While Charles Darwin’s ‘Natural Selection’ in the ‘preservation of favored races in the struggle for life’ prompted Herbert Spencer to redefine the term by using the phrase “survival of the fittest’, the struggle for survival in today’s digital world has affected people ever so more. Even though this struggle for existence is apparent in all walks of life, none seems to be more distressing than for those who are in the IT industry.
Gone are the days when an SEO expert’s only job revolved round keyword researching and On-Page optimization. Apart from being able to follow search engine webmaster’s guidelines in every detail, today’s SEO consultant not only needs to be a jack of all trades but also a master of all. However, here are a few skills that a contemporary SEO person needs to be proficient about in order to survive in the profession.
Search engine optimization today equates to making websites better at both page and server level in a structured way in order to enhance their opportunity of being easily found on search engines, with the ultimate goal of generating adequate traffic and conversion.
While on-page optimization that involves title tags, alt tags, H1, etc. is highly relevant, it is more crucial to comprehend the technical side of SEO, such as code. In other words, a modern day SEO person will become successful only when he/she becomes well-versed in the technical side of the optimization process. Needless to say, this entails server-side settings, sitemaps, server response codes, rewrites and many more.
Social Media marketing proficiency
Current day SEO consultant’s responsibility does not end in creating accounts on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms but attempting to drive traffic from social sites. The person should also be an expert in traffic generating processes through fan acquisition strategies, building Twitter followers, optimizing videos on YouTube, etc.
Incidentally, Social media can increase the volume of traffic visiting a website, which is a key factor in search engine ranking. Usually, the items being shared on social media that drive the most traffic are blog posts, videos, event listings, or other interesting content (as against links to your homepage or main category pages). If that content is interesting enough to get users stay for a while, reading the entire page or watching a full video before visiting other pages, rather than bouncing right away, the result will be rewarding. However, to achieve all that, the SEO person needs social media marketing proficiency to the fullest extent.
Information architecture and usability concept
Knowledge about Information architecture forms a crucial part in achieving high organic search engine optimization ranking. Arranging a website’s data and content affects several parts of a business’s web design that include:
- Usability – Having high search engine ranking no doubt will drive adequate volume of targeted traffic to your website, provided the site is fairly user-friendly. Also, creating a logical information structure that will make sense to users is very much needed.
- Ranking – Additionally, it is necessary to create an intelligent content structure where right pages get right emphasis.
- Conversion – Web design for businesses need feature a natural walk through the conversion path way. Information architecture in these instances need to walk the user through the conversion process, providing informative pages which begin with broad, early-in-the-buying cycle content and consistently moves the user towards the next step in the purchasing process.
However, a knowledge hungry SEO consultant may go through Peter Morville’s Information Architecture for the Modern Web to know more about this topic.
Content is actually what engages users and is a great way to get visitors into your marketing funnel, so it’s essential as an SEO you possess this skill. Content marketing can be divided into two main tasks: content creation and content distribution.
An SEO need to be well versed with both areas of content marketing strategies; especially one that concerns content creation. You may come across situations when there will be lots of excitement in a company to create content – from bizarre content creation ideas (“Let’s create 1 million new pages!”) to ideas that have keyword stuffing written all over it.
However, an SEO consultant’s job will be to act as a gatekeeper and support content ideas that can add value to search engines and users. Basic skills like keyword research, finding content gaps, and distributing your content will come in handy.