionate painter. Knowing nothing about your audience, however, would result in shooting in the dark.
Always have in mind to identify these 3 key aspects – behaviour, persona, and intent. If you know these three things, it is much easier to produce tailored content for your audience that delivers great conversion rates. Once you know what your audience is interested in, coming up with a functioning SEO article, text, or webpage is much easier. Adapting your pages to your sales funnel, not vice versa is one of the essential practices of reaching high conversion rates.
Create the content as mentioned above, and then run the A/B tests. Find out what works best for your business by analyzing statistically significant results and go for it.
#2 Sales funnel first, SEO later
Traffic is one of the key elements of a successful online business, but even if you get all the traffic in the world and your website is complicated, misleading, and frustrating, you won’t get any conversions. Moreover, a big bounce rate would lead to your rankings decreasing, which would mean you overdoing the SEO instead of CRO would eventually hurt both. Having 1,000,000 visitors with a 0.1 % conversion rate isn’t better than having 100,000 visitors converting at a rate of 20 per cent. Quite the opposite.
Hence, there’s an approach in which you build your sales funnel step by step and optimise it afterwards for SEO purposes. To properly set up a good conversion funnel, you need to choose a framework to lead you. AIDA (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) is an amazing example that you can use.
- Attention (Awareness stage). Grab the attention of your visitors by increasing the visibility and recognizability of your website as well as products or services. (Tools to use here: PPC, ads, content marketing, social networks, videos, email marketing, promotions, etc.)
- Interest (Leads stage). The next step after grabbing your audience’s attention is to ignite their interest in the product or service you are offering. Make them stay on your website. This can be used by a variety of tools. (Relevant entertaining content, educational content, free value, attractive visuals, familiarity, subscription letters, discount.)
- Desire (Prospects stage). Once you have your audience’s attention and interest, you need to assure them that the product they’re looking at is what they want. Personalized messages, email campaigns and networking come in handy here. Moreover, social proof is a concept you need to use to your advantage. (Testimonials, reviews, positive feedback.)
- Action (Sales stage). You’ve done it all, now the only step is to complete the funnel by converting your visitors into actual buyers. For that you need a clear payments page, without any distractions or overexaggerated calls to actions.
Different people come from different backgrounds and that means that some might grasp the concept of your product or service within milliseconds, while others might need more explanations until they get to the point of being confident about it.
For that very reason, you can never assume that they will process your information entirely, or that they will convert. Thus, your main goal as an SEO expert would be to not only lead traffic to a certain website but also to bring in qualified leads and visitors. By qualified, we mean that they have an intent to go through the entirety of your sales funnel.
TOFU (Top of the funnel queries)
As seen in the image presented above, people who know what they want are traffic with high intent, willing to purchase. A lead that knows exactly what they want is worth more than a few leads that are vaguely looking for something and simply browsing.
You should know how to respond properly to such queries. They can be broad, or they can be narrow enough for the visitor to purchase right away when they land on your website. These two versions require different approaches.
For example, for the term “Hiking shoes”, you can present an entire category of hiking shoes, and for a more detailed niche search, you can present a specific model to the visitor.
Moreover, there are visitors that are looking for information like “What are the best hiking shoes for winter?” or what are the best “Hiking shoes for summer?”, as well as many other questions like that. These types of questions can be answered via promoting blog posts, where you can easily place your product recommendations. These are the so-called middle of the funnel visitors.
Visitors that are likely to purchase are more valuable than visitors who are just passing by.
MOFU (Middle of the funnel queries)
If a user is asking a very specific question, that means they already have the intent of purchasing or at least interest in such a product. One thing is to simply browse hiking shoes, and another to know the brand and model you’re looking for. These are qualified leads that are most likely interested in the price, delivery, and quality of the product. They might even already know the majority of information about the product, like where it was manufactured, which influencer wears it, or what is the material.
These visitors know what they are looking for but don’t know exactly what model, brand or item to purchase, and luckily for us, they don’t know where to purchase it from either.
BOFU (Bottom of the funnel stages)
At the last, bottom of the funnel stage, you need to explain why your product is the best deal and the best solution, most suitable to the problem which your visitors are having. Not only that, but you need to take the extra step.
People have different concerns at this stage such as:
- Packaging concerns
- Is there good and reliable customer service for your product/service?
- Are different sizes, colour, patterns and models available?
- Are the shipping time, and delivery costs appropriate?
- What is the price? Is there a one-time deal that they can grab?
There are many tricks in the book that can be used here in order to convert someone. You can use one-time promotions, free shipping over a certain price, 24/7 customer service, etc. It all depends on your product and the potential objections your audience might have.
This stage is much easier if you add a reviews section and place your trust in social proof. Reviews, testimonials, and previous buyers recommendations can work wonders when someone is not sure whether the product is an exact match with their expectations.
Moreover, people are smart and they know that good shops photoshop some of their pictures to make the products look fancier. Customer photos, uploaded in reviews are something that entices people to buy. People trust people, not organizations. This is one of the reasons why influencers have had a big impact on e-commerce over the last few years.
SEO practices that go hand in hand with CRO
One of the first things that come to mind when thinking of conversions and SEO is mobile-friendliness. A large portion of your traffic comes from mobile devices, but is your website properly optimised to convert visitors that come from mobile?
Google knows that the majority of the traffic comes from mobile, thus the mobile experience has been having a bigger weight over static traffic in terms of rankings. Things you need to consider in order to improve your mobile responsiveness are:
- Are your images optimised for mobile devices?
- Do your mobile visitors bounce? If not, how long do they stay on your website?
- Does your website load fast enough on mobile devices?
- What is the average number of pages your visitors go to on your website through a mobile device? Compare that to desktop traffic.
Improving these few things simultaneously increases your conversion rates, as well as your SEO rankings. Regardless of whether more traffic comes from desktop or mobile, you should optimise your website’s responsiveness for CRO and SEO purposes.
In digital marketing, this has become a closed circle. Improving your mobile responsiveness improves conversion rates, but simultaneously increases your search engine rankings by leading in more qualified users to your website.
Decrease Page loading time
If I’m waiting 10 seconds for your page to load, I would most likely restart my mobile data, thinking I have an issue with my mobile device. Jokes aside, loading time is important not only for your visitors but for SEO. Google constantly updates their ranking algorithms and slowly loading pages are more penalized now than ever before.
There are other factors that also play a vital role, but the page load time is one of the primary ones.
Use free tools like Google PageSpeed Insights allows you to examine your website for free and get to know what is wrong and by how much. There are many other free and paid tools you can use to determine what needs to improve. Here are just some of the benefits that come from decreasing page speed load time:
- By decreasing page load speed you increase the number of page visits since fewer users give up and fail to load.
- Increasing the speed of loading decreases the number of page bounces. (Bounce rate)
- This increases conversions numbers, as more people get on your website faster.
User experience also plays a vital role in conversion rate optimisation as well as search engine optimisation. There are three things you need to consider to properly set up a good user experience on your website or online platform.
#1 Touchscreen responsiveness
We already emphasized how important mobile-friendliness is. Well, all mobile devices use touch screens. Test all buttons, drag downs, dropdowns, and whatever forms you have on your website whether they are mobile-friendly.
If anything doesn’t feel intuitive, change it and A/B test it, until it does. Even an eighty-year-old person should be able to navigate your website through their phone if needed.
#2 HTTPS protocols
Google penalizes websites that don’t display their protocols. Not only would that eventually hurt the rankings of your website, but also scare some users away from visiting. Whatever you are selling on the internet, trust is one of the things that inspire people to purchase the most.
#3 Avoid broken links (Site navigation optimisation)
Having a ton of broken links, or misleading link eventually turns people away and they would bounce off. Moreover, 404 pages can sometimes be frustrating, especially if people think they’ve found out something special, after a long search.
In order to avoid this from happening, SEO crawler tools can come in handy. Inspect whether you have any broken URLs and fix them right away.
Remember, SEO and CRO go hand in hand. Having a ton of traffic but a poor conversion rate wouldn’t help your business grow. Quite the opposite, it would make your many visitors despise your business for its inappropriate site structure.
Work on both simultaneously and increase your rankings and conversions. With the constantly updated Google ranking algorithm, mobile-friendliness and fast page loading speed become increasingly more important each year. Focus on them and rank better while also improving CRO.