SEO Survey Reveals Biggest Challenges Facing Online Marketers

Search engine optimization tactics, like keyword research and link building, are becoming more difficult for SEO professionals, according to a survey released Tuesday by web presence management provider Conductor and research firm Ascend2.

Search engine optimization continues to be crucial for businesses that want online exposure. Organic traffic accounts for 94% of online browser click through rates, and 75% of internet users don’t even scroll past the first search results page that appears.

“Organic search is one of the most crucial tools available to enterprises seeking to generate awareness and increase online visibility to reach consumers.” Conductor CEO Seth Besmertnik said in a statement. “With hundreds of thousands of products and pages, enterprise companies need a way to manage, scale and value SEO. This research report helps marketers at large companies to understand what is working for their peers and where they should focus their SEO efforts to maximize ROI.”

The report, titled “Inside Enterprise SEO: SEO Survey Benchmarks for Large Companies,” offered some interesting data about the future of SEO and online marketing.

With the flurry of Google updates in recent years, tech commentators have written plenty of blog posts about the death of SEO, but it seems to be still going strong. In the survey, 72% of enterprises rated SEO as successful in furthering objectives like increased web traffic and lead generation, and 57% believed SEO had become more successful in the past year. Only 2% believed SEO had become less successful.

As for SEO tactics, content continues to be king: 54% of respondents said that content creation was the most effective SEO tactic, while 50% said that frequently updated websites were more important. Surprisingly, only 2% chose mobile search optimization as the most effective tactic.

The most difficult tactics, according to survey participants, were link building and keyword research management. The two biggest obstacles to success in SEO objectives were limited in-house skills and budgetary problems.

These results should help SEO firms adjust their strategies going into 2015.

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