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One of the most difficult parts about explaining SEO to someone who is used to a traditional business model is explaining why SEO doesn’t have a fixed ROI. Most small business owners are used to the standard keystone method of pricing — if they invest $X, they expect a return of 2*$X, plain and simple.
SEO specialists know it doesn’t work that way. There are simply too many variables in turning website traffic into dollars. Our job is to make sure you GET the traffic — but we can’t really control what you do with it once you get it. If your website doesn’t convert, well, most of us will tell you hire a professional sales copywriter to tackle that particular issue.
On the other hand, there are a few tools we’re familiar with that can help convert traffic into money. One of the best is called targeted email marketing, and it’s such a solid tactic that we think of it as the “chaser” to the lager of organic SEO.
Put simply, targeted email marketing is the technique of convincing a surfer to leave you their email address and their permission for you to send them emails. The most commonplace way of accomplishing that goal is the use of a ‘squeeze bar’ or ‘squeeze page’ — basically an offer that says “opt in to our emailing list, and we’ll send you information/coupons/other valuable stuff through your email.”
This is doubly effective, because surfers are giving up something they don’t particularly feel is valuable (access to their Email inbox) for something they hopefully do (coupons for something they want or information that will solve a problem they have.) The trick is that after the first few emails, you start slipping offers for your products or services into your emails.
Of course, not every recipient will read or even open every email, and not everyone who reads an offer will buy — but people who have opted into your information-stream already recognize you, on some level, as the provider of some sort of value. Some of them will read, they will click, and they will buy. Sometimes even after YEARS of receiving your automated emails, they’ll click. It’s a slow-building process, but it’s one of the best ways to turn surfers into buyers. That’s why we suggest targeted email marketing to all of our SEO clients.