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Marketers Don't Understand SEO, Report Suggests

Some 83% of businesses think their digital marketing efforts are effective in helping them achieve their goal, but 44% name SEO as their least popular digital marketing channel.

Clutch polled about 500 digital marketers at companies with at least 100 employees; revenue ranged from less than $50 million to more than $500 million.

Apparently there is a knowledge gap between understanding SEO's full potential and actually using the digital media.

Marketers say they use digital channels, but the top six are far from search. At 81%, the top digital channel is social media, followed by websites at 78%, email at 69%, display and banner ads at 55%, mobile apps at 53%, and content marketing at 53%.

Many businesses are not aware of the benefits that SEO offers. A lack of awareness about how SEO functions and the fact that the media does not provide immediate results are two of the top reasons that SEO is a less popular digital marketing channel.

Some 28% of marketers participating in the survey say they use digital marketing in their business to increase sales and revenue -- so attribution, or the lack of knowledge about attribution (any type), also becomes a major concern.

Overall, the top five digital marketing goals for 2018 are to increase sales and revenue at 28%, followed by improving brand awareness at 19%, converting leads at 15%, standing out from competitors at 13%, and increasing website traffic at 11%.

Of course, a company’s digital marketing goals vary by business size. Some 21% of marketers at companies with between 101 and 500 employees say their digital marketing goal is to improve brand awareness, compared with 22% of marketers at companies with between 501 and 5,000 employees. Only 14% of marketers at companies with 5,000 or more employees fell the same.

Marketers at companies with 5,000 or more employees are more concerned about standing out from the competition, at 21%. From there the percentage drops to 12% for marketers at companies that have between 501 and 5,000 employees, and 7% for those at companies with between 101 and 500 employees.

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