Many business websites are pushing away prospective customers by focusing too heavily on the point of sale, according to the owner of a digital agency.
According to Tim Barnett of 2BInteractive, websites that deliver the best return on investment are those that deliver content to consumers right along the buying journey.
He uses the example of a growing family looking to upgrade to a bigger car.
Far from making a purchase from the outset, they will initially do online research to determine makes and models that best suit their needs, then refine that list down based on things such as price and features, before actually contacting a business for a test drive and then negotiate on price.
A website where “the checkout’s the be-all and end-all” will miss these consumers, who will simply go elsewhere to carry out their research and ultimately make their purchase.
“To be honest, it’s a hard sell to [our] clients, because they do see their website as a salesperson that is making that sale, and if you start talking about these people in the early stages of the buying cycle, they’re gonna go, ‘When are they going to buy something?’,” says Tim.
He suggests that the best approach to SEO is to look at it as relationship building. Just as you would do in the real world, investing time and effort in forging relationships with people that will become long-term customers, using SEO to cover the entire buying cycle of your product or service will ultimately deliver the best results.
“You’re not getting the dollars at the end of it, but you’ve got to think about the end game, and that you own that customer then. They’re familiar with your brand. They're comfortable with your brand. And they’re the ones that are going to be those loyalists at the end,” he says.
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