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Are Conversions the job for the SEO?

Should conversions be used as a metric to measure sucess?

     
2:24 pm on Sep 3, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I remember reading a little bit about this subject in 2009. But, I'm still unclear on it. Should conversions be considered the job of the seo?

I understand conversions play a definitive role in seo strategy. You want to drive qualified leads to complete specific actions. So, I guess it would depend on what you consider a conversion.

So, where does the job of the seo end with respect to the conversion cycle? If the seo optimizes the site and drives in targeted traffic and the visitor completes an initial action like a call or email submit, but can't be closed by the client, would that be considered a short coming on the seo side?

I'm wondering, because with the underemphasis on rankings in some cases, I know that conversions are essential, but is there a point where it leaves the realm of seo and falls into the lap of another dept to "close the deal"?

I'd be interested in hearing anyone's thoughts.
2:44 pm on Sept 3, 2010 (gmt 0)

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IMHO, the whole SEO & conversion issue breaks down like this.
SEO
Essentially drive or bring traffic to the site.
That's the essence of SEO.

Conversion
This is the responsibility of the Site Marketing Director & the company for whom the SEO is being done.

To me, it's that short simple and sweet.
12:23 pm on Sept 4, 2010 (gmt 0)

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If you have extremely delineated job descriptions, then conversion is outside the scope of the SEO.
The SEO brings people to the site from the search engines, thats it.
However most people have a much broader job description and will be responsible for more than this - but conversion will still not be a task that falls under their 'SEO' tasks.
3:54 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Not all visitors convert equally and bringing the right visitors to a site from the search engines can therefore have significant impact on conversions.

A good SEO-er will therefore not only just try to target a set of keywords, but especially those keywords which have a higher chance to convert. For example the keyword combination "free widget" will convert worse on many sites than "widget shop", but the latter may be more difficult to SEO because of more competition.
3:59 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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We have multiple conversion types and methods:
phone call, email, mailform, e-shop purchase...

Notoriously difficult to keep track of.