In the past 12 months, the SEO industry has undergone some very significant changes. And while some aspects of search engine optimisation haven’t changed (relevant and engaging content, keyword research, page titles and descriptions are all still invaluable), the presence of social media and inbound marketing are making considerable transformations in search optimisation, specifically at the enterprise level.

Organic search is the indisputable leader in driving traffic that will convert to a website. Yet, it remains among of the lowest funding priorities when it comes to the website or marketing budget. With organic search results garnering over 75 percent of clicks, it’s a wonder why so many businesses continue to invest such a large portion of their marketing budget into paid media. Yes, paid searches offer a quick fix solution, but it’s a short-term outcome with very few lingering benefits. Think of it this way: paying for search results is a lot like renting space in shopping centre–as long as you pay, you stay but as soon as you stop it’s like you never even existed.

So what do C-suite executives need to know? You’ll be surprised that these tips actually have more to do with company-wide collaboration than actual SEO programming.

1. Forget What You Know

Nearly every CEO, CMO and CIO understands the value of SEO and the crucial role it plays in generating leads and traffic. But with the constant metamorphosis of SEO, few executives realise just how challenging it is to not only gain, but sustain visibility in today’s digital environment.

Many in the C-suite will believe that bringing in a search agency or hiring more developers will be the golden ticket out of an underperforming SEO slump. Unfortunately, it’s going to require a little more blood, sweat and tears than that, and more importantly, teams across the entire company have to get involved. All departments must understand what it takes to earns organic search visibility and work together to complete the SEO objectives.

2. You’re In For the Long Haul

Good SEO isn’t simply a project; it’s a long-term investment strategy. Ensure that your SEO consultancy or agency will offer education across all internal divisions in your company. If a comprehensive understanding is not reached throughout all departments, there will be weak links, disconnects and obstacles from several directions, including management.

While the first step to better SEO practices is an enterprise-wide shift in processes and thinking, leadership must also be prepared to commit resources. Improving organic SEO practices is notoriously underfunded — when a strategy doesn’t meet immediate sale and bonus goals (campaigns can take up to 12-18 months before palpable results are felt), marketing managers and executives are hesitant to invest. The reality is, while pay-per-click offers a quick fix solution, SEO’s return on investment will continue to rise long after PPC has peaked. It may take a bit more company elbow grease, but your ROI will thank you for it.

3. Bring the Focus Back People

When putting together an SEO campaign, it’s easy to focus our attention on giving search engines what they want. It’s true that there is great value in ensuring your site conforms to technical SEO best-practices, but visibility isn’t accomplished simply by changing some keywords and titles. Social influence, social shares and content all have a hand in SEO success. And with the ever- increasing impact social media is having on digital media, people matter more than ever. Great content will resonate with your target audience and allow them to see you as an online authority. If you site is trusted, what you have to say will be shared, liked, tweeted, etc which will naturally boost your ranking.

So there you have it, the top three SEO best-practices for C-suite executives. As a leader of your business, you have considerable say in how far you can take your brand SEO. If you take anything away from this article, understand that good SEO requires development from all facets of a company, discipline, nurturing and patience. As the age-old adage goes, “good things take time”; garnering and sustaining organic search visibility is no easy feat but the success and exposure is well worth the struggle.

If you are looking increase the ROI on your SEO campaign and want some expert advice alongside a wealth of tools to cultivate your brand, give us a call! p: 09 950 2140