How to invest in SEO
SEO is one of the only marketing channels that can generate long-term transformational revenue for free-ish, but most brands get it wrong.
It only works if you know how to invest and what to track. Let’s jump in.
1. Invest in your C-Suite:
SEO is a long-haul strategy and needs to be treated that way. If you’re expecting fast results, grab a book. It’ll be a while.
The most important step is getting the people in charge to care and to buy in. Here’s how to make that happen.
2. Tie SEO to broader business objectives:
Executive teams talk in dollars and cents. Winning them over happens by showing the direct impact SEO can have on the bottom line.
If your pitch is loaded with SEO jargon, then you’ve already lost. Keep it simple. Focus on the money. 🤑
3. Utilize forecasts and projections:
For the greatest impact, your pitch should include customer projections and revenue forecasts, but be prepared to talk in detail about your SEO plan.
Check out the forecasting for SEO guide from ahrefs (a great SEO tool)
4. Set clear and explicit expectations:
Time to lay all your cards on the table, and to explain what the company will see in exchange for its investment in SEO.
Come prepared with project and traffic timelines, KPIs to be tracked, a communication plan, and reporting frequency.
Here are some of the business-level and SEO metrics you’ll want to regularly track and report out to the executive team:
Conversion Rate (CR).
Average Order Value (AOV).
Clicks, Impressions, and CTR.
Leadership is notorious for slashing project budgets. To stop them from axing yours, offer three pricing options at the end of your pitch – ie. good, better, best – and attach expected ROI at each level of investment.
Doing this shifts the focus from cost to ROI and subconsciously nudges decision-makers to the most expensive option. 😈
5. Invest in Storytelling
You got everything you asked for. Now what?
Start with creating content that answers people’s burning questions, solves their biggest problems, and shows them how to do something. A great example of outstanding DTC storytelling is DTC brand Avocado.
They leverage text, audio, and video to create story-driven, product-led content and are crushing it in the most visual way possible.
If you want to take your content to the next level, tell captivating stories and pair them with beautiful designs and visualizations.
Apps like Shorthand help you create digital stories like The New York Times, the BBC, and AdWeek, without code.
6. Invest in Getting the Word Out
Writing great content is a waste of time if you can’t get it in front of hungry eyes.
The person writing your content should know how to craft a piece that’s easy to pitch to bloggers, influencers, and media outlets so that it gets shared and linked.
Make sure your content pitch is relevant to the journalist making the request, and please don’t spam anyone.
You should continue building relationships with the journalist even if you don’t get featured, because other opportunities may arise.
7. Invest in Doubling Down
Once you’ve figured out what’s working, prune away the SEO tactics that aren’t working, laser focus on what is working to the exclusion of everything else and watch your SEO generate massive results.
Keep a close eye on clicks, impressions, and CTR in GSC and conversion rate and revenue in GA.
DTC brands are pitted against each other on Google, a place where winning can feel impossible.
But if you make the right investments, track the right metrics, and have patience, SEO can feel easy peasy.