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Why don’t you value the website searcher?

I’ve written before about how most marketers are missing the boat by ignoring people who search on their own website. Most marketers wouldn’t dare ignoring people who search on Google, but once they come to your site, you ignore them.

I say that you ignore them because most marketers have no team (or even a person) working on website search, even though they have people devoted to search marketing.

If you need motivation, try thinking about who your website searchers are. They somehow found your site. They navigated around. But they didn’t find what they were looking for.

So people in this situation are faced with a few choices:

  • Keep navigating around. Perhaps some will do this, but everyone eventually loses patience when they still can’t find what they are looking for, so they leave to do something else.
  • Go to Google and search the entire web. Many people will do this. In fact, the people who do this are the ones who really don’t care about where they find the answer. As long as they get their question answered, they are fine. This is probably the majority of people.
  • They search on your website using your little search box. Only some people will do this. Who do you think they are? They are the people who really want to find the answer from you. They are existing customers. They are people who are brand loyal. They are people who have check everyone else out and want you, but they have one more question–one only you can answer.

Why would you ignore these people? They are the most likely to buy from you. And if the website search results aren’t good, you are telling them to go away. And they will.

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Mike Moran

Mike Moran is an expert in digital marketing, search technology, social media, text analytics, web personalization, and web metrics, who, as a Certified Speaking Professional, regularly makes speaking appearances. Mike’s previous appearances include keynote speaking appearances worldwide. Mike serves as a senior strategist for Converseon, an AI powered consumer intelligence technology and consulting firm. He is also a senior strategist for SoloSegment, a marketing automation software solutions and services firm. Mike also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO. Mike spent 30 years at IBM, rising to Distinguished Engineer, an executive-level technical position. Mike held various roles in his IBM career, including eight years at IBM’s customer-facing website, ibm.com, most recently as the Manager of ibm.com Web Experience, where he led 65 information architects, web designers, webmasters, programmers, and technical architects around the world. Mike's newest book is Outside-In Marketing with world-renowned author James Mathewson. He is co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc. (with fellow search marketing expert Bill Hunt), now in its Third Edition. Mike is also the author of the acclaimed internet marketing book, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules, named one of best business books of 2007 by the Miami Herald. Mike founded and writes for Biznology® and writes regularly for other blogs. In addition to Mike’s broad technical background, he holds an Advanced Certificate in Market Management Practice from the Royal UK Charter Institute of Marketing and is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He also teaches at Rutgers Business School. He is a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research. Mike worked at ibm.com from 1998 through 2006, pioneering IBM’s successful search marketing program. IBM’s website of over two million pages was a classic “big company” website that has traditionally been difficult to optimize for search marketing. Mike, working with Bill Hunt, developed a strategy for search engine marketing that works for any business, large or small. Moran and Hunt spearheaded IBM’s content improvement that has resulted in dramatic gains in traffic from Google and other internet portals.

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