Everyone expects SEO professionals to have a solid grasp on how to design websites and write content that will maximize the chances of those sites trending upward on a search results page. But most people also understand that there’s a lot more to an SEO professional’s work than just selecting and distributing keywords in the right quantity and configuration.
Among the other areas of expertise that SEO professionals need to have is a knowledge of third-party websites and platforms that might help a client’s website to become integrated into a network of relevant and reputable links. A site’s search engine optimization is strongly tied to the traffic that it receives from places other than search engine results pages.
The importance of these links means that SEO professionals frequently have responsibilities that overlap with those of social media managers. This is one of the reasons why it’s a good idea for site owners to partner with web service providers who are capable of wearing a number of different hats. The traffic your site receives from various social media platforms could impact its ranking on search engines, especially if social media interactions also lead to and from other third-party sites.
Those sites might include blogs, news sites, or online directories. A user who interacts with your business on social media might go on to write about their experience with your business on a personal blog. Or they might take it upon themselves to update an online listing for your business. By monitoring these interactions closely, SEO professionals can make sure they result in links that connect the blog or directory to the client’s site, both directly and via social media. Ideally, traffic through both of those pathways will make search algorithms take twice as much notice of the site.
The preceding example highlights how an SEO professional’s social media expertise can lead to links being generated directly by third parties, like avid users of online directories. But naturally this kind of outside help isn’t something that SEO professionals can always rely on, so their toolkit must also include a great deal of expertise about third party sites where they can build relevant links on their own.
Expertise is crucial here because just searching around at random can actually get you into trouble. Submitting a client’s website to irrelevant or under-used directories can actually lead search engine algorithms to believe you’re spamming them, and this can lead to you being penalized with a lower ranking. SEO professionals must build these links, but they must build them carefully, and that requires advanced knowledge of which third-party sites have good reputations and valuable, established audiences, and thus which sites are most worthy of being included in the network for an SEO campaign.