January 25, 2023

How to Overcome 2023’s SEO Marketing Challenges

By: Mary Hiers

Few businesses have SEO marketing strategies that don’t require intervention. New SEO marketing challenges arise constantly, but how can you deal with them?

Some SEO marketing challenges affect your business more than others, so you have to understand how they arise, what they mean, and if they should prompt a change in strategy. Here are several anticipated SEO marketing challenges for 2023 and how to overcome them.

Google’s Algorithm Evolves Continually

In 2022, Google announced no fewer than seven algorithm updates. Some had a greater effect than others, but they were concerned with things like page experience, user interface, and product reviews. 

Google’s Helpful Content algorithm update was probably the most important. It signaled to businesses that they must deliver content that helps the searcher in some practical way. 

This was also a strong signal that trying to game the search engine to reach page one of the results without providing “meaty” content would no longer be tolerated.

Companies that had always tried to provide helpful optimized content generally weren’t slammed by the algorithm change. But many noted a drop in organic traffic — often temporary.

Keep Up With Algorithm Changes, Analytics

Google’s search algorithm will continue to evolve in 2023. Some changes will be announced, and others may only receive a passing acknowledgment in the press. 

Ensure that you get notifications about Google search algorithm updates. Setting up Google Alerts is quick and easy. If you read major search engine journals, you can also find out about upcoming algorithm updates there.

When you know an algorithm update is imminent (or has recently happened), it’s time to dig into your site analytics. Did your traffic change when the update was implemented? 

If traffic drops, learn as much as possible about the algorithm update and find out how it has affected other businesses. Your drop in traffic may be temporary. If not, you may need to examine your content and analyze why it has lost favor with the upgraded algorithm so you can make the necessary content changes.  

Uncertainty About Using AI Tools

The end of 2022 brought an influx of news about artificial intelligence (AI) tools like ChatGPT. The hype may have led you to believe that such tools could take over major SEO marketing tasks. 

AI tools have demonstrated the ability to create art, write fiction, and even write songs. The press was truly smitten with AI toward the end of the year.

Yet many people were skeptical and bewildered about how to put these tools to work. You are far from alone if you are confused about how to implement AI. 

Apply AI Tools Strategically

No one is suggesting that you can have AI tools take over your SEO marketing for 2023. In fact, a skeptical approach is best.

Many AI tools offer free versions and free trials, which can be great places to start. One task where AI tools can increase productivity is outlining SEO marketing content.

Google says it considers AI-generated content on par with past years’ “scraped” and “spun” content. In other words, Google will penalize it if it detects it. Therefore, using AI to write entire articles or blog posts is not advisable.

However, using AI to create topics and outlines can accelerate the content creation process because humans still write the content. Don’t be afraid to try AI tools, but don’t expect them to replace those who do your SEO marketing.

Fickle Consumers and Accelerating Trends

Changing consumer tastes have always caused marketing challenges. In the past, a neighbor or a TV character may have started a trend that ran its course at the pace of old-school mass media. Brands had more time to cope.

Today, due to social media, fads come and go in the blink of an eye. TikTok can make a product go viral one week and become extinct the next. How can the slower pace of SEO marketing cope?

Be Flexible, Understand Target Consumers

Leaning on SEO marketing “the way we’ve always done it” is risky now. While the skills remain largely the same, employing SEO marketing must include the willingness to pivot quickly.

Knowing how to allocate SEO marketing resources has always required understanding your target audience and what they want. In 2023, you may have to follow your target audience as they flock to a new platform and then learn how to market on that platform. 

Your team will still employ their skills. But how they employ them may have to change quickly. Ensure your team is ready to use their skills in novel ways and be ready to monitor marketing analytics so you can learn what works and what doesn’t.

Budget Constraints

No one ever complains about having too much SEO marketing money and not knowing how to spend it. Having to allocate resources within a constrained budget is the norm, especially for smaller businesses.

Shutting down a digital marketing campaign isn’t fun. However, it allows you to reallocate your budget quickly. 

Compare this to mass-media advertisers of the 20th century. They may have used focus groups, but once a campaign began, they had to wait for the numbers and the zeitgeist to tell them whether it worked.

Target, Evaluate Budget ROI

The good news is that today’s digital marketing can be highly targeted. This means mistakes are less costly and easier to recover from. 

Again, the key is knowing your target audience. Every platform, from your website to social media ad platforms, has ad targeting tools.

The better you focus your marketing efforts on your target audience, the less money you will waste, even if you have to pull a campaign and move it to a new platform.

The corollary activity is monitoring the analytics provided by Google and the various social media platforms. Targeting and monitoring are two skills that help you use your marketing budget to its best advantage. 

Competing with Big Brands

Most small businesses are acutely aware that they compete with big brands with big budgets and the best contacts. How can all these Davids compete with nationally-known Goliaths?

Moreover, according to co-founder of NP Digital Neil Patel, Google’s algorithms favor established brands. Breaking into the market can be hard!

Emphasize Brand Building

SEO marketing that emphasizes brand-building is the key to competing with big brands. One way Patel suggests for spurring brand queries is creating your own branded online tools. 

These tools should solve problems for the target audience. For example, a carpet cleaning business may offer an online tool that allows people to estimate how many square feet of carpet they have.

Not every business can offer tools, but every business can emphasize brand-building in its SEO marketing strategy. Organic social media can be an excellent platform for brand-building campaigns as long as you establish a positive, steady pace of posting and engage with your audience. 

Creating Enough High-Quality Content

Since AI tools aren’t yet up to creating high-quality content, how can you ensure it gets done? SEO marketing, after all, depends on a generous volume of fresh, original content delivered on a regular basis.

If you have an SEO writer, they may be able to create content faster with the help of AI tools that can help them identify keywords and outline articles. But this requires investing in an AI tool since the free versions and trials aren’t meant for repeated use.

Hire or Outsource Content Creation

Hiring writers can be a good investment, provided they understand SEO marketing and the key principles of SEO. Another option is outsourcing. 

Agencies that provide SEO-enriched content can be more cost-effective than hiring for many smaller businesses. And they are likely to employ writers who understand SEO marketing, so there is less uncertainty than when hiring a freelancer. 

SEO marketing and other forms of digital marketing are what we do, along with designing and building SEO-enriched websites.

If you are concerned about overcoming SEO marketing hurdles in 2023, set up a call with our team. We understand the obstacles, and we know how to overcome them. It would be our pleasure to help you put SEO marketing to work for your business. 

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