2017 has already finished. Most of the entrepreneurs and business owners are reviewing the activities carried out during the year and evaluating the results and the income generated. At the same time, it is important to move towards 2018 and determine new goals. In many cases, however, the objectives set for the following year are not chosen correctly. How is it possible to decide, real and adequate goals? Let’s find out together:
Guessing is not an option
How do you set the profit target to be achieved in 2018? Most companies simply increase by a certain percentage the numbers reached in 2017. However, this route is certainly not the best. Why?
The first reason is undoubtedly the lack of connection between the marketing plan and the budget allocated to it:
Do you have enough leads that generate additional profit?
To reach the profit targets it’s essential to get new leads, qualified users and potential customers:
is there enough budget to generate them?
In many cases the answer is “no” or “I do not know”, this is not a good way to start the year. The awareness of the company’s internal resources for the marketing side is fundamental, as it is fundamental to understand how much budget it takes to generate an additional million of profit. Let’s see together the steps to align the 2018 objectives with the marketing resources.
DO NOT START FROM THE OBJECTIVE
Having high goals for the coming year is good for the spirit, but it is essential to analyse the past year. The first thing to do is to study the evolution of the marketing strategy in 2017 and the conversion funnel.
- How was it set at the beginning of the year?
- What is it like today?
- How many users land to your site?
- How many of these visitors turn into leads?
- How many of these leads turn into qualified leads?
- How many opportunities does the funnel bring?
- How many of these users turns into customers?
- How much revenue generate each of these new customers?
- How long does the process last for?
These numbers are essential for the creation of a new marketing strategy and for setting the 2018 targets. How do you get new leads? There are different ways, but we are going to analyse a specific one: search engine optimisation.
SEO AS THE TOOL TO REACH YOUR MARKETING GOALS
Is it still worth spending time to implement search engine optimization strategies? The answer is yes and this why: 9 out of 10 users do not go further than the first page. Without implement the SEO best practices you very probably won’t appear in the first search results, which means you won’t be competitive.
What changes will we see then in 2018? What are the SEO trends to keep under control?
The habits of online users have changed, and this also applies to searches; images are a valid substitute for the written word as well as endless source of ideas and suggestions. This is probably why Bing decided to improve his image research; when we talked about the topic we knew that there was ample room for improvement but given the unstoppable increase of visual content there seems to be no doubt that image research will be one of the SEO trends for 2018.
And what about the vocal search? With smartphones and software that use artificial intelligence systems, it will be difficult not to witness bespoke strategies and ideas.
Search engines have learned over time to reward those who have immediately opted for responsive technologies and it seems that this will remain a ranking criterion with a considerable weight.
Increasingly faster sites
Web-sites compete with each other to gain first the attention and then the trust of the users. This is why the motto “the faster wins” seems to be an SEO trend, far from being abandoned. Users often give less than 3 seconds of time to a site to open up before getting tired and opting for the next one.
New backlink strategies
Finally, many analysts agree that the backlink strategies will no longer be the same from next year. Search engines are able to decide a website ranking, based on the reputation of the site or company on other channels (for example social media).