Checklist: High Quality Website
So what are the factors of high quality website?
It’s no secret that the Internet has become the first stop for consumers and businesses alike to search for insurance.
With the growing role of the Internet in insurance sales, we’ve also seen a rapid increase in the number of companies focusing on generating insurance leads that they turn around and sell to agents. While buying leads from these firms can be a viable option for some agents, the best Internet leads are the ones that you generate yourself.
By generating a lead directly from your website instead of buying it from a broker, you are reducing the chances that multiple agents are competing for that business. More importantly, because the lead completed a form on your website, that person already knows who you are and is expecting your call. These two factors dramatically increase your chances of making a sale with each lead.
So how do you generate your own Internet leads? In this e-book, we share strategies that agents like you are using to drive prospects to their website and convert them into leads. But before we begin, there are some things to consider:
1. Generating Internet Leads takes time
It may take months to see a return on your efforts. Traffic to your site will build slowly. You will need to monitor that traffic to learn from it and refine your efforts. This is not a quick fix.
2. Generating Internet Leads takes effort
If you want to generate leads online, it is going to require your continual effort. You should plan on setting aside a few hours a week to implement your Internet strategy or hire someone to help you. Once you get the knowledge required, things will speed up, but there are no shortcuts to online success.
3. If you follow these steps, you will be successful in generating Internet leads.
The process of generating Internet leads has been proven to work. However, few agents have the discipline and patience to follow through on their strategy.
4. The successful Internet agent has more income potential than a traditional agent.
Many of the limitations of traditional selling are completely removed online. You can come in contact with hundreds of people a day and effortlessly span the entire country. Tools are available to streamline and automate many of your routine processes, allowing you to focus on closing more deals. This means that you can make more money.
In the following pages, we’ve broken down the five steps to position your site for lead-generating success. For each step, we provide a checklist of the things you need to do. This is not an exhaustive list and the topics discussed here can get as complex as you want them to get.
Keep in mind that we’re offering a practical approach – our goal is not to explore the inner workings of search engines or to debate theory. The tactics and techniques described here, step by step, are proven to work. Follow them consistently and over time you will be successful.
It all comes down to trust. Regardless of how you sell insurance, you aren’t going to succeed unless your customers and prospects trust you.
How do you develop trust? By building relationships.
As an insurance agent you know the value of relationships. But, your website might be the closest your customers will ever get to you.
Does your website further your relationships?
Does it reflect your professionalism and knowledge?
Or, does it encourage your prospect to think of your site only as a place to “get a quote”?
Your website should communicate three straightforward ideas to your prospects:
To do this, you must have a quality website. If your website looks homemade, doesn’t work in all browsers, doesn’t load quickly, is outdated, or has poorly written content, it tells your visitors that you aren’t professional.
Nothing says unprofessional on the web like a broken, incomplete or confusing website. Your site MUST be a reflection of your professionalism.
So what are the factors of high quality website?
Additionally, there are several things that you should look for in your website
Once your site is live, you are going to want to know what’s going on with it.
Tracking and analytics software will tell you generally who is visiting your site, where they came from, and what pages they visited. This will allow you to track how your site is doing over time, letting you know such things as:
You can use this information to fine tune your site, remove bottlenecks, add content, and focus your visitors’ experience. By tracking where people come from, you can focus your efforts on what’s working.
Google provides a free analytics tool called Google Analytics. You integrate it into your site by adding a small script to on the Site Setting page (found under Manage Your Site), which allow Google Analytics to keep track of your site visitors.
To learn how to setup and use Google Analytics, visit their help site at https://support.google.com/analytics/?hl=en#topic=3544906
Now that your site is looking great and analytics are set up, you’re going to want some traffic. Search engines are a fantastic way to get people to your site. However, if you go to Google (or any other search engine) and type in “insurance agent,” your site isn’t anywhere to be found. Don’t panic! Through the process of search engine optimization (aka SEO), you can control your destiny.
SEO begins by figuring out what phrases you should focus on. The ideal target phrase is one that your customers are typing into search engines with some regularity, is directly relevant to what you sell and isn’t too competitive. With these three tests, we can quickly refine a list of potential keywords down to our best candidates.
SEO best practices help a website achieve the following:
Now take a look at these different keywords that might seem like a good target, but upon further analysis, aren’t:
Keyword: Insurance Agent
Keyword: Affordable Health Insurance
So What So what kind of phrases should you focus on?
Relevance = High – There is a very good chance that the person searching is someone looking to buy insurance where you sell. That means the phrase is specific to a type of insurance, specific need and geographic location.
Search Volume = Low to Moderate – The higher the volume, the more likely you are to find lots of competition. But if volume isn’t high enough, you are going to do lots of work for little to no results. We recommend looking for phrases that get 200 to 1000 searches per month.
Keep in mind that you are going to have better success, at least initially, targeting 5 phrases with 200 searches per month than you are a single more competitive phrase that gets 1000 searches per month.
You can find estimated search volume using Google’s keyword tool (search for keyword tool in Google to find it).
Competitiveness = Low – The less competitive, the better. A good indicator of competitiveness is to do a search for the phrase using the “allintitle:” modifier. Pages with the exact phrase in their title are likely optimized pages about the same topic that you are targeting. To do this, type allintitile: ”some target phrase” into Google.
Using this criteria, begin to brainstorm a list of potential keywords that are likely highly relevant to you and your business. Don’t be afraid to look at some competitor’s sites to see what keywords they are using in their title and h1 tags. Once you’ve created your list, run them through Google’s keyword tool to identify the 20 best candidates with decent search volume but aren’t too competitive (the keyword tool gives you an estimate but not exact values). Next, take your refined phrases list and do the allintitle search with them.
Finally, find the priority of the keywords using the formula:
"Priority =Search Volume2/Competitiveness"
This formula weights search volume and adjusts for competitiveness, finding the keyword phrases that are likely to give the best return on your effort.
Brainstorm a list of potential insurance-related keywords that your customers may search for. Use dictionary.com, Thesaurus.com, and acronymfinder.com to get ideas. Remember to add local qualifiers.
Identify 20 target relevant search phrases that have 300-1000 searches/month using Google Keyword Planner
Select top 10 phrases based on high traffic to competition ration, using formula (search volume)2/(# of all-in-title results)
Now that you have your list of target search phrases, the next step is to get them placed properly on your site. Before you put them in your copy, consider a few things.
This is where you can add a description to explain the task and to link to URLs if needed.
Once you’ve completed your on-site SEO, you need to build up your pages as the authoritative source on their respective topic.
You do this by getting other trusted and relevant pages to link to you. Search engines look at these inbound links as votes of confidence toward your content, and keep track of the keywords on the linking page as well as the “anchor text” (the text used in the link) to help determine keyword relevance of your page.
To be successful in search engine optimization, you need to put a plan in place to consistently develop links back to your site. This is an ongoing process that takes work. Avoid link-building schemes that automate this process as they can appear unnatural and fishy to search engines, putting your site at risk of getting black-listed. Instead, focus on getting links back to your site using the following strategies:
Once your listings are set up, use Moz's free local tool to check for accuracy, consistency, and completeness.
Collect Customer Reviews
With your listings complete, your next step is to get customers to add reviews to your profile. This helps you in a number of ways - search engines use reviews to determine both your ranking and the keywords they show you for, plus prospects are more likely to choose agents that have a large number of reviews.
Remember that your prospects aren't going to review you unless you ask them. You can get the process going by following these tips: