In efforts to increase sales and profitability, more and more companies are turning to online marketing initiatives – specifically, search engine optimization. Search Engine Optimization or (SEO) is art and science of blending technical and marketing skills together into a finely tuned website that is both search engine-friendly, ranks well for specific keywords and phrases, and is tailored to your audience from a buyer and seller perspective.
According to a recent U.S. study, only 20% of all businesses outsource search engine optimization programs to professional SEO firms. The remaining 80% either do not conduct search engine optimization at all or they believe they have resources and skills to do it in-house. Of this 80%, it is probable that 90% of these companies can’t be found on web – they don’t exist. In order to generate any amount of significant web visibility, your website must typically rank within top-30 results.
So, question comes down to what is in your company’s best interests? Conduct your SEO program in-house or out-source it. To answer this question, let’s first take a look at knowledge, skills and resources necessary to implement and maintain a successful search engine optimization program.
SEO knowledge and skills required
1) Basic understanding of how search engines and directories work. This may seem overly obvious, but you would be amazed how many people do not understand how they actually work. This knowledge provides foundation for your SEO program.
2) Website design Although SEO is not completely a technical marketing process, it does require a fair amount of technical knowledge of what constitutes search engine-friendly web design. Certain web design elements can either help your search engine rankings or hurt them. You simply have to know which is which.
3) SEO experience This is most important and most difficult knowledge to obtain. If you have never implemented a SEO program, then you are in for a big surprise. Search engine optimization programs require a lot of research and are extremely time consuming. Most importantly, they require actual SEO experience. This means knowing what SEO strategies and tactics work and which ones don’t. In-house vs. out-sourced SEO programs
If your company is considering conducting your search engine optimization program in-house, here are some questions to consider.
• Who will be responsible for analyzing, developing, implementing and measuring success of your SEO program?
• Is this considered role of your IT department, Marketing department or some other individual(s) within your company?