Lead Validation: The Secret To Successful SEO Campaigns

What you will learn: Why you are overestimating the results of your SEO campaign. Who should read this article: Company leadership, sales management and marketing management.

Don’t Be Misled by Lead Inflation

“Hello, ABC Corporation. How can I help you? “Um … I was calling my girlfriend. I think I got the wrong number.”
Do you know what most SEO companies call this conversation? A sales lead! Here’s another scenario. One of your customers uses Google search to get to your website. She uses your site’s contact page form to check the status of a pending order. Congratulations – your SEO campaign has delivered another sales lead!

The Massive Difference Between Inquiries and Leads

Typically, if SEO companies offer tracking, they track phone calls (example 1) and website form submissions (example 2), lump them together in a monthly report and call them leads. But as these real-world examples demonstrate, there is quite a difference between an inquiry and a lead. An inquiry could be a sales lead. It could also be a misdialed phone number, a customer service inquiry, a personal call, a sales inquiry or spam.

The Costly Damage of Mixing Leads and Inquiries

Unless your SEO company distinguishes sales leads from other types of inquiries, your monthly reports will lead you to believe your SEO campaign is reeling in far more sales leads than it actually is. By overestimating the performance of your SEO campaign in this way, three extremely bad things will happen to you:
  • First, you will continue or increase your investment in a campaign that is far less effective than you think.
  • Second, you will be unable to improve your campaign’s effectiveness because you have no idea which parts of it are generating the best return.
  • Third, the really great leads your SEO campaign generates will be lost in the shuffle, invisible to management until it is too late.

The Fix: Real-Time Lead Validation

Straight North recognized the significance of these problems and decided to do something about it. We implemented a system of real-time lead validation and reporting in order to:
  • Enable clients to understand exactly what our SEO campaigns are achieving.
  • Enable us to quickly and continually improve campaign effectiveness.
  • Draw attention to good leads through real time reporting so leadership and sales managers can take further action while those leads are still hot.
We accomplish this by listening to a recording of every phone inquiry and reading every website form submission generated by our SEO campaign. It’s time consuming and monotonous work, but the payoff is huge.

Remember, SEO Is Really about Sales

Businesses invest in SEO to generate sales leads or e-commerce revenue. Businesses do not invest in SEO to see inflated, undifferentiated campaign statistics. Lead validation and reporting give businesses quantitative, and perhaps more importantly, qualitative, data about their SEO leads. Clients are able to see not only how many leads we are generating for them, but also what their prospects are inquiring about. If a $1 million lead comes in, sales management can be aware of it almost instantly – and follow up accordingly. Sloppy SEO reporting is not only misleading, it allows great sales leads to slip through the cracks. Real-time lead validation and reporting are an extremely useful in helping sales managers monitor their very best leads.
Find out how Straight North validates leads and lets you know exactly how well your SEO campaign is performing Call us at 855-883-0011 or request a quote online.

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