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Getting a business started can feel like climbing Mount Everest. The constant battle that comes with making a name for your business and fighting the competition, can be physically and mentally draining. But when you experience success, it feels like the thrill that comes with reaching the summit.

No matter how great your business’s journey has been, the truth is that every business experiences a point of plateau. Sales may have slowed to a standstill, maybe there’s a lack of employee engagement or innovation, or perhaps your competition has your audience’s attention. That’s normal. However, a lull doesn’t need to mean the end. The right tools can help get your business back on track.

Digital marketing has become an essential tool for businesses of all sizes to reach new customers and drive growth. There are a variety of digital marketing tactics that businesses need to succeed. In this article, we'll explore how digital marketing can help businesses grow and the tactics that can be used to achieve this goal.

What is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is a marketing approach that uses numerous digital tactics and channels to connect with customers where they spend most of their time — online. Think of it as the opposite of traditional print advertising. Reaching your audience through newspapers or billboards used to be the norm. You’re now reaching customers through emails, popping up on their social media pages, and answering their questions in Google search. If you can meet them where they are, you’re more likely to be top of mind and make sales.

What are Some Popular Digital Marketing Tactics?

There are multiple ways to connect with your audience online, but not all tactics work for every business. Before committing to a digital marketing campaign, it’s essential that you have a clear picture of how it supports your overarching goals. It’s also necessary to understand how each approach works. While there are a few more tactics available, we’ll explain some of the main approaches below:

Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization, also called SEO, is the process of improving the visibility of a website in search engine results pages. Think about how often you go to the second or third page of Google results — rare, right? That’s why it’s so important to get on page one, and why so many people are strategically trying to rank in that number one spot.

Improving a website’s ranking is accomplished through a variety of techniques such as keyword research, meta tags, and link building. You want to make sure you’re answering the questions that people are actually asking to boost visibility, and you want to answer them correctly to gain credibility and authority. SEO is an essential tool for driving organic traffic to a website, reaching new customers, and driving business growth

Content Marketing

Content marketing emphasizes creating, producing, and sharing content meant to engage and attract a targeted online audience. This tactic and SEO go hand in hand. You can’t improve your ranking with search engines if you don’t have informative content on your website. While content marketing includes website content, like blog articles, it also covers social media posts, videos, online courses, and even events that invoke an interest in your brand’s products or services. 

This process of creating and distributing valuable content to attract and engage potential customers can be an effective tool for building trust, establishing authority, and ultimately driving growth. In fact, 72% of marketers claim that having a solid content strategy is a major key to their success, and they’ve increased their content marketing budget to continue seeing growth.

If you already prioritize content marketing and aren’t seeing the desired results, you may want to consider running a content analysis to see how you can optimize your material. While improving your content is always a plus, you also want to make sure you revise or delete anything that’s outdated or incorrect. It might be harming your ranking and your authority.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a type of digital advertising where businesses pay for each click on an advertisement. If you haven’t run this type of campaign as a marketer, you’ve definitely seen them as a consumer. Whether scrolling through Facebook or Google, PPC ads line the pages promoting specifically catered products and services.

PPC advertising can be a powerful tool for reaching new customers and driving growth. The visits generated from these ads often bring in more revenue than what the click costs, and the searcher is usually already committed to buying when they click. PPC ads can help grow a customer base because they are specifically targeted. Additionally, PPC advertising is often one of the quickest methods to grow your audience. While SEO is a marathon, PPC advertising is a sprint that offers a quick return on investment. 

Email Marketing

Email marketing allows businesses to promote products or services through email campaigns. It can be an effective tool for driving conversions, but what’s especially noteworthy with this approach is the cost benefit. Email is an owned media, which requires less initial spending than traditional advertising. Studies show for every dollar spent on email marketing, businesses see about $36 in return. That number even increases for retail and e-commerce companies.

This tactic is also beneficial because it allows you to send messages directly to consumers, and it can be personalized for returning customers. As personalization is becoming more important across industries, email marketing has proven especially beneficial. You can thank customers for their purchases, provide product recommendations, and provide rewards for special occasions or even referrals. 

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing, as its name suggests, uses social media platforms to promote products or services. It can be an effective tool for building brand awareness, engaging with customers, and driving growth. Statistica reports, “As of 2022, the average daily social media usage of internet users worldwide amounted to 147 minutes per day, which is up from 145 minutes in the previous year.” And it’s a trend that has continued to increase over the past 10 years.

If marketers should learn anything from social media usage trends, it’s that they need to have a social media presence. And it’s important to choose the right platform for your product or service. If you’re selling a retirement planning service, your main audience isn’t going to be on TikTok. But if you’re selling beauty supplies, clothes, tech, or food, TikTok might be the ticket. Platform popularity varies based on demographics, so it’s crucial to understand your audience.

Influencer Marketing

While it’s important for your brand to have its own presence on social media, partnering with an influencer allows your business to leverage their connections to expand your audience. The media elite prioritize building relationships with certain demographics, so strategically partnering with them can increase awareness and even boost sales.

Studies have found that 49% of consumers depend on influencer recommendations when they’re looking to buy a product. Even when consumers aren’t shopping, influencers have an effect. In fact, the same research suggests 40% of consumers have purchased something just after seeing it on social media. Some studies suggest influencer recommendations are more effective than friend referrals. It shows how authoritative influencers have become, which is why this marketing tactic is becoming more mainstream.

Digital Marketing is an Essential Tool

From SEO to social media marketing, there are a variety of tactics that you can use to reach new customers and drive growth. It's important to remember that a single tactic may not necessarily drive growth on its own. You’ll need to use a combination of different tools and strategies to meet your goals. 

It’s also important to make sure you measure and analyze your digital marketing efforts. Make use of the available analytics tools and software to track the performance of your website, campaigns, and social media channels. This will help you understand what’s working and what isn’t. Then you can adjust your strategy accordingly. This will also give you valuable insights on your target audience, helping you develop more effective campaigns for the future.

It’s 9 o’clock on Monday morning and an email slides into your inbox. It’s the weekly report from your advertising agency. Yikes, your budget is almost drained. Your ad strategy is sound and it’s generating sales, but you’re beginning to wonder… is it sustainable? Is it scalable?

Or perhaps it’s time to revisit those three little words: search engine optimization. You suspect you could be doing more in this area, but is it a worthwhile investment? Where should you begin?

What is SEO in simple terms?

Simply put, SEO strategy refers to the practice of improving your website’s rank and appearance on the search engine results page (SERP). SEO’s meaning in a business context is working to make your content appear higher in search results so more people will visit your website. This can lead to more prospects, conversions, and sales.

What is SEO marketing?

SEO marketing is an essential piece of your digital marketing strategy. It includes tactics like:

There are four types of SEO marketing: on-page, off-page, technical, and local. The best SEO marketing strategies integrate all four types.

On-page SEO

On-page SEO involves creating high-quality content centered on one keyword theme. Optimize your content by including the keyword in your page’s title, URL, meta description, and headers.

Off-page SEO

To master off-page SEO, you must build your backlink strategy. Once you’ve created linkable content, identify external sites where your audience hangs out. Then, ask for a backlink (be sure to clarify what’s in it for them and their audience).

Technical SEO

Technical SEO might sound complicated, but it’s really as simple as providing a good user experience. Follow web design best practices when it comes to your site structure and mobile-first design. Work with your technical experts on optimizing elements like load speed and security.

Local SEO

If your business serves customers in a particular geographic area, local SEO is critical. Incorporating local keywords into your content and having an active social media presence can help your brand show up to in-market searchers nearby.

The importance of SEO in digital marketing

Recent research reveals that the average working-age internet user now spends 6 hours and 37 minutes online each day. That means your target audience spends at least a third of their waking time online. And one of your primary marketing goals is to get them to spend a little piece of that time on your website.

Organic search is the primary source of web traffic for many businesses. Using SEO to improve the visibility and ranking of your website in search results can generate more traffic. And the best part is, it’s organic - meaning you didn’t pay for it with ads.

Not only is generating organic traffic easier on your marketing budget, but it’s also a more stable tactic. By investing some time up-front to optimize your site for search and create high-quality content, you can generate search traffic for months and years to come, without paying a dime (okay, Warren Buffet).

The importance of SEO for small businesses

Small businesses shine in many areas - agility, passion, and innovation, to name a few. One thing they often don’t have? A huge operating budget. Luckily, in terms of return, SEO is one of the most cost-effective business investments you can make.

In addition to its crucial role in digital marketing, SEO has even more benefits for your small business. It can:

SEO for business growth

Now that you know how SEO plays into marketing strategy and your business’s success, using it to grow your business is a no-brainer.

By improving your SERP ranking, you can increase your website traffic. More website traffic leads to more sales by sheer numbers. But since SEO also improves user experience, it can increase your conversion rate as well.

That means SEO can impact growth in at least two ways. Here’s an example.

How SEO can grow your revenue

Let’s say your website gets 1,500 visitors per month from a mix of organic and paid sources. Your conversion rate is 5% and your average sale is $85.

1,500 * 3% = 45 sales * $85 = $3,825 per month

By implementing some simple SEO strategies, you increase your number of visitors to 2,800 per month. Your revenue is now:

2,800 * 3% = 84 sales * $85 = $7,140 per month

Get after it! Your revenue’s climbing, but you’re not done yet. Because organic search traffic converts at a higher rate than paid, you also see your conversion rate increase. So in a few months, your equation looks like this:

2,800 visitors * 4% conversion rate = 112 sales * $85 = $9,520

You’ve more than doubled your revenue without any changes to product or pricing. This simple illustration shows the enormous impact SEO can have on your bottom line.

How to do SEO marketing

Knowing the foundations of SEO is vital, but enough with the theory already. How can you get started with SEO marketing in practice?

Here are a few SEO steps for beginners:

  1. Research keywords
  2. Incorporate the keywords into your content
  3. Create a plan to build new content
  4. Implement a link building strategy

Your SEO strategy doesn’t have to be airtight to start with some of these tactics today. Integrate SEO into your marketing strategy as a complement to your other channels, and watch your numbers soar.

Today’s marketers know that search engine optimization is table stakes for a successful integrated marketing strategy. Here are some examples of how to strengthen your plan with SEO strategy .

Examples of search engine optimization

SEO is a wide field that involves technical optimizations on the back end and improvements to the reader’s experience on the front end. There are four types of SEO : on-page, off-page, technical, and local.

What are examples of SEO marketing?

Here are some examples of how to incorporate the four types of SEO into your marketing.

Example of on-page SEO

You probably know that SEO marketing involves keywords. The most common example of on-page SEO is optimizing a piece of content to a specific keyword. For example, if you’re publishing a blog post about making your own ice cream, your keyword might be “homemade ice cream.” You’d include that keyword in your post’s title, slug, meta description, headers, and body.

Examples of SEO keywords

In this example, your keyword is “homemade ice cream.” This is an informational keyword. If a user searches for it, they’re probably looking for information on how to make homemade ice cream. Once they find the info they need, their search will be complete.

Keywords are all about intent. Here are some other types of keywords:

Understanding a users search intent will help you tailor your content to their goals and amplify your SEO performance.

Example of off page SEO

Your off page SEO strategy involves link building – links from external sites to the web page with your content. Also known as backlinks, this seo tool can help you gain visibility from social media or other websites. Once you’ve published your article on how to make homemade ice cream, you can maximize backlinks by:

Example of technical SEO

The goal of technical SEO is to help search engines index your site more effectively. One example of technical SEO is submitting a sitemap. A sitemap helps Google index your site by telling it where the most important content is. Even if you’re not a developer, you can create an XML sitemap file and submit it using Google Search Console.

Example of local SEO

One of the most ubiquitous examples of local SEO is claiming and optimizing your Google Business Profile. If a user searches “where to get ice cream,” several Google Business results show up. Your Google Business Profile is a complement to your website and social media. Claim your profile to ensure your business appears on the SERP for users looking for your products or services in your area.

SEO marketing strategy

Some of your goals in digital marketing strategy are to increase website traffic and increase conversions to bring in more revenue for your business. SEO can help you achieve all these.

How is SEO used in digital marketing?

Creating high quality content that’s optimized for search can grow your organic traffic over time. And best of all? It’s not just random traffic. You can control who your SEO content brings to your website.

How? By getting clear on the intent behind your keywords. Before you start creating your content, you should know its keyword and the searcher’s intent. This will help you target exactly the kind of user you want to bring to your site – one who’s more likely to take the action that will help you reach your goals.

What is bad SEO?

All SEO tactics are not created equal. The foundation of “good SEO” is user experience. Publishing quality content and making your website easy to use are examples of good SEO.

On the other side of the coin, some techniques are considered bad SEO or “ black hat SEO .” Generally, if your intention is anything other than being helpful, your tactic is probably sketchy. This includes activities like keyword stuffing, sneaky redirects, buying links, and pages with malicious behavior.

Do bad SEO tactics work? You might see some SEO success, but it's not sustainable. And tinkering with them can damage your brand’s reputation with both users and search engines. Google’s algorithm gets more sophisticated with every update, and these activities are all on the naughty list.

SEO example website

What does a well-optimized website look like in practice? Most mid-sized companies have put significant effort into SEO. But some of the best examples out there are B2C companies offering high-ticket products and services. The value of getting a user to their website is astronomical.

One of our favorite examples? Personal injury lawyers. For a masterclass in SEO, Google “got hurt at a theme park” and check out any of the top results.

Find examples of SEO marketing in your industry

To spark ideas for your own business, simply search the relevant keyword you’re targeting with your own SEO strategy. Now that you know what to look for, your cup will runneth over with optimizations to make on your own website.

What’s the very first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Oh, deep breathing and yoga? Well, aren’t you just a ray of sunshine?

We were expecting you to say “look at my phone,” which is what most Americans do. We spend a lot of time online. In our fast-paced world, we’re always looking for the quickest way to get where we want to go.

For most people, the quickest way to get where they’re going online is a search engine. And, well, we wouldn’t be marketers if we didn’t find a way to influence those online experiences.

Thus, search engine optimization (SEO) marketing was born. Today, marketers use SEO strategy to achieve a variety of goals from increased organic traffic to higher conversion rates. And since 68% of online experiences begin with search it’s vital to have a strong strategy.

What is SEO marketing for beginners?

To newer marketers, SEO might seem like a labyrinth of tags, keywords and coding. But search engine marketing is less mysterious than you think, and it can help you achieve your business goals. If you’re just starting out, here are a few SEO marketing tips for beginners .

What is SEO in marketing?

SEO refers to improving your website’s rank and appearance on the search engine results page (SERP). The benefits of SEO reach far and wide.

From a marketing standpoint, SEO is a cost-effective way to bring more organic traffic to your website. Since the average working-age internet user now spends 6 hours and 37 minutes online each day, you can’t afford to skip SEO.

SEO’s meaning in business

SEO also has business benefits outside of marketing:

You can also use SEO to grow your business. An increase organic traffic to your site can result in more sales and increase your conversion rate by improving the customer experience.

How is SEO used in digital marketing?

These days, most marketers define digital marketing as… well, marketing. We live in a digital world, and your website is often your first impression to potential buyers. For this reason, it’s hard to overstate the importance of SEO in digital marketing .

Your marketing plan probably involves many channels, like advertising, social media, email marketing, and public relations. SEO is part of your content marketing strategy , which you must have if you’re creating content. After all, you can create the best content in the universe (big ups if you’ve done this), but if the right people don’t see it, it hasn’t accomplished anything for your business.

Organic search is the main source of traffic for many websites, so an investment in SEO is a gift to your brand that keeps giving. By spending resources up-front on creating optimized content, you can generate organic search traffic for months and years to come.

What are the 4 types of SEO?

Once you master the basics and start digging deeper into SEO, you’ll learn there are four types of SEO : on-page, off-page, technical, and local. The best SEO strategies integrate all four.


5 steps for a great SEO STRATEGY

On-page SEO

On-page SEO includes the activities you probably think of first when you hear “SEO.” Because search engine algorithms are more sophisticated than ever, today’s on-page SEO strategies start with truly valuable content. You can’t trick, automate, or keyword-stuff your way to the top of the SERP.

Instead, focus on understanding your audience and the keywords that are relevant to them. If they were looking for your content or product, what types of keywords would they use – informational, navigational, commercial, or transactional?

Once you’ve done your keyword research, create high-quality content focused on the relevant keywords you’ve identified. Your content should:

Off-page SEO

Alexander the Great, notorious narcissist, said, “Even when I am gone, I shall remain in people’s minds the star of their rights.” But it was only after his death that he earned his Great title. If he’d spent his life talking about how great he was rather than doing “great” things, no one would’ve remembered him despite his self-aggrandizing speeches.

Similarly (but way less dramatic), promoting your own content can only get you so far in the SEO game. Why? Credibility. Of course you think your content is great. What do others think? Search engines look for backlinks as a sign that other users have found your content helpful.

Off-page SEO involves making sure your content is linkable, and then building a strategy to get backlinks. Linkable content has been crafted with backlinks in mind. Some common hooks are data (the more surprising the better), quotes from industry leaders, and engaging media like podcasts and videos.

To get the most out of your linkable content, identify trustworthy, popular sites within your space and track down a contact. Ask them to link to your content. Include a summary and how it benefits their readers.

Technical SEO

For some marketers, the word “technical” might kick your heart rate up a notch. But don’t be intimidated by technical SEO. Just like the rest of your SEO strategy, it centers on user experience.

Your first step for technical optimization should be ensuring that you’re following web design best practices. Do a website audit with these questions in mind:

If you come up with underwhelming answers for any of these, you’ve found your starting point for improvement. And remember, as Churchill said, “Perfection is the enemy of progress.” Your site doesn’t have to be 100% optimized to be an effective business asset.

Make improvements as you go, starting with the simplest work and tackling more complex technical SEO later. Before you know it, the organic traffic will be flowing.

Local SEO

If you offer products or services to a particular geographic region, you don’t want to skip local SEO . Generally, any optimizations you do on-page or off-page will boost your local listing. But if local SEO is a priority for your business, there are a few areas you should focus on.

One of the big benefits of local SEO is lower marketing costs, since it helps you focus on targeted geographic areas instead of the antiquated “spray and pray” approach.

What are examples of SEO marketing?

If you’ve made it this far, SEO might make sense in theory… but what does it look like in practice? Let’s look at some examples of SEO marketing .

For these examples, we’ll consider an auto shop that also sells car accessories, Amazing Auto Accessories & More.

Step 1: On-page and technical SEO

Let’s say AAA&M wants to use on-page SEO to organically capture more traffic looking to buy windshield wipers. They publish a blog post focused on the keyword “new windshield wipers.” They include the keyword in the post’s title, slug, meta description, headers, and body.

SEO marketing on-page and technical seoimage

From a technical SEO perspective, AAA&M digs deeper. They:

Step 2: Off-page SEO

The post is optimized and gaining organic traction, but AAA&M isn’t done yet. They know to get the most out of the article, they need to deploy a backlink strategy for off-page SEO. They regularly share the post on their social channels with engaging calls to action and target external sites publishing content related to vehicle maintenance and ask for backlinks.

Example social post: Ever been caught in a rainstorm on the highway? Driving in a downpour can be tense… and you DON’T need the added stress of limited visibility. If it’s time for new windshield wipers, we’ve got you covered with this guide. Do you have a go-to wiper brand? Let us know in the comments!

Example backlink email: Hi [name], your piece “7 things you didn’t know your car needed for routine maintenance” is killer. (Have I ever replaced my brake pads??) Anyway, we just published a guide to buying new windshield wipers, and I think it would be a great addition to your article in the “replace your windshield wipers” section. What do you think?

Step 3: Local SEO

Of course, providing a thorough guide to buying new windshield wipers is great for AAA&M’s brand trust and authority. But we’d be lying if we said they don’t want to sell new wipers to every single person who Google's the keyword. Windshield wipers are a $4.7 billion industry, after all.

For that reason, they target the “new windshield wipers” keyword with their local SEO strategy by making sure it’s included in their Google Business description and product catalog.

How do I SEO my website to Google?

After digesting everything we’ve discussed, you might be wondering: How do I use all this info to optimize my website for Google and other search engines?

Here’s a tip for how to do SEO well: Start where you are. If you’re already creating content but have never considered keywords, do some keyword research. Google Trends is a great SEO tool. Check out the keywords your competitors are using.

If you’ve been optimizing your content to keywords for a while, but have no idea how your website performs technically – start there. Run your site through Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool and share your findings with your tech colleagues. Find out what high-impact, quick-win opportunities there are. Google search console is another SEO tool to learn more about your search performance. 

The most important thing is to start making progress. At the end of the day, SEO is about user experience. Anything you can do to better understand users’ expectations and improve your content’s ability to meet them is a win for SEO.

How much does SEO marketing cost?

The beauty of search engine optimization is that it brings in more organic search traffic – meaning you didn’t pay for the traffic with advertising. However, like everything good in life, SEO is not free.

Creating and executing a comprehensive and effective SEO strategy is a big undertaking. Enterprise companies often have a whole team of full-time marketers dedicated to SEO services. That’s how valuable it is.

The cost of excellent SEO is in the time it takes to create high-quality content and optimize your website. If you’re ready to take your strategy to the next level, there are SEO-specific tools available that can cost as much as $500 per month.

Launch your SEO marketing strategy today

Fortunately, you don’t have to spend $500 a month on software to put your SEO marketing plan into place today. There’s constant innovation in search engine optimization , and tomorrow you could discover a brand new tactic that’s perfect for your business.

But don’t get distracted by shiny, new tactics without mastering the basics first. Getting a handle on how the four types of SEO fit into your marketing strategy will put you miles above your competitor who’s ignoring SEO.

And when your potential buyers wake up in the morning and grab their phones, your content will be there waiting.


Is there anything more disappointing than stumbling upon a treasure map that ultimately leads to...nothing of any real value? And yet, businesses that over-emphasize the use of advanced search engine optimization (SEO) tactics to the detriment of their content strategy run the risk of doing just that.

On the other hand, companies that stress content strategy without bolstering their technical SEO efforts make the opposite marketing mistake; they are, in effect, burying marketing "treasure" (i.e. great content) in the vast sands of the internet wasteland without bothering to create a keyword map.

For search engine success, make sure you do not treat SEO and content strategy as two distinct and separate marketing disciplines. While it's certainly possible to do so, it's not a winning SEO content marketing strategy for building long-term customer engagement.

Your SEO strategy should inform your content strategy. Similarly, your onsite content strategy should be tailored to your keyword research. Consequently, great content targeted to specific keywords and arranged in a topic cluster can help your brand rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).

We was like peas and carrots.

SEO and content strategy tactics can helpfully be compared to a keyword treasure map that leads to buried marketing treasure. SEO and content strategy go together like peas and carrots. Peanut butter and jelly. Pick whatever metaphor works for you; the point is that you'll need both to succeed.

As you look to begin content marketing or raise the profile of your existing enterprise, keep the following critical SEO content practices in mind. Refer to them often as you strategize, hire, acquire, reboot, conduct your keyword research, and reconfigure your content plan.

1. Zero In on Your Target Audience

The old axiom certainly proves true in the world of content strategy. "If you aim at nothing in particular, you're sure to hit it."

When engaging in online marketing, you absolutely must know who you are trying to reach. If you attempt to reach everyone with your existing content, you are increasingly unlikely to use the right keyword strategy or engage with anyone.

Do your keyword homework. The time you spend on your SEO content strategy will pay dividends later on.

Build a handful of buyer personas to guide the efforts of your writers, website developers, and marketers as they optimize your SEO strategy to hit your keyword sweet spots.

2. Pick Topics Based on Your Expertise

Avoid the SEO content strategy mistake of trying to appeal to everyone with a wide array of marketing information.

If you're like most companies, your business operates in a specific niche. As a result, you will want your SEO content strategy to remain solidly in your lane. Start asking others if you struggle to identify what makes your business special. As part of your content strategy, pay particular attention to the inquiries that routinely come your way via social media or other channels.

Many business owners are tempted to hold back a bit at this stage in the SEO content strategy. The operational (though faulty) logic is to reserve your best bits for paying customers.

However, living in a world where people consult a Google search result to answer everyday issues, this is a shortsighted content strategy. According to the Content Marketing Institute, it's been clearly shown that companies who consistently put out reliable content marketing information without paywalls tend to build up social media followers and, ultimately, customers.

3. Choose Your Keywords Carefully

Keyword research is the "secret sauce" that separates a successful content marketing strategy from one that's solidly mediocre. This is the second step at which taking the time to conduct research will be most helpful. If your content strategy focuses on a keyword that's too broad, larger corporations are likely going to bury your content marketing efforts.

Long tail keywords can be key to a winning strategy as you seek to reach a specific target audience. A long tail relevant keyword typically consists of three to five words. This keyword strategy helps your content marketing cut through the noise and yield targeted search results more likely to result in a conversion. At the end of the day you want to be targeting the keywords that your audience is searching.

4. Create Content To Build Topical Authority

Now that you are clear on your target audience, areas of expertise, and marketing keyword, you're ready to begin producing new content.

Every decision of your content strategist should be driven by the audience research you conducted in Step One. Your content marketing needs to show up wherever your people already are, not where you expect them to travel. 

Stick with what you know best and create the content that your brand should be known for. You'll struggle to rank for your target keywords if you don't have a strong web of content on your site around your key topics.

In addition, your content strategy should be tightly bound up with search intent. Are people looking to purchase when searching your target keyword? Or are they looking to get information and education on a subject? In other words, focus your content on what your users need when searching that keyword. If you are trying to rank a product page when people are looking for educational guides when searching that keyword, you likely won't see the progress you're hoping for.

5. Link, Interlink, and Backlink

If you've published high quality content, especially content that solves problems, you can reasonably expect other people to begin linking to your site. Good content is its own advertisement, though initially you might want to augment your visibility with Google Ads or some other paid content marketer service. Backlinks suggest to search engines that you are a leader in your field. This, in turn, will help boost your domain authority and your rank on a Google SERP.

You will want to interlink these pieces within your website as you produce value-laden how-to guides, white papers, instructional videos, and more. Then you can start link outreach efforts and see if you can get other authoritative sites to link back to your content. You may even start ranking for your target keywords with your rankable content. The point is that relevant keyword linking practices is a strategy that will pay off in the long run.

6. Commit to Ongoing Improvement

Search engines are constantly crawling the internet and updating their SERPs according to the latest data they can collect. As a result, a keyword that worked great as part of your content strategy just two weeks ago may already be starting to slip a bit. This is where your SEO audit comes into play.

Make sure you consistently monitor your Google Analytics and social media platforms. Similarly, collect empirical marketing data ahead of your decision-making. Dive into what is working and what isn’t for your content marketing by looking at what content is driving traffic in Google Search Console or some other SEO tool that suits your needs. You might even share your search engine data with an SEO agency and have them provide additional marketing insights.

Analytics, search engines, marketing statistics, and spreadsheets might not be "your thing," and that's OK. However, you owe it to your company's future marketing success to ensure that someone you trust is combing through the piles of search engine data to identify current trends. In a time crunch, it might be tempting to leave outdated videos on your site or hold off on retooling a page with a high bounce rate. In those moments, remind yourself of your marketing strategy. Recall how you felt when you were led to information on the web that wasted your time.

Wrapping Up

Every business, large or small, thrives by providing valuable products and services at a competitive price point. Along the way, you refine and sharpen your niche-specific expertise. When that expertise fuels content ideas and you share it freely, you kindle potential customer gratitude. In today's world of eCommerce and SEO content, successful businesses are learning the value of reliability. Trust and appreciation are vital for gaining the attention of search engines and (ultimately) making sales.

Your content strategy will probably need a tune-up every so often. However, the time you invest in SEO content marketing is well worthwhile.

Regardless of your niche, there's almost certainly a way to leverage your knowledge and insights. You can create quality content that cuts through all the search engine clutter and results in SEO success. If you are struggling in the digital marketing space or need help balancing your content strategy or other SEO services, don't go it alone! Feel free to schedule a time to chat with one of our subject matter experts.

The customer journey starts from the moment someone hears about your product’s name. Consequently, it’s important to get off the ground running as early as possible to maximize your chances of converting them into a customer of your retail brand.

An overall brand experience needs to be crafted to set you apart from the competition. defines the eCommerce Customer Experience (or in our case journey) as the sum of every touchpoint, engagement, thought, or feeling that occurs or is exchanged between the customer and your brand — as experienced from the customer’s perspective.

Here’s a quick video on this concept from PlaybookUX to get you started.

Quick Takeaways

There’s plenty of reasons why a unique customer journey is important to customer conversion and retention.

Building Loyalty with Your Customers

Emplifi says that 49% of customers have abandoned a brand in the last year because of poor customer experience. And why shouldn't they? When you stay engaged with customers, you build trust and loyalty between them and your product.

Neglecting to keep their attention through things like content marketing and the post-purchasing experience can lead them away from your brand in favor of the competition.

Attracting New Prospects to Convert

Every step of your customer journey should be built with attracting new prospects in mind. Accordingly, things like excellent website UI and special offers for new clients attract the eye and put you in a great starting position with someone who’s never used your product(s) before.

Think about it this way: your overall brand is unique to you — by selling your brand at every step of the journey you are doing the most to differentiate your product vs the other guy’s.

Long Term Growth Through Data

Customer data is crucial to the overall growth of your business. Data should drive your KPI’s and long-term goals for lead conversion and customer retention. More importantly, customer data can help you see where your customer journey is succeeding, and where it could use a little attention.

Every stage of the journey is measurable. Things like clickthrough rate and traffic to your landing page can show you how many eyes are on your website, while email list websites like Constant Contact and Mailchimp provide crucial information on the happenings of your regular clients.

Here are some metrics to consider in the long run.


Traffic is about pageviews and users. Services like Google Analytics can give you an accurate read of this data. It also helps you see exactly where your views are coming from.

Brands Customer Journey: Website Traffic



Views are great, but what happens after the initial click? Is the reader just leafing through your website? Are they sharing it? Are they actually purchasing your product or scheduling your services?

Conversion rate shows how many prospects are becoming customers. As a result, this metric is the real shining gem of your content marketing efforts! Converting prospects should be your number one goal with content marketing.


Seeing how your organic search rankings are performing is crucial to a healthy content marketing strategy. Consequently, keywords drive your content, because the higher you rank with keywords, the higher you are on Google’s search results. Be honest, when was the last time you clicked the seventh link down?

Regardless of stage, knowing how many people are participating in the experience is crucial to the success of your overall customer journey.

Now that you know why, let’s talk about just how eCommerce retail brands are doing their customer journey.

Great Website UI

An aesthetically pleasing landing page is the first taste a prospect gets of your brand. No one wants to see an HTML page of word vomit. Instead, they want to see something nice and pleasantly informative. Here’s a great example of a good looking webpage from us!

Brands Customer Journey: Relevance Home Page


Relevance is a great example of an excellent landing page because it has all of the required elements — from the catchy headline to the simple CTA copy and visually appealing screenshots.

The overall design banks on SEO. As a result, there is enough content to keep readers engaged with the site before they complete the next action.

Don’t forget — your website must be optimized for mobile. No one wants to open their phone and have to zoom in on every part of your website! Make sure the experience is great on all platforms.

Content Marketing

Content marketing is the sustainable and cost effective tool to get your product or service in front of your top prospects. Creating content on your website and distributing them across your social channels can cut your marketing strategy spending down drastically.

Brands Customer Journey: Content Marketing

Source: Entrepreneur

Blog Writing

Blog writing is the easiest way to get organic hits on your website by creating quality pieces that those who fall into your customer profile are already searching for. Proper distribution can also captivate your current customers, guiding the post-purchase stage of the customer journey.

This process is especially beneficial for top of the funnel prospects seeking information before they purchase. Creating context about why they need your item and leading them to the conclusion is key.

Social Media

By keeping up on your social media presence, you are also opening an avenue to get your content in front of your customer’s eyes. Posting your new content across different platforms gives you a variety of outlets to send the same message to different people.

Not to mention, an open comment section is a place for your community to discuss ideas and connect with each other. This organic engagement is important to the viewership of your content and the overall value of your brand.

Using a content calendar can keep your publishing efforts organized and well-planned.

Customer Surveys

How do we know what the customer wants out of their journey? Simple. We ask!

Keeping in contact with prospects converted into customers and asking about their experience provides excellent insight into the customer journey. It also helps build the communication line that instills trust in your brand.

Surveys can be sent directly to clients via the email addresses they used at checkout or through the email blasts from your content marketing efforts. Either way, providing an incentive like a discount code can encourage them to give the feedback you need.

Wrap Up

The customer journey is the entire process your prospect goes through from being aware of your product to the second they stop doing business with you. Making sure every step in your brands customer journey contains elements of your unique brand will help grow trust between you and them.

By keeping a connected and unique customer journey, you can ensure your product and brand stand out from the competition and blow past your marketing goals!

You got this!

Hiring Relevance as your growth marketing agency can make this process easier on you as your brand and business grows in an ever-changing market. Ready to talk? Fill out an interest form and we can help your business on the path to success.

It's oftentimes a freelance writer or professional marketer's biggest question about generating effective content: "What should I write?"

Do you struggle with content production? As you engage in content planning, do you find it difficult to identify topics to write about? Does your team toil over what type of website content or which content type will have the greatest impact on your target audience? Do you agonize over which content piece will attract your target audience? Do your marketing activities ever grind to a halt at this point?

You're certainly not alone.

Content writing can be challenging. Highly visual content and building a strong content calendar present their own unique challenges, too. This is true whether you're engaged in influencer marketing or building a B2B content marketing strategy. Producing engaging, effective content is the top challenge for most content marketers. More than one digital marketing strategy has stalled out at this critical juncture of the customer journey.

Regardless of the content format you select, this roadmap will help you navigate the path to achieve both engaging and effective content — and more importantly, a marketing roadmap will help you answer the question: "What should I write?"

An effective content marketing plan can help your company create consistently good content and write its own success story. Because we all know it doesn't feel good to spend a lot of time and effort writing effective content that nobody reads, or worse, that they do read and think was a waste of time.

Roadmap for Creating Engaging and Effective Content

Step 1: Start with business strategy and audience needs.

Cascade business strategy and context.

Without a set of defined business goals to achieve, your growth marketing strategy is flying blind. A marketing roadmap brings both vision and clarity to your content plan.

A successful content marketing strategy starts with the set of business goals you're out to accomplish — brand awareness, lead generation, sales, etc. These goals must cascade down from your overall business and department objectives to your written content and ultimately to your potential customers. OKRs — used by Google's search engine and Intel — can give you a simple framework to think about how your marketing roadmap strategy can cascade if your organization doesn't already have a formal process.

Even if you've been doing content marketing for years, go back to this step and really understand what your business goals are for your content marketing strategy. You may find that those goals and your current execution are not in alignment with a successful content marketing effort.

Don't gloss over this step.

Before any talk of content creation occurs, write out your business goals and make sure your entire content team is in alignment with them. Everyone needs to know what the finish line looks like for providing valuable content. Your marketing roadmap must make this clear.

Understand your audience's needs and preferences.

While you are developing your foundational understanding of a successful inbound marketing business strategy and context, you should also be doing some parallel research to identify your audience's needs and preferences, right down to the social media channels they tend to prefer.

Don't let the organization's product launch objectives interfere with how you approach this step. This can influence the results, creating an understanding of your company's ideal customers, instead of your real customers. Aim to understand your real audience and develop content that addresses their current need, not your company's "want."

There are many ways to do this research prior to developing your marketing campaign. Start your information-gathering initiative with the development of buyer personas. An effective content marketing strategy for your campaign should answer questions such as:

Get your hands on website analytics for recent posts and competitive intelligence. These will help you better understand what is engaging your audience on your website, the websites of your competitors, and on social media. Your marketing strategy roadmap should answer questions such as:

Step 2: Identify key metrics.

After you've defined your business goals and have an understanding of your audience, you must determine how your marketing roadmap will measure the progress of your strategy.

It is vital that you establish these metrics before launching the strategy. All too often, measurement is an afterthought, and marketers simply measure whatever is easily available — which usually takes the form of soft metrics like social media shares and page views — things that don't report well to the C-Suite.

Without establishing metrics that align with the overall goals of the strategy, marketers will have no idea if their marketing roadmap is succeeding or failing. The point of measurement is to determine the true trajectory of your marketing roadmap. You manifest what you measure.

Effective reporting begins with the basics.

Identify to whom you will be reporting these metrics. Just the product manager? Or do they report up to the C-Suite? The Board of Directors?

If you're not sure, you might check with human resources to make sure you're following established company protocol. Understanding to whom you're accountable will help target the metrics that will most effectively measure and communicate your content marketing success.

For example, a COO may value sales and revenue metrics over online marketing consumption metrics. Email marketing figures matter more to content creators than business administration types. Social media numbers matter to your brand awareness types. Adjust your metrics accordingly.

In order to have a true understanding of whether your content program is working, Jay Baer suggests that you "create an array of metrics that are selected from four primary buckets: consumption metrics, social media sharing metrics, lead generation metrics, sales metrics."

Which goals will show the success or failure of your strategy and give you insights into whether to adjust it? What metrics will give you the best pulse on your strategy?

Also, understand how you will get to these metrics. Google Analytics, social media statistics, and your company's CRM are great places to start.

New content intelligence tools are utilizing big data and predictive marketing to give you more insight into individual metrics by diving deep into your existing content and understanding what's resonating with your current audience. These insights not only help you create great content moving forward. They also help you optimize existing content you've already created.

With a solid foundation of business goals, audience understanding, and metrics, we can now begin the task of diving into the creative guts of your content marketing strategy.

Step 3: Develop content marketing editorial mission statement.

At the beginning of any marketing initiative, Joe Pulizzi suggests content marketers get clear on this key part of editorial planning, which can then serve as a guidepost for all content creation and social media campaigns. The mission statement answers the question, "Why do you exist?"

Pulizzi recommends answering three basic questions to create your initial mission statement:

  1. Who is your core target audience?
  2. What will be delivered to the audience?
  3. What is the desired outcome for the audience?

Because you have your business goals and understanding of your audience already in place, this section should come together rather quickly.

When creating your editorial mission statement, keep in mind your own differentiators you discovered from your competitive intelligence gathering. What unique attributes does your company bring to the market when solving your audience's problems?

Step 4: Create an editorial calendar.

Go back to your audience preferences and identify the content types/forms that will work best to address their needs. As you develop your marketing road map, ask yourself:

Do a gut check. Check that the types/forms of content you selected lend themselves to the metrics you identified in Step Two.

If not, you may need to establish better metrics to show success. This may be an evolution of an existing metric. For example, if you have video content, and one of your goals is sales instead of just "views," you can use links within the video descriptions to get people back to your site where they can buy your product.

Within your editorial calendar, you will also identify the appropriate promotion channels. Once content types/forms are selected, you'll have a better idea of what channels will work best to promote them.

Step 5: Adopt a data collection and reporting schedule.

It's important to discuss and agree on when and how you will report the progress of your marketing plan and content marketing efforts — not only to your team but to the relevant organizational leadership.

With the right metrics and marketing analytics, you should be able to quickly shift your roadmap strategies depending on their initial effectiveness. Keep an eye on the end goal, and if the strategy is veering off, correct it.

This is why constant monitoring and reporting is your best friend. It may help to have more frequent meetings with your content marketing team to have these discussions — the most effective teams meet daily or weekly, as reported by CMI .

Step 6: Write, edit, publish, and listen.

At this point, you should have amazing clarity around how to answer the question, "What should I write?" Not only that, but you should also be able to answer the question, "Why did you write that?"

So, do what you do best — write, edit, and publish effective content that will engage your audiences and deliver the business results your organization needs to be successful. To help make the creative process even smoother, the Content Marketing Institute offers 10 ways you can write like a pro.

Then, be sure to listen. (This is one place social media can become one of your best friends.)

Listen to how your audiences are responding to your marketing effort. Nurture the product roadmap connection you've established with them. Feedback what you hear into the understanding of your audience in Step One, and see how that new information trickles down the rest of the marketing roadmap. This will all help later on as you seek to build a marketing roadmap template with a proven track record.

Step 7: Establish a continuous feedback loop and make adjustments to your approach.

Anything in your digital content marketing strategy can change. Your marketing roadmap template is just that, a template that will require adjustment and course correction.

Executive leadership might launch a new strategy or invest in a different market, which would completely alter your content strategy. Your audience's needs and preferences might evolve over time or drastically shift overnight after a major event. Competitors could enter the marketplace or change their own content marketing strategy.

Commit to constantly monitoring Google Analytics, collecting your digital marketing metrics, and keeping a pulse on your audience via social media. That way, you'll be able to pivot as changes occur. You can then feed the new information back into the top of the content strategy. Revising your marketing roadmap template is a sign of progress, not failure.

This is a strong win-win tactic. By doing this quickly and effectively, you'll be able to create the content your new audiences need before your competition and gain a competitive edge. That competitive edge will make you a content strategy hero in your organization. Don't you want to be a hero?


Without the solid foundations of a digital content marketing strategy, any small business will struggle to come up with a great content idea and deliver engaging, quality content to its target audience.

Your content marketing strategy must open your sales funnel to increased traffic in a way that both helps audiences solve a problem and helps you achieve your business goals.

No matter where you are in your company's content marketing strategy, revisit your goals and understanding of your audience to see if they are still in alignment with where you are currently spending your time and resources. If they're not, it may be a sign that your digital marketing program needs to change — for the better. Much of what we call marketing management is merely tweaking an underperforming marketing tactic to deliver more consistent results.

What will you do to be a better content marketer today? How will you incorporate social media monitoring into your marketing plan? Do you need help building or modifying a content marketing roadmap to meet your company's marketing goal? If so, consider contacting a Relevance strategist today to help you build out your digital marketing roadmap.

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