How To Drive Traffic To Your Website
By: Allie Viau
When it comes to your agency’s website, the “if you build it, they will come” optimism simply does not apply. Unless you work hard to market your site and entice online visitors, chances are you will not find the reach you are hoping for.
So, how can your agency drive traffic to your website? While paid advertisements are always an option, many agents today do not realize the true value of organic, or unpaid, marketing. Inbound marketing strategies such as search engine optimization (SEO), social media, blogging, and others all work together to market in a way that is attractive to your audience, not disruptive.
Independent insurance agencies that adopt a holistic inbound marketing strategy can achieve increased traffic, among other benefits. In order to see the maximum results from these efforts, the strategy needs to be an agency-wide initiative. Each and every team member should be on board and contributing. By doing so, your agency can leverage inbound marketing to create new customer opportunities, improve client retention, and increase the number of referrals your agency receives.
So, how can you use inbound marketing, specifically SEO, social media, blogs, and press releases to drive traffic to your website?
Search Engine Optimization
SEO is the process of improving and promoting a website in order to increase web traffic received via search engines. Since between 50 and 60-percent of web traffic is driven by search engines today, it is crucial to make sure that your agency is following up to date SEO best practices (which are, unfortunately, changing constantly). Today, search engine optimization is not just about pleasing search engines, but web visitors as well. By working to “optimize” your site, you will help drive traffic to your website over time since you are making it easier for users to find you through online search.
Since the insurance industry is one of the most competitive in terms of search traffic, if your agency is not on board with SEO yet, you will have a difficult time competing in the future. Not only will SEO help bring in more traffic, but it can bring in higher quality traffic. Studies show that on average, SEO leads have a 14.6% sales close rate. This blows away the 1.7% close rate for outbound leads such as print ads, direct mailing, etc.
As a local agency, one great benefit of social media is to differentiate your agency from its competitors, especially from the major carriers, and driving traffic to your site instead of theirs. For example, by engaging with customers and prospects through social media, your agency can interact with consumers on a more personal, human level. By sharing information about your agency, products, and brand via social media, you can build long-term customers and also drive traffic to your site. Everyone you connect with on social media has easy access to your site to learn more about your products, fill out a quote form, or give your agency a call.
Modern consumers now consider user-generated content, such as reviews or testimonials, to be more reliable than advertisements or other forms of content. This user-generated content is what social media sites are made of. Taking advantage of these platforms can result in increased opportunities, referrals, and in turn, traffic.
Still don’t believe in the business powers of social media? 80% of Facebook users prefer to connect with brands on Facebook, and 50% of twitter users say they are more likely to become a customer of a business that they follow.
More than half of consumers state that blogs impact their purchase decisions. What does this mean for agencies? Your prospects and customers are using blogs to find information, so if you are not blogging, you are missing out. Maintaining a blog that contains relevant, unique, and compelling content is one of the best ways to drive traffic to your agency’s website. Regular blogging can improve your SEO, since it works to develop the credibility and reliability of your site in the eyes of the search engines. And, search engines are not the only ones to correlate blogging with credibility. Studies have shown that blogs are considered to be more trustworthy than Google+, online forums, online magazines, branded sites, Pinterest, and Twitter.
Improving your SEO will indirectly increase your site traffic, but blogging also provides significant direct traffic to your website. Businesses that blog 20 times per month have 5 times more traffic than those that do not. Blogging about your insurance products, your local community, your team members, and other relevant topics will increase your agency’s reach and drive more people to your site.
Customers are looking online for product and company information more than ever. However, it is not enough to simply have a website. Insurance agencies that work together as a team to implement an integrated inbound marketing strategy will be more successful in terms of traffic, retention, opportunities, and referrals than agencies that do not.
About The Author
Allie Viau is an Inbound Marketing Specialist at Astonish. She creates a variety of content including website landing pages, blogs, and press releases. Allie is passionate about helping small businesses build their brand equity online through quality content and other inbound marketing strategies. She spends her free time baking, painting, and traveling as much as possible.