Perhaps you’ve heard of enterprise crawler-turned-end-to-end-SEO-management solution Botify in the past.
But what has the company and its team been up to lately?
And perhaps most importantly for this audience – where are they headed and what are they looking for in new SEO talent to help get them there?
I had a chance to chat recently with Botify’s CEO, Adrien Menard.
Read on for his take on the most pressing challenges and opportunities in enterprise SEO, what’s new with his brand and tool, what Botify is looking for in new SEO hires, and more.
What Are The Greatest Analytics Challenges & Opportunities In Enterprise Right Now?
Adrien Menard: One of the biggest challenges for enterprise organizations is leveraging the massive amounts of raw data available to them efficiently and effectively in order to make sound decisions. This is particularly true for enterprises that maintain large or complex sites.
Any organization today can get more than enough data for a skilled organic-search professional to understand how a few pages are functioning and improve them.
However, it is impossible for humans to manually review this data for thousands of intricately connected pages and derive actionable insights on a daily or weekly basis. That requires powerful data analysis tools and, frankly, machine learning.
But, there is an even greater challenge hidden inside this one. Once you have accurate insight into the performance of your website at the page level, how do you prioritize optimizations?
To be blunt, you don’t want to waste time on pages that have no impact on revenue; nor do you want to work on improving pages that aren’t even being indexed by web crawlers because of some coding error or some algorithm’s decision that the pages aren’t worth crawling.
So, analysis can’t just reduce the mass of raw data to a mass of refined data – or even to a mass of brilliant insights. It has to take the next step.
It has to recognize the revenue value of individual pages, prioritize optimizations based on revenue impact, ensure that the pages are actually being indexed by the web crawlers, and devise optimizations from there.
What Enterprise SEO Challenges Lie Ahead?
Adrien Menard: I believe that organic Search Marketing teams face two kinds of issues within their own organizations.
First, I believe search professionals are having an increasingly difficult time getting their recommendations implemented.
If you have great ideas for optimizations, but you have to take them to an enterprise web team that is already booked out for two or three quarters, or you have to run them through a gauntlet of content reviewers, you may never be able to get optimizations activated.
I’m convinced that a good answer is to bring more automation into the decision process and during the implementation phase.
Second, I think organic-search professionals are under increasing pressure to show results in terms of impact on revenue. This is not uncommon.
Every marketing channel must answer the same question!
With the paid search option getting more competitive, and with serious questions being raised about online privacy, executives are beginning to look at organic search again and ask, “What can you do for my top line?”
Having an answer is not always easy and can require new approaches for search professionals, but it’s now required in any marketing organization.
What One Persistent Problem In Search Would You Wave A Magic Wand And Solve If You Could?
Adrien Menard: As I mentioned before, I think the one problem I would focus on is getting optimizations implemented. This is a two-fold problem.
First is the challenge of figuring out what changes should be activated and getting permission to activate them. And, this is turning increasingly into a problem of relating a proposed optimization to its expected revenue impact.
With limited resources, the only real way to justify touching the site is incremental revenue.
Second, there is the resource issue. There are no underused resources in most web organizations.
If you want to get something changed, you have to have as little impact on others in the organization as possible.
But, if you would allow me, I would add another, longer-range issue: the lack of diversity in the search world. When we think about search engines, most of the time, we think of Google.
It would be far more exciting for organic search professionals – and, really, for users – if there were a broader array of alternatives.
That’s why I like initiatives like You.com and Neeva so much, and why we’re actively supporting Bing.
What’s New At Botify?
Adrien Menard: 2021 was a fantastic year for Botify.
One of the most exciting things for us this year has been to watch Botify Activation – our tool that uses AI to generate and optimize for SEO without any developmental or technical resources – become our fastest-growing product.
I think this reflects what has become the biggest single challenge for organic-search marketing professionals: getting the optimizations they identify implemented.
Botify Activation is a huge help here because it avoids having to get time and resources from other already-overcommitted teams, such as web programmers and page designers.
Another development we are really excited about is more evolutionary.
We are now expanding our customer focus from huge, resource-rich retail and publishing operations to the broad world of enterprises that may have big, complex sites but don’t have huge teams of organic-search experts and web programmers to call upon.
So, we are expanding our organization to reach these new prospects.
In September, we received $55 million USD in Series C funding. This funding enables us to scale and expand more rapidly – in terms of our team, our partners, and our product offering.
In November, we announced our expansion into the Asia Pacific region, the largest regional market for organic-search marketing.
We are expanding our collaboration with key brands and partners in the region and actively hiring in Singapore, Sydney, and Tokyo across all departments.
Finally, we are expanding our ecosystem across technology, marketing, and solution partnerships.
We plan to build upon the strong partnerships we’ve already forged and to continue to create alignment, interoperability, and collaboration opportunities with the partners that are essential to our customers’ success.
For 2022, our focus is on automation, data science, and partnerships to deliver stronger ROI to our customers. That means continuing to strengthen Botify Analytics and Botify Intelligence with more AI and machine learning both in their abilities to identify revenue growth opportunities and alert when a regression is happening.
It also means, as we’ve discussed, continuing to develop new automation features in Botify Activation.
We’re also going to broaden and deepen our relationships with our partners.
Partner relationships make it far easier for an organic-search marketing team to adopt our tools and integrate them into their existing working environment.
And that, too, is a facet of turning analysis into incremental revenue and faster and easier implementations.
How Does Botify Use Machine Learning?
Adrien Menard: I think to answer that, we have to ask what machine learning is really good at today.
The answer is that ML really shines at scale. It can’t necessarily solve a single complex problem any better than can a human expert can, but it can make far faster and better decisions regarding tens or hundreds of thousands or millions of pages.
So, we’ve made machine learning and AI integral parts of Botify’s solutions.
Machine learning helps us automate tasks that take weeks or months, shrinking them down to hours. Botify Intelligence and Botify Activation both rely on it.
Botify Intelligence automatically prioritizes action plans using powerful ML and AI models to tell users exactly which optimizations they should focus on and what impact those optimizations will have.
Botify Activation gives organic-search managers the autonomy to implement their projects and helps them do it faster, more easily, and in some cases automatically, without the support of an engineering team.
This enables organizations to save on resources and time and to shift to more strategic initiatives.
AI is today’s must-have feature: Companies are throwing machine learning models at every conceivable problem. But I believe our experience has confirmed that we are on the right track.
The competitive situation our customers face is just getting more formidable, so we are going to continue intensively investing in the ML portions of our tools.
For Botify Intelligence, we will deepen and enrich our models of the relationship between page optimizations and revenue, so we can predict more accurately just what the financial result will be for applying a given optimization.
For Botify Activation, we will continue to develop our models automating the application of optimizations to the customer’s site.
Is Botify Hiring SEO Pros?
Adrien Menard: With our planned expansion in 2022, we expect to be staffing where ever we’re located in Europe, in the United States, Australia, Singapore, and Japan; so, we have a wealth of locations and opportunities open – about 170 in 2022.
The specific positions we are seeking to fill include SEO professionals, software and DevOps engineers, customer success managers, and a range of marketing and sales positions at different levels of seniority.
This is a great opportunity to work for customers with some of the most advanced SEO organizations in the world!
Check out the open roles we have available here.
Any Other Advice For Enterprise Marketers & SEO Pros?
Adrien Menard: If I could leave our audience with one piece of advice, it would be to treasure agility.
Our world is changing at incredible speed: Search volumes are expanding, search terms are shifting daily, and enterprises are continually trying to find the best mix of organic search, paid search, and other tactics.
To be able to recognize shifts in the raw data immediately, interpret those shifts, recognize their implications for the key pages in a huge, complex site, and actually get the needed optimizations activated is an enormous challenge.
It is a challenge we are eager to solve.
- How To Grow Organic Traffic With 5 Fundamental SEO Tactics
- How Search Engines Use Machine Learning: 9 Things We Know For Sure
- SEO Strategy: A Full Year Blueprint (+Template)
All images are courtesy of Botify