Search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial to a company’s digital marketing strategy. Optimizing a small company website is a relatively manageable task. Optimizing a website with thousands of pages and keywords, however, is much more complicated.
As a premier company, you can’t rely on small business and mid-market SEO strategies. This is because strategies that work for small organizations might not work for larger ones.
Instead, it would be best if focus on more sophisticated techniques to improve your search engine rankings and brand awareness.
This is where enterprise SEO can be exceptionally effective.
This blog post will discuss what enterprise SEO means and how it differs from regular SEO.
Enterprise SEO is leveraging a set of SEO strategies to improve the search engine rankings and organic presence of a large enterprise organization.
These companies are usually defined as “large” due to the number of pages on their site rather than their employees. For example, below are the kind of websites that may require enterprise SEO:
1. Fortune 500 and 1,000 company
2. Large eCommerce websites with 10k+ pages, like Amazon
3. Businesses with multiple locations
4. Companies with multiple subdomains and websites
5. Businesses with annual revenue higher than $1 billion
6. Media publishers with high publication rates (thousands of articles)
Common enterprise SEO techniques include scaling content, featured snippet optimization, voice SEO, E-A-T approach, ongoing technical SEO management and automation.
Take a look at GitHub’s website, for example. It has over 63 million pages indexed in Google. Therefore, this is a type of website where enterprise SEO works.
When you’re working on SEO for a major company challenges, solutions, project timelines and the effect of even minor tactics are amplified. Here are seven things that set enterprise SEO apart from other types of SEO.
Traditional or regular SEO strategies are leveraged by small businesses or mid-market companies with a few (or a couple of hundred) web pages. On the other hand, enterprise SEO is implemented on huge websites or eCommerce platforms consisting of anywhere from a few thousand to a million pages.
It, therefore, makes sense that SEO techniques that work for small websites might not give the same results for larger sites. Of course, many traditional and enterprise SEO fundamentals are the same, but big websites have numerous additional layers of complexity.
Another significant difference is scale. When you’re dealing with thousands and even millions of pages on a site, your SEO strategies need to be scalable. Otherwise, the site’s organic traffic and brand awareness will not make any difference.
Let’s say, you have thousands of products with an individual web page for each product to optimize. You will need to create copious amounts of content for each category and product page. Additionally, you need to find competitive keywords to rank for and give your writers guidelines on making the content SEO-friendly – what primary and secondary keywords to include, tips on image alt-text, including snippets and more.
Further, the internal linking approach is different in both types. On a small site, internally linking a few pages can positively impact your search rankings. But a few internal links aren’t going to work on a big website with millions of pages. You may want to set up an SEO-friendly site structure that automatically generates internal links between different web pages.
Whatever you decide to do, improving each page manually or without automation for a large enterprise site, can be extremely daunting. This is where scaling up can help.
To implement it successfully, you need a team of dedicated professionals working in different areas of digital marketing, like content, design, PR, social media and branding, to scale content production. You also need an expert SEO team to find new keywords and send them to a content marketing team.
Not only that, but sometimes scaling up also means setting up an entire department, like a content marketing department, and leveraging systems and software to ensure they create high-quality content regularly.
Numerous SEO tools are available, but not all can manage the complexity of a large enterprise website. This is where enterprise SEO tools can help. Using an enterprise SEO tool can help you with:
1. Boosting productivity of organic search marketing teams
2. Identifying new keywords
3. Tracking performance
4. Competitive analysis
5. Optimizing and scaling content creation
6. Integrating analytics tools
7. Backlink reporting and management
8. Efficient communication among different departments
9. Technical analysis from crawling to conversions.
Various SEO platforms like Ahrefs and SEMrush provide a custom plan for enterprise clients. For example, Ahrefs’ enterprise plan, known as the “Agency” plan, offers tools and valuable data to each team member – from your content marketer to your SEO advisor.
Further, it comes with 10K tracked keywords, 2.5 million crawl credits per month and 7K domain research per week.
Remember: Whatever enterprise SEO tool you select, make sure that it is great for large-scale projects and can be easily scalable as your business grows.
Traditional SEO strategies usually target long-tail keywords with less competition. However, this tactic won’t always work for you if you’re a large organization.
One of the greatest things about enterprise SEO is its focus on short-tail, highly competitive keywords. That’s because many large-scale websites have high domain authority – after all, they’re a huge brand.
For example, Booking.com doesn’t leverage any content marketing technique but still has over 1.8 billion backlinks from 293.5K domains. So, even if they want to start with content marketing, they’d still have the edge over their small competitors.
Why? Because Google’s algorithm prefers sites with a high number of backlinks. And therefore, sites with high domain authority (DA) are more likely to rank above sites with lower DA.
Hence, it makes sense for larger websites to target highly-competitive keywords compared to long-tail ones.
Small companies aim to improve their website’s search results by selling products and services locally. It therefore stand to reason that leveraging traditional SEO practices can work great here.
On the other hand, enterprise SEO focuses on larger businesses with multiple locations across different countries, multiple sites requiring their own strategy and multiple subdomains that house different content categories.
For enterprise companies, therefore, you must focus on creating location-specific content that’s consistent with their brand and drives conversions.
For Meineke, one of the biggest auto repair businesses in the U.S., brand recognition was not a problem. Instead, it wanted to keep up with the growing importance of local search.
So, it focused its SEO efforts on “near me” optimization and voice search, which resulted in a 30% increase in organic visibility when compared to its two biggest competitors.
One of the biggest challenges enterprise SEOs face that doesn’t exist with smaller businesses is to ensure seamless integration across teams to maximize impact. This means making sure that multiple teams are working towards a common goal. But since all teams have their own objectives, getting approval on specific changes in a reasonable timeframe within your department becomes difficult.
For example, suppose you’re a marketing agency handling the SEO of an enterprise company, and you notice that a few web pages have multiple H1 tags. It’s not something that can lower your site’s SEO, but it’s always recommended to fix it.
So, you contact the website’s developer via mail, “Hey Mike, I noticed that your product pages have more than one H1 tag. Can you fix that? Thanks.”
Usually, a developer can quickly fix such a problem. But sometimes, they require approval from people in different departments, like development, content, design and SEO.
And that’s just changing an H1 tag. Imagine if you want to change the site’s structure to be more SEO-friendly. It will usually take weeks or months for approval. And even then, there’s no guarantee that they’ll act on your recommendation.
In a nutshell, enterprise SEO isn’t just about optimizing thousands of web pages or scaling up your efforts. For your SEO suggestions to get implemented, you need to get buy-in from the specific team members in different departments.
Crawlability and indexability are critical technical SEO factors that can make or break your site’s visibility, regardless of your valuable content or backlink profile. And when you’re working with thousands of site pages, they could become an problem.
For smaller sites, you don’t need to be concerned about these factors as they can be fixed quickly. But, large sites can be challenging to crawl and index where the crawl budget isn’t being improved. Not to mention canonicalization issues, duplicate content, keyword cannibalization problems, orphan pages and more.
Enterprise SEO is the future for large organizations. Done well, it can help brands become a leader in their industry. And if not executed properly, it can damage their reputation and bottom line.
Sure, enterprise sites need not worry about name recognition. But, to protect their domain authority and backlinks while keeping content updated on thousands of web pages, having a dedicated, sophisticated team of SEO experts is a must.
Remember: The more pages your website has, the harder it is to manage your SEO efforts.