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Should We Be Making The Case For A Full Stack SEO
Having worked in SEO for a number of years now, spending my days optimising websites both in my native country of South Africa and internationally and helping millions of users find what they're looking for on a daily basis I've learned valuable lessons. Lessons that have taken me into about every facet that SEO would influence and I've built up a reliable knowledge base on what works and what doesn't when it comes to building a sustainable traffic source from serach engines.
SEO for all its wonder is still shrouded in controversy, doubt and mystery with many startup owners and clients still not convinced of its viability as a profitable investment. Speaking to business owners over the years I've often heard the narrative that SEO is seen as a nice to have rather than a necessity. Often these business owners views have been tainted by a poor experience with an SEO or a limited understanding of the channel.
If you're an SEO who has been called in to fix a site in need or you have pitched for business you've probably experienced the same reservations from your prospective clients. As experts, we are convinced of the power this marketing channel holds but for clients they need to see it in practice.
I've often struggled with understanding why relationships between clients and SEO's have been so rocky until recently. After reading Kameron Jenkins latest post on making a case for a full stack content writer, it hit me. We as an industry have failed to define our roles, provided an understanding of reach discipline and expectations of each role within SEO.
In a bit to bring transparency for both SEO's and clients, I thought it would be fitting to set a precedent of how companies should view SEO's that are either in-house or operating as consultants.
SEO is a multidisciplined profession
An SEO professional’s skill set must span across disciplines both sales, marketing and technology related. SEO professionals live at the intersection of technology, marketing, and sales. Most successful SEO's operate between these three states, and every SEO will have a preference or a definitive strength for one over the other.
This is the primary reason why we need to look at comparing SEO differently to other online marketing disciplines. Since SEO is such an ever growing and diverse industry SEO's have begun to specialise in specific skills.
These specialised traits help pick up the slack and a successful SEO team is made up of various SEO's that all have a strength in a specific subset of the discipline.
SEO's teams will need a range of skills that cover the following:
- SEO content writing
- SEO research
- On page optimisation
- Technical SEO and development
- Link building and outreach
- SEO strategy
- SEO reporting
In addition, as companies scale the SEO department will also need an SEO manager to handle the roadblocks and collaborative efforts between departments like Sales, BI, User Experience & Design and of course Web Development.
SEO's need to be honest about their skillset
If we are all in agreement that SEO is a multi-disciplined role then shouldn't calling yourself an SEO be an oversimplification of the position and its requirements? I would think, so I think its the reason why clients have had such a tough time understanding us. Since we have not given clearance to the various roles SEO's are misrepresenting themselves and businesses are not picking the right SEO to match their current budget or business goals.
Picking the right SEO for your business
Instead of looking for any SEO, companies need to be upfront with their business goals and not just say we need SEO. Tell the SEO what you want and see if their skills match your specific business goal.
- If your website is thin on content - Look for an SEO content writer
- If your website runs on a custom CMS - Look for a technical SEO
- If you're looking to expand to new regions or keywords - Look for an SEO strategist
This approach will do well to get you to identify the correct talent and help you get the most of our investment or build a team of complimenting traits.
Working towards a full stack SEO
If you are indeed a full stack SEO, you are the cream of the crop and deserve to charge top dollar for your services. The fact that you can incorporate tasks and strategies across a full spectrum makes you invaluable to a business and in many cases a strategic advantage.
Besides the monetary gain, there are definite benefits to developing yourself into a “full-stack SEO” since you can adapt to various situations and business requirements.
If you are working within a small operation, you will be able to pivot from one element of SEO to another easily. While in a larger enterprise and will have a team specialised SEO professionals working with you. You will also have the oversight to judge their task output and be able to prioritise their efforts, so you extract the maximum value from what they efforts.
If your mindset isn’t already geared toward developing yourself as a “full-stack SEO,” consider adjusting to do so. It will not only help you become more valuable to companies but also expose you to new skills you never thought you had a knack for.
The benefits of being a well-rounded SEO professional will surely bear fruit in the long run.
If you are to refer to yourself as an SEO I would encourage yourself to refer to yourself as a full stack SEO and for recruiters to also differentiate between the various types of SEO's when searching for skilled individuals.
Tell us your SEO story
Have you been frustrated with an SEO in the past? How did you or the company overcome it? Are there any tips you would like to share on working with an SEO? Share it with us in the comments.
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Registering with nichemarket is easy; all you will need to do is head over to our sign up form and follow the instructions. If you require a more detailed guide on how to create your profile or your listing, then we highly recommend you check out the following articles.
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If you enjoyed this post and have a little extra time to dive deeper down the rabbit hole, why not check out the following posts on SEO.
- How To Combine PR, Content Marketing and SEO
- How to Improve your SEO with PPC
- 12 On Page SEO Techniques To Master
- How To Put Together SEO Testing Notes For Developers
- 10 SEO Myths That Make Us Question Our Life Choice
- Why UX and Marketing Departments Need More Collaboration