What's the value of organic search engine optimization? It apparently contributed quite a bit to the $410 million that the New York Times paid for About.com. Note the heavy discussion of how SEO has helped About in driving traffic in this Online Journalism Review article, About.com CEO explains why NYT spent $410 million to buy site.
Quoted about About's SEO efforts is CEO Peter Horan. Behind the scenes, it's SEO veteran Marshall Simmonds, one of our regular SES speakers, who orchestrates the optimization and in-house training of all those guides to help their content naturally do better.
Want some tips on what he does for the big site of About.com? See these past SearchDay articles and SES forum coverage: Big Sites + Big Brands = Big Search Engine Marketing Challenges, Home-Grown Search Engine Optimization, Big Sites / Big Brands