One can get wrapped up into definitions real easily. There is a tendency to think about SEO only in terms of search engine benefits, but that’s not always the case. Certainly, search engine positioning is the primary benefit to be gained from your SEO efforts. But don’t get locked into thinking that SEO is all about where you stand with Google.
There are other ways to measure your SEO success. For instance, did you know that many smaller search engines and directories get their information from Google, Yahoo!, and the bigger search engines? It’s true. You don’t even have to submit your website to some of these search engines, aggregators, and directories. They will find you. Dogpile.com may not be your No. 1 source of traffic, but it could send you traffic in small doses and that traffic could just as easily convert into sales as any other.
Other sources of traffic, and enhanced SEO benefits, come from sites like StumbleUpon and Digg. The bookmarking sites do not provide primary SEO benefits – at least not in the sense that you should be bookmarking your web pages in order to enhance your SEO. But it’s important to realize that you could be building additional inbound links from these sites when your pages are bookmarked.
Some of the best SEO benefits come from the inbound links you create at social networking sites like LinkedIn and Facebook. You don’t even have to be particularly active in these websites. Just build a profile and your profile link counts as an inbound link as well as any other. Because of the reputation of those sites, those are valuable links.
Directories like DMOZ and SearchSight also offer SEO advantages. Just by creating a listing at those sites, you are building a reputation for yourself that translates into more SEO benefits. You do the same thing when you submit articles to article directories.
Many online marketing strategies carry SEO benefits, even if ever so slightly. While I wouldn’t necessarily use the strategies as SEO tools per se, I am always conscious that there may be SEO benefits to using them and I try to think of the best ways to get the most SEO mileage from the strategies that I do use. Are you doing that? You should be. SEO, while not the be all-end all of everything, should be on the top of your mind always.