Creating interesting, engaging content, that is optimized for SEO is essential for any small business especially an agency site where many times consumers are looking for immediate needs or information to help them navigate a complex insurance landscape. The concept of great website content ushers forth all sorts of descriptive phrases like useful, engaging, easy to find, readable, motivating, etc… but those are lost if the meat and potatoes (so to speak) are weak. By that we mean that the content you offer is your average, run-of-the-mill information that your competitor down the street is producing.
One thing agreed upon by most is that content must convey a great message, and deliver something that moves readers to, in return, take some type of positive action. What it boils down to is selling without all the sales talk and transforming your business into a trusted source of information. Brands and agencies that customers trust typically leads to more sales and referral business.
How to Establish Trust
The insurance business deals with some intimate aspects of life, such as personal assets, health, and death. Not surprisingly, consumers seek the anonymity of the internet when researching insurance products. Catching their attention during their research requires gaining their trust through content that gives them usable data for making an insurance decision. Connecting that great content that you produce with website optimization tactics will help you get more organic traffic to your site also.
Look at it this way, if an insurance shopper is researching life insurance products, and they happen to fall on your site from a quick online search, wouldn’t you rather serve them with helpful information and get them to submit a quote request to through your site? Of course you want that! However, if the content on your site is bleak, you may be pushing these potential clients to your competition down the street.
Being seen as “the” authoritative voice in any space typically takes years to develop. It’s the constant and consistent display of knowledge, being in the right place, and of course accuracy with respect to the topic at hand. Think of your site as a tool for which to service your clients. If you just produce “general” content, then you’re going to get a general audience but if you specialize in one insurance product or know more than the average agent on a particular vertical like motorcycle insurance or commercial property lines, then you should start producing content within your breadth of knowledge. Consumers visiting your site will appreciate your detail and authority.
Great Blog Structuring
According to Buffer, several key components go into great blog:
- Use dual-purpose headlines that rank highly and capture readers’ attention. Keep headlines at six words, give or take, since people tend to read the first and last three words of a title. (The trick here is to be natural and not “stuff” keywords about your business into any content. Just create natural descriptions.)
- Starting with a story relating to both the blog topic and to readers makes dry, boring content more appealing by drawing in people.
- Incorporate relevant images, which, when placed correctly, make opening paragraphs seem shorter and more easily digestible.
- Mimic dual purposing in headlines in subheadings, using them to highlight the important concepts within the blog for both readers and search engines.
- Consider article words counts, but, in the end, the best rule is to use only as many words as needed to say what needs to be said in a graceful, engaging manner.
- Use a memorable turn of phrase within content. Such soundbites Tweet well and remain in readers’ memories for future reference.
- Incorporate several calls to action in a blog post, in various formats, such as sidebars and links embedded in the text of the blog.
- Check, and double-check all spelling and grammar. Proofreading matters.
Unfortunately, creating a valuable blog is not as easy as finding a decent writer and posting their work online. Good writing and unimpeachable information count for a lot in website credibility. However, apps and site features also play a role in attracting attention. Consider creating your own or working with third-party providers and businesses that can add value to your site and your viewers.
Here are some samples of tools and content to consider engaging your viewers.
- Rate calculators
- White papers
- A site wide search box
- Calendars listing upcoming events (seminars, community functions, etc.)
- Social media links
- A Who’s Who of agents
Optimization keeps traffic flowing into a site. However, it goes beyond just readership numbers. Optimization creates the potential of gathering leads that may convert into sales.
- 55 character long headlines appear in their entirety in search results
- Search engines use subheadings to gather data on content
- Subheadings that include keywords provide better SEO results
The science behind the content brings traffic to the site, and artful incorporation of such elements keeps people reading. Just keep in mind that without a dependable, fast web hosting service and a good content management system, no amount of optimization will achieve very much, as revealed by the use of web analytics.
Use Google Tools
High-ranking search results are the aim of internet marketing. Google’s Webmaster Tools help achieve great rankings. Better yet, the tools are free, and provide various ways to monitor website performance. The tools check sites for any potential Google violation issues. Beyond that, Google makes the tools approachable for even website neophytes by explaining the how’s and what’s of search traffic, optimization, and search results.
With a basic understanding of SEO, Google analytics data on site performance (including visitor counts and site use) reveals how different marketing efforts perform and foster improvement in ROI by showing what methods bring in little or no business, and which succeed. It gives the information needed to figure out why a site underperforms (or, perhaps, why it does so well).
Using Google Analytics entails incorporating a small piece of code into the code of every site page. That code enables Google to send information on site visitors to a Google account:
- Geographical location of visitors
- Search terms that brought in visitors
- Traffic sources (referrals, searches, etc.)
- Visitors incoming from other sites
Using the analytic data requires practice, and the learning curve is not too steep. In addition, the information is accessible through automatic email reports, a Google account, and even from mobile devices. It helps identify where content fails, and why.
The result of great insurance content is both lead generation and conversion of leads to sales. An added bonus is retaining existing clients who feel valued because of the quality content made available to them.