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Is SEO Really A Hard Skill To Learn?

September 23, 2020

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Search engine optimisation is an essential component of any business’ online efforts. When you first dive into the subject, you discover pretty quickly that SEO requires a lot of different elements, some of which may not seem all that connected in the beginning.

From content marketing to keyword research, making sure your website has an intuitive design, and more, SEO efforts span across many different areas. But how easy is it for first-time marketers to learn SEO skills?

We are getting to the bottom of this question in this article.

SEO 101: What Does It Involve?

SEO is a practice that involves increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.

When it comes to traffic quantity, this is a pretty self-explanatory term; it refers to getting more people to visit your site from the search engine result pages. Quality of traffic, however, means you are not just interested in the final number of new users, but also the type of user, and their intent.

For most businesses, they want to attract users most interested in what the business has to offer, be it a product, a service, or just information. Because of this, just any user clicking on your link won’t be effective in helping you reach your business goals, which is why SEO efforts focus on traffic quality as well.

For instance, let’s say you have a local phone repair business and want to promote it so that more people come to you with their broken smartphones. Through SEO, you will then target users searching for phone repair shops in your area, instead of going for the broader, more vague term of “smartphone repair” or even just “smartphones.” The broader target means more traffic, but in this case, more traffic will not result in more people paying for your services.

Successful SEO has the goal of helping you get closer to your business goals by improving your position in the SERPs. Many of the individual SEO strategies work towards both improving user experience and making one’s website search engine-friendly, meaning the web crawler can easily scan it and match it to the user query.

How Difficult Is It to Learn SEO?

SEO is not that difficult to learn. When it comes to most digital marketing methods, their biggest appeal is that they have a rather small learning curve, and once you’re familiar with the process and understand it, it is easy to set up a strategy and implement it.

However, SEO is a long-term strategy that needs a lot of your attention. An SEO strategy usually encompasses a lot of different nooks and crannies of your business’ online presence, such as:

● Content marketing
● Keyword research
● Website optimisation, which focuses on various technical aspects of a website
● Social media marketing
● Link building strategies, which involve getting other high-quality sites to link to yours
● Even search engine marketing, which are paid ads, also rely on how well your SEO efforts are doing

Most people who choose SEO as a career path can easily understand the process, but they will need time to get a handle on everything this effort involves.

What Skills Does SEO Require?

There are a handful of important skills any SEO professional either must have or needs to work on as they are learning about it. And you’ll be surprised to discover that not all of them are marketing skills:

Critical Thinking

SEO requires an analytical mind to understand how the marketing strategy brought on a particular result and why. SEO is not necessarily a strategy you design today, implement tomorrow, and wait for it to bring results quickly.

It requires constant, realtime improvement, but to know whether you should improve something, you need to be able to understand the difference between correlation and causation. And this comes with practice.

Writing Abilities

Especially in terms of writing for the online sphere. With a website, a piece of content needs to keep users engaged so that they continue reading, preferably so much so that they want to visit even more webpages and spend more time on your site.

Writing for a website is very different from writing an article for a newspaper or a book. Online, people have much less patience, and they want the information to be presented to them clearly and succinctly. This means that even more complex ideas have to be stripped down to their cores, and presented in such a way that all members of your target audience can understand what you’re writing about.

Technical Skills

While the SEO professional may not work on a website’s HTML themselves, it is important to have at least basic technical skills or understanding of how a website works.

SEO efforts often focus a lot of a website’s performance:

● Page speed
● Server-side redirects
● Lazy loading
● Image optimisation
● HTML tags

It’s very difficult to improve a website’s performance if you do not understand how it actually works.

People Skills

This one may not seem that obvious, but having people skills as an SEO professional is essential. You will likely not do everything on your own, but work with a group of people you, therefore, have to coordinate and communicate with constantly.

Anyone who’s ever been in charge of a group of people knows this is not an easy thing to do. But much of the SEO industry’s efforts involve cooperating and combining different people’s skills to achieve great results.

Final Thoughts: Can You Do It?

The bottom line is this: SEO can be easily learned by just about anyone, but it will take some time to get to a level where you can implement a successful SEO strategy. Of course, this doesn’t mean SEO newbies shouldn’t try to learn more about this tactic. Even business owners who do not plan on taking a hands-on approach can benefit from learning more about how SEO works.

If you’re looking for an SEO professional to show you the ropes and help you create an effective SEO strategy, Australian Internet Advertising is happy to lend a hand. Book a free 30-minute strategy session with us now, or give us a call at 1300 304 640. We’re dedicated to helping Australian businesses improve their digital marketing efforts and getting them closer to their goals.

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