You have to play it smart when it comes to selling as well as pitching SEO to local clients by doing your homework. A lot of homework.
by Kevin James Culp
There are more SEO agencies than dirty nurse costumes for a Halloween party in The Hamptons. So, the best way I know how for you or your agency to land clients is to learn how to sell SEO services–and, get very good at it over time.
Selling SEO Services to Local Businesses Is Not Easy. My Key Points To Consider Are Below:
- Don’t use a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to selling local SEO.
- Use free or paid online tools to help you understand your sales targets existing SEO framework and paid traffic.
- Perform your own analysis in their existing SEO from your online tools and compare your service to expose how you can fill missed, overlooked or unfound niche keyword searches or target phrases people will use to find said business or service.
- Avoid the temptation to offer a guarantee of success in the form of traffic or rankings.
- Do not spend money on leads. Leads are right there – millions of them for the searching. Building your database is simply a matter of defining what you want to sell to home and why they can benefit from said SEO package.
- Use video testimonials from actual clients seeing success using your service that is being sold.
- Fill your pitches with expert quotes and statistics from authoritative third parties to reinforce how effective your services can be.
- Polish Your Value Proposition.
- Perfect Your Cold Emails.
To Penetrate Your Target Market and Build a Strong Clientele These Are The Top Six Sales Tips to Follow:
- Identify Your Niche.
- Focus On Providing Solutions For Your Clients.
- Avoid SEO Jargon While Talking to Your Clients.
- Brand Your Services.
- Define Your UVP.
- Develop and Implement Lead Generation Strategies.
So, what is SEO Anyway?
Search engine optimization is the process of increasing the visibility of a website or a web page to users of a web search engine. The term excludes the purchase of paid placement, referring only to the improvement of unpaid results. SEO is performed because a website will receive more visitors from a search engine the higher the website ranks in the search engine results page. These visitors can then be converted into customers quite easily if this service is performed properly with goals in mind prior to implementing a program.
Search Engine Marketing Alert! Almost 90% of Business Purchase Decisions Start With Search and That Number is Growing Fast!
Gone are the days of outdated media, such as newspaper and direct mail, positively benefiting business as a whole. Reaching certain demographics still requires these platforms. However, the web’s ultimate selling point is the ability to create more campaigns on several platforms that target any number of audiences.
Why Is It So Hard To Reach The Desired Buyer?
Your potential buyers/customers is bombarded with dozens of cold calls, video messages, walk-ins and so many emails from various vendors it makes their head spin and almost all go into the ‘trash bin’ including possible profitable opportunities that could have increased their business. The reason? Business owners usually don’t have the time to hear every pitch and listen to every sales person drone on about how great this, that and to the other thing is that is being pitched. This lack of attention makes it much harder for you to reach the decision maker/small business owner to gain their attention to pitch your SEO service package, but not impossible. So, you’ll need to set your service apart from the rest.
Read on and I’ll show you a few methods to break through the fluff, the slick sales people and the worthless, endless emails to allow your project to shine.
You my friends need a ‘Reason To Call/Contact’ and then you need a message that will really attract their buying attention. You need to ask yourself… what do YOUR buyers want most? Answer in almost all cases is to make more sales/money with less effort. You need to show them how your SEO service can achieve this goal with real stats, figures and a lot of research prior to contact.
SALES HINT ✏️ Avoid being overly technical or using loads of SEO terms. The more you know about what they currently do, how they currently rank and how you can can that for the better the easier it will be to sell your product along with gaining referral service. A great place to start learning about SEO in general is SearchEngineland.com.
As an SEO sales agency, individual selling SEO packages or if you are part of a larger portal that performs SEO and you plan to sell splash pages that rank, competition can make it difficult for you to sell your services to local businesses; however, knowing how to sell SEO services to the local business can create a difference between failure and getting long-term clients.
1. Identify Your Niche
SEO services are in high demand; all industries make use of SEO to market their business opportunities, distributorships, home-based businesses, partner programs, affiliate programs and more. Identifying your clients niche will make it easier for you to know what they need and how you can provide the service to them in an effective and profitable method. If you’re just starting, you can begin by researching industries that need SEO services if you do not have a specific focus. Allow me to provide you with some tools below and insight as to how best position yourself with the knowledge you need to beat the competition cold each and every time.
2. Provide Solutions for Your Clients
If you want to sell these services effectively, you have to become a solution provider. DO THE WORK FOR THEM! Using the same approach for all clients is a strategy that you should avoid at all cost. As all clients face the same challenge, using the same strategy on all of them can make you lose your clients. The best approach to follow is to allow you, clients, to define their problems in SEO. Before engaging with them in any discussion, you can visit their websites and social media platforms to establish the issues affecting them that you can address. You should then bring out these issues and explain to your clients how you intend to solve these issues.
3. Top Tools to Use for SEO/PPC Competitor Research
Discover your competitors keywords and ads for paid and organic search prior to contacting your sales targets.
Moz.com (they offer a 30-day free trial) The one keyword research tool to rule them all.Ranking for the right keywords can make or break website success. Keyword Explorer streamlines your workflow and improves how you discover and prioritize the best keywords to target in less time. In the trenches of SEO since 2004, we poured our knowledge into building the most comprehensive keyword tool out there to take the hassle, bad data, and repetitive busywork out of the process.
SEOProfiler.com Outperform the competition! SEOprofiler is a full featured website promotion tool that offers SEO tools for keyword research, web page optimization, link analysis, link building, ranking checks, SEO audits, website monitoring, website analytics, and much more. Improve your rankings and get more customers.
SEMRush.com (they offer a 7-day free trial)
Analyze data on more than 450 million domains and over 9.4 billion keywords. Uncover your competitors’ organic search, paid, content, PR, and social media strategies. Find the most profitable keywords for their business. Market insights and competitors’ strategies overview:
- Spot new opportunities for growth
- Explore any company’s web traffic and visitor engagement
- Get data for sales prospecting and lead evaluation
- Understand new market to the fullest
- Uncover the most effective digital marketing strategies
SEO: Complete workflow for any SEO professional:
- Technical SEO Audit
- Semantic core collection
- Position tracking
- Ideas for gaining more organic traffic
- Competitive intelligence
- “Not provided” problem solution
- Backlinks audit and analytics
Improve the results of your PPC efforts:
- Competition analysis (search and GDN campaigns)
- Ad keywords and creatives research
- Keyword grouping and management
- Negatives optimization
- Google Shopping campaign analysis
- Benchmarks of PPC costs at a local level
4. How Much Does A Position Make In The SERPSs?
Click through rates do in fact decline the further down SERPs the result is positioned. Not only do they decline, but the difference between 1st and 5th position is the largest decrease with an average of 25%. This shows the reason for the large importance search engine marketers place on ranking first on SERPs.
5. Perform Google search
Open, open an incognito window in Chrome or any browser where your cache and history have been cleared. You want to perform the exact same search that a shopper/buyer would to find said business. Establish how they rank with the top most common keywords and see how their competition ranks as well. You can do this by looking at a certain term on Google to be specific such as ‘Best Sliders in Allentown’ and see what pops up. Try ‘Best Sliders (insert your city)’ and see what pops up as one example. This will enable you to get an idea of what the search volume is, apart from that, you will also find the cost per click.
6. Record the URLs that are used by advertisers in Google
You can do this by adding the advertisers you see on Google into your excel spread sheet. Knowing your competition is very important, and you should also know what the industry in question is spending its money on. Finding the advertisers in Google is very easy; this is because there is normally a green box next to their domain home which helps with identification.
7. Make use of online tools that can help you find their budget and make the pitch.
Pick a single advertising domain from the list that you have then placed it into SEMRush to start your report. The main thing you should do is to change the settings; this will enable you to look for advertising research so that you will be in a position to see how much the advertisers spend in a month. From there, you can scroll down to see the paid keywords that the advertiser bids on.
8. Avoid Using SEO Jargon While Talking to Clients
You should focus on using clear and concise statements while explaining your business plans to your clients. However, you may be tempted to use SEO jargon while talking to your client to show them that you know SEO, so whenever you use any term that the client may not understand, you should make sure that you properly explain it so that your clients can understand what you are saying. The essential thing is clearly to understand your client’s problem and describe the possible solution as simple as you can.
9. Brand Your Services
Once you have identified your niche, the most important thing you should do is to make sure that your services are visible in that market. You can enhance this by creating profiles on various social media platforms and also make sure that you respond to the followers on these platforms. You must also engage with them by sharing useful content on the platforms. Participating in top forums on your niche and also sharing trending topics about your niche is another great way to sell SEO. You have to remain relevant to your clients, and this can be achieved by increasing your knowledge of your niche.
10. Define Your UVP
You should define your unique value proposition; this will enable you to improve your success in selling your SEO services. This term will help you to clearly start your benefits to the potential clients, how you will miss their needs and how your services are different from those of your competitors.
11. Develop and Implement Lead Generating Strategies
Ensure that your website is optimized, and make sure that your call to action is very clear on all your pages. Make use of social media, forums and blogs to generate more leads. Select conventional methods that can effectively work for your business and your niche. Some of the lead generation strategies involve cold calls as well as direct mail campaigns. You should ensure that your communication is personalized when using cold calls and direct emails.
12. To Remain Competitive You Have To Deliver Outstanding Performance
Poor results will only invite bad reviews, and hence your reputation in the market will be ruined as well. You should also remember that the best ambassadors for your business are satisfied clients. Therefore, you need to focus a lot on your niche.
Delivering outstanding performance to clients can be difficult if you do it on your own, so the best thing to do is to partner with other professionals, seek advice from other experts, if you consult other SEO experts, you learn faster and also be able to find customized solutions for the SEO problems of your clients. SEO changes every time, this is due to the changes in consumer behaviors and therefore, you should ensure that you stay updated with the latest SEO trends and other fields too.
In my next blog, I’ll explore Voice-Optimized content searches and additional SEO sales tips.
Did you know that last year 20 percent of online searches were conducted through voice search? By 2020, that number is expected to increase to 50 percent. Just as marketers have optimized content for web 2.0 and mobile, they will start optimizing content for voice search as well.
For example, because voice search is easier than typing, searches tend to surface more long-tail content. By comparison, text search tends to surface sorter phrases. I’ll explore how this relates to SEO sales and how it will affect the industry.