Many people throw around terms like “SEO” and “inbound marketing” as buzzwords without understanding what either means. Continuing on that point, people also don’t truly get that SEO and inbound marketing operate together in many ways.
So that begs the following two questions: What is the purpose of SEO? What defines inbound marketing strategy?
What is Search Engine Optimization?
In basic terms, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing and streamlining a webpage’s data to rank high within a search engine’s web results.
Search engines like Google and Bing are the most popular, but most people design their websites around the Google Search algorithm. The main fundamental difference between how each search engine ranking algorithm functions is that Bing benefits sites for including external social media hyperlinks, while Google doesn’t.
Webpages are ranked based on four different types of meta elements: the meta title, the meta description, meta keywords, and the meta robots attribute.
A meta title is an abbreviated version of your webpage title. This title uses a combination of word phrases that may highlight the main attributes of your content. You will see meta titles as the larger blue-colored, pop-up hyperlinks within the search results of your web browser.
The meta description is a short, two-sentence summary that covers the content on the webpage. Meta descriptions give brief information about your webpage and include at least one keyword phrase.
In addition, meta keywords are relevant phrases to the information within your webpage. Put simply, keywords are written content on your webpage that may link relevant visitors to your site. Keyword strategy is a topic that can be covered extensively on its own. Try not to go overboard placing keywords and try to make your writing read as naturally as possible.
The meta robots’ attribute uses external bots to scour through a website’s data for various information. Skilled SEO professionals have internal bots that tell them what data is being used from the site.
What is SEO Inbound Marketing?
Inbound marketing, the other half of the SEO Inbound Marketing combined strategy, is a form of marketing that targets existing customers. These customers may be brand ambassadors, brand followers on social media, in-person patrons, long-term donors, referenceable work partners, and/or existing customers. Your inbound marketing strategy and audience should depend on what kind of website you have.
Brand ambassadors have a unique relationship with a company’s inbound marketing strategy because, in a way, you are paying them to improve your web presence and to increase fresh web traffic to your site. Brand ambassadors interact with you and your followers’ social media pages, which keeps your brand’s products, including new releases, fresh in customers’ minds. These customers already have an active interest in your brand and more interactions mean a more positive and close-knit connection.
For smaller businesses, honest reviews from customers online can be an effective form of inbound marketing. Interacting with customers on social media and showcasing posts on your website show that your business is reliable. Not to mention, if you run a local business in a small town, potential customers may see someone they know. In a way, trust is built through word of mouth.
Nonprofits use inbound marketing to target existing donors by creating advertising material such as videos, articles, and newsletters which they send to this audience.
This article isn’t meant to help broader eCommerce sites specifically, nor any specific type of website. Inbound marketing within the informal social media sphere, especially using referencing, is an excellent way to generate consistent revenue and an ever-growing audience. More and more people can freelance using social media to showcase their content during the new digital age. Freelancers get paid directly through crowdfunding or donation apps or by directly selling their goods on their websites. The cycle continues when they show their work on their website and social media.
Inbound marketing tries to personalize the marketing experience, unlike traditional forms of marketing, which aggressively target consumers with ads. Inbound marketing strategies are more earnest and involve active thought about how you want your brand to be perceived and how you expand your brand’s imaging for a broader and more diverse demographic. Websites based on niche interests often have to keep an active inbound marketing strategy to stay afloat due to their less well known presence.
Where Does SEO and Inbound Marketing Meet?
SEO can be thought of as the internal and technical arm driving inbound marketing strategy. Inbound marketing for websites uses information learned from extensive SEO audits to formulate both long-term and short-term plans. When using SEO, you can learn and edit critical meta information which Google uses to rank your website. Inbound marketing strategy drives people to your website and your website is developed using the principles of SEO to structure content and data.
Introduction to SEO Inbound Marketing Strategy
SEO inbound marketing strategy begins with an understanding of your target and current audience. Your existing audience is actively defined through inbound marketing, and your target audience should be discovered through your SEO research. Formatting and configuring should be conducted independently of any sort of inbound marketing strategy. Major formatting errors and bug fixes should be done using SEO for both inbound marketing campaigns and general webpages. This should be a priority for websites that don’t already use SEO because it directly impacts your web ranking. Websites with a good and consistent design rank highly, so read ahead to expand your perspective.
How to Develop an Effective SEO Inbound Marketing Strategy
Define Your Target and Current Audience
Before you can make any changes to your current SEO configurations or inbound marketing strategy, you must understand who is engaging with your webpage. SEO tools offer a variety of data that can be used to create a profile of your typical customer. With SEO, you can learn which webpages your viewers visit before they purchase certain items. This is one of many ways SEO will teach you about your current audience. Inbound marketing also allows you to learn about your consumers based on how they interact with your online persona.
Inbound marketing strictly depends on you maintaining and having a positive relationship with your audience. Inbound marketing also directly targets individuals following your brand on social media, people who have searched your site (which you can learn through SEO), and people who have bought something from your site (in the case your site sells products or services).
It also should be noted that different websites use different payment models and look at inbound marketing and SEO strategies uniquely. News-oriented sites, unlike eCommerce sites, will earn more direct revenue from donations and direct advertising. eCommerce sites earn income from the sales of. If you run an eCommerce site, you should know that people do not like or trust sites with external advertising links.
Defining your target audience should depend on content gaps within your SEO. If webpages are not reachable, existent, or consistent within your social media output, then you have a content gap.
The Importance of Chatbots
Chatbots are a popular example of combining SEO and inbound marketing, as they give customers a platform to directly address concerns and give feedback on the website. In this way, chatbots function as an informal survey. Therefore, areas, where people provide lots of negative feedback, can be improved immediately.
A chatbot will help to formulate an SEO strategy and inbound marketing. You can use chatbots to directly link to customer service, where customers can give more specific feedback. Remember that initial negative feedback isn’t bad, because your website is supposed to serve customers, so you should cater to their tastes.
Keeping your social media strategy consistent is another way of using SEO inbound marketing. To keep a continual relationship with ongoing customers, you must use similar and friendly messaging using inbound marketing. That doesn’t particularly mean planning everything you post weeks in advance, but there are certain things you can create in advance.
For example, if you are preparing an SEO-formatted webpage for a new product, you probably should showcase the product beforehand. The same thing is true if your website specializes in reviews or podcasts. You could highlight your guest for the next podcast ahead of time through your social media and even make a temporary webpage covering who they are.
Note that good SEO formatting, not SEO strategy, should come independent of the inbound marketing strategy. To rank highly within search engines, you must be consistent throughout your website in accordance with Google’s meta robots attribute.
You can also use SEO information and data obtained from purchase details to drive social media efforts. For example, if you sell a lot of a particular product or get many hits on a blog article, you may want to circulate a post or retweet a review. If you are a more reference-based business, you can post about a local company or person using your product, but remember to always ask for permission to use references online.
It also is vital to include backlinks and hyperlinks to your social media posts. Integrate APIs (Application Program Interfaces) into your web design to add more functionality to your website. Plugins that integrate actual features from social media pages allow customers to directly follow your page from their device, as long as they are already logged in.
People often think that content marketing strategy and inbound marketing strategy should be kept mutually exclusive. However, individuals familiar with content marketing strategy and SEO inbound marketing strategy know that this shouldn’t be the case.
Content marketing is the practice of creating blog posts, guides, videos, and games to initiate contact with new and recurring customers. Content marketing efforts use the brand’s identity or reputation to showcase newsworthy developments to sway the opinions of potential customers. Content marketing generally implies content made by you, although you should also prioritize external marketing content about your brand as part of inbound marketing.
To retain customers, you should use inbound marketing. However, the content you create using content marketing can be used for inbound marketing. Content marketing often directly targets your audience from your inbound marketing efforts. Some of the same posts you create, especially on social media, will be shared or created by content marketing teams. Both strategies will rely on your understanding of your current audience.
Content marketing also has a lot of overlap with SEO. For example, all the content you create and post to your website or blog site must be formatted using SEO. Furthermore, you can track whether specific blog posts or content leads customers to purchase goods. SEO is also used to highlight popular content, which then can be moved to a more active spot for visitors to view.
Keep Your Website and Social Media Visually Consistent
Web design as a visual aspect is one of the most commonly ignored features that differentiate between a good website from a bad website. Visual aesthetics are sometimes a brief experience. You load a webpage and immediately know if you want to click through it or if you are going to exit the site out of fear of your data being stolen.
People want to see simplicity in your web design but also want to see something new. Finding a balance between these can be difficult. Make sure you don’t have an excessive amount of links or overly descriptive text at the top of webpages. On the other hand, make sure you aren’t hiding relevant information. Always keep your content practical and appropriate to your brand.
It also is wise to keep color palettes consistent amongst your social media and website designs. Effective inbound marketing strategy wants you to feel welcome as a part of the brand. Inviting visual design is one of the most significant ways of keeping customer retention high.
A Concluding Example of Effective SEO Inbound Marketing
You made an impression on a potential customer by editing the content on your webpage to include more keywords. This customer purchases a product or service from your website, then types their email address into the popup window to learn more about their order. After successfully receiving the product, the customer follows your webpage on social media and loyally awaits the release of all of your new products. This is one of many potential customers you can acquire using SEO Inbound Marketing. Therefore, optimize and streamline your site and social media presence to guarantee you results.