The goal of an SEO campaign is to improve a website presence in the search engines and online in general in order to deliver more targeted traffic to the website over time. Obviously, a website owner wants website visitors to take some kind of action and convert once they arrive at the site. However that’s not the job of the SEO campaign. SEO success and website conversion success are two different metrics. It’s very possible for an SEO campaign to be working and generating more traffic, but for the site conversion rates to just not be improving steadily along with it. If this is the case, your website needs to be analyzed for a conversion issue.
Before jumping to any kind of conclusions about your SEO campaign or website conversion rate and making rash decisions, benchmark the data for an extended period of time. Looking at one month’s worth of data isn’t nearly enough to get an accurate picture of what might be going on. Also, be realistic when it comes to the nature of your business. Many businesses have a certain seasonality that goes along with it. Analyzing the data during “off-peak” times isn’t an accurate way to measure success. Give your SEO and other marketing efforts enough time to generate an increase in conversion rate based on the typical sales cycle of your business.
After looking at the data over a period of time, if you are unhappy with the conversion rate compared to the amount of traffic that you are receiving, take a look at your conversion metrics of the website and consider what the goals of the site are. If you primarily want to receive phone calls and have people make appointments, make sure that your phone number is listed prominently on every page. If you want a website visitor to fill out a lead form, analyze the lead form to see if there is some sort of “turn off”. A lead form shouldn’t be too complex or time consuming to fill out and shouldn’t ask for information beyond what is necessary. If you operate an e-commerce site and want a website visitor to buy something, ensure that your check out process is painless and that the visitor experience is secure and safe.
Beyond looking at your own website, there could be external factors contributing to a low conversion rate. Take a look at competitor websites. It’s likely that visitors to your website are also visiting their websites. Are they offering something better or at a lower price? If so, that’s likely affecting your conversion rate. Pay attention to other external factors as well like the current economic climate. If people are spending less on just about everything, your business can take a hit.
When analyzing website conversion rate success and making website changes, it’s important to test everything. Never assume that you know exactly what your target audience wants. Test and analyze conversion points. It’s a timely process, but necessary in order to get a website conversion rate where you want it to be.
SEO helps to deliver targeted traffic to a website, but ultimately it is up to the website itself to get that visitor to convert. Instead of getting frustrated with an SEO campaign and scrapping it, focus on making business and website changes that will improve conversion.