When formulating a SEO plan, it is important to understand all of the parties that will be involved in the process. It is important to communicate the overall strategy by outlining all objectives, tasks, and goals between all team members involved. This will help each department create specific tasks and goals to achieve their piece of the puzzle.
Your marketing team must work closely with your SEO department or 3rd party agency to develop a strategy based on your goals. For an internal SEO department this may be a bit easier because they are already familiar with your philosophy, products/services, target market, resources available, policies, and company goals. For an external agency it may take extra time for them to come in and learn about how your company functions and operates.
It is the SEO’s job to understand the target market/customer, the company goals, and what to do to achieve those goals. The SEO should have a detailed plan, talking about the different SEO methods that will be used and outlining all responsibilities for each department. He must have a plan in place to monitor the impact of the strategy and how to improve.
Once that SEO plan has been created, it is important to explain to upper management your strategy, how you will get there, and what ROI you are expecting from it. Since they have the last say, you want to create a compelling argument as to why you are implementing the strategy and how it will produce results.
If you are looking to create a new website, resign an existing site, develop a new landing page(s), perform A/B or Multivariate testing, or create ads, then you will need to have your creative team develop those. It is important for the marketing and SEO departments to give the creative team some direction as to what you are looking for. Giving similar examples from other sites or even a rough mock up will help the creative team come up with something that is close to what you were looking for. The more feedback you can give to the creative on the front end, the better your end product will be.
With almost any thorough SEO project, your development team will have to make programming changes to the website. They may be changing tags, adding content, programming new creative pieces, installing analytics code into the site, etc… Make sure that the programmer(s) working on the site are familiar with the site. It could take twice as long for a programmer to make changes to a site they have never worked on before.
It is important to choose an analytics package that will record the data you are looking for. In some cases a free package like Google Analytics may suffice, however some companies may need a more professional analytics suite like CoreMetrics or Omniture. No matter which package you go with, make sure your analyst has access to this data. Probably the most important part of rolling out a SEO strategy is analyzing the data and improving on your efforts. Too many companies implement a great SEO strategy but do not take the time to look at the numbers. You can learn a lot about your market and customers just by observing what they are doing on your site and understand what lead them to a conversion/sale. Have your analyst pay close attention to your KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators), trends in the data, and your overall goals.