Trying to get found on the Internet? Don't worry, you're not alone.
While all SEO tactics will work in similar ways for all industries in general, some tactics are more relevant to professional services companies, like having information-rich content.
To us, it makes no sense (actually, we think it's criminal) to engage in marketing practices that will both attract and repel potential customers at the same time. If you agree, here's a list of some things that are pretty bad, but that can be fixed without breaking too much of sweat:
1. An old, outdated, clunky, non-mobile-friendly, slow loading website.
What is one qualified lead (SQL) worth to you?
Let's work the numbers on this. Take one of our favorite industries: commercial cleaning. A lead visits the company's website, converts, bamm, a new customer has landed. Let's say the customer purchases a new contract to clean the client's small office at $50 / week. $50 x 52 weeks = $2,600.00. Wouldn't that pay a deposit on a nice, new website?
$2,600 x 10 years (good customer retention policy in place) = $26K. Just one new customer more than buys the website. Are you sold yet?
2. A nice, shiny, new website with no redirects.
This happens all the time because few web designers or SEO consultants are doing anything about it. What's a "redirect?"
Let me explain: Maybe the old website had a "cleaning services" page, thus the URL: www.mywebsite.com/cleaningservices. But the URL for the equivalent page on the new website is: www.mywebsite.com/services/cleaning. See the difference in URL's?
Problem: Anyone who has the old URL bookmarked, any Google search ranking on that page, and any inbound links will be dead. The dead links will return a "404 error." 404's are an SEO killer.
We've seen organic traffic dip noticeably for a few months while the search engines figure out you've changed some things.
How to fix: Your web developer should redirect each old URL to the appropriate new URL, thus eliminating the "404 errors."
3. Purchasing SEO tactics that never worked well in the first place.
Well, maybe they worked a little 10 years ago. You're forward thinking, right? Here's a laundry list just so I don't have to entitle this article, "100 ways to kill SEO." These are some of the things you could be penalized for:
- Purchasing junk inbound links. Tempting, isn't it? This tactic is quickly becoming a "black hat" trick in the SEO world. Google's smart algorithms are good at figuring out someone's trying to trick them. BTW: "Junk" means: While the links are good, the content they link to is totally junk.
- Adding localization keywords to the bottom of a page. We still see web designers doing this, "Here are the keywords for our page." Yikes.
- Copying content (plagiarizing). A quick way to get de-ranked due to thin or duplicate content.
- Keyword stuffing. A blog reads: "Cookie baking in California is a great thing to do. That's because people in California love cookie baking." You guessed that the keyword phrase we're going for is, "cookie baking in California." Don't stuff in keywords.
- Hidden text. Still being done. Very bad.
4. Junk blogging, spammy content, straying too far from the path.
This is one of my favorite topics. With over 152 million blogs on the Internet, delivering excellent content is more important than ever. SEO for professional services companies means creating content that truly will educate. That's because the technical nature or complexity of the services you're offering is a magnet for visitors seeking more information before they buy.
It's also vital to create content that is well within the realm of your expertise, not being tempted to stray from your content goals.
57% of your leads will have spent some time researching their purchase decision before contacting you (source: executiveboard.com
- Don't blindly recycle content. Instead, either write something new, or add your expertise to what someone else said, citing the source.
- Don't force things on your audience.
5. Never using metrics to track ROI.
Would you start a healthy eating / exercise and weight-loss program without ever weighing yourself? Probably not. Most marketers don't measure anything, and so every task becomes a "shotgun" approach. Failing to track ROI might actually be the #1 priority.
The difference between SEO and ROI is that SEO gets traffic, ROI gets revenue.
Correct, SEO and ROI are two different things, per se, but why spend the time (a huge amount of time) and money to do digital marketing by blogging on your website, launching email campaigns, and posting on social media at all?
You may say, "I'm getting great traffic on my website." But are you getting the right traffic? Tracking campaigns, visitors, leads, and conversions is the only way to know if something is working or not. If you know something is not working, you can change it, right? If you don't know, you're wasting huge effort and money in your digital marketing strategy.
Key take-a-ways from this blog article:
- SEO for professional service companies requires precise strategies and always employing best practices.
- Trying to save money by not taking action costs acquiring new customers.
- Create educationally-rich content.
- If you're going to spend money on digital marketing, make sure you can measure the results.
To learn more about marketing your professional services company through the Internet, please download our FREE e-book below.
If you're serious about marketing your business in the digital age, our e-book will really help!