Nobody knows you’re here.
How much organic traffic does your website get per month?
Finding that number should be priority #1. Organic traffic (the number of visitors coming through search engine results) is a number you or your marketing team should know off the top of your heads. It’s one of the most powerful assets in your digital marketing strategy, and it’s really the end-all be-all metric for who is coming and going.
If you don’t know how much organic traffic your website gets, it’s vitally important to set up Google Analytics and regularly monitor it for fluctuations. And always remember to compare those fluctuations with changes in your practice.
Google is the world’s most popular search engine. 90% of searches happen there. If your website doesn’t pop up near the top of Google’s results, people won’t know you exist. Optimizing your website’s text, layout, and graphics for the search engine’s algorithms is commonly referred to as Search Engine Optimization, or SEO.
The Fix: Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an $80 billion industry. There’s a reason business owners are willing to hand over money to the pros to get the site Google-friendly: 28% of Google searchers will click on the first result they see. If your link isn’t on the first page? Forget about it.
You can purchase Google Ads, sure, and help get yourself pushed higher. But not every business can go that route. So how do you get your website to the top of Google’s search results organically?
Google prefers websites that are organized — where information can be easily found. When Google crawls across your page, it wants to find content quickly, so it can share that page with its searchers.
On-page SEO is optimization and organization of your website’s content so that Google can sort through it easily. Your digital marketing team should be all over this. If they’re not, you should contact our amazing SEO team at Cordelia Labs and get support ASAP.
Off-page SEO is the real driver of organic site traffic. Google has eyes everywhere, so the more places your name and keywords pop up — giving Google more opportunities to find you — the better.
This requires blogging and link building. It’s important to remember that Google wants to give their users the most accurate search results possible. Create blog posts that address your customers’ needs, and provide solutions to the common problems they’re looking to solve.
Anticipate what a user might type into Google that your business can address. Things like “how do I fix…”, “where can I find…”, or “when is the best time to…” might be good places to start, depending on your services. Each industry is different, and each business can find different angles for their blog content.
To really step up your organic traffic, you can utilize online SEO tools like SEMrush.
SEMrush is fantastic at analyzing your website’s organic traffic and comparing it to your competitors’ traffic. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so if a strategy is working for your competitors, you should consider exploring it.
In the chart above, your website is the red circle. You can see where you rank against others in your field. (Hint: You should really want to know what the light yellow circle is up to.)
Typically, the more organic keywords you rank for, the more search traffic your website will receive. You can see that linear relationship in this chart.
How do you rank for more keywords? I’m glad you asked. That’s where blogs come into play. If you vary the topics you’re writing about, you can hone in on a wider variety of keywords.
In the chart above, we’re comparing four websites in the same industry and niche.
The website highlighted in green far exceeds the others in organic traffic. Notice they have the highest amount of organic traffic, and the highest number of organic keywords. But there’s something else going on, too: They have the highest Authority Score, and the most backlinks. Dig into those topics, and see what changes you could be making to increase traffic.
Where does your website rank compared to your closest competitors? Use SEMRush to find out. Make sure to look at their authority scores and overall backlinks, because those are the results that affect the organic traffic numbers.
2. Your visitors aren’t hanging around.
Let’s say your organic traffic looks great. Folks are really showing up to see what you’re all about. Your SEO must be strong!
So why is nobody buying anything? Why aren’t they making appointments? Why is everyone just window shopping on your website?
Let’s start by looking at the conversion rate: the number of conversions (leads or sales) your website generated, divided by the total number of visitors. Within a given period of time, how many of your window shoppers are actually coming inside to make a transaction?
If people are coming to your website and not converting, you might have a problem with your conversion rate optimization.
The Fix: Conversion Rate Optimization
SEO & CRO
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) is the process of optimizing your site and/or landing pages to increase the number of leads you generate. If SEO brings them to the door, CRO invites them in for tea. Once there, they’ll sign up for a service, add something to their shopping cart, schedule an appointment, or fill out a form.
In the digital space, you’ll engage with potential customers better if you let them find you, rather than seeking them out one by one.
There are more than 5.6 billion Google searches every day. Representatives from Google have said that, for the most part, SEO is about posting high-quality and original content to earn those organic visitors, while CRO is about making the website user-friendly once they’ve arrived.
By combining SEO efforts with Conversion Rate Optimization, you create a lead-generating force to be reckoned with.
How to Optimize Your Website for Conversions
Here are a few general rules if you’re trying to increase conversion rates:
- Have one clear call to action on every page of your website.
- Make sure the purpose of each page is clearly stated above the fold.
- Keep the structure of each page simple and easy to use.
If your website is promoting a service, your call to action (CTA) might be “fill out a contact form.” So, having your contact form at the top of the page, right next to the main heading, makes it easy to see and immediately accessible. Fill out the form? Don’t mind if I do.
This conversion is much harder to obtain if you stick the contact form down at the bottom of the page. If your page is too complex to navigate, you can lose visitors, who return to the Google search results to find a site that’s easier to read. Then all that great SEO work has gone down the drain.
The majority of web searches have information as the intent, meaning the searcher is looking for help with something. Your business might have a product or service that’s the solution to their problem.
Writing an informative blog answering their search query will keep them on your page, which will, in turn, establish trust between your brand and this prospective customer.
If your blog describes a service or product you offer, link directly to that resource, so they can purchase it. Publishing blogs that speak to your ideal client can definitely drive organic traffic to your website.
Advanced CRO Tools
At Cordelia Labs, we run tests on a client’s page to identify spots where users are doing the most clicking, scrolling, and swiping. We use a digital heat mapping tool called Hotjar, which records interactions on a web page.
Hotjar will identify the “hottest” places on the page, so we can optimize the page’s layout to maximize that activity. This helps increase conversions on that page.
Google Optimize is a free but powerful tool used to test variations of your website.
You can install Google Optimize on your website through Google Tag Manager. This tool allows you to make adjustments to the front-end user interface (UI) of your website without resorting to huge overall changes.
For example, if your page has a blue background, you could use Google Optimize to create a variation of your page with a red background, to see which one gets a higher conversion rate. 50% of the site traffic will automatically route to the red page, and 50% to the blue page.
After running a test for 1-2 weeks, you can determine what color that web page should be to maximize your conversions. This is great for design experimentation!
The best way to maximize the effectiveness of Hotjar and Google Optimize is to send traffic to your site by reaching customers through paid media, which we’re going to talk more about.
3. You’re not reaching the right audience.
You might be getting traffic, but maybe these aren’t the people you’re trying to reach. Poorly designed SEO can miss the ideal audience, and CRO only works if you’re bringing in ideal customers. So when organic isn’t working quickly or successfully enough, using paid advertising is a great way to go.
Not every business should dive straight into paid ads, especially not before they have a solid SEO strategy in place (always start with organic).
Paid ads, though, are the fastest and most effective way to find the people who are likely to convert and drive them to your website. This increased traffic can really speed up the CRO process by allowing you to test and optimize faster, making this a great time to use Hotjar and Google Optimize.
The Fix: Paid Media
Paid media is pretty simple. Once you decide which platforms your ideal audience spends their time on, you create a campaign to present your goods and services on those platforms.
After launching your campaign, you’ll begin to see impressions, clicks, and hopefully conversions on the page itself. It can also position your business ahead of your competitors, especially if you have a very effective campaign.
You can run A/B tests to determine which kinds of copywriting and/or graphics are engaging with audiences the most. Maybe your product sells well with funny pet pictures in the ads, or maybe your audience likes nature shots.
Posting version A and version B simultaneously, and monitoring the results for a couple of weeks, lets you make these determinations. Then pick the winning version and run with it!
You can perform these A/B tests with the ads, copy, graphics, and ad settings within each platform. Over time, as you narrow down what works for your audience, your campaign will convert more users at a lower cost per ad (or, in some cases, cost per click).
Feeling a bit overwhelmed? There’s a lot to absorb here. But start by checking those organic traffic results, and use this blog post as a checklist to diagnose the problems.
If that’s not your bag, you needn’t worry. Paid media agencies like Cordelia Labs can run your digital advertising campaigns for you, handling all the metrics as well. It’s often best to work with an established agency before putting money into paid advertisements without a solid foundation in place.
If your site isn’t selling your stuff, you need to get the right traffic to visit your site.
Search Engine Optimization harnesses the power of organic traffic.
Publish high-quality, original blog content that answers your ideal customer’s questions.
Once you have consistent organic traffic coming to your website, work on your Conversion Rate Optimization to sell your goods and services to site visitors.
After establishing SEO and CRO, use paid advertising to promote your site quickly and publicly — it’s easier to surpass local competitors this way.
Your digital marketing team should be all over this. For a second pair of eyes on your digital marketing, or to get more in-depth support, reach out to us at Cordelia Labs.