SEO Platform Startup Delivers SAP-Like Workflow Tools
The application aims to draw a solid line between SEO tasks and return on investment (ROI). Cofounders John Straw and Matt Roberts believe the startup can become the SAP for search engine marketing, as SEO continues to mature and require workflow tools to manage campaigns, reduce costs, and find the ROI to secure and justify budget. The platform took 22 months to develop, taking into consideration a couple of false starts.
With insight from Laurence John, partner at Amadeus Capital, which provided seed venture capital funding, the team quickly realized the initial platform only supported a portion of the requirements needed to support a well-run campaign. So Straw and Roberts surveyed about 550 small and medium-sized U.S. and U.K. businesses. They found that SEO ranked high on their marketing priority list, but most didn't have the tools to organize workflow management. The findings prompted the complete redesign of the platform.
Through charts and graphs, Linkdex's dashboard now compares a company's site with competitors. It integrates with Google analytics to provide traffic numbers for targeted keywords, as well as details on key performance indicators (KPIs), and tips for small and medium-sized businesses on how to improve online marketing strategies.
The sophisticated tools allow marketers to learn the types of Web sites linking to them, as well as determine their influence by comparing the site's authority with trust. Features support My Tasks, Keyword Research, Rank Tracking, Site Optimization, Competitor Analysis, Link Building, and Learn SEO.
Linkdex's investments in analyses give marketers the ability to analyze words and HTML content on linking and home pages, categorizing them on blogs, social, local, news sites and more through the Competitor Analysis tool. The tool allows marketers to see linking pages, and provides the ability to add the list of sites to the workflow and make an annotation on whether the link required a payment or contact, providing a permanent record of the transaction.
Other features are in the works. In two weeks, for example, the platform will allow users to assign tasks in the My Tasks feature to others working on campaigns managed in the application. Clients will soon find tools for managing teams. The platform will offer a built-in checklist and alerts to project coordinators, as well as lists that provide names of team members and those building the most links or completing the most deals.
Francois Roux, vice president of New York Habitat, knows the value of monitoring when tasks get completed and by whom. The vacation rental company, which has been testing the platform for nearly two weeks, supports thousands of properties in Paris, London, New York and the South of France. "The big difference between Linkdex and other tools I've used in the past is the front end," he says, pointing to the organizational structure and ability to integrate data. "The future of the tool, which will eventually integrate with Google Analytics, will help us make decisions on where to spend time and what to focus on," he says. "For a small or medium-size company this will help to maintain the margins we all need."
Google Webmaster's and Microsoft Bing's tools do not offer easy integration between applications, Roux says. Surprising for an industry worth billions that platforms -- even those from the same company -- don't talk to each other, adds SiteLogic CEO Matt Bailey, who agrees that "free" might no longer provide the necessary tools as the industry matures.
SiteLogic serves clients ranging from SMBs to enterprise. The company has many tools, but since they don't talk with each other, ultimately SEO experts need to create reports with spreadsheets. Linkdex changes that because it provides a context to linking and rankings in one interface.
Linkdex launches Tuesday at $49 per month geared toward Web-savvy small and medium-sized businesses, followed shortly with a package geared toward agencies requiring more data for $299.