Today, I want to talk about SEO mistakes organisations make when they embark on their digital transformation mission.
In a digital transformation journey, some organisations tend to be aware of SEO like Blockbuster was aware of the web in the early 2000s.
They know it exists but don’t know what to do with it.
So, I’m going to go through 3 SEO mistakes organisations make in their digital transformation.
Avoiding these mistakes can save you a lot of time and contingency budget later on because fixing these issues are costly endeavours.
Endeavours that could have you thinking of SEO in a bad light, instead of as one of the most powerful marketing channels you can wield to grow your business.
So, let’s start with the first mistake.
Mistake 1: SEO Status is Unknown
The status of SEO is unknown.
Now, by status, I mean being aware of everything that has to do with your company’s SEO.
This is quite a wide spectrum so let’s go through a couple of key things you need to be aware of, which will help you become more familiar with SEO.
Firstly, does your business actively do SEO?
Now, if you were to look at your analytics, you will undoubtedly see SEO is an active channel that brings in traffic.
What I am asking is does your business have a marketing spend specifically for SEO?
A marketing spend for SEO suggests the website is being optimised to acquire traffic via organic search.
Next, who is responsible for SEO in your organisation?
I’m not talking about the agency that does your SEO. I’m talking about the point person in your organisation.
Do you have an SEO guy? Someone who looks after SEO in the business. This needs to be a point person – a person with ‘SEO’ (or something equivalent) in their job title.
Next, what are the challenges your business faces when it comes to SEO?
Your SEO challenges will, for sure, have something to do with your CMS and your server.
Both of these indicate your SEO challenges are technical. This is good to know!
When it comes to executing your digital transformation, a lot of the SEO work will be technical so knowing the technical issues will be a first step in making improvements in your digital transformation journey.
Other SEO challenges may be within the other two pillars of SEO – on-page and off-page.
Make a list!
Now is the time to understand many of the SEO issues that you face.
Understanding the intricacies of these questions will give you an assessment of your business’s SEO, which will make the status of SEO in your organisation known.
Mistake 2: SEO Is Not Budgeted For
The second SEO mistake organisations make when they embark on their digital transformation journey is they do not budget for SEO.
It’s not enough to have SEO covered within a technical development project.
SEO in a digital transformation journey is SEO in a website migration journey.
It needs its own project within the overall project.
If SEO is just a line item on a spreadsheet, this is a pitfall.
If SEO is regarded as a secondary project, this is a pitfall.
If SEO is grouped underneath a sub-project, this is a pitfall.
Why are these pitfalls? Because SEO will not be operated to success assigning SEO in such a manner.
When your journey is digital transformation, and it involves your website, SEO should, no, needs, no, MUST, play a leadership role.
You may call it digital transformation, but from an SEO point of view, this is a type of website migration.
And what do we know about website migrations…? SEO needs to be forefront in the journey.
Not budgeting for SEO in your digital transformation journey is like running a TV advert without a website for your business.
You’ll generate interest in your business. But online, that interest will go elsewhere.
Budgeting for SEO means there’s a plan for the channel, which means there’s a plan to generate traffic to your site, with the channel.
And guess what…? This plan will tie into the first point I made – knowing the status of SEO in your organisation.
Have a budget for SEO! Whether this budget is for contractors, an agency, or both, have a budget for SEO!
Mistake 3: SEO Is Actioned Towards The End Of The Journey
The third SEO mistake organisations make when they embark on their digital transformation journey is they action SEO towards the end of the digital transformation journey.
This tends to happen as a result of not knowing SEO.
Because SEO is not understood, and because people are contempt with not understanding it, they tend to neglect it.
We see this often with poor website migration projects – where SEO is treated as a line item.
Heck, it’s even seen in the typical new page launch.
SEO is regarded as a final stop before the launch of new pages.
This is a pitfall!
If you have SEO as a block to be ‘SEO’d’ towards the end of the digital transformation journey, this is a mistake!
SEO needs to run concurrently, throughout the journey.
And the starting point for SEO is the very first briefing of the digital transformation journey.
This is no exaggeration! When digital transformation is being discussed in a board meeting, and SEO is not mentioned, this is a pitfall!
This is how important SEO is.
This is how important SEO is because the consequence of not considering SEO at all levels in the business, when embarking on a digital transformation journey is… a realised threat!
What do I mean by this…?
By ‘realised threat’ I mean having a massive drop in rankings that directly impacts business revenue.
The throughline for the organic channel is clear – you want to generate website revenue with the channel.
To do this, you need conversions.
To get conversions, you need traffic.
To get traffic, you need rankings.
You’re not going to rank if your website is no longer visible in the SERPs.
By having SEO actioned, almost as a checkbox, before the end of your digital transformation journey, you leave so many opportunities to jeopardise your SEO beforehand.
Wouldn’t that be a shame? To plan to improve your digital presence and not have a presence on one of the most important digital real estates in the world?
Folks, I’m sure you’re aware, digital transformation in an ever-increasing digital-first world, is necessary for businesses to grow, and in many cases, for businesses to survive.
Online, there is a lot of information about digital transformation.
SEO, doesn’t seem to be forefront in discussions about digital transformation. This is a mistake!
If you have SEO as a main talking point when building or updating your website and/or infrastructure, you’ll have a better control of your digital presence. This is, after all, the point of digital transformation.
Your website is a digital asset. And as long as you have a website, you need SEO.
Your organisation’s SEO, therefore, is a digital asset.
Let me say that again, your organisation’s SEO is a digital asset.
How you regard SEO is an indication of how you regard your organisation.