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Blending a Strategic SEO & PPC Strategy for Great Results

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Whether you are a part of an in-house marketing team or an agency, something is usually consistent in both as far as teams go. Now, I want you to do me a favor. Stand up and look around if you are either in an SEO or PPC department. Are your teams sitting together or separated? Chances are, it’s the latter of the two as this is common practice among digital marketing departments or agencies. This doesn’t mean you should be strategically separated, however. A well-blended SEO and PPC strategy can be vastly superior than running both separately without cross-team collaboration. So let’s dive in and see how we can achieve success for great results.

Capturing Clicks No Matter What Medium

Here’s an eye-opening statistic for you: approximately 90% of searchers don’t go past the first page of Google search results. 90%! So after reading this fact, it becomes apparent that getting searchers to click on your ad or blue organic link is important if you are already ranking on page 1. But capturing that searcher or position in the first place can be difficult. You could be ranking #11 for a search term in organic, but if searchers don’t scroll to the second page, you’ll be missing an opportunity to attract their business. This is why adding a PPC strategy on top of this is beneficial to split the difference in which you can easily rank #1 with a paid ad and spend the appropriate amount to stay at the top instead of waiting for organic to catch up, and there’s no guarantee it will. Practicing both mediums increases your chances of being seen!

Example: Home Depot has the top paid ad as well as the top organic position for the search term “exterior doors.”

Organic Listing Ranking Number 1

Use a Holistic Approach

I’m talking about high level stuff here, friend! Think about all the classic combos of history. PB&J. A burger and fries. Bacon and eggs. SEO and PPC? I’m a firm believer in both of them serving their purpose on their own, but together, that’s really where the magic happens. A holistic approach creates a strong search engine presence – here’s how:

  • PPC drives traffic: Paid ads create exposure on page 1 to your website in an otherwise buried search result. It could organically be on page 3, 4, or even farther back.
  • PPC Fills In When Organic Drops: Let’s say an organic keyword drops out of nowhere. The PPC ad can pick up the pieces without missing a beat while the SEO team figures out what happened and remedies the issue.
  • Use SEO to Optimize PPC Landing Pages: Whether it’s a tailor made landing page for specific ads or a category page, using SEO practices to optimize the page will help it rank higher in both mediums.
  • SEO and PPC Dominance: Using these types of holistic practices and assert your SERP dominance, and send better ranking signals across the web.

Use PPC Data from Keyword Planner for SEO Keyword Research

There are many ways to perform keyword research and a variety of tools to use in order to gather the data you need. One thing that I like to do when carrying out keyword research for our clients is to use Google Keyword Planner data. This probably isn’t new to you, as you probably do this yourself, but hear me out.

  • Monthly Searches: Yes, search volume still matters. The term, or some variation of it, has to be entered into Google in the first place at a volume that makes sense. You can also see search volume is trending with a visual graph. It also depends on how specific the search query is in your industry, which ties into….
  • Competition Metrics: Google Ads has a column in keyword planner called “Competition”, and is ranked High, Medium, or Low. This is particularly useful for PPC data, but you can actually check this out for SEO to see how competitive your area of business is in general so this can drive overall strategy. If you are a smaller business, aim for medium and low competition keywords.

Use SEO Data for PPC Campaigns

Maybe you are having success with organic keywords in certain keyword areas that are essential to your business. You are getting the traffic, but you aren’t getting the conversions! What can be done?

  • Use Remarketing: Get these customers back with remarketing display campaigns to show previous site visitors what they were missing out on. You essentially purchase ad space in Google’s Display Network so that your ad will display to customers on sites they normally frequent.
  • Remove High Ranking SEO Keywords: If you already have high ranking keywords for pages that rank in positions 1-3 on Google, then chances are you can remove them from your PPC campaigns and put that money you would spend on clicks somewhere else. Common sense, right?

Reap the Benefits of the Blend

After implementing the blend, you can start reaping the benefits! Here are just some that you’ll be seeing:

  • More Traffic & Visibility: This might be the obvious answer. When you have all your bases covered in both SEO & PPC, you’ll have more exposure on the SERPs which means more visibility, more traffic, and more clicks.
  • Higher PPC Quality Scores for Keywords & Ads: When Google and Microsoft Ads go through and scan your ads, they scan whatever landing page they are linked to and if relevant keywords are included. This can include the title, page headers, and page description. The SERPs will then give you a reward in terms of a boost in quality score if the keywords you are targeting are relevant to the landing page content. This quality score boost will also lower cost per click, and leads me to my next point.
  • Better PPC = Better SEO: As mentioned earlier, when you optimize a PPC landing page for SEO, it goes without saying it will give you a boost in BOTH paid and organic search results. It will also increase the aforementioned quality scores, as well as giving keywords an organic rankings boost for the landing page you have a higher quality score on.
  • Higher Returning Visitors & ROI: Think about this for a second. Let’s say someone searches for your services or product online and happens to click on an organic link while they are in the awareness phase of the sales funnel. When they come back during the action (purchasing) phase, they are most likely going to search for your brand since they now know about it. Or one could use remarketing to target customers that aren’t converting. Either way, utilizing both mediums working hand in hand = higher ROI & conversions.

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PPC

Definition and How to Calculate a Lead Score

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Definition and How to Calculate a Lead Score


Generating a high volume of leads is one thing while identifying which prospects are most likely to convert into customers is another. To put it differently, it’s all about quality over quantity. 

That’s where lead scoring comes in. Let’s take a look at what lead scoring is and how you can calculate it effectively.

What is Lead Scoring? 

In short, lead scoring involves gauging your prospects’ quality to determine which leads are worth pursuing and which ones are not. Usually, this process works on a point-based system. 

You assign prospects points according to various attributes. More specifically, you can score leads based on implicit and explicit data. 

Explicit information refers to factual data that your leads have confirmed through a phone call or by completing a form. On the other hand, implicit data is based on the information you already possess, like purchase history. 

You can then break down both data sets into demographic and behavioral data. Demographic data refers to your leads’ company size, geographical information, or industry, while behavioral data focuses on information based on the actions your leads took, like form submissions. 

What are the Benefits of Lead Scoring?  

For starters, lead scoring makes the sales process more efficient. By identifying qualified and unqualified leads, you’ll no longer need to spend time cold-calling or personalizing sales emails to leads that will likely not bring any value to your business. 

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By getting bad leads out of the equation, you’ll likely be able to increase conversions with fewer sales representatives. 

Consequently, lead scoring helps you save time and money. It also helps shift your sales efforts to high-value leads for better results. 

In addition, a lead scoring system helps you improve your marketing strategy. You’ll get to identify which marketing channels bring in the most valuable leads, thus allowing you to determine which channels are worth investing in and which ones are not. 

Moreover, lead scoring will improve the nurturing process, as it allows you to pinpoint where prospects are situated in the sales cycle. 

You can use that information to send content dedicated to leads during each sales cycle stage. Consequently, you can create more meaningful relationships and close deals quicker.

Lastly, evaluating leads will help you get your sales and marketing teams on the same page. As mentioned earlier, having a lead scoring system requires data. 

This information helps marketers understand what type of prospects are most likely to convert and how to create targeted campaigns to attract them. The marketing department can then hand over sales-ready leads to the sales team and help them generate more sales

How to Score Leads Manually

Lead-to-Customer Conversion Rate

The lead-to-customer conversion rate represents the percentage of the company’s qualified leads that resulted in a sale. To calculate this metric, divide the number of qualified prospects that generated conversions by the total number of qualified leads. 

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Why is this metric important? It essentially acts as your sales team’s benchmark. It allows you to assess the performance of your sales funnel and helps you stack up multiple marketing channels against each other to identify which ones are most effective in generating high-quality leads.

Choose the Right Attributes for Your Model 

Attributes are the backbone of your lead scoring model. They help you define and identify the characteristics of sales-ready prospects and give you an idea of how to improve lead quality.

That’s where the data we mentioned earlier comes in. First, identify the prospects that bring the most value to your business. 

Second, take your implicit and explicit data sets and find similarities between your high-value leads by examining demographic and behavioral data. Upon reviewing the data, identify the characteristics that define high-quality prospects and assign the attributes accordingly.

Determine the Close Rate for All Attributes

Next up, it’s time to determine which attribute is more valuable than the other. You’ll first need to calculate the close rate for each attribute to do this. More specifically, identify how many prospects turn into customers depending on their behavior or demographics. 

For instance, you could calculate the close rate of people who sign-up for your newsletter, follow you on social media, or determine the close rate of prospects within various regions or niches. 

Assign Point Values

Upon determining the close rates for each attribute, you’ll need to compare them and prioritize one over another.  

For instance, recent Instagram statistics show that marketers grade influencer marketing as their fastest-expanding customer acquisition channel. So you may find out that more prospects from influencer campaigns turn into customers than prospects who signed up for your newsletter.

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In that case, the former attribute is more valuable. Repeat the process for each specific attribute to define the characteristics that accurately reflect lead quality. 

Furthermore, compare the close rates of your attributes to your overall close rate. This will act as a reference point when assigning scores for your attributes. 

For example, if newsletter sign-ups have a close rate of 15%, whereas your overall close rate is one percent, you could assign each lead that registers to your newsletter 15 points. 

Setting a minimum score threshold is also recommended to draw the line between qualified and unqualified prospects easier. For instance, leads with a score below 50/100 points may not be worth pursuing. 

Other Types of Lead Scoring

Aside from the manual approach, there are also other methods of scoring leads. More specifically, predictive and logistics regression lead scoring. 

Predictive lead scoring might be your best bet if you’re looking to save time. This method uses machine learning to go through prospect data to find common points between leads that convert and leads that do not and rank each prospect based on their likelihood of converting. 

Predictive lead scoring eliminates the need to manually sift through data to identify valuable attributes and minimizes the risk of human errors. 

Moreover, since predictive lead scoring systems use machine learning technology, you won’t need to optimize your follow-up strategy manually. 

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On the other hand, the main strength of logistic regression lead scoring systems lies in their accuracy, as it considers how all customer attributes interact with one another. 

This is a data mining technique that uses Microsoft Excel. It works by building a formula in the spreadsheet which will reveal the probability of turning a prospect into a customer. 

Conclusion

Overall, lead scoring is crucial for identifying high-value prospects and giving you an insight into how you could lower your cost per lead

Start by determining your lead-to-conversion late. After that, choose the right attributes depending on your customer information, calculate the close rate of each attribute, and sort them based on their importance.





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