For the first three years of the Search Engine Land Awards program, we made a conscious decision not to include awards categories such as “Best SEO Software” or “Best SEM Tool”. The logic behind this choice had many layers, but among the top reasons:
- Judging all tools individually would require access and significant time to evaluate tool features.
- Tools and platform choices are inherently challenging for customers – budget, user seats, implementation needs, and so forth vary greatly across a wide scope of users, and selecting a limited few does a disservice to the community at large.
- As an unbiased publication, we simply cannot endorse a “Top 10” or ultimate winner among the many useful tools available in the industry.
However, there is no denying that most of the SEO tools and SEM platforms available in the industry provide inherent value to both users and the community at large, whether you are an existing customer or prospective one.
That’s why for 2018, we decided to take our own innovative approach to this often requested award, by creating a category to recognize those software tools and platforms that are utilizing their extensive customer datasets to derive ground-breaking insights and actionable recommendations for SEO and SEM professionals to implement in their marketing efforts.
Similarly, there are many agencies – both small and large – as well as talented individual consultants, who have also published significant research findings based on client data, aggregated data from a variety of sources or used other mechanisms such as surveys. As such, there is a parallel category to recognize research performed from the consulting point of view.
What are we looking for?
Since these particular categories are new this year, we’ve left the requirements somewhat broad in nature. That means it’s fairly wide open as far as what can be submitted – the good news is, you or your team has already done the work to produce most of the required submission materials!
Both categories share the same entry criteria (full details linked below) – but our primary goal is to uncover innovative research that moves the search industry forward through proven hypotheses, quantifiable results and qualitative, actionable insights.
Examples of qualifying industry research
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but they are general examples of the types of research reports and corresponding media we’re looking for in submissions.
If your SEO or SEM software or agency has conducted and published industry research between January 1, 2017 and March 31, 2018, then we want to hear all about it! It’s possible we missed it the first time around, and with this new level of recognition in play, we want to make sure all innovative findings get their time in the spotlight.
The FINAL deadline to enter the Search Engine Land Awards is April 13th, and we’ll be announcing winners at a special evening event during our annual SMX Advanced conference on June 12th, in Seattle. See all of the categories here and get started on your entries today!
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.