When you work in digital marketing, not a day goes by without hearing the term ‘SEO’. While those of us who work in the marketing industry are aware that the initialism stands for ‘Search Engine Optimisation’, if we’re being honest with ourselves, how familiar are we with the ins and outs of how it works? 

As the Head of Project Management at a digital marketing agency, it’s not often that I get hands-on with client delivery work; instead, it’s mine and my team’s job to make sure that our clients have a seamless experience whilst we manage our agency’s teams to deliver award-winning work effectively and efficiently.

So, when the opportunity came up to study with the University of Nottingham Online in their SEO Fundamentals course, I jumped at the chance to add to my SEO knowledge. 

In this blog, I’m exploring the benefits that UoNO’s SEO training brings to a project management role, based on my own learning experience.

In this blog, I’ll explore:

  • What is SEO?  
  • How to get better at communicating with your team and clients
  • Keeping up with the ever-changing digital landscape
  • Saving time and resources
  • Enhancing your problem-solving skills

What is SEO?

Let’s start with the basics: SEO, standing for Search Engine Optimisation, is the practice of optimising your website to appear at the top of search engine results pages, like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. When you search for “funny cat videos” or “world’s best cookie recipe,” the quality of the site’s SEO is what determines which websites pop up first and which get lost in the internet’s abyss.

A 2020 study in Search Engine Journal study states that the clickthrough rate for websites in position one on the SERP is 25%. For websites ranking in second place this drops to 15% and then down to 2.5% for those sitting in 10th. Page two SERPs on Google, as you’d imagine, is even lower.

This is all well and good but you might be wondering, “but what has SEO got to do with project managers?”

SEO isn’t just for web developers and digital marketers; it’s a skill that can benefit anyone working on projects that involve an online component. 

There are a number of ways that a deeper understanding of SEO can benefit project managers and overall project success; here’s a clear breakdown of the benefits I’ve reaped in my role so far.

Better communication with your team and clients

Imagine you’re the project manager of a website redesign project: you have a team of designers, developers, and content writers working on the project, sometimes even a team of SEO experts. Understanding SEO can help you speak their language and ensure that the project aligns with the client’s digital goals. 

When your web development team says, “We need to optimise the site for mobile users,” you’ll nod knowingly and appreciate the importance of responsive design. When your content writer suggests using keywords strategically, you’ll be right on board and be able to relay the importance to the client because you understand the SEO benefits behind it. Communication becomes smoother and your project team can work together like a well-oiled machine.

An SEO-trained project manager can add immense value by acting as the constant thread between departments when working on digital projects, making sure that work not only looks great, but also adds SEO value for the client.

Stay up to date with the ever-changing digital landscape 

The digital landscape is like a rollercoaster; it’s always changing, and when you’re not the digital marketer but still leading a digital project, it can sometimes feel like you’re riding blindfolded. SEO can act as your trusty map to navigate this rollercoaster with confidence. An SEO training course teaches you about the latest trends and updates in the world of search engines and online marketing and helps you feel confident talking to clients about improving their Organic strategies, regardless of whether the work is being carried out by your internal team or theirs.

Save time and resources

Project managers are often juggling multiple tasks and deadlines. The last thing you want is to spend valuable time and resources on initiatives that won’t yield results. With better SEO understanding, you can make informed decisions about where to invest your clients time and budget, bringing the right experts in at the right time on all your digital projects.

Enhance your problem-solving skills

SEO is like a puzzle, and completing it successfully requires analytical thinking and problem-solving skills. 

It’s not just about knowing the theory; it’s about applying it to real-world situations. An SEO training course can sharpen your problem-solving abilities as you work on optimising websites and content.

These newfound skills will not only help you tackle SEO-related challenges but also improve your general problem-solving skills, which are essential for any project manager.

In the world of project management, knowledge is power. A project manager with a good base level understanding of SEO can communicate effectively with their digital teams, keep up with the evolving digital landscape, save time and resources, and sharpen their problem-solving skills. More importantly, they can build trust and confidence with clients who will feel that their online presence is in safe hands.

So, if you’re a project manager looking to level up your game, consider enrolling in an SEO training course; it’s a fun and enlightening journey that can take your projects to the next level in the digital realm. 

Find out more about the SEO fundamentals course at UoNO.