Marketers face a common problem when it comes to organic traffic through SEO – how to convert website visitors into leads and paid customers. Working with SaaS businesses and hi-tech startups, we have nailed several proven methods, and in this article, we will share our experience with 13 effective strategies you can start using right away.
Why do you generate poor sales/leads through SEO?
There could be several reasons why you are unable to generate leads or make sales through organic SEO. Here are the most common reasons.
1. You do not tackle the right audience
For example, when it comes to AI, a lot of organic searches are done by scholars. SEO tools and Google Analytics only provide primary demographic data about website visitors without identifying them specifically. How can you determine if decision-makers are visiting your website as opposed to random students?
A helpful approach is to create a customized online survey with targeted questions to differentiate between the two groups. Hotjar allows you to display these surveys based on exit intent, gathering valuable insights as users are on the verge of leaving your website. But it is important to note that this method only works when you’re already generating significant traffic to your website.
Tips for ensuring you’re targeting the right audience before investing in SEO
- Always check the top 10 competitors and what content they are using.
- Check the cost per click – if companies are paying for specific terms, it means they generate some value.
- Set up a test Google Adwords campaign and analyze whether you can convert the paid traffic into customers.
2. You do not tackle commercial and transactional keywords
The fundamental thing about converting website visitors into customers is to use content for commercial and transactional keywords. Informational articles very rarely convert visitors into customers directly.
Informational vs Commercial Intent keywords
The reason why someone is researching a particular topic is called the search intent for that topic. There are four types of user intent, all of which are very important to understand.
- Informational – when people look for knowledge: “what is link building”, “how to cook pasta”
- Navigational – when looking for something specific: “youtube”, “linkedin sales navigator”
- Transactional – when the searcher wants to buy something. Usually, users with such intents visit e-commerce websites or product and service pages: “ipad pro 2020”, “red bull pack”
- Commercial – somewhere between informational and transactional. The user knows they want to buy something, but they are not looking for something specific and are comparing possible options: “cheap headphones”, “iphone 11 vs samsung galaxy s10”)
Each of these user intents represents a specific step in the customer journey. So, what happens if we wrongly guess a user’s intent?
Let’s say someone searches for “what is a chatbot.” Most likely, they want just that information. An article explaining the functioning of chatbots would suit their needs. However, responding to this query with a page promoting your chatbot services wouldn’t match their intention (Try searching up “what is a chatbot” on Google to see the point!).
At the same time, “custom chatbot” or “sms verification service” would represent commercial/transactional intent keywords that could be used to convert visitors into leads. So if you want to convert your website visitors into potential customers, these are the keywords you’d want to target.
3. You use the wrong content type and format
We’ve seen cases where companies have used article-type content for transactional intent keywords. For example, in cases where they should use a well-structured landing page, companies have written blog posts with walls of text.
There are multiple types and formats of content you can choose from.
|Content Type||Content Format|
|Product pages||Step-by-step tutorials|
|Category pages||List posts|
|Landing pages||Opinion editorials|
The basic SEO setup would involve three types of pages.
- A landing/product page that tackles your product features or services. For instance, words like “bulk sms”, “aml check”, or “custom chatbot” would represent ideal candidates for such a page type. These pages typically address the bottom of the funnel or later stages of the customer journey, when users are prepared to make a purchase or schedule a demo.
- Commercial listicles – “best aml software”, “best sms gateway”, or “best chatbot software.” The trick here is to list your solution as one of the options. These are great for converting users who like to research and compare different products before making their decision to buy. But try to be honest about your competitors and your own product.
- Informational articles – “types of chatbots” or “how to perform a content audit.” These types of articles are necessary to establish topical authority and educate your audience. As the average sales cycle for SaaS is 84 days, it might be useful to set up retargeting ads for your users and educate them further with case studies and success stories. This will help to move your audience through different stages of the customer journey.
More advanced SEO strategies would include additional types of pages like
- Alternative/review pages – “Hubspot vs Pipedrive”
- Problem to be solved – “Automate data collection”
- Integration pages – “Integrate Google docs with Notion”
- Jobs to be done – “Legal document template”
Ensure that you use the first three types of pages. Those will form the basis to start converting your visitors.
4. You deliver a poor user experience
There are several important aspects of user experience (UX) that you must address.
50% of SaaS industry users browse the web using mobile devices. So make sure your website is mobile-friendly, with all illustrations and text accessible across all devices. Utilize tools like Microsoft Clarity or Hotjar to review user screen recordings and monitor their experience.
In today’s fast-paced digital world, users expect web pages to load quickly. Employ tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights to analyze and optimize your site’s loading time. Otherwise, even a few seconds’ delay could result in high bounce rates.
Users should be able to find the information they’re looking for without hassle. A clear, organized menu structure, a functional search bar, and well-defined content categories can significantly improve UX.
Engaging content layout
Break content into easily digestible sections using headers, bullet points, and visual elements. This makes it easier for users to skim and find relevant information.
5. Conversion rate optimization
Besides generating organic traffic, you need to convert visitors into paying customers. This is the second piece of the puzzle.
As we mentioned before, first, you need to match search intent with the correct page type and format. You have to understand that each page should have its own unique call-to-action. In other words, you need to encourage visitors to perform a specific action after getting on your web page.
Typically, conversion rate optimization (CRO) strongly emphasizes landing pages given their pivotal role in driving conversions. However, while landing pages are undoubtedly crucial in the CRO process, it’s also essential to recognize that CRO can and should encompass other elements of a website or user journey. CRO could include optimizing the checkout process, email sign-up forms, product pages, and CTAs on blog posts.
Let’s also discuss some fundamental things to keep in mind when dealing with page optimization, referring specifically to product pages.
a. Clear title with a unique value proposition
Let’s be honest: how many times have you been on a website where you didn’t understand what the company was doing? Create an effective unique value proposition (UVP) that addresses your website visitors’ pain points.
Unique value proposition example
Perform a 5-second test to uncover whether users understand what your page is about and the action you want them to take. Test different landing pages using this method.
b. Social proof
Social proof is a powerful tool that helps increase conversions on landing pages by leveraging the collective trust of endorsements.
Different ways to show credibility include testimonials, reviews, trusted partner logos, and user metrics.
Employing authentic and relatable testimonials, showcasing trusted client logos, and highlighting metrics like user counts can significantly enhance credibility and trust.
A CTA, or call-to-action, prompts website users to take a specific action, such as “Sign Up”, “Buy Now”, or “Learn More.”
A well-crafted CTA bridges the gap between passive browsing and taking decisive action, ultimately driving conversions.
When creating a Call-to-Action (CTA), these are some essential factors to keep in mind.
- Firstly, the design and placement of the CTA should be visually eye-catching and strategically placed for maximum visibility without being intrusive.
- Secondly, it’s crucial to convey clear, direct, unambiguous messaging, letting the user know exactly what they can expect after they click.
- Lastly, it’s good to include urgent language such as “Limited Offer” or a clear value proposition like “Get Your Free eBook”, as these tend to result in better CTA performance.
Please refrain from using too many calls-to-action on a single page. Overloading with CTAs can distract users and detract from the primary value of your content.
6. You do not have a product-market fit
In the modern SaaS world, achieving product-market fit can be challenging due to users being distracted by information overload.
Website visitors struggle to distinguish similar SaaS tools from competitors, causing difficulty in standing out amongst countless businesses.
Here is an example of SaaS business competition by various industries
SaaS Competition. Source
Product differentiation and achieving a product-market fit are expansive subjects. However, a simple yet effective exercise for crafting your product messaging is to answer the question:
‘What unique value does your product offer to X audience?’
For example, our agency focuses on ethical link building for SaaS businesses.
How to get more paying customers
Let’s sum up everything that we have talked about, with some bonus points that might further help you gain more visitors and boost sales.
1. Understand your audience and the customer journey
It is important to understand who your potential customers are and what content might be interesting on their journey.
2. Target commercial/transactional keywords
It’s essential to target words that people are using when they want to buy or compare specific solutions. These fall in the later stages of the customer journey (or bottom of the funnel, if you prefer so). These pages are responsible for converting your website visitors into leads.
3. Use the right type and format of content
Please remember to check whether you need a landing page or a blog post. Just go check the top 10 SERP results for your keyword to see what type of content your competitors have been posting that’s caught your target audience’s eye.
4. Create a well-structured landing page
Pay attention to the structure of your landing page. Remember to be clear with your unique value proposition and use social proof to justify your arguments.
5. Clear CTA
Every piece of content should have an end goal,like getting email subscribers, urging users to download a case study, or getting more requests for scheduling a demo.
5. Encourage departing visitors to stay with exit-intent pop-ups
According to one survey, implementing exit-intent popups resulted in a 341% surge in email list subscribers, a 290% boost in form-building activities, a retrieval of 53% of visitors on the verge of leaving, and a 4.1% uptick in sales conversions.
6. Email marketing
Sales cycles can be quite lengthy, especially in the B2B industry. Therefore, it’s essential to utilize email marketing campaigns to convert website visitors into new customers.
7. Google retargeting
Google retargeting and Facebook remarketing can be highly effective and often relatively cost-effective per lead acquisition. Users may only sometimes be prepared to decide immediately but might be ready in the following weeks. Thus, tracking and targeting them with valuable content that resonates with their needs and interests is essential.
8. Set up a chatbot
Chatbots can be very helpful nowadays as they allow natural language conversations. In fact, they can increase your conversion rate as high as 10-20%.
Best tools to convert website visitors into customers
Below are the tools we have personally used and experienced success with.
- Google Analytics
- Microsoft Clarity
Successfully converting website visitors into paying customers requires a strategic and comprehensive approach, combining the science of understanding user intent with the art of creating engaging and valuable content.
As businesses in the SaaS domain and hi-tech startups intensify their competition for online visibility and conversions, it’s critical to attract organic traffic and optimize every stage of the customer journey.
By leveraging targeted SEO strategies that align with transactional and commercial keywords, businesses can better position themselves in front of the right audience at the right time.
If you would like to monetize your organic traffic and turn visitors into customers, drop us a message, as we have extensive experience working with great SaaS companies all over the world.