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Can Your Website Convert the Increased Traffic Brought On by SEO? – Part 1

January 6th, 2010 | | Conversion Optimization

Nothing makes me happier than when clients ask for SEO, Blogging, Social Media and PPC for their site. The part that scares me is when the business model they seem to be using has a familiar “.com” feel to it:

1. Website
2. ?
3. Sale

My fears are typically perpetuated when their initial opening statement begins like his:

“I just had my site redesigned…”

Or more frightening:

“I know how I want my site to look and have a guy re-doing it.”

Sometimes those sites turn out okay. Sometimes.

But what I think frightens me even more than client decisions is that none of the web and online professionals the client used up to that point tried to talk the client out of their decisions. Not that I’m anymore worth considering than the next professional, but in a world of inbound marketing, online direct response, WordPress, and CafePress, it shocks me how many small and medium businesses still have corporate websites designed in the traditional brochure style without much thought for converting website traffic into leads or, better yet, sales.

Too many sites are dependent on the “contact us” and “blog” header links for visitor interaction.

If an SEO professional takes a site under these conditions, increases relevant traffic to the site, and the sales don’t accompany the cost of the effort, who do you think is getting blamed?

And using the, “I can only lead a horse to water,” excuse – those often valid – will only work so long before the client moves on to other options. SEO specialists already get labeled as voodoo artists. Situations like the ones described above don’t help any.

How many SEO professionals consider the landing page? Not just the onsite SEO, but the ability of the landing page to convert traffic:   receive leads, capture data, generate sales. I’m not just talking about properly integrating a blog and other social media applications on the site, though it’s definitely a topic worth addressing and I will focus on those issues in part II, but for now I’m concerned about general landing page design principles.

Landing Pages Questions to Consider Before Performing SEO

  • Are the landing pages set to convert?
  • Is the message on the landing page concise and easy to understand?
  • How many clicks are between the landing page to the conversion page?
  • Are their CTAs (Call to Action) on the site?
  • How Many CTAs are above the fold?
  • Would the page benefit from an order capture form?
  • What design changes would make the pages easier to convert?

The answers to such questions could not only save you headaches but also your reputation as an SEO expert.

And if the answers aren’t to your liking, don’t be afraid to walk away.

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