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Bringing SEO In-House


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Discusses issues and best practices for determining IF you need an in-house SEO, and if you do, how do you find and hire one.

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Bringing SEO In-House

  1. 1. How Do You Bring SEO In-House?<br />Look (and Plan) Before You Leap<br />
  2. 2. Common problems…<br />Not having a thorough understanding of your current situation AND longer range plans.<br />How do you hire an SEO when you don’t have an existing team/person to start with?<br />Where do you put the SEO position? Marketing? IT? In between? How much power/authority will he/they have?<br />
  3. 3. Do you NEED an in-house SEO?<br />
  4. 4. Do you NEED an in-house SEO?<br />You can have in-house SEO in a position that also handles other duties…<br />Webmaster<br />Web Site Manager<br />Web Experience<br />Etc.<br />Whether you can swing this or not depends on your goals, the size and complexity of your site, CMS, organization… what are your NEEDS?<br />
  5. 5. Where does the SEO go?<br />IT or Marketing? Or somewhere else?<br />Really, either is generally okay, and “in a department unto themselves and equal to both marketing and IT” would be ideal. Ultimately, you have to consider your corporate political landscape.<br />Potential power struggles?<br />Trod upon toes?<br />Do not stick the SEO into a position where walking in the door he/she has to manage a department full of angry people with hurt feelings on top of everything else.<br />Make sure the person responsible for SEO has the power and authority to do their job.<br />
  6. 6. Where does SEO belong in the SDLC?<br />
  7. 7. Understanding Your Specific Needs<br />What type of site do you have?<br />Catalog/E-commerce<br />Brochure-ware<br />Community/Interactive<br />How do you make money?<br />Sell stuff online<br />Lead gen/Affiliate<br />Publisher<br />B2B, B2C, etc?<br />
  8. 8. Different Types = Different Strategies<br />It is important to remember that what works for a business model based on advertising does not necessarily work for a lead-gen site, or for an e-commerce site, etc.<br />Different goals, different audiences, different needs<br />Ad-revenue sites need traffic, but don’t care about conversions<br />E-commerce sites care a LOT about conversions, but not so much tons of non-converting traffic<br />Etc.<br />
  9. 9. Special Needs to Consider<br />Are you going through/planning a major site redesign (now, 1-3 months, in 6 months, etc)?<br />Are you planning any major technology upgrades? New domain, new web host, new platform, etc?<br />Switching from ASP to PHP?<br />Switching from Windows to Unix/Linux?<br />Bringing web site in house?<br />Sometimes what you need right now, isn’t what you need long term.<br />
  10. 10. Finding the right candidate…<br />Hire a consultant to help write job descriptions, vet resumes and conduct interviews.<br />Will ensure the job description will accurately describe the qualifications needed.<br />Will ensure the qualifications do not exceed the salary offered.<br />Can help you separate the posers from the qualified candidates.<br />Will be your BS detector in interviews.<br />
  11. 11. Typical Job Description: Webmaster<br />Performs SEO optimization of content and search engine ad management<br />Responsible for maintenance and posting of content.  <br />Performs QA throughout entire site, checks for broken links, relevance and accuracy of data, and corrects as needed; updates information in web pages/templates/db and locates and resolves bugs and other issues<br />Bring best Web 2.0 practices in site maintenance, functionality, and SEO effectiveness<br />Develop, run, and issue key website usage tracking and SEO reports on a monthly basis, and identify opportunities for improvement<br />Assist in the development and implementation of new media – including digital video, RSS feeds, product reviews, etc.<br />Must be proficient in image sizing/editing and have a working knowledge of HTML, Dreamweaver, and Photoshop<br />Will take part in product technical support, to maintain awareness of customer needs<br />
  12. 12. And they expect to get all that and more for… $32,000 a year?<br />(Be realistic! You won’t get a rockstar for intern wages.)<br />
  13. 13. Planning Ahead Helps<br />Clearly defined goals and a solid understanding of your short term and long term needs will help you find the right candidate.<br />Hiring for the long term, and utilizing consultants or agencies for special needs or to fill in gaps can help when budgets are a concern.<br />Setting reasonable expectations with management and the new hire will reduce turn-over and increase everyone’s happiness.<br />
  14. 14. Carolyn Shelby<br />CSHEL Search Strategies<br /><br />The Twitter: @cshel<br />The Email:<br />