Steve Wiideman is an SEO expert (just Google “SEO expert” to see that expertise at work). He is the Creative Search Strategist at the eponymous Wiideman Consulting Group.

Wiideman Consulting Group already boasts a world-class clientele (like Skechers, Bob’s Watches, and California Closets) and comprehensive digital marketing services.

We asked Steve Wiideman 5 questions about the challenges his clients face, and how Conductor Searchlight has helped his business ramp up at lightning speed.

1. Tell us about Wiideman Consulting Group, and how you stand out in a crowded field of marketing services.

We are a very young group. In only January 2015, we went from “Steve Wiideman, SEO Expert” to “Wiideman Consulting Group.”

Your average SEO specialist and developer can list technical tasks to improve crawler and visitor experience, but it takes a real search geek – one who has written and tested 10k+ titles and meta descriptions — to make suggestions that improve user experience and can increase clicks within search results. We are the real search geeks.

2. What does your working relationship with clients look like?

When a brand first signs on with us, they receive an SEO Roadmap of technical fixes to start working on within the first 7-10 days.

During this time, our team performs audits and creates advanced search strategies for the next 6-12 months. By the first month, we’ve aligned with the client across all disciplines of search: technical, content, reputation, visibility, and strategy.

After our audit, we identify and map out critical pages in the SEO plan, and then we sort tasks by effort level and long-term impact. Monthly and bi-monthly calls serve to help us stay aligned with tasks in our client’s SEO Roadmap, and give our team an opportunity to gain ongoing “buy in” from client resources as they learn to do the tasks themselves.

Wiideman Keyword Pipeline Womens Work Shoes

3. We know you work with big brands like SKECHERS, Bob’s Watches, California Closets – can you give an example of how you’re growing those businesses with your SEO services?

For larger brands, there are a lot approvals and red tape to go through to implement a change sometimes. So the biggest win with these types of clients is getting buy-in and building a library of business cases based on past successes.

Searchlight gave us some fascinating intel on how SKECHERS was performing in the “women’s work shoes” category. It helped us put an action plan together, some of which was in Searchlight’s Task feature, to move the dial on keyword rankings.

You can see below how we increased visibility for women’s work shoes:

4. Is Conductor Searchlight part of your strategy for all your clients? Why?

Yes — It takes about 5 times the amount of energy to compile the same data and insight Searchlight puts together automatically, and hours of effort to create the side-by-side keyword visibility analysis offered up by the platform. I believe we all know the hourly cost of an SEO specialist and can appreciate anything that cuts down labor.

What we haven’t been able to get before Searchlight can be found in Business Cases, such as forecasts. We also haven’t been able to bundle or track category performance with the level of detail Searchlight offers. For example, thanks to striking distance keywords, our clients can improve week over week keyword visibility with minimal effort.

Conductor Searchlight, has become the cornerstone of our reporting and analytics. Our clients can now identify untapped revenue opportunities by tracking competitive keyword rankings and industry market share, that are actionable and assignable. This serves to motivate client resources even more to enact learnings from the program, as most brands look to SEO as a strategy to drive traffic to their business and increase revenue.

The category level reporting in Searchlight Workspaces is powerful platform for our clients to be proactive, instead of reactive, and to see the results right away, from changes made on the fly that dramatically impact search ranking positions across various pages on their website.

"Conductor Searchlight, has become the cornerstone of our reporting and analytics. Our clients can now identify untapped revenue opportunities by tracking competitive keyword rankings and industry market share, that are actionable and assignable."

5. What are the biggest challenges your clients are facing right now?

Finding good talent is definitely a huge challenge for our clients. It might be just a coincidence, but it seems like clients either have a rockstar tech team, and lack creative teams, or visa versa. A frequent problem we see with having a rockstar tech team is getting them to collaborate and take an interest in the results they are helping produce.

It’s all about communication and reporting. One thing we’ve found helpful is Searchlight’s Workspaces because we can email customized workspaces to various teams. The content team gets to watch their content’s visibility grow, and find new opportunities based on competitive insights. The tech team members get to see the direct impact of changes they made for instant validation.