How to Maximize the Value of Your Website
by Scott Dodge and Patrick Johnston
February 18, 2019
SEO

You have a website. You want to ensure that both search engines and users can find it. You want to ensure the people visiting your site get what they need (and do what you want them to do—buy, subscribe, etc.).

And while you might already have a robust paid media strategy in place, you may not be taking full advantage of the media properties you own. Together, paid and owned media pack a powerful punch, but ongoing care and attention to both SEO and site optimization is critical for the success of your site.

Maximizing the Value of Your Site

When you focus on making SEO improvements, you’ll likely see an increase in traffic coming to your site from organic search. Great news, right? Yes—however, if the site you serve up once these visitors arrive isn’t fulfilling expectations, they’ll leave your site without ever completing your desired action.

Alternatively, when you focus on optimizing your site to create the best experience for site visitors, they will be happy — so long as they can find your site in the first place.

The same principles apply outside of the digital world. Let’s say you have attractive billboards, TV commercials and print ads directing people to visit your store. They are flooding in the doors, but quickly realize the aisles have no organization, they can’t find their way around, and they don’t see the items they came to buy. So, they leave without purchasing anything. Or, if you have the perfect in-store experience that’s aesthetically pleasing and easy to get around—but nobody ever walks in. In sum, it’s short-sighted not to think through the whole experience.  

When you combine traffic growth from SEO and improvements in sitewide conversion rate, the result is incremental gain and maximized efficiency. This theory is evidenced in the following case study:

Despite this reality, too many marketers only address their website or organic traffic when something goes wrong, and they notice a dramatic difference in traffic or conversions. Those moments are somewhat inevitable. That being said, there are strategies to prepare your teams and mitigate the risks. Here’s how.

Search Engine Algorithms Change, and So Does Your Traffic

Risk: Search engine algorithms are unpredictable. When they change, traffic to your site can change as well…

Mitigating it: Rather than only responding when site traffic plummets from an algorithm shift,  ongoing SEO management enables you to proactively capitalize on current search demand. Whether it’s simple technical improvements or a full-fledged content strategy catered towards what the search engine crawlers are looking for, there are always opportunities to boost your organic search ranking.

User Behaviors Change, and So Does Your Site Performance

Risk: What your target audience seeks, and how they behave while looking to find it, are things that evolve over time. As their needs and behaviors shift, so too should your site.

Mitigating it: Having an iterative testing program in place will proactively improve the performance of your site by continuously optimizing it for conversion. When you are looking at optimizing your site on an ongoing basis, you can proactively identify unique audience segments, then test changes to the site that meet their unique needs and improve their experiences. As an example, someone visiting your site for the very first time might not be familiar with your brand. What they need from the site is undoubtedly different from a returning customer that visits your site multiple times a week.

Ongoing Attention and A Balanced Approach

It’s important to ensure the search engines can find your website. It’s equally important to ensure your site visitors have a great online experience that moves them to act. Succeeding in SEO and site optimization is a never-ending balancing act, but the optimizations that you make via both of these channels are of evergreen value to your brand.  Encouraging your team to think through the full-funnel experience by considering SEO in junction with site optimization is just one way to shift your brand to becoming more customer-centric.

For help dialing in the right balance between SEO and site optimization, a Digital Marketing Audit, which takes stock of how your digital marketing programs are currently performing, is a logical place to start.

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