5 Things I Learned About SEO as an Intern

In the summer of 2019, I interned at Seer Interactive in the San Diego office. During my internship, I learned a ton about SEO, PPC, and Analytics. Below are five key tips and lessons that I learned throughout my internship that made executing SEO tactics much easier.

1. SEO Chrome Extensions Can Make Life Easier

Want to save time and make your life easier? Then I highly recommend that you find Chrome extensions that support the creation of your SEO deliverables. Here are a couple that I found useful:

  • Keywords Everywhere- Want a tool that saves you the hassle of copying data from various websites, and uses Google Ads Keyword Planner to show you relevant search volume and CPC data?  When you enter a search query into Google, it automatically gives you search volume on similar terms as well. Keywords Everywhere is a great tool to support your keyword research.
  • SEO Peek- Auditing webpages can be a pain, but this tool enables a one-click peek into the most relevant content elements of on-page SEO.
  • Grammarly- This may not be an SEO-specific tool, but it's still a huge help. I recommend paying for the premium service, as this tool works across email, MS Office and Google. If you’re creating content, spell check won’t cut it. This tool will save you and your supervisor a lot of time.

2. Excel Is Great, But You Need More In SEO

You've probably spent a lot of time learning formulas and shortcuts and don’t want to hear someone say that now it’s time to learn a new tool. Luckily the folks at Microsoft also developed Power BI, so if you’re already proficient in Excel, you should be able to create amazing visualizations with only a few hours of training in PowerBI.

It’s also the visualization tool we use at Seer to combine SEO and PPC data to uncover cross-divisional insights for our clients. Unfortunately, Excel just can’t keep up with big data, but luckily for you, our founder Wil has made some amazing videos on Power BI basics for digital marketers.

3. How to Learn & Stay Up To Date In An Evolving SEO Environment

For learning the basics, the Moz Blog is a great place to start. I like that they have written content and White Board Friday Videos, which support multiple learning styles. Search Engine Journal and Search Engine Round Table are great to help you stay up to date, as they are quick to post responses to Google updates and changes to the SEO environment.

4. Take An Audience-First Approach

Google has been cranking out updates lately, which can cause pages to rise and fall overnight on the SERPs. Google has said these unnamed updates revolve around relevance and quality. If you go beyond keyword research to understand what searchers are looking for, and then figure out the best way to give them the answers they need, you can use these updates to help your pages achieve key positions on the SERPs. 

I say key positions instead of ranking number 1, because formatting is one to go beyond the keyword research to provide your audience with, not only the answer they are looking for but also the context in which they want it. To do this, simply type the keywords into the search box, then see how Google formats the responses. Is the featured snippet a bulleted list or a definition? Did YouTube videos or local pack and maps appear above the fold?  

Use Google to give you insight into what the searcher is looking for, and format your content accordingly. Of course, this is just one aspect of an audience-first approach, for more tips visit the official Seer ASIC hub.

5. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help

There’s a lot to learn about SEO, and as Google updates its algorithm, the rules can change. No reasonable person expects you to know it all on day one. While you want to prove you have the ability to conduct your own research and find the answer to your problem, you must remember there are only 24 hours in a day, and people have deadlines to meet. If you are having trouble, reach out and get help.  

Besides not holding up projects when you’re an intern, you’re also evaluating the office culture (is this a place you want to spend 40+ hours a week?). If people aren’t willing or are unable to assist you as an intern, then they’re definitely not going to help you when you’re a full-time employee. A great SEO team will support each other and grow together.

For more on the author, see Dan’s Bio. Got questions, feel free to connect over LinkedIn.

Are you looking for a great place to intern and gain experience in Digital Marketing or Web Analytics?  Check out the Seer Interactive Internship Program in San Diego and Philadelphia.

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