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3 Biggest SEO Mistakes That Damage Businesses

Your marketing goal is very clear- rank high on search engines, attract warm prospects who will convert, and become repeat customers. While at it, you also need to offer a great service to maintain an untarnished online reputation.

To achieve this, one of the tools you are using is SEO because you know that 57% of marketers have testified that SEO has the biggest impact on lead generation goals.

These marketers have reported that leads from SEO result in an average conversion rate of 14.6% if done right. While it might seem quite unimpressive at first, it is great when you compare it to a measly 1.7% from traditional marketing methods such as print advertising and direct mail.

This is great news, but you seem to have a problem. The 14.6% conversion rate seems like a tall order. Your business is not ranking well on search engines, and the sales are discouraging.

This is why:

You are doing SEO wrong!

Let’s see if you are making any of these three SEO mistakes.

Focusing On The Wrong Analytics

Data gives your business rich information, making analytics a marketer’s powerful arsenal. Sadly, there is a paradox.

In 2018, companies planned to increase marketing budgets allocated to analytics in the next three years, from 5.8% to 17.3%, an incredible 198% increase.

These same professionals also reported the average analytics contribution to business growth at 4.1 on a 7-point scale, 7 being highly effective.

Two issues arose: the type of data used and the analyst talent producing it. These issues stem from several analytics mistakes you might be making.

  • Chasing page visits instead of focusing on pages and content that convert.

Page visits show your business’ popularity. But, are these leads converting? Pages and content that convert reveal what potential customers love and respond to.

By analyzing high-converting pages, you can create content that attracts, and eventually get quality page visits with lesser bounce rates.

Your website design also impacts bounce rates. For example, bad blog design that makes content hard to read affects the user experience (UX), which then sends negative signals to Google and consequently hurts the website’s organic rankings.

  • You are creating data without deciding what to do with it.

Set a goal and find data that will give you the information you need by integrating marketing and IT.

For example, to target the right keywords, you need to know what keywords your competition and prospects are using. Researching competitors to find content gaps and opportunities will give you an upper hand.

Use reputable keyword research tools, get the data, and then optimize your content to include keywords that are not too competitive or lack a search intent.

Not Promoting Content

Content marketing is essential, especially for SaaS businesses that don’t have complex websites with a lot of pages. And when combined with SEO, the results are explosive!

We already know that SEO is the cake, and content marketing is the frosting.

Here’s how:

A recent survey by Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs revealed the following results:

  • 86% of businesses experienced increased brand awareness
  • 79% were able to educate their audience
  • 75% built trust/ credibility
  • 53% generated more sales and increased revenue, due to their content marketing efforts in just 12 months!
Source: contentmarketinginstitute

Now, imagine what happens when this is combined with SEO.

First, you will pick the right keywords. Then you will create quality and SEO optimized content that your promotion will position on the first page. You can promote content in different ways – with link building, influencer outreach, collabs, etc.

Groove, a customer support software is an excellent example of how content marketing can save a business from imminent death.

In an elaborate post, Groove’s founder, Alex Turnbull, explains how they used content marketing to increase revenue from $0 to $100,000 monthly, and eventually, to $5million annually.

Marketing efforts were barren. The site had zero visitors. Worse, no one was signing up for their product! The startup was in its deathbed.

They got serious about content marketing, spent two months researching and talking to established content marketers, created content that addressed the target market’s immediate need, and used about 80 influencers to market each blog post.

The image below is a great example of how Groove used feedback from its target market on online forums to get keywords and turn their challenges into a blog post, directly addressing issues.

Source: Groove HQ

The result?

250,000 monthly blog readers, 5,000 customers, about $5 million annual revenue, and they are growing!

Lessons from Groove:

  • Create quality content
  • Create relevant content to the target market
  • Use relevant keywords for SEO
  • Invest in influencers
  • Place strategic CTAs around content

If you promote your content as Groove did, you will get backlinks that help that content rank better. SaaS companies often leverage content marketing and SEO right and use that combo as their main growth channel.

Creating Content For Only One Buyer’s Stage 

You are now convinced that content marketing works. Does this mean that focusing on one type of content will suffice?

Well, no!

87% of shoppers begin their search on digital channels, and, according to HubSpot, the average customer will engage with 3-5 pieces of content before talking to a sales representative.

Due to this savvy nature of today’s buyers, you are bound to get confused when choosing the right kind of content.

You aren’t sure if you should tweet daily, share blog posts daily, or create new videos daily. So, to play safe, you opt to create only one type of content for only one buyer’s stage.

That’s wrong!

This is what you should do:

Understand the basic marketing funnel. You need to attract, engage, and delight your prospects.

  • To attract, use ads, social media, optimize landing pages, create educational blog posts.
  • Then, engage the prospect by offering gated content (downloads), pointing them out to other useful resources, sending emails, doing surveys, etc.
  • In the last stage, you want to convert them. You can do that with a product demo, a case study, a webinar, or a customer story. 

Creating website content for all stages will increase its topical relevance as well. As for your audience, you will position yourself as an expert.

Let’s see a small demonstration of how to move a prospect through a funnel.

Chanty, a SaaS company, ranks on the first Google page for the keyword “Skype alternatives”. That keyword has a somewhat buying intent because people searching for this keyword are obviously looking for a different option.

In their blog article, Chanty points out Skype downsides (user pain points) and offers a solution to the problem—their chat software. They also use comparison charts to convince the reader that they have a better tool.

Throughout the article, they placed buttons for different CTAs — free ebook download, more useful content, and a free trial.

This is an example of how you can convert website visitors with blog posts. However, you can also use ads to get people on your website.

Bottom Line

SEO is powerful for businesses of all domains when done right.

Using data properly, especially keyword analytics, increases your chances of finding opportunities for business growth. If you create content for stages of your buyer’s journey, you will cover more topics and have the opportunity to rank on search engines faster.

With quality content that you promote, you will increase your brand’s awareness and get more relevant web traffic. Then, you only need to convince and convert.

Joe Peters

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Joe Peters

Joe Peters is a Baltimore-based freelance writer and an ultimate techie. When he is not working his magic as a marketing consultant, this incurable tech junkie devours the news on the latest gadgets and binge-watches his favorite TV shows. Follow him on @bmorepeters

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