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Q: I want to increase our natural search rankings. Currently we spend £2,000 a month for sales leads with Google AdWords and would like to reduce this by increasing our natural search through SEO. How do we go about it?

Managing Director
Direct marketing company

A: The Story So Far

In the pursuit of more sales leads, MD Direct Marketing Company now sees a number of things quite clearly:

> his adword spend is going to keep rising and rising, and there’s nothing he can do about it, so he has to act.

> SEO, search engine optimisation, offers an alternative to continual higher advertising spending, so this avenue must be explored, as natural search is free.

> he’s not confident buying SEO services, as the contracts and proposals are written in a completely alien language he doesn’t understand, from people he has no previous experience with, around a topic he’s not familiar with.

So what does he do?

The Plan

We’re now at the point where we can implement an actual plan to reduce Google adword spend by increasing free search to win sales leads, and also to improve sales conversion.

It’s being done on a consultancy-self-help-basis where MD Direct Marketing Company can:

> source and arrange the suppliers required to make the necessary changes to his website, eg copywriting, new web pages, graphics, flash animation, etc. He feels comfortable doing this as they’re reasonably known quantities that he’s bought before.

> join Google University to learn new the SEO skills. It’s time to roll up the sleeves and learn new skills. Google University is an excellent starting point for free search, and it’s free.

> implements a regular dialogue with an emarketing consultant. Paying for regular highly skilled advice is also something that MD Direct Marketing Company is comfortable with. And a series of mentoring meetings cost a lot less than buying a SEO campaign management programme.

Implementing the Plan

To learn the new SEO skills, MD Direct Marketing Company is setting aside time in the early morning to go to Google University.

He’s always been keen to learn new things if the knowledge will pay, and help him to run his business better. So it’s time for MD Direct Marketing Company to set the alarm clock an hour earlier for a month or two.

MD Direct Marketing Company also knows there are a dozen keywords that drive his business.

So he intends to convert his site into a knowledge hub for his business niche. This means writing lots of information around those keywords (in order to attract higher Google ranking), while offering his customers a more knowledgeable informed service.

Adding lots more pages around the twelve top keywords is a win/win, as it will bring more free search visitors.

Landing pages also need to be enhanced.

All the landing pages will have a brighter more graphic appeal, where the proposition can be clearly grasped in a couple of seconds.

And once these new landing pages are shown to make a difference (by converting more visitors to sales enquiries), he intends to upgrade to a more compelling flash animation style.

MD Direct Marketing Company also expects to spend more time analysing his web site traffic. Initially he’s going to continue with Google Analytics as it’s free, but he also sees that a more professional package might well be required some time in the near future. Clicktracks is a good example of a professional analytics package that is easy to understand.

A more professional web metrics package will allow for greater segmentation of visitor types. This means that instead of understanding the behaviour of all site visitors, he can gain a greater insight into the behaviour of the visitors who actually buy.

In other words, to win more buyers, you have to study actual buyers (the sales leads), and not the wannabees and tyre kickers. Pro web metrics will help him do this.

Last but not least, a weekly mentoring session with an emarketing consultant has been set up.

MD Direct Marketing Company feels confident he can take his company in new emarketing directions, but like most people would appreciate professional help from a trustworthy source, that can offer direction and advice, while costing far less than a full-on bought-in SEO campaign.


Google adword costs are spiralling so action has to be taken.

Deciding that NOW was the time to change was the biggest factor in the whole decision process.

A combination of a mentor-consultant and locally sourced suppliers was the most economic way forward.

MD Direct Marketing Company also joined Google University to learn the new skills. He’s an economics graduate so he doesn’t mind hitting the books for a while to learn new skills.

Improved landing pages are the first goal.

But the real goal is to make his site a genuine information hub for both his customers, and for the Google spider that decides how far up the search rankings he’ll go, and how much free natural search traffic he’ll be sent.

Reducing adword costs has become a priority, and MD Direct Marketing Company has a workable plan to do it.
© Studio Rossiter 2007

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