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The Importance of Search Engine Optimization and Meaningful Engagement

Nearly half of your traffic comes from Google searches (yes, that's a real statistic), what makes that statistic even more daunting is that 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results. If you aren't on the first page, you're irrelevant.


When you go to Google and you enter "Tacos near me", Google runs a customized algorithm that searches the internet for "tacos" in a geographically close location. The idea behind search engine optimization is to make it so that, when your customer types in "tacos", Google selects your taco joint to put on the first page.

Search Engine Optimization

When I am done with this blog, I am putting labels on it that will be specific search terms that will bring you to this blog. SEO can be very easy, but it is of utmost importance. I am a subscriber of the "Think like a consumer" mentality. My goal is to imagine what would drive a consumer to my website. If I am a customized coffee mug salesman, I need to imagine who my consumer is and what they would Google when they are looking for my services. ie. "Customized Coffee Mug" is an easy one, but what about something more specific like, "Groomsman gifts" or "coffee lover gifts", or even "worlds greatest dad coffee mug". 


However, search engine optimization isn't just about keyword density anymore, it involves engaging content. All companies need to think about how to pull in more website visitors and keep them around long enough to trust your company. For example, PNC Bank posts a lot of stuff on their website, not just banking solutions, but today they have an article about the Gender Gap women face on financial matters.

Meaningful Engagement is the Name of the Game

The Online Consumer Sales Cycle goes something like this:

  1. Initial Engagement through shared interests or needs - This is the process by which the customer is initially interested in your website because of what you have to say, or by what you offer. Note: You have not yet earned meaningful engagement.
  2. Retention through trust - The customer is immediately making a judgment call on your website, "should I stay or should I go?" as it were. 70% of users do not trust a website that is poorly designed or is difficult to navigate.
  3. Click-Thru - This is when the consumer actually starts to peruse your website, judgment calls are continually being made, tested, and adjusted until they finally decide that you have the right product at the right price- or not. There are two important things to remember when you are encouraging click-thru, (1) Teach your customer about your brand and about your product, (2) make it very easy to buy.
  4. Meaningful Engagement - Your customer has made a purchase, plans to make a purchase or believes in your product. This occurs because your customer has decided that they trust you, your product and that they are paying the right price.

Walking the customer through those steps is difficult, but each must be addressed individually.


I started thinking about meaningful engagement when I was considering The Dollar Shave Club. I was initially engaged through social media, I was retained when I saw that the website looked appealing and it spoke to the man inside of me- which caused me to stick around. Because I trusted the company and the website, I started reading about the company, the brand, and the product. After that, I did not purchase the product, but I found myself recommending it. I would say, "I haven't tried it yet, but have you looked into The Dollar Shave Club?"

Bringing the Two Together


Every American download an estimated 34 gigabytes per day of data throughout their normal day. Further, it is estimated that Americans took in 3.6 zettabytes in 2008 (that's 3,600,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes). One more statistic says that there are over 800 million websites on the internet as of January 2014. And you wondered why you were having such a hard time getting traction on the internet.


The problem that every business encounters are the average American brain. We have become so good at downloading vast amounts of data that we are able to block out what is unimportant. In the same way that you don't have to think about taking each and every breath (because your brain itself to not think about it), you aren't aware of everything you are noticing. So when Americans go to search for something on the Web, we don't notice every little website, we only notice the important ones. How do you make your business important to Americans?


One Last Thought

I think it is important to mention- if you have not yet started to think about how the internet impacts your business, now is the time. Every person highly values every single dollar in their pocket, and as internet searches become easier and easier (heck, we are putting Google on our eyes and Apple on our wrists), people will start to consider internet presence before they consider physical presence. And if the guy down the street is engaging his customers in a meaningful way, you can be sure he is going to be stealing your market share.


"SEO is a complicated, ever-changing process. However, if you consistently provide good content to your readers and follow Google's White Hat rules, you will be in great shape for improved ranking," stated De-de Mulligan, President of Mulligan Management Group, LLC.

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