How to Engage, Convert, and Retain Visitors to Your Website in 2012

The first month of the year is drawing to a close, but we are still curious to hear what others are saying about the state of the web in 2012. While technology may seem like it moves at the speed of light, we can count on Internet sales and marketing to adapt as needed. As search engine marketing experts are supercharging visitor engagement though social media and content marketing, website owners are taking note and making big changes. This is the year in which quality content is necessary for not only search engine optimization, but visitor engagement, conversion, and retention as well.

Keyword-Stuffing No Longer Works

A few years ago, it was quite easy for your website to secure a top ranking in search engines and drive a lot of traffic just by writing content loaded with keywords. Website content authors took advantage of this and would seize every opportunity to insert a keyword here and there to ensure prime real estate in Google’s search results. However, instead of finding the answer or solution to your search query, oftentimes what was returned to you was empty, meaningless content.

Take, for example, the following sentence: “We are an Indianapolis company located in Indianapolis, which is in the central part of Indiana, which is where many other Indianapolis companies reside.”

Although this is a bit of an exaggeration, it is obvious that this sentence was written to merely drive traffic and rank high in search results. Many websites might have performed well with this optimization trickery, but it has proven to be an ineffective and insincere method. Now that our search engines have gotten smarter and have upgraded their algorithms to sniff out lousy websites, website content authors can no longer rely on keywords.

Don’t get me wrong, though: keywords still are an important factor in the SEO equation. You still need to focus on strong keywords and terms to acquire new visitors to your website. However, now you really need to strategize about how your website content is going to engage, convert, and retain these visitors.

Engage Your Visitors

Your content should speak to the needs of your target audience and present solutions to their problems. Likewise, it should also entice your visitor to want to learn more about your company, products, and services. To take your engagement to the next level, set up a social media and email marketing strategy that will allow you to interact with your visitors on a more authentic level.

Convert Your Prospects

If you write content without regard to what it is your visitors are looking for, then what’s the point? It’s like throwing bait into a lake without putting it on a hook. By focusing on quality content, you create more opportunities to engage and earn the respect, trust, and (hopefully) the desire of those who visit your website. And when you have the respect, trust, and desire of your visitors, you are more likely to turn that opportunity into a golden one and, more importantly, that prospect into a loyal customer.

Retain Your Customers

It is important to plan to update your website content accordingly to keep it fresh and relevant not only in the search engines’ indexes, but in your visitors’ minds as well. By getting your visitor to come back to your website on a consistent basis, you know that your company will come to mind whenever they have a need for your products or services, regardless of search engine rank. Likewise, make sure the social media and email marketing strategies you have in place engage all of your visitors.

How will you engage, convert, and retain your website visitors this year? Please share your thoughts with us – we welcome the discussion!