The constant struggle to attract new readers has led the digital news media to adopt search engine positioning strategies within their newsrooms. Given that readers are increasingly opting to consume their news via search engines, such as Google or Bing, this study explores perceptions and applications of search engine optimization (SEO) in the online news media and identifies the future training needs of journalists in this sector. To do so, 33 semi-structured interviews were conducted with individuals representative of three professional profiles: professional journalists, SEO consultants, and academics. Based on the data collected, we created five semantic categories-with 25 subcategories-and we correlated the perceptions of the SEO experts employed by the news media with those of the academics. The results highlight varying degrees of convergence and divergence in perceptions across these three professional profiles. Similarly, the results confirm the sector's pressing need to attract readers by implementing search engine positioning techniques and, hence, its need to ensure future journalists are well trained in technical SEO, on-page SEO, off-page SEO, in the use of SEO analytics and audit tools, and in the ability to identify search trends so that they have the necessary skills to win the struggle for more readers.
Lopezosa, C., Codina, L., Díaz-Noci, J., & Ontalba-Ruipérez, J. A. (2020). SEO and the digital news media: From the workplace to the classroom. Comunicar, 28(63), 63–72. https://doi.org/10.3916/C63-2020-06