The final session of the day covered by us, was “Scaling Up Your SEO Campaigns”. The agenda of the session was “The need for enterprise wide planning, implementation and control of SEO campaigns for improved ROI”.
- Mike Grehan
- Russ Mann, CEO of Covario, Search Engine Marketing Software and Services
- Seth Besmertnik, CEO and co-founder of Conductor
- Jim Yu, founder and CEO of BrightEdge
- Horst Joepen, CEO of Searchmetrics
Russ Mann was the first speaker. He focused on how companies can scale up to handle growth and SEO globally. He talked about how there can be an disconnect between SEO technicalities and the company executives on ROI. It can become an issue specially while trying to gain buy-in, resources and investment from the management to scale up SEO programs, said Russ. In his views, Technology and tools can give the push, that companies need to achieve scale. However, it is important to understand that one tool is not sufficient and there is need for an eco-system of tools.
As an example, Russ talked about a large CPG company that had somewhere around 1,000 brands and websites, and over 200 non-technical constituents. The company used the tool from Covario – Organic Search Insight Tool. Moreover, they made a quarterly search governance council, where the teams were required to come together and share their best practices. It is important for companies to move their focus to strategy, structure, and systems, said Russ.
Recommendation from Russ:
- Create a sense of urgency
- Form a coalition team
- Create the vision of success
- Communicate the vision
- Delegate and empower others to act on the vision
- Plan for and create short-term wins
- Consolidate improvements and create more change
- Institutionalize new ways of doing business
The next speaker from the panel was Jim Yu. He spoke about the state of enterprise SEO. He sighted some problems with enterprise SEO.
Common problems in enterprise SEO:
- There are lot of difficulties for internal teams to make site changes
- Another problem is of coordinating multiple cross-functional teams
- Competition among different business units in the organization
- SEO revenue getting dropped because someone in the company breaks the site
- The need to understand that everyone who touches the website somehow impacts SEO and SEO is an enterprise-wide responsibility is important.
- It is critical to define SEO standards and processes early. Also, training is essential, as is standardizing best practices, pro-active audits, metrics, workflow, and the use of scalable technology.
- Planning for a wide range of SEO knowledge across all business unit helps. There is need for clear goals and instructions tailor-made for people to get a hold of SEO knowledge.
- The need is to have performance and compliance reports at all levels (company-wide, business unit and individual). This would help to focus the reports back to business impact and ROI, that can further help to align and drive behavior.
- Planning for long-tail in SEO planning because 20-25 percent of all Google searches are unique and the tail is getting longer.
Next speaker was Horst Joepen, who talked about the data involved in SEO. According to him, it is crucial that a bit of data is controlled because the SEO data universe is quite huge:
- On-page SEO and add to that the errors, rankings, back-links
- Multiplied by the number of domains
- Keyword positions
- Multiplied by keywords
- Multiplied by historic data points
- Multiplied by country
According to him, data-needs depend on the business:
- Consumer vs. B2B
- International vs. local
- Dynamics (news vs. infrastructure)
SEO Data Problems
- Just by looking at Google.com data, possibilities of missing out on International positions increases and therefore, automated monitoring of international search engines is the key.
- Choice of too small or the wrong keyword set.
- Undefined database refresh rate. The data refresh frequency has to happen on a regular basis.
The final speaker in the final session was Seth Besmertnik. He mainly kept his focus on the five stages of SEO maturity.
The five stages of SEO, according to Seth:
- Try stage: The key is to find striking distance keywords and use of some simple metrics like rankings and start over.
- Measure stage: SEO metrics could be tied to the business metrics. Rankings are not important rather driving traffic to site and delivering ROI is.
- Scale stage: The requirement is to build a good internal team, that can tackle large volume of data.
Compete stage: In this stage, having a split on high-level taxonomies can make the move forward easy.
- Need to control SEO data
- Need to look further than just Google.com
- Need for performance and compliance reports
- Try, invest, measure, scale and compete