SEO: Link Building, Keyword Research Becoming Most Challenging Tactics

While 72% of marketers from enterprises rate search engine optimization (SEO) as successful in achieving marketing objectives like lead generation and increased Web traffic, 57% say the greatest barriers to achieving SEO success are challenges like a lack of dedicated in-house SEO resources, and 43% say limited budgets. About 28% find that SEO is not successful, per a recent study.

Released Tuesday, Conductor's report -- Inside Enterprise SEO: SEO Survey Benchmarks for Large Companies -- conducted in partnership with research firmAscend2, analyzes survey responses from 442 marketers, sales and business professionals to determine the most effective SEO tactic for marketers in the creation of quality content.

Although many marketers believe that SEO offers benefits, not all agree, and some SEO tactics are challenging to implement. About 41% find link building one of the more difficult strategies, and 39% call out keyword research management as a close second. Some 33% admit that quality content creation proves challenging, followed by 30% for social media integration; 28%, frequent blogging; 26%, frequent Web site updates; 22%, mobile search optimization; and 13%, local search optimization.

Lead generation and Web site traffic are the top SEO objectives for marketers at enterprise companies in the coming year. In fact, 61% name increasing lead generation as a top priority, followed by 57% who want to improve Web site traffic; 54% who want to improve traffic conversion rates; 48%, natural search ranking; 33%, brand awareness; 26%, analytics and reporting; 24%, attribute sales and revenue to SEO; and 20%, increase content development.

Having limited in-house support for SEO projects places a heavy burden on marketing departments. In fact, 57% say a lack of SEO skills in-house presents the biggest challenge, followed by 43%, limited SEO budgets; 39%, optimizing content with keywords; 230% lack of an effective strategy; 28%, attributing sales to SEO; 20%, identifying new keywords; 17%, understanding search algorithms; and 13%, lack of quality content.

One caveat for the next stat in the study: Conductor, which spearheaded this survey, focuses on organic content. With that in mind, 54% of marketers participating in the survey point to quality content as the most effective SEO tactic their company uses. Frequent Web site updates follows at 50%; keyword research, 46%; social media integration, 28%; local search optimization, 28%; frequent blogging, 17%; link building, 13%; and surprisingly, mobile search optimization, with a mere 1%.

With all these limitations in mind, 55% of marketers admit their SEO endeavors are "somewhat successful"; 28%, "not successful"; and 17%, "very successful." 

"Brand Logos" photo from Shutterstock.

1 comment about "SEO: Link Building, Keyword Research Becoming Most Challenging Tactics".
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  1. Bill Roberts from DLinkers, November 25, 2014 at 10:04 p.m.

    This can be very true as Google updates are getting stricter. Going after quality links is not easy. You'll be dealing with deep research to come up with right link building strategy. Tools may help, but it's still time-consuming. Nevertheless, links are hold a heavy weight in your site's overall ranking.

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