What's SEO Marketing? - 2 Concepts You Need to Know

TL;DR: SEO marketing is a key member of the digital marketing club, and arguably the most critical. Learn why.

logo-short-whiteErik Bonsaksen
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What's SEO Marketing? - 2 Concepts You Need to Know

What's SEO Marketing? - 2 Concepts You Need to Know

By now you should know what SEO is: search engine optimization - the stuff you need to do on your website so it can rank higher in search results and gain organic traffic. Not the paid traffic from Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Snapchat Ads, “programmatic” marketing and bla bla bla. We're talking about traffic that lands on your pages from unpaid sources, essentially free traffic.

It's the neatest of all the neat traffic sources you can generate online (except perhaps referrals from really cool people), and you ought to do it right. It tells everything on how savvy you are digitally, to your users, search engines to perhaps those pesky investors that want to buy your business.

Concept 1: SEO in digital marketing

Here's the thing though - while SEO could be viewed as something separate from digital marketing, it's really not. SEO marketing is a key member of the digital marketing club, and arguably the most critical. While it's hard to fully know the global share of traffic sources, it is estimated that of the top 1 million websites in the world, approximately 53.7% are organic. Above half, and it's growing every year.

When you read listings of digital marketing jobs, they often focus on advertising platforms, management of clients or to keep their social media channels active, whatever that means. Search engine optimization on the other hand is left for a SEO specialist/expert. If marketing is defined as “the action or business of promoting and selling products or services, including market research and advertising”, SEO should be a core part of the skills any digital marketing specialist has.

Sure SEO can be complex and comprehensive, but it's no excuse to leave it out in the cold. How to learn SEO and SEO best practices is a must for all digital marketeers - and fooling around with a Yoast plugin does not cut it.

Concept 2: SEO defines your digital maturity

To classify how your websites fare in regards of search engine friendliness and user compatibility (I'm so tired writing S E O omg), we can do a SEO audit. An audit will tell us a lot of things, but it usually boils down to three main areas: Technical SEO, Content (or “on-site”) SEO and Off-site SEO.

Technical uncovers if the SEO basics from a web development perspective are taken care of. It can be page speed, if you have used HTML tags properly or added a sitemap.

Content looks at how you've optimized your on-site elements, that is headlines, HTML tags (title, meta, and header), and images. Maybe we'll look a bit on your schema markup usage as well (we highly recommend you to look at this). All these “on-page” elements are evaluated based on how well they are optimized for relevant search queries and repurposed to whatever you want to tell.

Off-site is the SEO stuff you have least control over. It's the area we use the fancy words such as “authority” or “domain rating” to explain how popular your websites and its henchmen landing pages are. Backlinks, the heart and soul of SEO, is what Google was based on from its birth. If a website other than yours links to your domain, preferably unprovoked, it's a super strong sign that you have stuff worth showing in search results, because it's peer-reviewed. Someone else bothers linking to you. Validation!

If you score well on these areas, or at least better than your peers, you show a level of digital maturity. Most websites get technical SEO wrong. You need some knowledge of how your code interacts with search engines, which equals some time invested in Googling around. If you post new, fresh blog posts here and there, and their topics match some popular search terms people actually use (traffic's a plus, too), then you preach to the choir. Off-site takes you from child to grandpa maturity wise, since it's a sign that your stuff is worth talking about from others. If you ever have been part of a due diligence of a website, then you'll know what these things are crucial for estimating the value of your domain.

There's a lot more to be said about SEO, or even more concepts to grasp, but understanding these two will make you a better person. Trust metamanager.