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The Real Goal of Search Marketing

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Great post by Melissa Burdon at grokdotcom on the real goal of search marketing—conversions. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know how much I agree.

Melissa makes exactly the right points. Your goal is to sell stuff, not to get high search rankings. Obviously, if you can get more traffic with same conversion rate, then great. But the relationship between rankings, traffic, conversion rate, and conversions is fluid.

You might get lower rankings for more popular keywords and get more traffic with the same conversion rate and therefore more conversions. Which would be good. Hmmm…lower rankings are good? Yes, they can be.

Or you might get lower rankings for less popular keywords and get lower traffic but have a higher conversion rate (because that keyword is a perfect match for your target market) and get higher conversions. Which would be good. Hmmmm…lower rankings and lower traffic are good? Yes, they can be.

As my Little League coach used to tell me, "Keep your eye on the ball." (I still couldn’t hit the ball, but oh well.) Your focus should be on conversions, not conversion rate or traffic or rankings. Even better, your focus should be on Lifetime Value.

If you’re looking for a search marketing book that helps you keep your eye on the ball, then check out ours. We make sure that you focus on sales first (which means converting your customers) and search stuff second. Anytime you think search first you end up doing the wrong thing—either spamming the search engines or annoying your customers or both.

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