As a search engine optimization specialist, I spend many hours a month looking over countless pages of data. I look at many aspects from search engine rankings and queries on specific pages to what pages people left your site on and more. While all this data is important, let’s not forget that there are people attached to all these 1s and 0s.
Who Are Your Customers?
It’s important to know the types of customers that are coming to your website and what their motivations are. Our goal in SEO is to understand these people and use that information to grow your traffic and conversions. The data we collect helps us determine where and when, but we also have to understand the why.
For example, are people coming to your blog before heading to your site or are they going directly to the product or category pages? If they’re coming to your blog first, then they are looking for information versus looking for something more specific. We can check out search queries and see what questions people are asking and build blog posts around that.
It’s Especially Important for Local Search
When you’re dealing with potential customers from all over the world, you might be able to get away with being a little more general. You’re dealing with a larger and more diverse group of customers, but when it comes to local search you’re dealing with your friends and neighbors.
It’s easy to base everything for SEO on data, keyword volume, etc., but for it to be truly effective, you need to know who is buying your product or service. When you’re dealing with a local population, they have issues that might be unique to your location. Take these into account when creating an SEO strategy. What specific problems are they having and how can you help them with it?
SEO Goes Beyond Keywords
Many small businesses think SEO revolves around keywords and while they are very important, they’re not the end all of Internet marketing. Technology and Google’s algorithm have advanced so much that it’s not enough to know what people are doing to get to your site, but also what are they doing when they get there and why they are leaving.
People have so many choices that it’s not simply enough to get them to the site, you need to understand what they want and convince them you’re the one to deliver it to them. For that, you need to know their motivations, issues and mindset.