Top SEO Questions To Ask Your Marketing Department
Organic traffic from Google is crucial to drive more leads through your website, and keep your sales funnel full. SEO is one of the most fruitful methods to achieve this.
The best SEO Marketers can, over time, catapult you onto the first page of Google, driving some of the most profitable traffic to your site. However, without the right expertise, SEO strategy, or by using old methods to drive new traffic, you could be doing your business more harm than good and ultimately cost yourself more money than required.
If you're currently assessing whether to hire an expert agency or keep your SEO in-house, these are the top questions you should be asking your Marketing department to determine if they have the in-house capabilities they say they do:
Is there on-site optimization that will take place? If so, what does that look like?
The user experience of your website is an important factor for Google. Are people staying on your site for a long time and having a good experience? Or is there a high bounce rate?
Your marketing department or agency should always be looking for ways to improve the pages throughout your website. SEO is an ongoing process, so these types of projects should be continuous.
What is our content marketing strategy?
A consistent flow of fresh, authoritative content signals to Google that you are experts in your industry and deserve to rank accordingly for your identified keywords/key-phrases.
While a lot of Marketing departments can write generic blogs, you need to ask the questions "What does our blog calendar look like, and what relevance do these blogs serve on my site and for my business?"
We often hear "I heard blogging is important to Google." Absolutely, blogs are extremely useful - IF the content is driving relevant traffic for your business that can result in new business or just better informing your audience. For your blog, you should focus on questions that your customers might have (and might be Googling) that wouldn't be covered on your site elsewhere.
What is the strategy for offsite optimisation and building backlinks?
Too often Marketing departments focus so heavily on the website itself, the offsite optimisation elements are completely ignored.
This is a big mistake as it is a key ranking factor in Google's ranking algorithm.
You need to ask your marketing department - "what is our offsite optimisation strategy? - online PR, link building etc".
Backlinks are the foundation to Google's algorithm. If you don't have quality backlinks to your site, it'll be tough to increase your rank on Google. You'll want to measure your domain authority versus your competitors, which is a great indicator to see how well you'll rank on Google and also how far you need to go for that top placement.
You can also view "recently discovered links" on Moz to see the links that are pointing to your site.
If you don't have any new links pointing to your site, this likely means there is no proactive measure taking place in this area.
If your Marketing department say they are building backlinks to your site, ask them for the backlink profile so you can see all of the links to ensure they are legitimate.
How will reporting be presented to showcase progress?
Google Analytics and Google Search Console are both great tools for SEO to track your keyword rankings on Google.
Have you got a list of relevant keywords compiled? This initial keyword list will be the benchmark for the progress made over time. If you start in the No. 40 position on Google for "IT Software Berkshire," obviously, over time you will want to see progress made as you try and climb onto the first page.
Make sure your keyword list isn't overly complicated. This is a major issue a lot of marketing departments make. They make the reporting so confusing that C-Suite executives can't actually understand what the metrics mean. We like to compile a list of the most relevant keywords for our clients to be able to keep tabs on.
SEO is a giant subject, we hope these four questions give you a top level understanding of how to question your Marketing department and gain the information you need to know to ensure your Marketing is being ran effectively, or whether you need to outsource to an Expert SEO agency, like us.