In this post, I’ll provide five SEO project management practices that we’ve discovered to be critical to client success. You can also utilize them to ensure that your SEO efforts go successfully.
- Establish a Repetitive Process
First, make sure you understand your service offerings and strategy, as well as how you intend to carry out the task. You won’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you sign a new customer or begin a new SEO job.
To be clear, I’m not suggesting that your deliverables be the same for each customer or SEO assignment. However, you must have a plan for how you will approach the assignment.
For instance, your project template may include the following steps: Step 1: kickoff call, Step 2: research, Step 3: SEO audit, and so on. This is a significant time saver that also guarantees duties are not overlooked.
Pro tip: Some tasks in the scope of an SEO project will always be repeated. Make a template for everything you do repeatedly and/or automate it to save time.
- Establish Expectations
One of the primary reasons projects fail is that expectations are not established from the start. Have a launch call whenever you start a new SEO job or sign a new customer.
On the launch call, you may discuss a range of topics to ensure that everyone knows the scope of the engagement, their duties, and any other pertinent information.
If you are signing a new customer, this is an excellent moment to go over the contract verbally (even if they signed it and supposedly read it ahead of time). That way, there is no possibility for misunderstanding.
You should also discuss when and how you plan to communicate about the initiative. If you are adaptable, you may defer to the modes of communication preferred by stakeholders, such as email vs phone conversations. Then, make a plan for regular touch-base communications.
Even if you’ve previously addressed what stakeholders want out of the project in the past, it’s critical to dive further on the launch call. What do they anticipate? How will you determine success?
In this conversation, it may be useful to delve more into any queries you have about the SEO project. If the launch call becomes too long, schedule another time to interview stakeholders to gather the information you want.
- Inform Stakeholders
If you have little to no expertise with SEO, it might sound like a whole foreign language. Projects might fail quickly if others do not perceive the value in what you are doing.
That is why you should educate stakeholders whenever possible. Explain in layman’s terms how the job you propose or are performing will help them. Search engine results might help you backup your suggestions.
Keep in mind that various stakeholders have conflicting priorities. As a result, you must tailor the topic of your talks to your audience (the marketing team versus the CEO, for example). However, we feel that in order to achieve the greatest results, an SEO consultant must educate their customer.
It is entirely up to you how you carry out the education component. For example, all of our SEO consulting clients at Bruce Clay Inc. go through our SEO training. We also take advantage of any chance to teach along the route, such as during SEO audits, phone conversations, and so on.
- Project Management
Project management may seem vary depending on your business or corporation. You may be the only one running the show, or you may be cooperating with others and sharing the burden.
Whatever you’re doing, be sure you’re using excellent time management methods and monitoring milestones along the way.
If you’re working with others to complete a task, schedule regular team check-ins to ensure everything is proceeding as planned. If not, you’ll have to backtrack.
To keep things going smoothly, it’s a good idea to employ the correct collaboration tools. For example, you might use a programme like Basecamp or Trello to manage all project data and files in one spot. You may enhance it using Slack to deliver brief messages about the project to others.
If you manage a team, make sure you all get together on a regular basis to share what you’ve done and learned.
Remember that everyone has a unique personality, set of abilities, and contributions to make. So you are not just managing work, but also people. That requires solid interpersonal skills as well.
- Communicate Progress
I had mentioned scheduling conversations at regular intervals to discuss the project. These monthly-ish sessions are often used to discuss outstanding work, disclose any problems (dubbed “stucks”), exchange project ideas, and ask questions. You may also discuss progress on those calls.
Regardless, you should plan out when and how you will report on progress. For example, at the end of each month and quarter, you may send reports that demonstrate project progress and any victories. Then, on your regularly scheduled Zoom call, you may go over those.
Then, at the end of the project, you may provide a more detailed presentation demonstrating what you’ve achieved. Whatever reporting technique you use, convey to stakeholders when and how they may anticipate reports.
Reporting not only displays the figures, but it also contributes to the project’s momentum and keeps employees interested in the SEO job.
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