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How to Get Your Boss Excited About SEO

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Published: October 22, 2014

Getting your boss excited about SEO (search engine optimization) may not be the hardest sell you’ve ever faced, but it’s probably not the easiest one either. The quicksilver nature of SEO is probably one of the biggest challenges you face in convincing your company’s senior management to invest in an organic SEO campaign; it’s hard for a casual observer to warm up to a concept that refuses to sit still long enough to be understood.

Google’s search ranking algorithm is a perfect case in point. This incredibly complex formula that determines how websites rank for specific search queries is composed of an estimated 232 factors that are updated, revised, and tweaked some 600 times a year.

Rather than risk getting bogged down trying to explain why the techniques you’re applying today are different from what you were doing yesterday, and may need to be changed again by tomorrow, treat your boss the same way you would a customer and focus on presenting benefits and opportunities.

Remind Him That Your Competitors are Investing in SEO
Smart businesspeople are usually attuned to competitive marketing activities, and your boss is probably no exception. Let the competition help you sell your company’s decision makers on the idea of investing in SEO.

If your competitors are beating your company up in the search rankings, sit your boss down and go over the Google search results together. Do a search query for each of your target keywords and translate the page positions into an estimate of the traffic your company is losing out on. According to a study by Chitika:

  • The first result on page one receives 32.5 percent of all traffic for that keyword
  • The second result receives 17.6 percent
  • The third result receives 11.4 percent
  • The fourth result receives 8.1 percent
  • The fifth result receives 6.1 percent
  • The sixth result receives 4.4 percent
  • The seventh result receives 3.5 percent
  • The eighth result receives 3.1 percent
  • The ninth result receives 2.6 percent
  • The tenth result receives 2.4 percent

On the other hand, if your competition isn’t dominating the search results, make the case for increasing your company’s SEO efforts to capture the top position. Show the potential traffic your website could be attracting with an effective campaign.

Talk About the Numbers
Speak the language of successful business managers everywhere – numbers that relate to revenue and return on investment.

Numbers like 80 percent of consumers conducting a search before making a purchase decision. More than 257 million searches being made very hour. And 70 percent of search clicks going to an organic result.

maximize your roi on seo campaigns

Present a broad estimate of the ROI potentials
Pick one of your target keywords and write down the number of estimated Google searches. Multiply that figure by the percentage of traffic attributed to the ranking position your campaign could reasonably be expected to achieve. Multiply that result by the average conversion rate of 3 percent. This gives you an idea of the number of conversions or sales that your company could reasonably expect. Multiply your estimated number of conversions by the amount of net profit you receive from an average sale to arrive at a rough estimate of the profit potential from this singe keyword for one month.

Perform this exercise for each of your target keywords. To arrive at a truer ROI estimate for your proposed campaign, add up the total profit potential numbers and subtract the direct costs of SEO campaign management.

While this simplified approach makes a lot of assumptions and is no guarantee of actual results, it will help you illustrate the potential revenue that your SEO campaign could deliver.