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The Changing Responsibilities of SEO

When it comes to keeping SEO clients happy you really have to deliver the goods. Its basically a shopping list of responsibilities you have to do.

However as time goes on its becoming clear that there is many more responsibilities for the SEO expert to do than there used to be.

In the beginning...

1999 - SEO was really just links, navigation and basic keyword search. Over time things like spider readability, avoiding duplicate content, HTML sitemaps and so forth. Blogs started appearing, image ALT text became more important.

2004 - Five years later they were making HTML and XML sitemaps, issues surrounding rel="nofollow" coding, complex keyword analysis, social media was starting to appear, widgets, articles, content research, Search Engine Marketing rears its ugly head...

2009 - Videos and social media has gone mainstream. YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, bookmarking websites, AddThis codes, guest writers, guest bloggers, PR companies getting in on the SEO action, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, reputation strategy and tracking...

2012 - Its become so much that one person can't do it all. You have to have separate people doing SEO, SMO and SEM because one person can't be an expert at all three.



The problem is that the general public sees "SEO" as a catchphrase for SEM (Search Engine Marketing, which is completely separate) and SMO (Social Media Optimization, a whole other topic)... without realizing how different they are.

Here to sort out this mess is three handy definitions:

SEO - The process of creating a network of links to promote specific keywords targeted at one website with the purpose of getting it to the top of the search engine. This process is called Search Engine Optimization (or SEO for short).

SEM - The process of advertising on search engines directly via Google AdWords and similar advertising programs and paying per click each time people click on your ads. Search Engine Marketing does not boost SEO.

SMO or SMM - The process of writing buzz on Twitter, Facebook and other social networking websites. The links all have rel="nofollow" and Social Media Marketing do absolutely nothing for SEO. SMO, wherein the O stands for optimization is a misnomer because it doesn't really "optimize" anything. Its just buzz.

And last but not least...

VVM - Viral Video Marketing. Blame YouTube for that one. Still in its infancy VVM is either a grand waste of time and money or a really lucky win when it actually works. VVM is a bit like shooting a bullet at another bullet and hoping the two will ricochet, that is how awful the success rate is.

See Also
The Laughable Expectations of Non SEO People

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