X3_Marketing-Lead_Nurturing

Lead Nurturing and Digital Marketing

After taking all the right steps for your business’s online marketing you finally have good, quality traffic to your business. You’re connecting with your target audience and creating awareness with potential customers. One problem though. Too much of your traffic is not converting. Statistics show that somewhere between 40 and 70% of leads are not ready to convert. YET! For business owners, this means necessary lead nurturing steps should be taken to maintain a relationship and make that conversion.

What is Lead Nurturing?

Lead nurturing is the process of building a relationship with your target audience through engaging and relevant content to create a sale. This process usually begins with the exploration part of the customer journey. When a potential customer is searching for a service or product you offer and they find your company, the lead nurturing process has begun.  Everything that happens between your business and the potential customer from this point until the sale is complete is all part of lead nurturing.

Why is it important to my business?

There is a lot of information about how and why lead nurturing is important for business. But the bottom line is that it increases your sales. To elaborate, though, effective lead nurturing will reduce your cost per acquisition while simultaneously increasing your return on investment. Here are a few statistics about how lead nurturing benefits your business:

  • Companies that prioritize lead nurturing generate 50% more sales at 1/3 the cost
  • Nurtured leads make nearly 50% larger purchases
  • Lead nurturing creates more loyal customers

How can I Improve my Lead Nurturing Strategy with Digital Marketing?

There are several actions you can take to make an effective lead nurturing strategy and your online presence plays a critical role in this process. A wide range of engagement activities from one-on-one interactions with customers to personalized ads lead to sales conversions. A successful strategy will use a variety of these tactics and digital marketing to engage your target customers in every step of the customer journey. 

Beginning with awareness, your visibility online is the first step to reaching your target audience. A strong website is then necessary during the consideration phase to inform customers about your company. After this, retargeting ads and other forms of follow up work to increase the customers intent to purchase. Lastly, after the conversion is complete, the customer then becomes a champion for your brand. They can leave online reviews and speak to their experiences online.

Remember, it is crucial for companies to follow up with their leads in a way that is timely and professional. A strong digital marketing strategy will help you throughout the lead nurturing process and reach your business goals!

Denver SEO: how to get your business found online by X3 Marketing Group

Denver SEO: How To Get Your Business Found

Recently, when sitting down with someone they called search engine optimization “black magic”. He’s not wrong. Probably the biggest reason he said that is because SEO isn’t simply ONE thing. Rather, it’s a series of techniques which are used to varying degrees depending on strategy and goals of a business. With X3 Marketing Group’s home state of Colorado being something of an emerging tech hub, finding the best Denver SEO agency can be a job unto itself. Sifting through big promises of agencies to find those who put trust, results and clarity for their customer first is challenging at best.

An SEO expert understands the need to have a powerful, yet flexible search engine optimization strategy to increase online visibility, bring lots of good site traffic, provide powerful user experience through design and make sure the proper target audience full of potential customers are those finding your business online.

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

What is SEO?

SEO simply stands for search engine optimization. Now in its fifth decade, this tactic has evolved to become an integrated part of web design, development, content creation and inbound marketing for businesses. As with many other business strategies, SEO has become much more sophisticated over time. Today there are more than 60 billion monthly online searches around the world. Many of these searches are looking for something geographically nearby with local business owners. Yet for most businesses, they will only see about 20 percent of those searches translated into conversions.

Why do websites fail? No matter the industry you work in, the most common cause of website failure is site speed. People can instantly tell when a site is loading slowly or not loading at all. As we’ve discussed, websites are not static objects; they are changing and updating all the time.

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

What are the basic tenets of SEO?

Search engine optimization is more than just matching keywords to particular content marketing assets. In many cases, that’s the bare minimum, but many tools and strategies exist for SEO. When done correctly, they help businesses show up in search results more often. Topical Analytics An analytics tool allows for a more in-depth understanding of what the business is doing for an individual keyword. This might be, “What pages are ranking for our company name? What pages are ranking for our phone number?” The common denominator here is that when people search for a service or product, they aren’t necessarily looking to read about your competition, but what’s out there that meets their needs.

We’ll also take a second here to mention digital advertising using platforms like Google Ads or any number of paid marketing options including social media marketing. These things should also be a large part of a good digital marketing strategy but can often be overlooked. While SEO has probably the best long-term return on investment (ROI), since it takes time to implement and shift if needs be, digital advertising makes for a much more nimble and fast-reacting marketing strategy and, depending on a particular business model, these types of internet marketing services can serve to bolster SEO by quite a bit.

X3 Small Business SEO Packages

What makes Denver SEO challenging?

Denver has a large and unique blend of companies within the larger metro region when it comes to Denver SEO. There are those who employ ‘black hat’ tactics to game the system, and then there are those that keep an open mind, offer training and use optimization techniques in an ethical, accurate manner. For the industry as a whole, the first problem is getting a handle on the industry itself. People get away with deceptive SEO for the simple reason that it’s hard to see.

What is black hat SEO? Can it be used against a website? Can you trust a company to not go around using tricks that could leave your site defenseless against the wolves of the internet? these are a few of the questions any good agency providing reasonable SEO services should be able to address without hesitation.

SEO tips and tricks

Think carefully. Yes, there are some solid specialists out there. But if a small company is already working with a digital marketing strategy they can get from a service like Google Ads, they can probably save themselves the hassle of finding an SEO specialist. As an added bonus, look for an agency who has a client list. If you know for sure that you are willing to take on a couple of new clients and you have a firm understanding of their marketing goals for the upcoming year, asking if they do work with businesses similar to yours might go a long way. Beyond just their website content, the Denver SEO agency you choose should be taking on more of the effort to improve a company’s overall site presence.

While we may be a bit biased since X3 Marketing Group does handle everything in the digital marketing arena, it’s important to add to the above the fact that having and agency who has a holistic view of all your businesses digital marketing services and needs can be crucial. A digital marketing agency such as X3 takes into consideration the proper focus for each of the arms of digital marketing. Does your social media marketing needs to be increased? Great. Do your Google ads need a higher cost-per-click to reach the ideal audience? Let’s do it. Are most of your potential customers looking for businesses like yours on Google Maps? Let’s make sure you’re doing everything you can to be found there.

Bottom Line: Finding the best Denver SEO is hard. X3 Marketing Group is here.

All this information is likely confusing and possibly even counterintuitive, but at the end of the day, the value in it comes from how well it can inform a business’ search engine optimization strategy. There’s no silver bullet when it comes to getting Denver search engine optimization results, which is why it’s important to find a seasoned agency with a proven track record of results for clients. This goes not only for Denver but for the entire state of Colorado.

We’d love to take a good look at how your business is getting customers online (or not) so please tell us about yourself!

Just remember that SEO is a never ending pursuit with some new techniques popping up all the time, so it’s the job of a good SEO company to continually research, refine and make informed decisions about SEO strategy based on business traffic goals and outcomes.

What’s the next step toward success with your online marketing tactics? Reach out to us now!

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

7 + 10 = 

X3 Marketing Group: Do I need a business website in 2021?

Do I Need A Business Website in 2021?

We’re going to get into the “Why?” of this question below but first, let’s get the main answer out of the way:

Yes, your small business definitely needs a website. And it needs it yesterday. 84% of today’s consumers think a website makes your business more credible than companies who only have social media profiles (themeisle.com). On top of that, 72% of consumers that perform a local search visit a store within 5 miles of their current location.

Does my small business need a website?

Does my small business need a website?

What's the best website builder for small business?

What’s the best website builder for small business?

How about Google My Business websites?

How about Google My Business websites?

What about those "Free" website builders?

What about those “Free” website builders?

Does my small business need a website?

As we said unequivocally above, yes. 100%. Why though? Frankly, it’s all about legitimacy and appearing above your competitors in Google Search. By the end of 2019, 97% of consumers looking for a local business did so by using a search engine and 91% of the time, that search engine is Google.

X3 Marketing Group Mobile and Digital Marketing

When we search for a local business – let’s take a mechanic in Northglenn, Colorado where our office is, for example – we’re looking for a business that is close by so we don’t spend a huge amount of our day driving to and from and we also want a mechanic who comes recommended by our neighbors and people we know.

If we search for this mechanic and there is simply a Google My Business listing which hasn’t been “claimed” by the business owner and whose information is incorrect and whose phone number is incorrect. Out of the gate, that business is losing credibility and frustrating a potential customer. In this scenario, let’s say that the customer keeps looking for a way to get in touch with the mechanic and they go digging for a website. If no website exists, the auto shop has almost certainly lost that potential customer.

When we, as an agency that provides local SEO services, work with a client the very first thing we look at is whether that small business has a website where we can drive traffic using one of our strategic SEO packages or digital advertising services. If you don’t have a website to accompany your marketing efforts, it will affect all of your online marketing plans and no amount of customer service can help if no customers can find your otherwise successful business online.

As a final point, a full 80% of online search engine usage takes place on a mobile device. If you don’t have a site at all, you’re not going to show up on mobile either.

What’s the best website builder for small business?

We’ve certainly covered this in other X3 Marketing Group articles but since HOW your website is built is almost as important as having a website at all, we’ll touch on it again. Here are some of the most popular ways to build a small business website ranging from “Free” to quite expensive, custom website builds:

Weebly: This is a reasonable way to just get an online presence but it’s extremely limited in its ability to generate leads for heating and air conditioning repair and service (or any other leads for that matter). Not good for SEO.
Wix: Similar to Weebly in that it’s a decent stop-gap while your “big kid” website is under construction with X3 (#shamelessplug). Generally speaking, there’s quite a bit of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” when it comes to online marketing and there are challenges with Wix which would make it less than ideal for reaching and engaging a loyal customer base through SEO.
Squarespace: While it’s still missing some of the SEO tools of other platforms, Squarespace is known for visually appealing websites that incorporate beautiful images on a bit of a budget. Easy to work with, it requires almost none of the technical skills that may give you pause.
WordPress: Open source and very customizable, WordPress is primarily what we build on (ahem) and makes for a solid solution. There is a world of plugins by third-party developers to make WordPress very customizable to your needs. Can be a bit sluggish from time to time if not properly optimized.
Custom: There are a couple of very important things to consider when looking at a fully custom coded website; 1. the cost will likely be significantly more than other platforms and 2. the development time will certainly be longer (typically about double) than most estimates given at the outset of a project. On the other hand, a fully-custom Python build, for example, can be fast, powerful and do pretty much everything a company of any size could need (and pay for).
In order for an agency like X3 Marketing Group to bring a small business the best local SEO services as well as giving the most bang-for-your-buck with pay-per-click and other other digital marketing and advertising methods, your website needs needs to be at the forefront of marketing efforts to effectively capitalize on a wide range of the available marketing tools.
X3 Marketing Group: Squarespace
X3 Marketing Group: Weebly

X3 Marketing Group: Wix

X3 Marketing Group: WordPress

What about Google Sites?

Speaking frankly, we wouldn’t consider Google Sites (Google My Business free websites) a true “website builder”. It can be a temporary placeholder while your website is under construction but its functionality is very limited and while it may answer basic questions your perspective customers may have, customer behavior tells use that a well-organized and visually appealing website is what causes a prospective customer to reach out. Google sites simply don’t have enough functionality.

X3 Marketing Group: Google Sites

Additionally, Google sites don’t offer the ability to have a custom domain – this means you don’t truly have your own .COM. Google’s sites instead have a long URL string beginning with “sites.google.com/yournamehere”. This means that any traffic you get isn’t owned by your business and things like social media channels will reflect this. At the outset of this article, we talked about the credibility factor of having a website and not having your own URL is a big no-no in the world of online marketing.

What about a free website builder?

We touched on this above when talking about some of the types of website builders available but we’ll expand a bit more here. Free website builders are certainly a tempting option – especially for those small businesses who are starting out and simply need a web presence. These free options often act as the hosting provider, WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) website editor and, to some degree, design company.
Most free website builders will give you some templates from which to select your website layout and even access to royalty-free, high-quality images to use. You can include functionality like a contact form. With some free website builders you can have your own custom domain with whatever domain extension you’d like (.com, .net, .tv, .co, etc.) but others will restrict your URL to being a subdirectory or subdomain of their site (like the sites.google.com/yournamehere mentioned above).

Another drawback of these free website builders is that they often require their own branding to remain on YOUR site. This is akin to handing someone your business card and it having “Kinko’s!” printed across the top.

As a marketing tool, your website helps establish and, over time, build credibility. It give people who have found you through and online review a place to click to to find out more about your business success. If it appears unprofessional and/or isn’t engaging, potential customers will leave and look elsewhere.

When it comes to websites, there are widely varying degrees of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” for sure but few (if any) digital marketing professionals would agree that a “free” website is much more than a placeholder while you grown-up site is being built.

X3: Local SEO & Word of Mouth. Which way to go.

Local SEO & Word of Mouth. Which way to go.

One of the objections we hear the most from potential clients is that their primary means of finding new clients is through word of mouth. Upon hearing this, it used to be that we’d push back saying that local SEO is a much more effective way of being found by clients who don’t already know your business. Over time however, our views have evolved quite a bit.

Below I’m going to talk about just how important digital marketing is and just how strong the tie between that and word of mouth marketing is.

 

Tactics such as setting up a cool social media ad or experimenting with AI in ecommerce may sound more exciting (and like quicker wins). (originalwordofmouth.com)

First let’s look at how a customer’s research is a factor in word of mouth marketing; according to BrightLocal customers say that positive reviews of a product or company make them more likely to use that business a whopping 91% of the time in the B2B space. What happens after that though? Things like Google, Google My Business, a Google Map and a ton of other aggregators and review sites take over. That’s because things like Google My Business are simply word of mouth in the digital space and a campaign there can have a more targeted and direct reach on platforms like Google.

Typical behavior suggests that those potential customers then learn more about a product – and this is where local SEO efforts plays a massive role. For instance, when it comes to roofing in our area, a Denver SEO expert will tell you that there are about 5,000 roofers licensed to work in Colorado. With all that interference out there, if your local SEO isn’t working for you and you don’t get found in organic Google search or Google My Business, review effectiveness will fall off significantly. Second, how do we get those reviews for a local business?

Finding a good local SEO agency will tell you that getting found for the things that people search Google for – not just your company name – is vital. With the best local SEO campaign firing on all cylinders, Denver SEO for local businesses like roofers will have them showing up in top positions in search engines for things like, “roofers Denver CO” which gets 500 searches per month on average.

Once a business brings aboard a client they then have the opportunity to help them build their reviews. This includes Google Maps and Google My Business optimization which are key places that online reviews are shown. This also includes Facebook reviews in addition to other social media outlets.

We all know Google, and how it has its fingers in every part of the online pie, but what is Google My Business? (yoast.com)

Google My Business, Apple Maps and Bing Places – among other interactive map platforms –  have quickly become some of the most powerful places where a person finds business listings – including your competitor down the street. These platforms harness the knowledge of information in a business profile and couple it with reviews from customers near a particular zip code so the learn and become more informed. They also provide a business owner with a way to respond to client compliments or negative reviews which keeps their online presence transparent and their customer service tactics open.

Another advantage of these platforms is providing a local citation and a bit of local link building. For each business listing there is an opportunity to improve a local ranking factor in search engines with local links back to your businesses website which improves organic search and is one of the SEO tools and tactics which can bring new customers to your online or physical location through Google.

X3: Local SEO & Word of Mouth. Which way to go.

With a massive decrease in the amount of face-to-face interactions due to Covid-19 over the past several months, online reviews and requests for recommendations has become even more important for local businesses. The same holds true for local SEO – the more online research people do for a business, the more information they’re able to find. Google My Business is often the first stop in SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

Statcounter reported in 2020 that Google’s search engine market share worldwide is a whopping 92.18% (SOURCE)

A business should be hiring a local SEO company to help navigate those waters so that they can focus on actually running their business. At X3, we are a local business too and when we see someone like a plumber or roofer being dominated by a competitor, we know that the person running that business is a person we can help. It is our job to make sure that search engines like Google show your website and Google My Business shows your business listing first and moves your competitor or product to the second spot. We make sure that a searcher finds you using local keywords which contain things like your city or zip code.

Ever wonder where this whole Google Local thing came from and how it’s changed over time? Then come on in! (moz.com)

The final thing we’ll point to is cost. Let’s face it, on its face word of mouth marketing costs – zero. But does it? In terms of time and effort to share local business values, know how and service with a new client, there is a ton of work that goes into a business growth strategy to find a potential customer. Every minute spent on marketing takes away from a business’s ability to be involved in actually running that business. The cost in sweat equity can quickly go through the roof. This includes trying to do the complex task of managing their own SEO and social media. In fact, even as we go through this article, things like mobile search grow more and more important and a local keyword becomes more impactful since your phone knows your location. Your local ranking is the first thing you want someone nearby to see since many more people shop close-to-home (especially during the COVID-19 pandemic) than anywhere else.

X3: Local SEO & Word of Mouth. Which way to go.

However, when local businesses are looking for affordable local SEO services we love showing an actual example of how the ROI on SEO works. Here’s a quick example:

There are an average of 50,000 Google searches focus on roofing, roof repair, roof replacement, product, etc. in Colorado each month. So let’s say that 5% of those local searches find a particular roofing company, 5% of that 5% become leads and 50% (typical rate of conversions for Denver roofing companies) of that 5% become customers.

50,000 (searches) X 5% = 2,500

2,500 X 5% = 125

125 X 5% = 6.25

6.25 X 50% = ~3.125 new clients per month

 

With the average Denver roof replacement price being about $15,000 that means an estimated ~$550,000 in a year.

When broken down like that, hiring an expert local SEO company with their tools to drive traffic, reviews and more word of mouth is certainly affordable. Your marketing efforts should be focused on the overall value of improving your local search ranking since the return can be so high.

The Bottom Line

Word of mouth marketing is a vital part of establishing trust with both existing and potential clients. However, the effectiveness of much of that trust is the ability for people to then find a business through utilization of the best local SEO services available. Reviews and local search engine marketing work hand in hand to drive revenue and success with any business.

Click here for our article on

5 Ways to improve your local SEO

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5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

Let’s face it, SEO can be confusing for small business owners. There is a lot of conflicting information on how much small business SEO packages should cost, the effectiveness of different approaches and how long it should take to get a local business to appear on top of Google.

While finding an SEO agency in Denver that actually produces great local seo results can be tough, it is more important than ever for a local business to invest their marketing dollars in improving their digital presence.

With the rise of COVID-19 and new business landscape, more and more people are doing their shopping and research online. Local businesses which a person finds nearby on a Google Map are those who are more likely to get business over a competitor

This means that small business owners can’t afford not to be found by potential customers on Google. At X3, we help local business owners find the perfect small business SEO package for them and guarantee results. Today, we will look at 5 ways that companies can increase their local SEO on Google and other powerful search engines.

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

1) Avoid Black Hat SEO

If it sounds too good to be true, then it almost always is. This is definitely the case with local SEO and how much it can influence a ranking factor.

In the early days of local SEO, companies could use “keyword” stuffing to jam a bunch of keywords that they wanted to rank for into any page or posts on their website to improve the desired keyword’s ranking.

Today, such shortcuts will get penalized by search engines and do much more harm than good.

If a Denver SEO agency is promising hundreds of backlinks in a short amount of time, it’s another giveaway that they are using black hat SEO efforts. Other black hat tactics include:

-blog comment spam

-cloaking

-keyword stuffing

Growing your company’s digital presence requires hard work over time. Don’t work with a company that takes shortcuts and will hurt your brand and your business and its online presence.

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

2) Claim your online business listings

There are many places online where your business can appear including social media sites, local indexes, search engines etc. A few of these, to be specific are:

– Google Maps

– Apple Maps

– Bing Places

– Google My Business (including Google Reviews)

Each listing that is claimed and correctly connected to your website provides a valuable backlink to your business and your local SEO near your zip code. Having correct information and being accessible on directories makes your business easier to find for potential customers.

Conversely, each unclaimed listing is a missed opportunity and you could have potential customers looking at incorrect/outdated information. You also could be missing out on responding to negative reviews or customer complaints.

In the early days of the internet, there were relatively few websites, so navigating the web was easy. Once the internet started to expand, however, search engines were created to allow… Source: mailchimp.com

Making sure that all of your online listings have been claimed can take a lot of time. If you have a solid small business SEO package, your agency should be helping you claim and audit all of your business listings.

Working with your agency (who should have much of this knowledge), look for local business directories where local customers may look to find something like plumbers or restaurants nearby. These directories indicate local intent to keep money in their own zip code.

Our website is listed in seolist.org – Colorado Search Engine Optimization Directory

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

3) Reviews

Ready for a crazy statistic?

According to BrightLocal, 76% of people trust small businesses online reviews as much as a personal recommendation from a friend.

Getting positive reviews means increasing your credibility and trust with your local market and prospective customers. Google My Business and other directories with your business profile are increasingly important to a person looking for your business or product.

A large amount of reviews is also a great indicator to search engines that you are an established company in your market.

Most companies do not prioritize quality reviews from clients enough. Separate yourself from the crowd and prioritize your company’s reviews.In order to have these reviews show up in a Google search, you need to be listed with a local citation. These  include many local directories or aggregators which allow for NAP citations (Name, Address and Phone number) which will guide customers to search results for a local keyword.

WHY ARE NAP CITATIONS IMPORTANT?

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

X3: 5 Ways to Improve Your Local SEO

4) Focus on local link building

Getting local links to your website tells Google that you are an authority in local search for your core services or product. Let’s say that you are a Denver SEO company trying to build credibility in Denver and the surrounding areas – it wouldn’t do much good to build links in Los Angeles, California, since that location isn’t a good ranking factor for a business in Colorado, is it?

This is a mistake that a lot of companies make as they focus on industry specific links in other markets rather than building local links right in their backyard. Having a business profile and NAP citations in something like a local Chamber of Commerce is a great opportunity to find a new potential customer.

THE ULTIMATE LIST: 57 ONLINE BUSINESS DIRECTORIES

Building valuable local SEO links can be tricky as the best links have to be industry relevant and relevant locally. At X3, we help small businesses with the best local link building strategy and do the link building for our clients. Someone looking for Google local listings on mobile search are even more likely to shop with your business as mobile search knowledge becomes even more important accounting for over 80% of Google search by the end of 2020.

Most companies do not prioritize quality reviews from clients enough. Separate yourself from the crowd and prioritize your company’s reviews.

5) Creating local SEO content

Almost half of all Google search queries are searching for local information relative to where a person lives. You can make sure that your small business website shows up in the local rankings with a good local SEO content strategy.

The first step to creating great content is to come up with your local keyword strategy for Google, Bing and the other search engines. Once you have your optimal keyword strategy writing good, long-form content using the keywords in your strategy is a great way to go.

LINK: 9 WAYS TO USE BLOGGING TO RANK IN LOCAL SEARCH 

The best way to implement this is to write great blog posts around your business or service using your keywords and specifically around your local area. You can also make sure that your local ranking is further improved by keeping things like Google My Business up to date with pictures of a current project, your staff or a featured product.

Consistent, high quality blog posts are pivotal to any local SEO strategy and will ensure that you continue to stay relevant for the most valuable keywords in your market.

The Bottom Line

At X3 we are SEO professionals. It is our job to maximize your marketing budget so your digital marketing efforts can turn search engines into that put-one-in-get-two-back money machine I mentioned earlier. It’s also our job to show you how your money is being spent and provide the trust, results and clarity so you can account for each dollar and track conversion goals to see that money grow. Let’s talk.

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