Why is SEO for Lead Generation Essential for B2B Marketing?

Attracting the right traffic is tough now that millions of people are online. Targeting high quality leads is now less about volume, and more about quality. Take a look at the key elements to consider for your SEO lead generation strategy in 2018.

10 Guy Swanborough

As a website owner, you are no doubt aware of the importance of B2B SEO and attracting traffic. But given the explosion of the web over the last decade, millions and millions of people are now online. Now, it is less about volume, and more about quality.

A huge proportion of businesses operating online today offer forms of lead generation for selling more complex products or services, usually within B2B markets. If the intention of your website is to put you in contact with people who will interact with your business – either as a seller, buyer or partner – you want to make sure that it provides them with all the information they need to influence their decision in the right direction.

However, the availability of the internet has made it highly competitive for businesses to attract new customers, resulting in a shift in information sharing. Now, businesses need to share so much more to capture the attention of a prospect.

With this in mind, here are a few key elements to consider for your SEO lead generation strategy as we move through 2018.

Keyword Identification: Understand Intention, Not Just Volume

The foundation of any SEO strategy will start with keyword research. Valuable data about keywords relating to online search is quite easily available, such as how often they are searched, and how competitive they are. But one of the most overlooked aspects of keywords is the intention behind them.

Example: If your company sold data cleansing solutions to other companies, the value of a lead can be relatively high, should it turn into a long-term contract.

Google AdWords screenshot

In this instance, it may be more worthwhile targeting to rank for data cleansing company over just data cleansing, as the intentions of the two keywords are inherently different. The latter could be larger as more people are researching what it is (lesser informed), while the former could be users further down the funnel looking for a supplier to help them with a problem (more informed). Despite the lower volume, it would be a far more qualified lead.

Create Keyword Intention Clusters and Prioritise

Intention keywords can also be clustered into logical groups, and knowing which ones carry more value than others can help guide your overall content strategy.

Informational keyword clusters would include terms like how to _, ways to _, guide to _, _ methods, _ best practice etc, which would make for good blog content.

Commercial keywords would have the words buy _, _ company, _ solution, _ service, _ cost, _ download etc, which would be important to mention on your landing pages with clear Call to Actions (CTAs) for contact.

Useless keywords are just as important to be identified, as despite having significant volumes, they would bring low quality (low conversion) traffic to your site and only increase your bounce rate. Examples of these would be free _, cheap _, _ torrent, _ stream. Basically, users of these terms have no intention of paying, so best to avoid them. Depending on your industry, you would know what types of customers not to target.

Let Keyword Classification Guide Site Navigation and Structure

Depending on how thoroughly you have researched your keywords, you can then classify them according to intent, which in turn can help you develop a website structure and navigation. This is achieved by grouping similar intention keywords together, and letting them guide the content for the page.

The intent can be mapped according to which stage of the Purchase Funnel the user is at – which is illustrated below.

Purchase funnel graphic

Awareness – “format data entries”

Interest – “different types of data cleansing”

Desire – “sql data cleansing”

Action – “sql data cleansing services”

Apply User Terminology, Not Industry

A major proponent of SEO is making your product or service visible to your intended customer base, which can often mean a difference between how you describe your product and how they would. Use simpler language and all the variations of describing it in your page copy, so that search engines can get a fuller understanding of exactly what you sell.

For this reason, you would include semantically similar variations of target keywords in the page meta data and copy.

For instance – a user looking for data cleansing might start their search with “fix errors in database”, which would lead them on to the term and progressing the stages of their research. Hence, having content describing how to fix errors would be for the user.

Let Informative Content Attract Users, and Keep Them There

The usefulness of the information on your website will be one of the most powerful weapons in your arsenal, as your potential customer will most likely choose you due to demonstration of ability in your chosen trade. If you can logically and accurately address the concerns of your potential customer for smaller issues they might have, they will be far more inclined to use your services for bigger challenges.

But you also want to leave them egging for more, so (obviously) don’t divulge everything you know. You still need to sell your services at the end of the day. The key is providing just enough info to convince them you are the ones for the job.

You can present your content to them in a variety of formats. If you have interesting statistics and figures from your industry or use of your services, you present them as a visual infographic. For more research orientated information, perhaps a comprehensive white paper (asking for an email before download) would be more appropriate. Or with attention spans lower than ever, present it in a quirky 5 minute video. There are many options, so choosing the one which will have the highest impact and relevance to your audience is key.

Using SEO for lead generation means knowing what your customer is likely to search for. This will define both your keyword and ongoing content strategy, but the methods mentioned in this blog are by no means exhaustive. They will, however, give you an idea as to how deeply you can target potential leads which creates a foundation on top of which you can build high quality, engaging content that speaks your message to the most relevant demographic.