Can SEO really drive more leads for your services-based business?
Here’s how Squarespace SEO can drive more leads your services-based business
I’ve written before about why every services-based business needs an SEO strategy and I was happy to see that that blog post struck a chord with my of my readers. I received quite a few comments and emails about that blog post - people liked the post but they wanted to learn more about how to actually APPLY that strategy.
The number one question I received was “How can I use SEO to drive more sales/book more discovery calls for my services-based business?”. Fantastic question and I’m super excited to answer that in today’s follow up blog post!
Most of my clients are services-based business owners. I’d say about half of them run their businesses entirely online and rarely work with in-person clients, whereas the other half serve local clients and rely on their website to serve as their “online home”.
In both cases, these services-based business use their websites as a way to connect with their (potential, current and past) clients and customers, and promote their offerings online.
Services based businesses serve a whole variety of industries - we’re talking law firms, accountants, engineers, plumbers, florists, personal trainers, coaches, photographers, consultants, PR pros, social media managers, graphic designers, gardeners, dog walkers, psychics, bakeries, physiotherapists - you name it, the list goes on.
Some of these services must be performed in person (e.g., dog walkers, massage therapists, gardeners, etc.) but others can be done either in-person OR online/remotely (e.g., consultants, personal trainers, graphic designers, etc.).
Services based businesses can be one-off projects or ongoing, recurring services…. really, the sky’s the limit and there’s a huge amount of flexibility in services-based business models!
Almost all services based businesses, however, have a website. At this point, it’s pretty much a requirement because hardly anyone (except your granny) is going old school and looking up businesses in a physical phone book. Yes, we still rely on word of mouth and recommendations from our friends and family, but the trend is increasingly to connect with businesses online. More often than not, we check out a business’ website and then get in touch if we want to work with them.
But having a website doesn’t guarantee that potential clients and customers will find out about your business- far from it, in fact. All websites are not created equally! Different types of websites work in different ways. The requirements and strategy for a services-based business website is going to be totally different from a e-commerce shop or website that sells digital/physical products. Not only will the look & feel of these websites be different, so too will the SEO strategy and goals.
SEO can act as the perfect bridge between a website (think: business) and an online audience (think: future clients/customers). It’s the pathway that warms up a potential client to inquire about your service and ultimately book you out.
You already know that I’m a firm believer that every services based business needs and SEO strategy and beyond that, I know that SEO can directly drive leads and grow your business. SEO will help grow your website but it also connects you to a much wider online audience who can potentially become paying clients and customers. Which, if you’re running a services based business, is the ultimate goal!
In this blog post, I’m going to show you exactly how SEO can drive leads for your services-based business. Whether your website is on Squarespace or another platform, the goals and outcome will be the same.
Remember that SEO is an art, not a science. There’s so much to learn about Squarespace SEO which is why I have written about it a lot - it’s the most popular topic on my blog by far. Check out my Squarespace SEO page for more resources, blog posts & video tutorials and get your copy of my Squarespace SEO Checklist below for free!
SQUARESPACE SEO SERIES
This article is part of my series on Squarespace SEO. I have so many tips to share on the subject that it would have been crazy to put it all in one article! There are many misconceptions about Squarespace SEO which is why I've dedicate so many posts to this topic. Enjoy!
Click to view all posts in the Squarespace SEO Series
Visit my Squarespace SEO page for lots more resources.
Once you’ve settled on an SEO strategy for your services-based business website, there’s no doubt that you will benefit from greater traffic, increased exposure to your ideal audience and an up-tick in business leads.
And more leads means more booked services and happy clients. That’s a win for everyone!
Let’s take a look, shall we?
SEO leads to sales
Businesses are always looking to grow - whether that’s increased revenue, serving more clients, increasing their customer base, or adding new income streams, a business is forever evolving and trying to reach new milestones.
As a services-based business, your goal is to book more of your services and work with more of your ideal clients.
But sadly, clients don’t just pop out of thin air - nope, you’ve got to either go out and find them OR do everything you can to make sure that they find you!
Finding these potential clients online means that you’re able to generate leads for your business and ultimately convert those people/leads into booked services.
Your website is HUGELY valuable here because it’s basically your online home base, the digital centre of your business. It’s how many potential clients will fidn you and learn about your & your services/offerings.
WEBSITE > ONLINE BUSINESS >SALES OF YOUR SERVICES
If you haven’t already, be sure to read up about why an SEO strategy is so important for services-based businesses and once you’ve got that covered, we’re ready to talk about how you can use SEO to generate more leads online. There’s no doubt about it, SEO is one of the most important online marketing tactics because it has real impact on generating business leads.
SEO is all about connecting the content of your website with people who are making online searches. In order to leverage SEO and turn all that new traffic into business leads, we have to get strategic.
There are a few real ways we can use SEO to drive new leads for our services-based business so let’s take a look at those now.
Website copy that speaks directly to you ideal audience & search engines
Take a moment to look at the copy or written text on your website and evaluate whether (or not) it speaks directly to your ideal audience. Every person who visits your website is a potential client and when they land on your site, you want to make sure they know they’re in exactly the right place. Because if they know that your services are right for them and they see the value communicated through your services offerings, they will be way more likely to book a discovery call or services package.
Think about the copy of your website - how can you strategically use language, words, phrases, tone, etc. to connect on a deeper lever with your audience?
Review key pages on your website such as the Home page, About page, Services page, Contact page, etc. and if needed, spend a few hours re-writing the copy to speak directly to your ideal audience.
Consider things like:
Headers (h1, h2, h3)
Images, photos, graphics, videos, etc.
The goal here is to have website copy that KEYWORD RICH so that real people who end up on your website are totally convinced that your services are the solution to their problems or that you offer exactly what they need/want.
Strong website copy also has huge benefits to search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. Remember, search engines crawl and index the content of every page of your website and as they scan the text & images, they’re looking for keywords so that they can add you to their databases. As you refine your website copy to include keywords strategically and have friendlier formatting, you’re giving these search engines more to work with and as a result, it’s more likely that you will rank higher in search results.
Either way, great website copy helps convey your offerings to both search engines and real people and from here, you can use clear language to direct these people on next steps - sign up, book a free discovery call, purchase a services package, etc.
Create quality content
While we’re on the topic of quality website content, let’s take it a step further and talk about how beneficial it is for both search engines and your ideal audience (who represents potential clients).
The biggest focus here is on blogging but video and even social media can be super helpful too.
I’m a firm believer that every website needs a blog because it’s a built-in platform to create even more high-quality, valuable content that promotes and sells your services to your ideal audience, beyond simply the pages of your website.
There’s enormous value in blogging because every post can be indexed by search engines, giving you more opportunities to target keywords and attract a wider audience online by showing up in search results.
Use these blog posts as a way to lead into and show off your services. Blog posts let you:
Explain what you offer
Demonstrate the value of your services
Walk people through your services packages or the different types of offerings you have
Position yourself as an expert or industry leader
Participate in conversations about current events and how they relate to your services
And much more!
At the end of the day, your blog posts can lead back to your services and you always want to direct people to your services page or specific packages. Use clear language and direct calls-to-action (CTA)s such as “book a discovery call”, “purchase a services package now”, or “get in touch to discuss how this can work for your business” - whatever!
Basically what we’re doing on the SEO front is creating blog posts that attract our ideal audience to our website and then using that blog content to show off our services. This generate leads for our business directly within the blog post.
It’s a similar process for video content (e.g., Youtube videos) and social media - create content for those platforms that directly promotes your services and instructs people to click through to your services page to learn more and book out your services.
Get featured by other online publications
A crazy-beneficial but slightly more advanced SEO strategy is link building, which is all about getting other websites to link back to your website, thus creating something called “back-links”. There are so many benefits of backlinks for SEO but one of the biggest selling points is that you can use all that new traffic to send people back to your website and then promote your services to drive new leads. When these backlinks come from websites with similar audiences as yours, you are extending your reach and putting yourself in front of people who are already more likely to be interested in what you have to offer.
There are many ways you can get featured by other online publications and earn backlinks to your site. Here are a few ideas:
Write articles for other websites/online publications/blogs
Get featured on an industry website
Contribute to a media site like the Huffington Post, Inc, Business Insider, Tech Crunch, etc.
The goal here to either get featured in an article that someone else writes for another online publication, OR create your own article/blog post that you write for another online publication.
You could contribute a quote, be featured as a guest expert, participate in a roundup, whatever.
Or, you could write a valuable article/blog post that is in someway related to the services that you offer.
Readers may then click through to your website and from there, you can begin the lead generating process and promote your services.
The great thing about this is that the SEO benefits continue for a long time, as long as the online feature/link is live. For example, a few years ago I wrote several articles for Small Business BC and I ended up booking 2 clients who found me from those links… and the site continues to send traffic my way, even years later!
Every services-based business website needs an SEO strategy because it’s a tried & true way to generate more leads. SEO is all about getting your website in front of the right people online. You must create quality content that speaks directly to your ideal audience and communicates the value of your services/business offerings. Equally important is to get that website content indexed by search engines so that they can serve it up in online searches - thus connecting your website content to a wider online audience.
Spending time on SEO always pays off, there are no downsides. Once you start learning about and mastering Squarespace SEO, you will see an increase in website traffic. This will ultimately help you grow your website faster, create more business opportunities, have better positioning online, and a whole load of other benefits. Start small and build as you go!
Speaking from my own experience, I saw major gains growing my website and business once I began focusing on SEO. I created quality content that served my ideal audience (like this blog post that you’re reading!), made sure that all my Squarespace settings were properly filled out, got all the tech right on the back end of my site, and started link building. These results didn’t happen over night but man, they have for sure paid off. The same thing can happen to you too!
Now it’s your turn to tell me, are you a services-based business? Do you have an SEO strategy? How do you use SEO to generate business leads right now and what are you going to try out next? Is there anything your’e still learning about? I’d love to know so leave me a note in the comments below!
No matter what type of Squarespace website you have, you can start working on an SEO strategy today. There are no downsides, only benefits. I encourage you to start where you are and work on improving your Squarespace website’s SEO a little bit at a time, you’ve got this!
If you want more SEO goodness, be sure to check out my Squarespace SEO page for all resources on the topic.
You can also sign up for my newsletter (right here or below), where I often share Squarespace SEO tips, tricks and high-quality exclusive content. I send out emails to my list every week and while I don’t talk about SEO every time, I can guarantee that you’ll still find the newsletter topics interesting, entertaining and worth your time.
Finally, shameless plug : hit me up with any specific questions you have about Squarespace SEO and your website because I’m your girl. You can reach out to me directly if you’re interested in working together on your website and we can talk about whether or not you would be a good fit for my Squarespace SEO Audit & Consulting sessions and ongoing services. I can’t take on every request to do SEO consulting but I do pick a few websites and businesses to work with every month and I’d love for you to be one of them.
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