This is the seventh post in our o360 Series on 360 Degree Optimisation; using SEO, SEM, UX Optimisation, Content Optimisation, Customer Journey Optimisation and Conversion Rate Optimisation to enhance the user experience to not only garner positive results for our clients, but also foster a positive experience for users that they will want to return to.
We all have our favourite offline stores. There are a number of factors that contribute to why we spend in the same places whenever we decide to go shopping in the real world. The same could be said for any online store or company website, but all too often these businesses come up short when it comes to delivering all that’s required to turn an online browser into a buyer.
As part of the o360 series today I’d like to discuss digital marketing strategy in the form of a few questions aimed at you the reader or business owner to ask the question: "Are you doing all that’s required to convert your hard earned traffic into well earned euros?"
We all know where to go when we are looking to find somewhere, something or find out about anything these days. Google is our trusted go-to guide for all of life’s little conundrums with the power of search influencing our decisions and steering browsers onto their path to purchase with the simple click of a button. Optimising your site for natural traffic or SEO is strongly recommended if you want to be found by those looking for your products or service however moving up in Google’s rankings doesn’t happen overnight.
From training a dragon (or watching a movie about it) to tying a tie, Google has you covered.
For this reason combining your SEO efforts with a well-managed PPC campaign can help make sure you are not missing out on some of that all-important traffic relevant to your business. Many website owners approach the two strategies separately however, due to the fact that you are targeting the same customer with the same search request combining both SEO & PPC will yield you greater results.
Although there seems to be a lot of talk about SEO’s relevance in today’s digital marketplace, SEO is now a much bigger piece of the digital marketing pie where content is king and adhering to Google’s frequent algorithmic shifts is a live or die move for aspiring digital marketers. If you are still unconvinced, we know at least 7 good reasons why your business should invest in SEO
At iProspect we look at optimisation in a much wider context. It’s no longer merely about getting your site found but in providing the type of overall user experience (UX) expertly explained by Hannah Maguire’s blog post last week . The idea is to create a fluid, free-flowing experience allowing them to make their way through the site, find what they want quickly and easily and exit out the store complete with a purchase or having completed the desired action of the website owner.
In the offline world people will generally shop at a particular store due to convenience or because they stock a certain product or deliver a service that requires you a visit. If a customer arrives to find the store a mess and the items they hoped to purchase nowhere to be found, I suspect (like myself) they’d make a sharp exit and be on their way to the next available outlet. The very same can be expected from the online user experience where the competitor is only a click away from winning that business ahead of you. Thinking about the user when laying out your site will pay its dividends in the long run. A poorly layed-out shop will regularly result in a missed opportunity for the site owner.
Optimising the content of your site to make sure it is relevant to your browsers will make a big difference when looking at your overall conversions. Traffic that arrives only to find your website holds nothing for them will be quick to disappear--for good. Google recognises user behaviour and a high bounce rate will suggest that the content is not relevant to what the browser was searching for which will ultimately have a negative effect on a websites search engine rankings. Investing in a dedicated content strategy to grab a potential customer’s interest is vital for the overall success of your online business.
Showing the user journey: Both ads for Marks & Spencer have shown up both on webpages I visit and social media channels. They click through with clear messaging on landing page that links to the ads.
With only a few seconds' window to demonstrate your websites relevance, we recommend you think of your shopper and their mind set and how it lines up with the landing pages you are directing them to. The quality & layout of your content will ultimately decide whether they stay on your site or ‘search’ for a more relevant provider. Having this level of relevancy in your content throughout your site will increase the chances of turning this one time visitor into a long term customer.
Once users have clicked through to your site whether it’s direct traffic, via ads or through natural search it’s recommended to A/B test what sort of landing page drives you the best results. Likewise testing multi variants or versions of your website pages will provide insights to allow you to continue to optimise your approach and deliver an overall better performance from your site.
A before and after of a company's site that used testing to decide how to move forward with their redesign.
Although this might sound costly and something that involves multiple versions of your site pages to be designed Conversion Rate Optimisation or CRO as it’s more commonly known is part of the 360 degree optimisation ecosystem we keep referring to, a vital piece of the puzzle that when provided as a service, with access to the right tools, requires little or no work for the website owner and can very quickly pay for itself by delivering big increases in your overall website performance.
Performance display advertising is a great way to begin the brand building journey casting the net out to prospective customers in an effort to turn them into loyal customers. Display advertising is at the very heart of an optimised user experience, delivering relevant brand messaging to a targeted audience in an effort to push them further down the purchase funnel. Users who engage with your ads and arrive on your landing page can then be retargeted with variants of messaging depending on how far down the conversion path they make it.
Mini case study from one of our client's audience research.
Creating a social identity as a brand is a crucial part of driving an online business’s ongoing success. Understanding who your target audience is and developing a winning social media engagement strategy will help build brand loyalty ,create advocates for your business & spread the good word about your offering. Social Media allows a brand to engage with their audience at a personal level.
The Fault in Our Stars film made a huge impact with Facebook advertising, simply because they knew how to talk to their audience.
In many cases breaking down otherwise big barriers to advertising to allow important messages to reach the customer and influence them towards a purchase. Equally important through social is the opportunity to listen to what your customers are saying helping you shape your overall business strategy while allowing you to remain relevant to their future needs. Having a presence on Facebook & Twitter is a must for all businesses looking at building a brand identity through organic content while applying new advanced targeting options available through using social ads businesses have a great way to push their products to a highly relevant audience.
Potential customers will interact with your brand in a number of ways, often first interacting on one channel before converting through another. They expect you to know at each stage that you have already shown interest in their products and services and therefore understand them and easily meet their needs. It’s important to connect these touch points as they move across channels and maximise the opportunity to push them further down the path to purchase by delivering the right message based on what you have learned from their user journey- something more commonly known as customer journey optimisation.
There are many pieces to the puzzle that require constant attention to keep your online business afloat. Without a skilled professional at the helm, your ship will certainly begin to spring leaks with the potential disaster of disappearing into online obscurity a very real possibility.
At iProspect we look at the big picture for our clients placing value on each individual step with the knowledge and expertise of how all work in unison to deliver a truly optimised 360 degree approach.
Are there some pieces currently missing from your marketing puzzle that are preventing from reaching your full potential online? To hear how we can help you improve your 360 degree approach feel free to drop me a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org