Getting Things Done in SEO

GTD & SEOSEO is an extensive daily activity that needs a good organization system. Different SEO professionals use different systems, programs, or other methods to make their SEO work more effectively and produce better results for themselves and their clients. However, there is no need to invent the wheel again when a guy named David Allen has already created the best time-management system out there: Getting Things Done. If you haven’t read this book yet, do. It will most likely make your life better. In the interim, let’s talk about how GTD can be used in SEO.

The beauty of SEO is that it is done merely with one’s Internet-accessible computer. You don’t need anything else to do your job. And you can arrange the work in the most productive way possible.

There is no need to change your current task-management system right away. If you are a successful SEO professional, then you are already doing most things suggested by GTD. Think about this: While you are reading this article, is there anything you’re thinking about that’s bothering you because it must be done? If the answer is ”yes,” then here is the first thing you are doing wrong: Keeping tasks in your head.

The main idea of GTD is to get everything OUT of your head. All the things you need to do in your SEO campaign should be entered into an external task management system that you prefer to use. It can be anything from computer folders and MS Word files to a nice web-based application like http://www.rememberthemilk.com/. Your head isn’t powerful enough to remind you about each of the endless tasks you need to do in a timely manner, without giving you stress. A simple organizer can do this easily if you make it a habit using it.

Here is a simple ”algorithm” to get things out of your head and organize them effortlessly into a stress-free working system:

  • Identify all SEO tasks that you need to do.
  • Look at each task and ask yourself: Is it important to be done? If the answer is ”no”, then you have three choices:
    1. Throw it into trash (remove from your list of tasks).
    2. Put it in a separate file called ”someday”.
    3. If this task can be useful as a resource, send it to your ”useful resources” file or folder.

You might already be gathering all sorts of data that might be useful for you someday. For example, if you use URLs (sites, pages, links), then you can utilize the Bookmarks/Favorites standard tool that’s built into any web-browser. Create folders like ”potential link partners”, ”same niche blogs”, ”new SEO tools”, ”competitors”, etc.

When it comes to important tasks:

  • Write them all down into one place (like a Word or Excel file). Examples:
    1. Submit to 20 directories;
    2. Comment 5 blogs;
    3. Create 1 new optimized page.
  • Now think about each of these tasks as an exact result you will achieve once this task is done. Examples:
    1. Submitted the site to 20 new directories;
    2. Five new blogs commented;
    3. One new optimized page created;
  • Under each task/result, outline exact steps (actions) that must be taken to finish with it. Examples:
    1. List of directories’ submission pages;
    2. List of blogs for commenting;
    3. Steps for creating the new page:
    1. analyze the keyword competition;
    2. brainstorm ideas for content;
    3. write content;
    4. find or create images;
    5. optimize tags;
    6. add links to and from this page;
    7. add the page to sitemap and navigation menu.
  • Now, classify all these steps by their common groups in terms of their similarities in action, i.e. if they can be done in the same manner, time and place. For example, working with directories and blogs are external (off-page) jobs, but creating new pages on your own site can be done internally (on-page).
  • Answer this simple question: Can it be done right now in two minutes? If the answer is ”yes”, well, do it! Once finished, go back to your list and look at the next action with the same question in your mind. If the answer is ”No”, then classify further”¦
  • ”¦Is this a project? Anything that consists of more than one action to do (more than one step) is a project, so move such tasks into a separate file/folder and call it ”Projects.”
  • Ask, ”Should I do it myself or can I delegate it to my partners/assistants?” If you can have someone in your team do this, send that person an email and set up a deadline to complete the actions, making you sure you add this deadline to your calendar.
  • If only you can do it, but not right away, either place a reminder about it in your calendar or write exact little steps that must be taken soon in order to make it happen. Do this whenever you have a chance.

From first glance all this might look a bit more complicated – but if you try it, you will see how simple it is.

Creating the system is important, but even more important is to actually work with it. Here is a simple hint on how to manage your SEO tasks: Go through your lists (files with lists) on a weekly basis, every Monday morning, for example. Add new stuff there, re-organize, update some items if necessary, and complete projects – work with your tasks every week and you will become much more effective and much less stressful from work than you are today.

This post has been a very brief explanation on how GTD can be used in SEO, but hopefully it inspires you to actually use it in your daily online marketing activities.

Shavkat Karimov
Director, Online Marketing
mobileStorm, Inc.
Every problem comes with a solution

 

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