This post was sponsored by ResultFirst. The opinions expressed in this article are the sponsor’s own.
Your CEO wants to know how important your SEO team is in the company’s big picture.
The CFO wants to make sure you’re staying within your tight marketing budget.
Meanwhile, shareholders want to see a higher return on investment (ROI) with limited cost.
So, how do you transform your SEO team into an ROI powerhouse without breaking your budget?
We’ll show you how to improve your ROI through an updated keyword ranking strategy and some untapped SEO strategies for enterprise SEO teams.
And some of these SEO strategies only cost money when they work.
We’ll teach you how to work more efficiently with a smaller in-house marketing budget.
1. Get More Qualified Visitors: Add Mid-Volume Keywords To Your SEO Strategy
You know the drill. Your CEO wants to see millions of visitors pouring into your site with a minimum spend.
Your SEO team focuses on high-volume keywords and branded keywords to make sure traffic flow improves.
However, once website traffic begins to increase, shareholders seem to start focusing on the next key metric – return on investment (ROI).
Suddenly, your CEO starts asking to see conversion data and asking how many hours went into each conversion:
- How many hours went into nurturing each visitor?
- How many of those nurtured visitors converted into a sale?
- How many fell out of a long marketing funnel?
- How many of those visitors are converting into true profit?
- Is all of this work financially paying off?
Then, you realize that high-volume keywords and branded keywords only attract top-of-the-funnel visitors, a.k.a people who are the farthest away from making a purchase.
The excitement begins to fade – your marketing team has spent hundreds of hours nurturing those top-funnel visitors to the consideration stage, only for 4.31% of visitors to convert.
Each hour spent nurturing reduces the ROI of SEO.
It’s time to make sure that the leads entering your website are closer to the conversion phase of your marketing funnel.
After all, less work to transform a visitor into profit means higher ROI.
The key: pivot your SEO team’s focus towards adding more mid-volume and low-volume keywords to your SEO strategy.
Why Should I Allocate SEO Bandwidth To Mid- & Low-Volume Keywords?
To make sure that your website leads are closer to conversion, allocate SEO bandwidth toward mid- and low-volume keywords.
What’s The ROI Difference Between High-Volume & Mid-/Low-Volume Keywords?
High-volume keywords, such as the short-tail keywords [iPhone 14] or [Android], are great for awareness and traffic. But because visitors who enter your site through high-volume, short-tail keywords are in the awareness stage of the marketing funnel, only 3% of these visitors may convert.
Mid-volume and low-volume keywords, such as the long-tail keywords [buy 256GB iPhone 14 pro max], have a 23% chance of converting with less work.
How To Increase ROI With Mid- & Low-Volume Keywords
To add mid-volume and low-volume keywords (a.k.a long-tail keywords) to your SEO strategy, simply repeat your in-house keyword research strategy to focus on search intent.
Re-performing your initial keyword research with search intent will naturally help you uncover the long-tail keywords you need to get more qualified leads and search visibility.
The Easy Way
Don’t have the budget to repeat keyword research for more qualified search terms?
- Hands-on pay-for-performance SEO agencies that combine your current keyword strategy with a well-balanced mix of short-tail and long-tail keywords. Bonus, you only pay for results; there are no budget-wasting retainers.
- Automated SEO tools, which will still require bandwidth for configuration and quality control.
2. Audit The True ROI Of Your SEO Strategy: Reduce Unnecessary Marketing Spend
Being wise about how you allocate your resources is the second key to higher ROI.
- Are your marketing teams aligned with your SEO goals?
- Are you streamlining and automating simple SEO tasks to improve bandwidth and innovative output from your key players?
- If you’re outsourcing parts of your SEO strategy, is their success resulting in net profit?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, you may be accidentally lowering the ROI of your SEO results.
Focus on these key areas to solve the largest unnecessary drains on your marketing budget.
Cost Reduction Tip 1: Ensure Content Marketing, PPC & SEO Are Aligned For Higher Success
Sharing strategies and data between marketing teams can help your organization save bandwidth costs while improving how you optimize and manage campaigns.
Siloed enterprise marketing teams can quickly become one of the largest sources of budget drain.
In fact, 13.9% of marketing managers and department heads cited alignment with other departments as a major hurdle to SEO success in 2022.
However, when broader interdepartmental collaboration is implemented, you can quickly see the ROI of SEO strategies increase.
ROI is severely lowered when PPC teams, content marketing teams, and SEO teams are not communicating with each other, content can quickly overlap, causing cannibalization, repeat work, and more.
The cost of duplicate work, educational meetings, and strategy repairs cause unnecessary additional costs toward a conversion.
Reduce repetitive work and raise ROI by:
- Using proven data from recently completed campaigns. Save time on SEO research by leveraging successful PPC ad copy as a starting point for SERP titles and meta descriptions.
- Combining and sharing PPC and SEO keyword research.
- Sharing Google Ads and Search Console data between teams to save time on experimenting and help avoid mistakes.
- Discovering SERP ownership and allocating ad spend to SERPs that have higher competition.
- Locating and combining content pages that directly compete with SEO-focused pages, then working together to focus those content creation resources on new, high-ROI targets.
By reducing repeat work for the same conversion, you can quickly raise ROI.
Cost Reduction Tip 2: Safely Streamline & Automate SEO Tasks
In 2022, the majority of marketing managers and department heads cited a lack of resources as their largest hurdle toward SEO success.
ROI drops when your team is stretched thin; high-quality output decreases and mistakes are made.
Mistakes take time to correct, and to your CEO, time is money that’s taken away from ROI.
Raise ROI by investing in AI and machine learning tools that save time and help allow the output of higher-quality work from your teams.
Time saved = lower conversion costs = higher ROI.
AI and machine learning can reduce conversion costs by up to 20%, with up to 70% of the cost reduction resulting from higher productivity.
To get started, uncover which simple SEO tasks can be automated and taken off of your team’s plate.
AI can safely automate time-consuming tasks and augment SEO performance through:
- SERP anomaly detection.
- Ranking and traffic report updates.
- Backlink profile creation.
- Gathering manual SEO data.
- Backlink sourcing.
- Initial keyword research reports.
- Topic research and article structure.
By allowing tools and AI to perform those tasks, you’ll find:
- Fewer costly mistakes and correction periods, because your team has more time to focus on quality instead of racing to complete their tasks.
- Less time-spend on time-consuming work, allowing your team to focus on needle-moving strategy and collaboration.
- Faster paths to scalability and growth within your SEO team structure.
Each of these elements directly influences the ROI of SEO.
Cost Reduction Tip 3: Audit The ROI Of Outsourced SEO
Your CFO and CEO are highly focused on costs to operate versus profit.
You should be, too.
Outsourcing SEO tasks solves any bandwidth problems your marketing team has, but how do you know if the cost of the retainer is worth the ROI?
ROI drops when retainers enter the picture.
When there is an expense simply because your company signed the contract or because the agency requires three months of setup time, it can be hard to prove that your agency choice was a good idea.
Learning how retainers impact your ROI can help you paint a better picture of success.
Calculating your SEO strategy’s ROI and including retainer costs plus the time it takes to get to page 1 is key.
- When is your outsourced SEO agency expecting results to begin?
- How many months of the retainer will you be paying before that?
- How much money could you save paying only for results?
In this scenario, the first SEO results are seen around month four.
With traditional SEO billing, you’ve already spent $4,000 for the first conversions.
With pay-for-performance SEO billing, you’ve only paid $450 for the first conversions.
After discovering the cost impact of your current retainers, try exploring other types of SEO agencies.
3. Hire Specific Top Skills: Scale Your SEO Team Into A High-Impact Powerhouse
Like searching for the perfect SEO agency, hiring new SEO professionals can be an ROI-draining gamble.
So, in order to positively impact your ROI, the key is to look for specific traits for the perfect enterprise SEO professional.
Look For These Traits In Your Next Enterprise SEO Hire
In addition to critical thinking, great speaking and writing ability, technical and programming skills, and analytics knowledge, you should also look for these key enterprise SEO traits:
- Inherent knowledge of your business and its vertical(s).
- A multidisciplinary mindset with a collaborative nature.
- SEO reporting mastery and the ability to communicate results in ways that matter to your CEO.
- A solid foundational understanding of how search engines crawl, index, and rank content.
- Experience creating and maintaining technical documentation.
- Deep experience with AI-assisted SEO tools and platforms.
By crafting your enterprise SEO team around these skillsets, you automatically attune your team towards high-quality, high-ROI results.
Scale Your SEO Department Effortlessly With No Recruitment Costs
This year, many marketing and SEO budgets are lower than usual.
If hiring is not included in your budget for this year, it’s still possible to scale your SEO program.
You can avoid hiring expensive SEO teams in-house and work with a pay-for-performance agency like ResultFirst to affordably scale your SEO program.
4. Implement Pay-Per-Performance SEO Into Your SEO Strategy
As you know, the startup costs of onboarding a new SEO agency can cause your ROI to plummet as you wait for results.
In some cases, the first true SEO results from a retainer SEO contract can take up to six months, effectively causing your conversion value to be much lower than your CPC.
A great alternative to traditional SEO agency models is the pay-for-performance (PFP) SEO model.
While you work with your PPC team for immediate visibility on SERPs, a PFP agency can begin working on your search visibility for free.
What Is Pay-For-Performance SEO?
Pay-For-Performance (PFP) SEO is a performance-based service model in which you are only charged when your SEO campaign is successful and your SEO goals are achieved.
So, once you reach the desired ranking for your top keywords, then, and only then, will you be charged.
PFP SEO works primarily to boost rankings, increase web traffic, and drive more revenue through:
- Industry Analysis.
- Competitor Analysis.
- Complete Website Audit.
- Keyword Research.
- Complete On-Page SEO Suggestions.
- Backlink Acquisitions.
Outperform Your Competition & Grow Your Digital Marketing Initiatives With ResultFirst
Pay-For-Performance SEO is here to address your economic challenges by allowing your company to achieve greater results with less marketing spend.
Ready to increase organic traffic, improve rankings, and boost conversions for your business – all while saving money and getting the most return on your investment? Start marketing with ResultFirst today!
Featured Image: Used with permission.