To most people ROI is an acronym for Return on Investment. According to Wikipedia ROI can also mean Region of Interest or Republic of Ireland. But I’d like to introduce a whole new meaning to ROI that I think is more relevant for search engine marketing: Return on Ignorance.
Most often marketers measure their marketing activities using Return on Investment. That’s fine when it comes to many kinds of marketing but it may not (always) be the best way to measure your search engine marketing effectiveness.
Unlike most “display marketing” (here used in the broadest possible sense) search “ads” (organic or paid) only appear if someone is actually searching – but when they do that (and they do), they WILL find something and click it. If you are not there – in the top results of relevant searches – your prospects will just find someone else and possible buy from them instead of you.
If you ignore the fact that your target audience do search in search engines and that you need to be there – in the top spot results, you loose business. It’s that simple!
You can research what kind of keywords your target groups use in search engines when they search for you, your products and services. You can also research how many times each keyword is searched for. For each keyword you can test the conversions and calculate the value of search result clicks. The total of that is what you could earn from search engine marketing with perfect a visibility.
Next you should look at how much traffic – and business, you get from your keywords every month. The difference between this – and the total calculated possible revenues from all the keywords you found in your research is your ROI: Return On Ignorance!
OK, I know it may be cruel to call it “Return On Ignorance” – “Ignorance” … Many of you are probably doing a lot to reach the top of search result pages for all your keywords. But maybe you could do more and maybe your boss needs to understand why. And this is where ROI – Return On Ignorance, comes in handy.
Show your boss how much you revenue from search today – with the limited of resources he allows you to spend on it. Then show him how much more you could make if you spend a little more. Show him the Return On Ignorance.
Even if you don’t have a boss that don’t understand the value of search engine marketing calculating your Return On Ignorance may be a great motivator for yourself.