How I Got 10 Extra Leads a Day From Existing SEO Traffic with 10 Minutes of Work

I am currently in the midst of one of the longest spanning and poorest planned redesigns I can remember here at Jeffalytics. 6 months ago I announced that I would be merging Knowledge Land into Jeffalytics, and that it would all culminate in a website redesign.

While the ideas of launching a new design started to show promise early in May, I didn’t really make much progress for several months after the announcement. I will blame my digital nomad status for this one, as I haven’t been at the same place for more than a few nights at a time in months.

Redesigns can drag on for years if you aren’t careful. Finally, I got fed up with the lack of progress and launched the new site 8 days ago as a work in progress. Then I hit the road with limited Internet access and didn’t touch the website for those 8 days.

Basically I did everything that I tell my friends, family, neighbors and clients not to do. I launched a work in progress, and then I didn’t fix the things that were broken because I was traveling.

But something weird happened along the way.

How one 10-minute change to an existing piece of content has generated 10 leads a day

Campervan-1

I launched my new website, and then lived out of this van for the next 5 nights… not a good idea!

As I was driving a camper van through New Zealand, my email inbox became flooded with new email list subscribers each time I checked my mail.

Every time I checked my email, a new lead was coming in. They looked exactly like this:

Email Notifications LeadPages

At first I was flattered, but then I actually started to get annoyed. After collecting 77 email addresses in 8 days, I had to turn off notifications for new leads.

LeadPages Email Collected

So what the heck happened? How did I start generating so many leads from a piece of content that was almost two years old?

I made two simple changes that took less than 10 minutes to complete!

Upgrade your existing content, grow your email list faster

For years I have advocated an SEO strategy that doesn’t always fit with conventional wisdom. Instead of focusing on ranking for new terms, I have recommended maximizing the value of your current SEO visitors.

My theory (which is backed by hard numbers from Google Analytics) is that it is much easier to monetize content that already ranks in Google and draws visitors, than it is to get new content to rank.

It’s obvious, really. If your content can drive visitors and consume the resources of your site, then it should also contribute to your economic engine. The simplest way to monetize search traffic is to use this content to grow your list.

You can do this through website pop-ups asking for email addresses (as I do here on Jeffalytics) or you can use lead magnets and content upgrades to get the job done (which I advocate and am working on doing at Jeffalytics).

The increase of leads I am seeing recently come from providing a content upgrade on a post that has been ranking well for the past several months.

Read my blog post about how to create a monthly report template, get a free download (with email address)

The post that is ranking well is a monthly report template. For anyone stuck doing reporting each month, I have created a template to make your life easier. This powerpoint template can be downloaded for free, but has always required a name and email address to download.

The blog post ranks well for broad keywords like “monthly report template” and several other variations of the keyword. It draws in hundreds of visitors each month and offers a free download.

However, due to the previous method of downloading the content, only a small percentage of visitors actually took the time to download the report. This was likely due to two reasons:

  1. I asked for too much information
  2. The signup process took too many steps

Two changes that generated a 50% opt in rate and 10 extra leads per day

One of the things I did during my redesign was move the monthly report template post over to Jeffalytics. While I was moving the template to the new location, I also decided to do two things to boost conversion rates.

The first thing I did was add a button for the template to the top and bottom of the page. When someone comes in from search, they can download the template immediately if interested.

Download Monthly Report Template

Or they can read the post and then download via a similar button at the bottom.

The previous download button was not nearly as user friendly or concise, but this one is dead simple.

The second change I made was implementing the entire download functionality within my page using LeadBoxes from LeadPages. This was so simple to put in place. Whenever a visitor clicks on the red button, the following pops up.

Leadbox Monthly Report

Simple, yet extremely effective.

50% of visitors who see this box will give their name and email address.

Monthly Report Template

Of the 393 visits and 316 unique pageviews who have seen this page (50/day), 156 have looked at the pop up form and 77 of those have downloaded the template.

That is a lead conversion rate of SEO traffic of 19.6%!

It might not sound like much, but I am absolutely amazed at how this 10 minute change has generated such fantastic results.

Upgrade all of your current articles, generate thousands of additional leads each month!

Now that this simple change has been proven to draw big results, I have started the process of converting all of my other high ranking articles to the new system. If the article has an existing content upgrade, then it gets moved to LeadPages. If there is no upgrade, then I need to work on a new asset.

In 8 days, one article is drawing in 77 leads at a 20% conversion rate. This site gets over 10,000 visitors a month from organic search alone. If implemented with care, I could generate an extra 1,000 to 2,000 extra opt ins a month using the same technique.

Combine this with other list generating techniques that are already in place, and we are talking about massive growth.

To give you an idea of scale, I usually generate about 100 email opt-ins a month from the site. This simple change could result in a 10-20x increase.

List building starts with your existing SEO successes

SEO traffic is pointless if you don’t get the visitor to take the next step. Without conversion, visitors are just consuming resources from your site. Content upgrades using LeadBoxes are a proven way to increase your opt-ins, and it doesn’t take very long to implement.

So if you want to get serious about growing your list, invest 10 minutes of your time to conduct this experiment on your own site. I would love to hear how it goes!

About the Author

Jeff Sauer is an independent Digital Marketing Consultant, Speaker and Teacher based out of a suitcase somewhere in the world. Formerly of Minneapolis, MN and San Francisco, CA.

  • Paul Koks

    Hi Jeff, that’s a great conversion rate indeed. 🙂 Two questions 1) Do you use (or is it at least possible to use) double opt in when buiding your list via leadpages? 2) What happens if someone downloads two content upgrades on two different pages with the same email address (I guess nothing special, just wondering)? I also consider to sign up there, so great to read your story! Thanks, Paul

    • Hey Paul – I believe that the only option is double-opt in. When someone fills out the form and it hits the Mailchimp API, they are sent an email to opt in fully.

      If someone downloads two upgrades and you have a 1-dimensional list, then they just are 1 opt in to your list. If you segment or have campaigns for each lead magnet, then you should be able to put them in different email streams. This is not super easy to do with Mailchimp, though. You might need something more powerful if you want to have good segmentation. I am considering upgrading/making some changes for this very reason.

      • Paul Koks

        Hey Jeff, thank you for your feedback. Great to here, since I prefer to stay with double opt-in now and build a high-quality list. Single opt-in might lead to a bigger list in less amount of time. However, also Mailchimp is not “happy” with this and then I should consider a different provider.

        For now it works for me to use one list. But you are right, maybe it’s worth it to consider an upgrade/change in the future for segmentation purposes.

        Thanks again,
        Paul

    • Hey Paul! I started out my content upgrade system using the single opt-in process with LeadPages & Mailchimp. You control that from your email provider. But, I’m finding my list engagement to be lower than I’d like, so I’m testing double opt-in to see if that improves engagement despite potentially losing subs through the confirmation process.

  • I can’t agree more with this approach; I built my blog with the content upgrade plan in place, and while I can’t boast the traffic numbers for total number of leads, it’s so gratifying to see upgrades I created six months ago still creating value for people every day!