Automated SEO vs. Manual: Which is Right For Your Small Business?

    What’s the best SEO strategy for your small business, manual or automated SEO?

    SEO is an integral aspect of digital marketing that helps you gain visibility in online searches. It also results in more traffic to your website and, thus, more revenue.

    But the question is, should you opt for manually doing your SEO, or should you automate it?

    In this article, we’ll walk you through the difference between manual SEO and automatic SEO so you can know which is best for your business.

    What is SEO?

    SEO or Search Engine Optimization is optimizing your website and web pages to drive free organic traffic from search engines like Google. 

    With SEO, your goal is to follow WordPress SEO best practices on your site. Doing so helps search engines easily discover your content and display it in the search results.  

    There are 3 things search engines do to find and display your content to their users: 

    1. Crawling: Discover content on the internet by scanning each URL they find.
    2. Indexing: Organize the content they found during crawling, so they can quickly list it in search results for relevant queries.
    3. Ranking: Ordering the indexed content in search results so that the most relevant content appears at the top.

    All 3 aspects can be influenced by the content you create and how you set up the technical aspects of your site.

    What is Automated SEO?

    Automated SEO is the use of automation software to implement your SEO strategies. One of the best SEO automation tools to boost your SEO is All In One SEO (AIOSEO).

    AIOSEO home page

    AIOSEO is a powerful yet easy-to-use SEO plugin that has been downloaded over 100 million times. Millions of smart website owners and marketers use this powerful plugin to help them boost their search engine rankings and drive qualified traffic to their sites. 

    The plugin has many powerful features and modules to help you properly configure your SEO settings. Examples include:

    • Search Statistics: This powerful Google Search Console integration lets you track your keyword rankings and see important SEO metrics with 1-click, and more.
    • Next-gen Schema generator: This no-code schema generator enables users to generate and output any schema markup on their sites.
    • AI Title/Description Generator: This AI-powered module automatically generates SEO post titles and meta descriptions that help increase your clickthrough rates and boost your SEO.
    • Redirection Manager: Helps you manage redirects and eliminate 404 errors, making it easier for search engines to crawl and index your site.
    • Link Assistant: Powerful internal linking tool that automates building links between pages on your site using artificial intelligence. It also gives you an audit of outbound links.
    • SEO Preview: This gives you an overview of your search and social snippets and general SEO so you can improve your optimization.
    • IndexNow: For fast indexing on search engines that support the IndexNow protocol (like Bing and Yandex).
    • Sitemap generator: Automatically generate different types of sitemaps to notify all search engines of any updates on your site.
    • And more.

    AIOSEO also has other powerful tools you can use to help your site rank and drive traffic. Plus, the SEO modules in AIOSEO are super easy to use, even without technical or coding knowledge. This makes AIOSEO a fantastic tool for automating your SEO, whether you’re a newbie or an expert. 

    For step-by-step instructions on how to install AIOSEO, check out our installation guide.

    Critical SEO Tasks You Can Automate

    SEO has many moving parts, each critical to your overall success. Because of this, it’s advisable to automate as many tasks as you can. Some of the essential SEO tasks you can automate include:

    Tools like AIOSEO also help automate other vital SEO tasks like the insertion of FAQ sections replete with schema markup:

    Insert FAQ blocks in WordPress is easy with AIOSEO's FAQ block.

    This results in rich results on search engine results pages (SERPs) which, in turn, boost your visibility, clickthrough rates, and traffic. 

    Automating your SEO means you can easily boost your visibility and drive traffic to your site with little effort on your part. This brings us to the next part.

    Pros of Automated SEO

    As you can already see by now, automating your SEO has many benefits for small business owners and one-person marketing teams. Here are some of the most significant ones:

    • Saves money: Automating your SEO helps you save money as you don’t have to hire a professional SEO (which can be pretty expensive).
    • Saves time: one of the biggest benefits of automation is that it eliminates tedious and repetitive tasks. This frees up your time to do more important things. It also means SEO tasks can be completed faster. A fantastic example is automating post title and meta description writing.
    • Improves efficiency and accuracy: Many aspects of SEO require attention to detail and yet must be done at scale. Automating such tasks improves efficiency, leading to better results.
    • Makes it easy to scale: Automating SEO tasks makes it easy for you to scale your campaigns. As your website and business grow, your SEO campaigns will also have to match the growth. Automation makes this easy and enables you to do so without hiring a professional SEO.
    • Boosts performance: The most significant advantage of automation is that it boosts your performance. Especially if you’re a one-person team, automation can help boost your performance and enables you to compete with bigger brands in your niche.
    • Makes monitoring performance easy: Monitoring SEO performance is crucial to help you know if you’re reaching your goals. It also helps you create better iterations of your campaigns and conduct effective competitor analysis. 
    • Boosts traffic and revenue: Ultimately, automating your SEO results in increased traffic to your site and a boost in revenue.

    If you’re a small business owner, automating your SEO has many advantages you can’t ignore. But does that mean automation doesn’t have any disadvantages?

    Cons of Automated SEO

    One of the biggest disadvantages of automating your SEO is that it doesn’t give you granular control over your campaigns. That’s because, in some cases, the software you’re using may not give you as much control over certain aspects of your SEO tasks as you may want.

    What is Manual SEO?

    Manual SEO involves you or an SEO professional implementing various on-page, off-page, and technical SEO strategies into your website by hand. In many cases, it involves using SEO tools and plugins designed for specific tasks. 

    Pros of Manual SEO

    While it may be time-consuming, manual SEO does have its advantages. Some of the main ones include:

    • Greater control: Doing your SEO manually gives you 100% control over your strategies. It also enables you to certify that a task has been properly handled.
    • Handpick links: Manually handling your SEO also allows you to handpick the internal and external links you add to your website.

    Ultimately, manual SEO may improve the quality of your campaigns by a small margin.

    Cons of Manual SEO

    As can be expected, manual SEO can have some pretty significant disadvantages. The top ones include:

    • Time-consuming: Doing SEO manually is extremely time-consuming because there are so many small repetitive tasks involved. This also results in slower implementation, which puts you at a disadvantage in a fast-paced environment.
    • Requires technical and coding skills: If you don’t have any technical skills, particularly coding, you won’t be able to handle most SEO tasks. 
    • Difficult to scale: Because there are so many moving parts involved, scaling SEO when doing it manually can be difficult. This problem is compounded if you’re a small business that doesn’t have the resources to hire a team to take care of your campaigns.
    • Manual SEO is expensive: Manual SEO requires hiring experts, and in most cases, they don’t come cheap.

    For a small business owner, these disadvantages should be enough to steer you toward automation. 

    Automated SEO vs. Manual SEO: Which is Right for You?

    Now that we’ve looked at the pros and cons of automated SEO and its counterpart, what’s the verdict?

    If you’re a small business owner who DIYs your SEO, then automated SEO should, hands down, be your preferred way of executing your campaigns. This is because it makes it super easy, saves you time, and results in better performance.

    We hope this post helped you know the difference between automatic SEO and manual SEO. We also hope it has helped you decide which is best for you. You may also want to check out other articles on our blog, like our guide on getting local SEO citations or our tutorial on small business SEO.

    If you found this article helpful, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel. You’ll find many more helpful tutorials there. You can also follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook to stay in the loop.

    Want to Try AIOSEO for Free?

    Enter the URL of your WordPress website to install AIOSEO Lite.

    Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

    Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. We only recommend products that we believe will add value to our readers.

    author avatar
    Kato Nkhoma Content Writer
    Kato is one of those rare unicorns born with a pen in his hand—so the legend says. He’s authored 2 books and produced content for hundreds of brands. When he’s not creating content for AIOSEO, you’ll find him either watching tech videos on YouTube or playing with his kids. And if you can’t find him, he’s probably gone camping.

    Add a Comment

    We're glad you have chosen to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated according to our privacy policy, and all links are nofollow. Do NOT use keywords in the name field. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.

    1 comment on “Automated SEO vs. Manual: Which is Right For Your Small Business?

    1. Hi, I am using services of All in one SEO from more than 2 months for my sports blogging website “” I am finding it very useful, in free version also they are giving many services, hope will also upgrade to pro.