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In-House SEO Strategy - Gourmet Edition

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SMX West 2020 presentation on how to build your internal SEO team. What we've learned and how we're trying to fix it.

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In-House SEO Strategy - Gourmet Edition

  1. 1. @saksters In-House SEO Strategy From Big Picture to Implementation
  2. 2. @saksters Nine months ago in our SEO kitchen…
  3. 3. @saksters We have everything under control (me lol)
  4. 4. @saksters We have everything under control (me lol) They didn’t.
  5. 5. @saksters • Generic Roles • Duplicate Experts (Too Many Cooks) • Poor Relevancy to the Business • Low Authority Our SEO Team had some problems…
  6. 6. @saksters So how do we start addressing these problems? (manager lol)
  7. 7. @saksters Let’s start with how we defined our SEO team… SEO Implementation (still manager lol)
  8. 8. @saksters Initially assigned job titles, not job roles In organizations with a surplus of stakeholders this made our SEO work ambiguous A generic SEO team to do generic SEO things SEO Manager SEO Specialist Associate SEO Specialist SEO Specialist
  9. 9. @saksters We introduce ourselves as these roles to other teams in the organization Bonus: Can make hiring easier too ;) Assign meaningful roles to the SEO Team SEO Project Manager Technical SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist
  10. 10. @saksters Clearer SEO subject matter experts Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist JS Frameworks XML Sitemaps Taxonomy Redirects Log Files Reporting Feeds DataVisualization Structured Data Location Data Keyword Research Creative Assets Copy Internal Links in Copy Semantic HTML
  11. 11. @saksters • Reports SEO progress to Executives • Keeps projects in motion and removes blockers SEO Project Manager role Executives • Helps the team be fast and focused on their roles
  12. 12. @saksters • Part of the SEO team • Has intermediate to advanced level SEO knowledge • Familiarity with Agile • Coordinates project delivery sequence SEO Project Manager
  13. 13. @saksters • Budget management • Shields from team mistakes / executive involvement • Learning management – facilitates continuous improvement for the team • Agency management at a contract level and what the scope should be SEO Project Manager (cont’d)
  14. 14. @saksters • Generic Roles • Duplicate Experts (Too Many Cooks) • Poor Relevancy to the Business • Low Authority Our SEO Team had some problems…
  15. 15. @saksters Share these #SMXInsights on your social channels! • Assign comprehensive roles to generic SEO titles • Ex. SEO Specialist -> Technical SEO Specialist • Consider an SEO project manager role to keep your team fast and focused
  16. 16. @saksters Now that we have the team defined…
  17. 17. @saksters How does this prevent “Too Many Cooks”? (that are not on your team) (not my manager in this analogy)
  18. 18. @saksters At first, we thought…
  19. 19. @saksters Dividing SEO SMEs will prevent “Too Many Cooks” Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist JS Frameworks XML Sitemaps Taxonomy Redirects Log Files Reporting Feeds DataVisualization Structured Data Location Data Keyword Research Creative Assets Copy Internal Links in Copy Semantic HTML
  20. 20. @saksters Dividing SEO SMEs will prevent “Too Many Cooks” Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist JS Frameworks XML Sitemaps Taxonomy Redirects Log Files Reporting Feeds DataVisualization Structured Data Location Data Keyword Research Creative Assets Copy Internal Links in Copy Semantic HTML It did.
  21. 21. @saksters Dividing SEO SMEs will prevent “Too Many Cooks” Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist JS Frameworks XML Sitemaps Taxonomy Redirects Log Files Reporting Feeds DataVisualization Structured Data Location Data Keyword Research Creative Assets Copy Internal Links in Copy Semantic HTML A little too well…
  22. 22. @saksters • As a technical SEO, I would like dynamic XML sitemaps to submit new URLs to search engines automatically Our Process: Build user stories in our respective SEO expertise • As a data SEO, I would like review links in our database to insert review links for each store • As a content SEO, I would like semantic html for this block to improve featured snippet potential
  23. 23. @saksters We ended up burdening each other with easy SEO tasks Can you write a new schema ticket? You’re just soooo good at it…and the expert ;) Uh sure, but you know how to write it…
  24. 24. @saksters *upset in vampire*
  25. 25. @saksters And then we recognized something else…
  26. 26. @saksters Our Site is Divided Greatly in Platforms… *Scale drawn is questionable Videos eCommerce Local StoresBlog Promotions Other
  27. 27. @saksters And Stakeholders
  28. 28. @saksters Oh my...
  29. 29. @saksters We needed to align to the business based on our expertise
  30. 30. @saksters Team alignment to the Organization (Example) SEO Project Manager Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist Content SEO Specialist Analytics Merchandising Developers IT Marketing Copywriters Feeds
  31. 31. @saksters Team alignment to the Site (Example) Content SEO Specialist Technical SEO Specialist Data SEO Specialist SEO Project Manager Other Promotions Blog Local Stores eCommerce Videos *Scale drawn is still questionable
  32. 32. @saksters • As a technical SEO, I would like X to do Y so that search engine crawlers can… • As a data SEO, I would like X to do Y so that a business user can… • As a content SEO, I would like X to do Y so that a consumer can… Writing user stories with the organization
  33. 33. @saksters • Generic Roles • Duplicate Experts (Too Many Cooks) • Poor Relevancy to the Business • Low Authority Our SEO Team had some problems…
  34. 34. @saksters Share these #SMXInsights on your social channels! • Establish SMEs in your internal team • Prevent “Too Many Cooks” • Align SMEs to the organization • Write user stories in line with other teams • Closer product ownership to core skills
  35. 35. @saksters How we’re building authority
  36. 36. @saksters • Technical • Back-End • Front-End • IT • QA • eCommerce • Analytics • Digital Experience • Paid Search • Feeds Setup goal to pitch SEO to 12+ teams (thanks manager) • Marketing • Creative • Social • Loyalty • Copywriters • Merchandising • Category #1 • Category #2 • Category #3 • Category #4…
  37. 37. @saksters (again our manager lol) Deal with it. *airhorns & disrespect*
  38. 38. @saksters • Technical • Back-End • Front-End • IT • QA • eCommerce • Analytics • Digital Experience • Paid Search • Feeds Progress so far • Marketing • Creative • Social • Loyalty • Copywriters • Merchandising • Category #1 • Category #2 • Category #3 • Category #4…
  39. 39. @saksters • Templated deck (15 mins) • What is SEO? • Where the respective team affects SEO • Relevant case study • Open Discussion (45 mins) • How can we work together to improve your program? • What are your frustrations with the SEO team? How we do it
  40. 40. @saksters In short, we let ourselves get roasted
  41. 41. @saksters What we’ve learned about our organization
  42. 42. @saksters Key Takeaways: • Front-end process is longer due to UI/UX team involvement • We can pivot towards building internal tools and tasks around data (ex. Autogenerating XML sitemaps, redirect tool, title tag logic etc.) 1. Back-end is implemented faster than front-end
  43. 43. @saksters Key Takeaways: • Prioritizing back-end resources towards relieving our co- dependence leads to SEO stability • In the interim, work with the team on aligning business goals 2. Feeds are inhibited by us because of infrastructure
  44. 44. @saksters Key Takeaways: • Improve content briefs (title, description, headings, creative, internal links etc.) to lighten workload given to copywriters • Leverage data to templatize content gaps • Consider hiring an agency for specific need 3. Internal copywriters are a shared resource
  45. 45. @saksters Key Takeaways: • Create dashboards that include SEO traffic to bridge revenue gaps for a Category • Opportunity to have other teams identify and monitor performance for you 4. Poor SEO performance, pressures Merchandising
  46. 46. @saksters Share these #SMXInsights on your social channels! • Make it a team goal to connect with other organizational teams • Listen for feedback and adapt your SEO needs to what fits your organizational problems
  47. 47. @saksters SEE YOU AT THE NEXT SMX! THANK YOU!

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