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Study Looks At SEO Tactics Regarding Effectiveness and Difficulty

If you are trying to prove a point about anything related to SEO you can probably find a study that supports what you are trying to prove. That, of course, is bias and it should have no place in looking at something objectively but, hey, this is SEO. If it wasn’t for opinions and stances there would be nothing to write about.

A study that was shared by eMarketer which was conducted by Ascend2 and Research Underwriters shows how B2C and B2B marketers view certain aspects of the SEO game with regard to how effective certain tactics are and just how difficult they are as well. Here are the charts so you can see how these two segments view the act of SEO.

First the B2C crowd:

Effective v Difficult SEO B2C

Now the B2B crowd:

Effective v Difficultb B2B

One point of consensus across the two practice areas is the external link building is the hardest part of SEO. I wonder if that’s why it is viewed as one the least effective tactics rather than it actually being less effective than say, keyword management.

One slight yet logical difference is the importance of creating original content having a higher position in the effectiveness pecking order for B2B marketers. B2B marketers often are concerned about terms like ‘thought leadership’ or ‘industry expertise’ and how else to ‘prove’ those kinds of concepts in the Internet space than to produce content that shows off your capabilities.

A small surprise came from the different points of view on the difficulty of social media integration as the B2C crowd found it to be considerably more difficult than the B2B marketers. My theory here is that social media in the B2C space attracts a much broader and less clearly definable audience whereas the B2B social media player is talking to people who are there for more specific reasons. Is that always the case? No, nothing in the Internet space is ‘always the case’. It is important to note, though, since social signals in search are becoming increasingly important and are not going to go away anytime soon.

Overall, nothing particularly earth shattering here but it is important to stay abreast of the where the heads of SEO practitioners in the real world are. I say, in the real world, in that many marketers are doing SEO as only one part of their laundry list of marketing duties that extend in to the offline world as well, while pure SEO experts often have a more narrow focus and see the discipline through a much different lens.

To that point, how accurate do you feel these findings are with respect to both the level of effectiveness of various SEO techniques as well as the level of difficulty of each? Was there anything you would add to the list? Let’s hear you sound off in the comments.