The Value of an In-House SEO Team

Posted in Digital Marketing
at 2017.07.04

During the previous decade, SEO has morphed into a intricate field encroaching on UX, content marketing, and even internet development. At exactly the exact same time, a vast range of organizations are now running full drive on to the internet; yet they often fail to take into account the possibility of bringing an search engine optimization specialist in-house.

Based on conversations with coworkers, it really comes down to the fact that organizations lack commitment from the C-suite and/or proper resources to obtain the right candidate.

One then needs to beg the question: Is it worth bringing someone in?

I decided to reach out to several SEO leaders in the industry to receive their points of view, while carefully examining my previous experience.

I've had the privilege over the last decade to mainly work as an in-house SEO supervisor for several e-commerce organizations. Even early on in my career I recognized that the value of SEO to the whole organization — from a merchant researching products to onboard, to some content team researching valuable subjects to address, I was always there to provide strategic insight on possible growth.

But what else could an in-house SEO do?

Political landscape negotiator

Every company will have teams that focus on different objectives, views and responsibilities. As SEOs, it is our job to attain true collaboration. We could drive all of the traffic you need, but that is not very valuable in the event the customer does not convert!

Whether it is a company picnic or even a department outing, we need to concentrate on establishing personal company-wide rapport.

Example 1:

I wanted to determine how to boost customer encounter on a page template without having to go through a code switch. I noticed a notable section that our team doesn't have access to and decided to reach out to all my essential contacts companywide to learn who manages it. Following a couple of discussions, I quickly learned that the process for updating this content area was manual, but potential.

I realized the extra untapped potential that individuals can now leverage to influence customer behavior. At exactly the exact same time I am now able to work with that team to streamline the process — all thanks to the fact that I regularly focus my time on looking for regions of progress and cross-company communicating.

Example 2:

User experience has rapidly taken off as a huge element for SEO, and I discover that the field fascinating. This led to having the chance to visit several clients to see their browsing behavior, and I got to try my hand at wire-framing.

These efforts have yielded a change where the UX and SEO teams work hand-in-hand to develop into a truly optimized experience.

Initiating change from within

Several organizations migrating to the web frequently overlook what a monumental change it's for the entire company. Current companywide procedures — even the ones that don't have anything to do with the internet — frequently have to be overhauled to encompass the new digital strategy.

But how?

An organization should bring in a seasoned SEO who not only understands the current search arena but also understands how search will affect their overall industry five or five years from now. This is the way they can assist their business stay ahead instead of merely playing catch-up — innovation is key!

Modern SEOs are no longer just keyword optimizers — we are ingrained into content plan, UX and web development, in addition to social.

Example 1:

A critical content plan that infuses best SEO/customer-centric clinics is instrumental for each organization. When I first joined my current company, I immediately discovered many parts of the company were establishing and developing articles sporadically, however there didn't appear to be a constant management or measurement strategy in place.

I met with every component of the organization to better comprehend what their planned outcome was. I then created an easy-to-follow SEO/customer-centric one-page funnel content strategy that could be used companywide (like negotiated prices for every type and potential results) and followed everyone to get feedback and make revisions. The outcome was a very clear content strategy that anyone in the company can utilize to effectively drive whatever goal they're trying to accomplish.

Doing something of the magnitude without being internal would be quite tough, if not impossible.

Example 2:

Reputation management is a very touchy subject, as well as an extremely important one for an organization — however many don't prioritize it.

Even before joining the organization, I did a little looking across varied review sites and discovered there appeared to be a reputation scenario brewing. I chose to go through every comment and search for patterns or problems which could be addressed and collect a record of the findings. I then spent a while discussing the situation with leadership, customer service and the sales group. We needed to not just make a shift in the level of service we're providing, but make sure our clients understood there was a way to leave comments on these types of third-party review websites.

We're aggressively forging a path toward improvement in enhancing our internet standing, and I am excited to see what we can do as an organization to ensure the few less positive experiences our clients may have had don't harm the company as a whole.

Agency's best friend

Owning a veteran in-house SEO is vital for any business — especially if they intend to onboard an SEO agency. An in-house SEO is able to strategically prep an agency on developing realistic KPIs that align with company objectives. They can also help cope with technical limits, expedite onboarding and help at any execution.

The alternative often unfolds, with an agency spending months in the discovery stage, followed by implementation. Next thing you know, it is time to renew the contract, yet the company has not even evaluated whether the KPIs have ever been met.

Did your organization hire an agency without clear targets and a measurement program? You aren't alone. I have heard heaps of comparable accounts. Agencies often make a large laundry list of search engine optimization recommendations and fixes. Yet very few clients think to ask, “What do we anticipate the final result to be” Or “How do we prioritize these tasks?”

Aside from the fact that search engines are experimenting each and every day with new attributes, and most companies are attempting to move quickly, an organization should be certain that an in-house person is able to understand the entire landscape and effectively guide the agency to success. In addition, without a committed in-house SEO person, the learning curve about how an organization functions and what's feasible is often quite steep — to a stage where an agency could be quickly set up to fail.

Are you convinced?

The ideal combination for any organization that's taking digital seriously is to have an in-house SEO coupled with a strategic agency. It's also really important that the search engine optimization lead documents strategy for simple on-boarding. Your in-house SEO should always be learning new technology, ought to be able to pivot quickly in the face of new improvements and should be versatile across the entire digital landscape.

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The Value of an In-House SEO Team

by Ryan time to read: 5 min