How To Drive More Qualified Leads Through SEO Carlotta Bartolini 81% of users search for information online before making a purchase. This means – no matter what your business offers – your target audience is searching online for a solution like yours. Don’t you want to be the one they find?Then you need to embrace search engine optimization (SEO).In this article, we’ll look at what SEO is, why it’s important, what tools you can use to help, and what action items you can implement to enhance your digital presence and drive more qualified leads among your target buyers. What is SEO?As described by Moz, SEO is a “set of practices designed to improve the appearance and positioning of web pages in organic search results”. In other words, it’s making changes to your website to ensure high rankings when users search for a specific term or keyword within Google or other search engines.Keep in mind, many components affect your SEO performance and web page positioning on search engine results pages (SERP). These include keyword alignment, metadata, local optimization, headings, mobile-friendliness, rich snippets, outbound and inbound links, page load speed, ADA compliance, and more. The Importance Of SEOSEO should be part of your core marketing strategy as it strengthens your online visibility. Think about it. Wouldn’t you want your potential customers to find your website first rather than your competitors? When users search for any term in a search engine, the SERP fills up with results it has determined as the most relevant to their specific query. Most likely, the top results will be ads – companies pay for the placement of those listings. Organic (or unpaid) search results are beneath the ads. They are different since their rank order is based on the search engine’s algorithm and what it believes to be the most useful to the person searching.Yes, it’s great to rank high organically. But more of a focus should be on ranking for the right keywords so the traffic coming to your site is relevant based on the makeup of your buyers. If you sell shoes, would you want to attract visitors looking for ice cream? You could. A high-quality 1200-word article on the “Top 5 Best Ice Cream Toppings This Summer” would surely drive visitors. But they likely wouldn’t buy any shoes. So it’d be a waste of time.Instead, when a user searches with a query that’s directly related to your business, product or service, you’d want your website as one of those top results. The more high-quality visitors you attract, the more likely you are to see your leads increase.SEO Tools For SuccessThere are endless tools in the market that can help you optimize your website and be found more often online. Below, we’re going to discuss some of our favorite, must-have SEO tools. Screaming FrogScreaming Frog is a feature-rich site audit tool used to crawl websites. At Site-Seeker, we use it constantly to export data and audit sites so we can make well-informed decisions and map out our SEO strategies.Screaming Frog helps you find broken links, duplicate content, and missing metadata. It also allows you to identify redirects, generate XML sitemaps, track the progress of SEO opportunities and issues, evaluate URL structure and internal linking, and more. Want to know what’s really cool? It lets you crawl up to 500 URLs for free!Google Search Console A free tool that you must have is Google Search Console. Google Search Console monitors the health of your website and its performance. The Performance dashboard displays information about your web pages, including how many impressions and clicks each page on your site receives, what keywords they’re ranking for, and their average position and click-through rate (CTR).Google Search Console also notifies you whenever your website URLs are affected by any issues, such as broken links, server errors, etc. Not only that, but it will also send you recommendations on how to solve these issues.UbersuggestsUbersuggests is a keyword research tool created by Neil Patel that helps you generate keyword ideas for your content marketing strategy and production. Its free Chrome extension provides helpful information about search queries, like monthly search volume, cost per click, competition data, and related keywords. With the free version, you get up to 40 searches per day, can generate an unlimited number of suggestions, and increase your website’s chances of ranking against the competition.Thanks to a recent update, the tool also allows you to type in a competitor’s domain to get better keyword ideas.Google Ads Keyword PlannerAnother keyword research tool we often use at Site-Seeker is Google Ads Keyword Planner. Once you set up your Google Ads account (yes, it’s free!), you get access to all Google Ads’ features, including the Keyword Planner, which is a useful resource for building strong keyword lists.Through the Keyword Planner, you can search for keyword ideas, see how a list of queries may perform, and combine keyword lists to create new ones. Its “Discover New Keywords” option is a great source of inspiration. You can enter up to 10 queries and one URL, which helps filter out unrelated keywords. Then, the tool provides you with a list of keyword ideas and helpful information about each query, including competition and monthly searches. SEO Actionable ItemsIf you are ready to start leveraging SEO today, here are some action items to implement:– Install Google Search Console. Like Google Analytics, this tool is free and gives you great insights on your website’s performance. – Conduct a website audit by running a Screaming Frog report. This will help you set your priorities, create an SEO strategy, and decide what to focus your efforts on. – Whether you’re a big or small business, make sure to leverage local SEO and check how and where your business information is listed online. You don’t want to have prospects call the wrong phone number, contact the wrong email address, or show up at your old location. Use our free local listings scan tool to see how accurate your business information is across the web: site-seeker.com/scan – Are you ready to optimize your website content? Then, researching keywords should be on your radar. Remember, keyword research is a crucial step to find which keywords are best to target and can provide you with valuable information about what queries your audience is typing on Google. There is not only one way to go about doing keyword research, but here are a few tips you can leverage to get started. First of all, don’t forget to download Ubersuggest’s Chrome extension and create your Google Ads account to start using its Keyword Planner feature! Then, pick a page from your website. Look at the content and think about “What words (or combination of words) do I want this page to rank for?” Then, write as many as you can in a spreadsheet. Now, open Google and start typing your words one by one. Ubersuggest will provide you with some insights and other related keywords. Take a look at these – do they fit the topic of your page? If so, add them to the spreadsheet (along with monthly volume and competition). Once you have a bunch of data, open Google Ads Keyword Planner and add up to ten keywords to the tool and start your search. Do the results show other terms that may be relevant? Keep adding sets of ten keywords and check if you missed anything that you may want to pursue.This process can help you uncover thousands of relevant terms and keyword opportunities at scale. Before deciding what keywords to pursue, look at the monthly search volume and competition. Then, type the keywords you picked on Google one more time – what pages show up for that keyword? Can you compete against them? Are those pages related to your content? These are all things to keep in mind before picking your terms. Also, remember that it’s best practice to pick about 2-3 keywords per page and optimize the content accordingly. As I mentioned, there are many ways and tools to use to do keyword research, but this is a good starting point. Happy research! SEO Success Story It’s important to note that SEO takes time. Unlike paid ads, it doesn’t generate quick results. If you started optimizing your content, creating backlinks, and fixing broken links today, it could be 6-12 months before you start to see the fruits of that labor. Let me give you an example (and success story!).One of our clients, a major material handling manufacturer and supplier, needed to enhance its digital presence and generate more organic leads online. While their paid traffic was healthy, their organic traffic was static and flat.That’s when Site-Seeker stepped in. We started with the SEO basics by researching keywords, correcting metadata, and performing internal linking. Then we created more content based on industry-related keywords used most often by potential buyersThe result? After six months, we saw a 45% increase in organic traffic year over year and a 23% increase in site-wide conversions!ConclusionIf you’re looking to enhance your business’s digital presence and drive more organic leads, you need SEO.SEO is not an overnight fix, and its ranking factors and Google’s algorithm change constantly. That’s why it takes time, ongoing effort, and monitoring, but it’s absolutely worth it when done well.If you need help, reach out – Site-Seeker is here to help! What Is “Hooked On Marketing With Corinne And Carlotta?”Hooked On Marketing With Corinne And Carlotta is a 4-episode video series about how to enhance your business’s digital presence through digital marketing. This series aims to provide you with an in-depth understanding of 4 different marketing strategies and tools that are available today and how they can help your business grow its online presence. These include Search Engine Optimization, Google Ads, Lead Intelligence, and Account-Based Marketing. Each episode covers tools for success, real-world applications, success stories, and actionable items you can start implementing today. Hooked On Marketing is led by Carlotta Bartolini and Corinne Dunston, Account Managers and Digital Marketing Specialists at Site-Seeker. They are accompanied by Coco, their monkey mascot.