How Search Engine Marketing Can Increase Your Sales

 
03 July, 2018

Have you ever wondered why some of your competitors always seem to do better than you? They might be selling an inferior product or service at a more expensive price and yet — month in, month out — they’re able to outsell, outperform and out-profit …

The explanation for this is simple. While some people say, ‘Digital is the future’, the fact of the matter is, 'Digital is NOW'.

If your business has no presence on any of the digital channels, then you are going into the fight with two hands tied behind your back.

So, let’s talk about Google...

These days, when Google is as much a noun as it is a verb, you're not doing yourself any favours by failing to complement your offline marketing with your online presence; even more so if you have no offline marketing.

When people search for your product/service, chances are that their first port of call is Google.

Let’s say, for example, that you are a house painter in Melbourne. A potential client would like to engage a painter to help renovate their house. They do what most other people do and jump on one of their digital devices to go straight to Google. In most cases, what they're presented with looks pretty much like this:

Notice that the first four results are paid ads, which are the Google Adwords listings. So, what happens when you have a website but you’re not advertising on Google Adwords is that you are relegated to the lower realms of the search engine results page (SERP).

The picture I am trying to paint here is, if you are not doing all that is possible to get onto the top of the first Google SERP, then you are practically giving up on sales that are going to the competitors that are on top of the SERP.

In saying that, Google Adwords is not the be all and end all of giving your business a digital presence. While it is certainly the first digital channel that most businesses should go to, depending on your marketing budget, Google Adwords can be an integral component of your whole sales process (or sales funnel) to complement your other marketing activities.

The Sales Funnel

All potential clients (prospects) will go through through the following steps, which hopefully results in a sale for you and in their becoming a loyal customer.

  • Awareness – At the beginning of the search, prospects are looking at all alternatives (including your product/service). At this stage, the prospect will most likely jump straight to Google. At this stage, being on Google Adwords is important to drive awareness of your business by showing up at the top of the SERP. Alternatively, prospects may click through on content from social media or email channels, although content on these channels is not guaranteed to show up at the beginning of the search.

  • Interest – Once the prospect has shown interest in your product/service, they may read reviews, sign up for free trials/newsletters, look for further information. At this stage, it is important to remain top of mind. SEM will be useful here to drive prospects back onto your website with targeted ads linking to pages that provide more information and/or opportunities to sign up for free trials/newsletters.

  • Decision – At this point, prospects are shortlisting the products/services that they are likely to choose. It is important to show up on searches that highlight not only the features, but the benefits and advantages of your product/service over your competitors. As an added incentive, you may even run promotions in the ads for people that have previously searched and clicked on your ads.

  • Action – Once the prospect is ready to buy into your product/service, it is important that you show up on the SERP as the purchase has not been completed. If it is overly difficult for the prospect to find you, there is every possibility that they could change their decision last minute and go with something that has shown up on their SERP.

  • Advocacy – The importance of SEM is not lost once you have converted your prospect into a purchasing client. Why? Because if they are satisfied with their purchase, they may repurchase and/or become a vocal advocate. By making sure that your business continues showing up in the search results, you ensure that you are both top of mind and ease of access for further purchases. If you stop showing up, your old customers may be poached by your competitors should/when they do another search for your product/service.

At every stage of the process, SEM can play a part in pushing your potential client further down the funnel and converting them into a sale.

Ensuring that your business commands a digital presence will increase the odds of your business being found, which in turn will help you start converting those prospects into customers. After all, people aren’t going to buy from you if they don’t even know you exist.

Found Digital’s expert SEM team can help you plan and implement an SEM campaign that helps you meet your business goals within your marketing budget. Get in touch using our online form or email: hello@founddigital.com.au

 

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