Should Your SEO Team Invest In SEO Tools?

Understanding your current marketing processes, knowing how to measure success, and being able to identify where you are looking for improvements, are all critical parts of SEO platform decision making. But deciding if your business needs an SEO platform requires the same assessment steps that are involved in any software adoption, starting with a full self-assessment.

Read more: SEO Software Tools: What Marketers Need To Know

Use the following questions as a guide to determine the answers.

Do we have the right human resources in place?

Employing people to implement and use SEO platforms is a prerequisite for success. If you have marketing staff, using SEO tools can make them more effective and efficient. The vast majority of organic search marketers struggle to justify their SEO budgets. SEO platforms and tools are a key part of helping to keep overall costs down while getting the job done. Their analytical skills can also help SEOs prove the impact of their work on bottom lines.

Do we have a level C buy-in?

Business SEO software can be a five- or six-figure annual investment. Demonstrating the value of SEO to senior executives is critical by running test pilots and agreeing to a definition of “success” in advance.

Do we have the right technical resources?

Successful SEO requires dedicated technical resources deployed to act on recommendations and opportunities revealed by analytics and reports.

Who will business SEO belong to?

Corporate SEO is typically placed in marketing, editorial, or IT, depending on the nature of the business. Unfortunately, in large companies it usually ends with whoever has the budget or who can best articulate the business case. Ideally, it should be both.

Can we invest in staff training?

It is essential to train the technical, design, content and marketing teams and to reinforce them regularly. A successful implementation of corporate SEO will find ways to inject SEO knowledge into existing training programs and identify internal evangelists to spread the messages widely. Training must be comprehensive, consistent and continuous. Some tooling companies include or offer training for an additional fee, so be sure to educate yourself about it.

How much should we share reports with non-SEO staff?

Some tool vendors focus significant development resources on simple interfaces that can be used by people in other organizational roles, such as copywriters or senior executives. If this is important to you, be sure to research it specifically when evaluating possible platforms.

Have we established KPIs and implemented a system for monitoring, measuring and reporting results?

It’s important to know up front what you want your SEO to achieve. Want to improve SERP rankings or the time visitors spend on your site? Is conversion, whether it’s a product purchase or a whitepaper download, your primary focus? Having goals will help you decide whether you’re ready to use an enterprise platform wisely, as well as which tool will best meet your organization’s needs.

How are we going to measure success?

Based on your site’s monetization strategy, make sure you know how you will determine whether the platform’s deployment and successful execution of established KPIs actually increased sales, conversions, or pageviews.

Do we have realistic expectations?

It’s not uncommon for a business’s SEO efforts to take at least six months to generate tangible results. While SEO is a new initiative within the organization, there are cultural changes and workflow processes that will need to be implemented and refined. Setting realistic timelines and goals will help build support at all levels of the business.

Do we have an SEO culture?

Many organizations are starting to invest in SEO, but find that a lack of understanding of SEO across the organization is crippling their progress. Extensive educational programs are often required to provide consistent performance and results.

Get the full report on business SEO tools here

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About the Author

Pamela Parker is a Research Director at Third Door Media’s Content Studio, where she produces MarTech Intelligence reports and other in-depth content for digital marketers in collaboration with Search Engine Land and MarTech. Prior to this role at TDM, she was Content Manager, Senior Editor, and Features Editor. Parker is a respected authority on digital marketing, having published and written on the subject since its inception. She is a former editor-in-chief of ClickZ and has also worked on the commercial side helping independent publishers monetize their sites at Federated Media Publishing. Parker received a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University.

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