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According to Internet Live Stats, there are more than 83,000 Google searches happening every second throughout the world. If you want your website to be among those on the first page of results for any of those searches, investing in search engine optimization (SEO) is the only path to take.
For most small to midsize companies, that means having a small team or an SEO agency devoted to bettering their search engine visibility and organic traffic. For larger enterprises, however, it isn’t quite so simple.
We’ll explain what enterprise SEO is, how it differs from conventional SEO, what the top strategies and tactics are for achieving the best results and how to find SEO tools and software.
The definition of enterprise SEO is the process of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to the websites of large organizations with complex needs.
Enterprise SEO is geared toward a large corporation or any business with an expansive, 1,000-plus page website. It uses the same tactics and strategies as a smaller scale SEO strategy but has a few different focuses and requirements.
There are crucial differences between running an enterprise SEO strategy and one for a smaller business or organization. Here are 3 of the most notable ones:
A 2-person team probably isn't going to cut it for enterprise SEO. Typically, you'll want a few enterprise SEO strategists who can tackle research and ideation, then dictate what needs to be done to other teams. Those other teams might include:
Each team should be built out so that individuals are focusing on their niche SEO tactic. Structuring a large team of SEO professionals in this way, with one or more enterprise SEO strategists at the head, is most likely to lead to the increased organic traffic and revenue returns you're looking for.
The basis of any SEO strategy is keyword research. Where a small to midsize company might focus on optimizing for a few core keywords, a large corporation with a 1,000-plus page website would have a much broader keyword focus. That means a very large and comprehensive keyword research strategy, plus a plan to implement keywords at a granular, on-page level.
An enterprise SEO-level keyword list still will include a handful of bread-and-butter keywords, just like a smaller website's keyword list would. However, when a company sells more than 1,000 unique products, each one is going to have its own set of keywords. That makes for a massive keyword list, and a carefully crafted strategy to match.
It'll take a team of people, not just 1 or 2, to implement that strategy.
While a technical SEO issue, such as high page load times or duplicate content, can derail any SEO strategy, it can have greater weight for an enterprise and be more difficult to fix. A technical issue can cause low rankings, meaning a huge decrease in profitability for such a large website.
On top of creating a big loss in profitability, technical issues for enterprise websites can be challenging to fix.
If your small website is running too slowly on mobile, there are a couple of things you can do to try to speed it up. When your large enterprise website is running slowly on mobile, there's just a lot more you may need to fix. You have more assets, more functionality and just more of everything.
While just about every SEO strategy will work for an enterprise website, there are 5 that stand out as being the most impactful. Start with an enterprise SEO audit, then focus on what's going to bring in the most traffic and revenue.
When you have hundreds or thousands of pages, automation and optimized templates are key to creating a website that'll work for you, not against you. Instead of optimizing possibly thousands of pages one by one, invest in automation and creating optimized templates.
If you're launching new product pages every week, is your team spending a bunch of time optimizing each individual page, or are those pages going live without being optimized?
Automate the process of fixing what you've currently got, and create templates that pull in optimized keywords. These tactics will not only save time, but could increase your organic visibility, click-through rates and revenue much faster than optimizing each page one-by-one.
We like Search Engine Land's thoughts on templates:
At the enterprise SEO level, templates need a bit of intelligence. The last thing anyone wants is a web page with holes in the text created by empty database fields. This means they have to recognize when data is not present and adjust accordingly. They also have to be flexible enough to handle variations, like different numbers of images on different pages.
As we’ve said, technical SEO is even more important for enterprises than it is for smaller businesses, so let's go a little deeper into why that’s the case.
How many pages do you have on your website? How many people can touch the content on those pages? The larger these numbers, the more difficult it is to keep track of things such as indexation, crawlability, mobile-friendliness, duplicate content and page speed. These are some of the biggest technical SEO issues facing enterprise-level websites, and when not taken care of, can really diminish the returns you're seeing from your website.
The best way to stay out in front of issues is to keep a technical SEO team on hand (in-house or hire an agency), and perform regular technical SEO audits.
According to a study completed by Backlinko, the number of referring domains that are linking to your site directly influences your position in searches.
It's arguable that link building is a little bit easier for enterprise-level companies than it is for some smaller ones, as a larger company most likely gets some of their mentions and links without needing to put a lot of work into getting them.
That said, there is a huge possibility of missed opportunities if you aren’t paying enough attention.
A crucial link building tactic you absolutely can’t overlook is unlinked mention outreach. This type of link building outreach involves locating unlinked mentions of your business, product or service, and reaching out to the content owner to ask for the link. It's time-consuming, but can produce big returns, as you can see in the chart above.
A few tools that you'll want to check out for unlinked mention mining:
While mining unlinked mentions can be an incredibly fruitful SEO strategy for enterprises, so can just about any link-building tactic.
All of your other SEO tactics and strategies will fall flat without content. You simply can’t compete without it.
For enterprise-level businesses, you must be churning out relevant, impactful, valuable content on a regular basis.
According to the Backlinko study, organic search results that rank on page 1 of Google contain an average of 1,890 words.
This statistic is the same across the board, whether you're an enterprise business or a small one. You're competing with everyone in your space to rank content and grab valuable organic traffic by providing the exact content your audience is looking for.
Bonus: Creating awesome content on a regular basis brings in a huge opportunity for getting more backlinks.
The No. 1 rule of branding and reputation as an SEO strategy for enterprise-level businesses: Never become complacent because you already have great brand recognition.
What do the SERPs look like when you search for your own brand or product? You probably see a mixture of results that are owned by you (your website, your Wikipedia page, your social media) and some that aren't (Google reviews, other review sites and news articles).
To take control of your online brand and reputation, you need to not only watch those branded results, but do your best to manipulate them to your advantage.
Accomplish this by:
There’s no shortage of enterprise SEO platforms available for your business, and it will require a significant amount of research to choose the one that's going to be the best fit.
Before you look at any of the available software, it's wise to sit down and think critically with your team about what you need out of it.
Now, when you begin looking at what's out there, you'll be able to sort by your most immediate needs.
For instance, if technical SEO is one of your biggest challenges right now, maybe you want to choose an enterprise SEO platform that includes a custom site crawl tool. Or, maybe you're in a really competitive industry and need to keep an eye on your competitors at all times. In that case, look for a platform with that capability.
The answer to this question isn’t one size fits all. Your enterprise business is unique, as is its structure. If you prefer to hire your own expert team, that's for you to decide. In some cases, even if you hire your own experts, there may still be a plus side to hiring an enterprise SEO company to bolster your own work.
How should you come to a conclusion here?
Enterprise SEO requires a unique set of considerations, strategies and tools. While enterprise SEO uses many of the same tactics and strategies as a small-scale SEO operation, there are key differences in terms of the focus and requirements for running a successful campaign.