Hello friend! As an SEO professional, you likely find yourself bogged down with tedious and repetitive tasks that sap your time and energy. I‘ve been there too! The good news is that today‘s cutting-edge tools open up massive time savings through automation.
In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll walk you through everything you need to know to leverage automation for SEO success in 2023. I‘ve been implementing these tactics and technologies in my own work for over 5 years, so I‘m excited to pass on what I‘ve learned!
Buckle up, and let‘s get started exploring the fast-evolving world of SEO automation.
Why You Should Embrace SEO Automation
I won‘t sugarcoat it – transitioning to an automated workflow takes some investment on the front end. But once you integrate the right tools, you‘ll reap huge rewards in efficiency, consistency, scale, and cost savings.
Here are 5 compelling reasons to get on board the automation train:
1. Regain a Massive Chunk of Lost Time
As an SEO pro, you likely spend up to 30% of your work hours on repetitive tasks like keyword research, rank tracking, and backlink analysis.
A survey by SEO software company Botify found that even experienced SEO specialists average nearly 10 hours per week just on manual keyword research!
By automating these monotonous processes, some experts have cut the time spent by 50% or more.
That means 15+ hours each week that can be redirected from dull busywork to high-value strategy and execution. The compound effect over months and years is huge!
2. Avoid the Human Error Factor
Humans are notoriously inconsistent. When grinding through repetitive SEO tasks, we‘re prone to occasionally overlooking items, making mistakes, or cutting corners out of boredom. This negatively impacts campaign results.
Software automation, on the other hand, repeatedly applies the exact same methodology you program it with. Bots don‘t get overwhelmed, distracted, or bored.
For example, a backlink analysis tool will extract every single link from a competitor‘s site and categorize them consistently based on your criteria. A human would likely miss some in such a large endeavor.
3. Scale Your Campaigns Far Beyond Manual Capacity
Here‘s a scenario many SEO pros face: your client wants you to audit and optimize 50+ company websites in one centralized dashboard.
Manually crawling, extracting data from, and tracking rankings for that many sites is essentially impossible without a huge team. But for an experienced SEO pro using automation tools, it becomes totally feasible.
The ability to scale and take on bigger clients is an obvious benefit. But surprisingly, many smaller agencies don‘t take full advantage of it. If you do, it provides a major competitive edge.
4. Base Strategy Decisions on Hard Data, Not Hunches
Automated rank tracking, engagement monitoring, and analytics extraction provide a constant stream of concrete data on the performance of your SEO campaigns.
Rather than relying on intuition or best guesses, you can pivot strategies based on real signals like:
- A competitor overtaking your rankings
- Sudden organic traffic changes
- Increasing engagement metrics
This data-driven approach takes the uncertainty out of decision making.
5. Drastically Reduce Your Costs Over the Long Term
It‘s true that transitioning to an automated workflow requires some financial investment at first. Pricing varies, but expect to budget around $100-$300 per month for a robust toolkit.
But once the tools are implemented, you‘ll save huge on the ongoing labor that automation replaces. Experts estimate 70%+ cost savings compared to entirely manual SEO.
Those savings really add up when managing large-scale campaigns. And outsourcing repetitive tasks becomes less necessary since your tools have you covered.
Let‘s now dig into the specific automation tools that will revolutionize your workflow.
Must-Have Tools for SEO Task Automation
The SEO software landscape has expanded rapidly in recent years. Here are some of the top solutions to integrate for productivity and efficiency gains:
1. Ahrefs (Rank Tracking + Keyword Research)
In my experience, Ahrefs is arguably the most powerful all-in-one SEO toolkit available today. Specific automation benefits include:
Rank Tracking: Ahrefs‘ Rank Tracker monitors your site‘s keyword positions across Google and other search engines. Set it up once, and you‘ll get a daily email with ranking updates. This automation saves me at least 2 hours per week.
Keyword Research: Ahrefs makes keyword discovery a breeze. Just input a seed keyword, and their database provides a list of long-tail semantic variations with search volume estimates. The Keyword Explorer tool also analyzes your competitors‘ top-ranking keywords.
For large websites, Ahrefs can get pricey. But their Lite plan is just $99/mo and still packs robust automation capabilities.
2. SEMrush (Rank Tracking + SEO Audits)
SEMrush competes directly with Ahrefs and has similar automation strengths:
Rank Tracking: The Position Tracking tool provides daily email updates on your site‘s keyword rankings. You can track 500 keywords for just $99/mo on their Pro plan.
Technical/On-Page Audits: SEMrush Site Audit automatically crawls your site to catch issues like duplicate content, thin pages, and broken links. This saves 8-10 hours a month for clients managing multiple websites.
Their custom reporting dashboards are also a huge time-saver for tracking all key metrics in one place.
3. SEO Spider (Rank Tracking)
For those looking for an affordable rank tracking-only solution, SEO Spider starts at just $30/mo. It monitors up to 1,000 keywords and sends weekly ranking updates.
The tool integrates smoothly with project management platforms like Asana and Trello, keeping all data centralized. For a solo freelancer like myself, this automation has been a gamechanger!
4. Botify (Technical SEO Audits)
If you managecomplex enterprise websites, Botify is the gold standard for large-scale technical SEO audits.
Their intelligent bots crawl entire sites to identify issues like:
- Indexation errors
- Duplicate content
- Slow page speeds
- Broken internal links
The audit reports are incredibly comprehensive. Botify will cost around $600-$1000/mo, but for large sites it pays for itself in manual labor savings.
5. Ryte (AI Content Optimization)
Ryte‘s AI solutions help automate on-page SEO optimization:
Their Content Success Tool rewrites your content for better readability and keyword optimization. The Headline Generator creates SEO-friendly headlines that grab attention.
For ecommerce sites, Ryte also optimizes product titles/descriptions at scale. Pricing starts around $49/mo.
6. Linkody (Link Prospecting and Outreach)
While entirely automating link building is tough, Linkody streamlines the outreach process:
Their platform automates email prospecting, cold outreach campaigns, and follow-up sequences. The link tracking helps you gauge campaign results.
Linkody won‘t replace the human creativity needed for relationship building. But as a one-person operation, it has helped me take on more ambitious link campaigns than I could manually.
As you can see, today‘s tools can automate huge portions of repetitive SEO work. But we‘ve still only scratched the surface of possible automation. Let‘s talk about leveraging future-forward approaches like Python and AI.
Python Scripts: DIY SEO Automation
For developers or technically-adept SEO pros, Python provides endless options for crafting custom automation solutions.
You can build scripts to handle tasks like:
Title Tag Optimization: A script can crawl pages and re-write titles to meet length, formatting, and keyword guidelines.
Image Compression: Use Python‘s Pillow image library to bulk resize and optimize all images on-site. Drastically speeds up page loads.
404 Monitoring: Crawl the site to identifiy and log any broken links or errors. Prevents losing equity from link rot.
Local SEO Audits: Pull and monitor name, address, and phone number data for local listings. Confirm correct consistency across directories.
The challenge is having the coding know-how. But for developers, Python automation possibilities are endless. Some helpful libraries to check out include BeautifulSoup, Scrapy, and Selenium.
Don‘t let the coding scare you off though! Further down, I‘ll recommend some beginner tips for getting started with Python SEO automation.
Content Creation With AI
Advancements in AI now allow for computer-generated content creation. While human writing still produces the best results, AI has advantages for scaling:
Jasper: Jasper‘s AI generates complete blog articles on the topics you provide. The output needs decent editing, but it provides a solid starting point.
Shortly AI: Great for optimizing content snippets like meta descriptions and headlines that need to hit tight length requirements.
Rytr: Rytr creates in-depth, detailed articles that almost read as if a person wrote them. It‘s the most advanced AI content tool I‘ve tested.
Ink: Ink writes very natural news and blog content while working in your target keywords. The voice sounds authentic.
AI content generators typically cost between $30-$100/mo. Think of them as extra team members rather than replacements. The human creative touch is still vital.
Actionable Tips to Start Automating Today
Transitioning to an automated SEO workflow can feel intimidating. Here are some pro tips to ensure you start off on the right foot:
Take Baby Steps First
Don‘t shoot for a complete workflow overhaul right away. Identify just 1 or 2 pain point tasks and implement automation there first. Site audits or rank tracking are great starting points.
As you get comfortable, keep layering on new automations incrementally. Small early wins will fuel motivation.
Thoroughly Vet Tools Before Buying
Demo and trial multiple automation tools rather than buying the first you see. Document specifically how each tool will save you time and impact your campaigns.
Run test audits and campaigns in a sandbox environment before deploying tools. Only purchase if the time savings pay for themselves.
Monitor Campaigns Closely at First
When activating a new automation tool, keep a much closer eye on campaign results than usual. This helps identify and squash any unforeseen issues with the technology.
For example, an over-aggressive technical SEO audit tool might incorrectly flag some pages as problematic. Early monitoring allows quick corrections.
Don‘t Go Overboard Too Fast
It‘s easy to get carried away once you realize the scale automation enables. But take it slow.
Too much automation too fast can be counterproductive. Don‘t cut out processes that still benefit from human nuance. Find the right balance.
Follow Up Every Automated Task
No tool is perfect, and automation will always generate some errors. Get in the habit of manually reviewing automated reports and tasks to catch any inaccuracies.
Following up on automated workflows improves output quality over time via corrections and tool adjustments.
Wrapping Up and Looking Ahead
And there you have it – everything you need to get rolling with SEO automation!
My key tips are to:
- Start small and layer on automations incrementally
- Thoroughly vet tools before purchasing
- Closely monitor initial performance
- Find the right balance between automation and human input
Properly leveraged, automation will transform your workflow. Repetitive tasks that once took 15+ hours per week disappear, leaving you ample time for big-picture strategy and impactful execution.
Just don‘t go too far too fast! Allow time to build expertise with the tools and strike the optimal automation/manual balance.
Looking ahead, we can expect SEO automation to become even more advanced. As AI capabilities grow, I foresee tools being able to:
- Automatically generate and optimize content
- Identify link-earning opportunities
- Make dynamic adjustments to campaigns based on performance
But skilled SEO experts will remain vital to oversee technology, drive strategy, and combine the automated tactics into success. While you can automate tasks, true expertise is irreplaceable.
Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions! I love helping fellow SEO pros modernize through smart implementation of automation.
Here‘s to optimized workflows and rediscovered time. Go get started automating today!