When it comes to search engine optimization, B-to-B marketers face unique challenges beyond the limited number of organic and paid ads on the first results page, increasing competition in search, etc. In its white paper, B2B Search Marketing Strategy Guide: Advice From the Pros, business search engine and pay-per-click advertising network Business.com lays out ways to overcome these challenges for SEO success.
1. Keep SEO Close to the Customer
Understand your audience, and define your Web site content to attract and serve that audience. “Multiple teams, including marketing, product, sales and technology, need to work together to improve SEO,” the white paper says. “… SEO should be driven by the group with the best understanding of the customer and [his] online behavior.”
2. Focus on Quality Traffic
SEO should be geared toward the right audience for you. “Too many times we see B2B marketers happy with the fact that they have first-page placement on the SERPs,” says David Underwood, president of TopSpot Internet Marketing, in the white paper. “The problem is that the phrases they are achieving first-page placement with will not deliver the audience they are looking for, thus the ROI will not be there. B-to-B marketers must realize that more clicks will not necessarily equal success.”
3. Optimize for Keywords Your Audience Uses, Not Internal Terms
The most important keywords are those your customers and prospects type into search engines, not necessarily the name of your products or your internal lingo.
4. Utilize Paid Search to Find the Best Converting Keywords
Most marketers have a large number of possible keywords—product names, brands, model numbers, etc.—but good SEO optimizes for a limited set of keywords that deliver the best conversions. Jump-start SEO keyword selection by running paid search campaigns across a broad range of keywords, advises the white paper. And, “Focus on keywords that provide quality leads, not merely increased traffic. Use Pay-Per-Click to identify which search terms provide quality leads,” says Soren Ryherd, president and co-founder of Working Planet Marketing Group.