Until a year ago, our focus for collecting leads was primarily on Facebook and Instagram. Every month, we invested several thousand dollars of advertising budget in order to bring in sign-ups for challenges, webinars and introductory talks.
For a long time that went incredibly well. Until last year, that is. Apple announced a major privacy update in 2020 that would also have major implications for advertising on Facebook and Instagram. Tracking data of the target audience would be affected by this update.
And fair is fair. Our reaction to this news was somewhat naive: I'm sure Facebook will come up with a solution, they won't let this happen. The consequences probably won't be too bad.
Nothing could be further from the truth. After the update was implemented in March 2021, targeting audiences became increasingly difficult. Many targeting options (including interests) were no longer available, and retargeting own audiences also became more challenging. Followed? The cost per lead skyrocketed.
Where before we were paying about €3 - €5 per lead, now suddenly it was €10 - €15 per lead. And the quality of these leads also became significantly lower.
So time for a new approach!
After all, why spend a lot of money monthly on ad budget when you can also bring in leads that you don't pay anything for? Visitors who just landed on your website organically and signed up for something.
We started focusing on SEO. We had let that slip a bit in the past few years, simply because our focus was elsewhere. Now the focus is definitely there and we are actually seeing results.
In this article, we talk more about SEO's approach to creating the perfect landing page for SEO. We also gave an online webinar on this topic. You can watch it back at the bottom of this page.
What is search engine optimization (SEO)?
SEO stands for "search engine optimization," or search engine optimization. This refers only to the organic search results in search engines, with Google, of course, being the largest. Google is the largest with 92% of all searches, followed by Bing (2.6%) and Yahoo (1.8%).
Organic findability means that you rank well in search engines without having to use paid campaigns. If your organic ranking is in order, you can generate 'free' traffic to your website and landing pages. This is not Google ads (SEA), where you run paid campaigns in Google.
If you search for "social media entrepreneur" in Google you will initially see a number of paid ads, these can be identified by the bold Ad. So these parties have a paid campaign running in Google (called SEA). Below the ads are the pages that are ranked organically for this search term, so these pages have not been paid for.
A high organic ranking is not something you do in a day. It takes time (and a lot of patience). To rank high in search results, it is especially important that you put in a lot of time and do good research.
What are SEO landing pages?
A landing page is a page where a visitor "lands" on after clicking on a link in an email or ad from YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Google, etc. In other words, your landing page is the destination page of your campaign. Read more about it in this article.
So you can create a landing page for different purposes. When you create a landing page for an ad on Facebook or Instagram, it is often quite compact and very focused on the CTA. In addition, these landing pages often only yield short-term results.
SEO landing pages are pages that are focused on long-term results. These landing pages are often much more comprehensive and are designed to share information with the visitor. In doing so, these landing pages are written with the goal of ranking higher in the search engines.
SEO landing pages come in all different shapes and sizes. Common SEO landing pages are:
- Testimonials and case studies
- Blog Articles
- Services pages and/or sales pages
- Tips and tutorials
- Frequently Asked Questions
Google's mysterious algorithm
Algorithms are flying around your ears these days. They are everywhere, even at Google. But what exactly is an algorithm?
Actually, an algorithm is nothing more than a series of steps leading to a certain goal. So it does not necessarily have to do with data and technology. In fact, following a recipe is also an algorithm. You follow the steps of the recipe with the goal of putting a delicious meal on the table.
But we're not talking about a cooking class now, we're talking about SEO. So what does Google's algorithm entail?
You can think of Google's algorithm as commands handed out to search engine spies. The spies are automated programs that are constantly searching for new website and landing pages or changes in them.
Among other things, the spies check the content of a page and its relevance. Based on what they find, they determine where in Google the page will be shown. The more valuable and relevant the content of the page is, the higher the page will be ranked.
For example, if you have written a blog article on how to write persuasive copy, Google's algorithm will ensure that you are found on search terms such as "tips text writing" or "copywriting tips. The spies will look at the blog article content and determine to what extent it is relevant to the search term in question. They will also compare the article to other Web pages on the topic.
The algorithm, like Coca Cola's recipe, is a well-kept secret. Few details are known about exactly how Google's algorithm works and what exactly they look at.
In recent years, the algorithm has been updated several times. Each major update has even been named. They are named after animals: Hummingbird, Panda and Penguin.
Provide relevant content
So what the exact components of the algorithm are is not known but what we do know is that these are important points to watch out for:
- Relevance of your page. One way they look at relevance is through visit duration. Does someone stay on the page for a long time after a search? Then you can assume that the information found matches the search query.
- User Experience. Google considers it very important that its users' user experience is good. You can share such valuable and relevant content, but if the page is full of ads and popups, the user experience will be poor. This will negatively affect your ranking.
When writing good content, above all you should not want to be too concerned with all the technical issues surrounding SEO. Don't focus on your title tags, meta descriptions, etc., but focus on writing valuable content for your target audience. If your target audience appreciates your content, your expertise status will increase and you will score better in search results.
How we do this? We look at search terms in Google. Based on these search terms, we determine suitable topics to write about. We combine the written content with video content as much as possible. Topics are discussed during weekly live broadcasts on various channels (LinkedIn, YouTube, Facebook). These videos can then be added to a blog.
In this way we make the article more valuable for the reader and the article is rated higher by Google. Win win!
Start with keyword research
To rank high in search results, it is first important that you share relevant content. And to make sure your content matches the search query, it is important to do keyword research beforehand.
A keyword research doesn't have to be complicated. Just look at what happens when you type a topic into Google, a number of interesting search queries will immediately appear that you might be able to do something more with in your page.
So, for example, if you want to write about landing pages (as we do) you start by searching on the term "landing page. You then immediately see a number of suggested searches from Google. These give you very specific insight into topics for your content.
Creating a page on the subject of "Landing Page" is obviously way too broad. Not only for your potential client but also for yourself. Because you can tell an infinite amount about this, where does it end? However, if you start writing about 'Landing page' you can already start creating the content for your page in a much more focused way.
Once you have entered a search you can scroll further to the end of the page. Below the search results of page 1, Google provides another list of related searches here. Super valuable information!
Of course, to finally determine which keywords to use in your landing page, you also want to know how often something is searched for and to what extent it is possible to rank high.
We ourselves use special software to extend our keyword research, namely SE Ranking. In this we can see how often a particular term is searched for and also get an indication of how difficult or easy it is to rank for something.
To reduce the difficulty, it is wise to also look at a combination of keywords.
You have a law firm in Eindhoven. Your first thought is that you want to rank high on the keyword 'lawyer'. If you enter this keyword in SE Ranking you immediately see that it will be incredibly difficult to rank for this.
The search volume is high (22,200 per month) but the competition is huge. So the chances of ranking high on this keyword are slim.
Your office is located in Eindhoven and you specialize in "employment law. This is valuable information to add to the search. If you start searching in SE Ranking for 'Lawyer employment law Eindhoven' you will see that it immediately becomes much easier to get to the top.
Of course the search volume is lower. But is that a bad thing? Because the people with this search are looking very specifically for something you can offer them. It's much more likely that they will end up coming to you as well.
Technical components of your website for SEO optimization
Unfortunately, when it comes to SEO, we cannot avoid a number of technical terms. We list the most important parts for you:
- H1 and H2: Make sure the keyword is reflected in the header (H1) of your page and in the intermediate headings (H2). If you look at this blog article, we optimize for the search term "seo landing page. This term appears in the title and in a number of sub-headings.
- Title tag: The title tag can be thought of as the title of your page that is visible behind the scenes. The title tag is displayed in Google's search results, it is often the clickable title of a page.
- Meta description: This is also called the page description. Here you provide a brief description of the page. The META description is visible in the search results, just below the page title.
- Alt tag: If you are adding images to your landing page, it is important to include an alt tag. This is a textual description of the image that is picked up by search engines.
- Backlinks: A backlink is reference from an external website or page to your website. You could think of it as a review from an external party that also refers directly to you. The more backlinks you have, the more valuable your content will be seen by the search engines. For example, you can contact bloggers in your field who write a review about your product or service. Actively obtaining these external links is also known as link building. There are also websites where you can purchase backlinks. But be very careful with this! If Google detects this, you may be blacklisted.
- Root domain: Google looks at the root domain name. For example, that is www.adpage.io. This then ranks better than, say, the url https://video.adpage.io (which is a subdomain name). You can set a root domain name through our WordPress plugin or through the link you make directly through the DNS settings. In these articles you will find a technical guide so you know how to do that in our pagebuilder.
Make sure your SEO landing page loads quickly for higher conversions
Every second counts, and that certainly applies to your landing page too! According to research by Kissmetrics, your landing page is expected to load within 2 seconds. According to Google, this itself should be possible within 1 second.
So it is incredibly important that your landing page loads quickly. Go figure for yourself. If you visit a website and it takes too long for the page to load, you will drop out. You want to avoid that at all costs.
There are multiple tools to see how fast your landing page loads. Here are some examples:
These tools also provide a comprehensive report with any areas of improvement for your landing page.
Getting started creating a landing page for SEO yourself?
Creating a good landing page that also scores for Google takes time. It can't (unfortunately) be accomplished at the click of a button.
Once you have gone through all the steps (such as keyword research, copy writing, backlinks, and completing the speed of your landing page properly) then your landing page slowly starts to improve. Then it becomes a part of your online marketing strategy from which you continuously get traffic and leads.
Getting started with SEO landing pages? With AdPage's software you can create the most beautiful landing pages in no time that also score well in SEO. With a load time between 0.2 and 1 second, you are guaranteed to move up in the search results.
Previously, we also gave a webinar on this topic. Watch the webinar back below.