Thursday, 26 September 2013

6 questions to ask a prospective SEO Company

1. Are people actually searching online for the products/services we offer?

There’s little point in investing in SEO unless you are going to see some sort of return (this can be measured in other ways than simply an increase in sales). Some industries still rely on word of mouth, rather than online search. This should be the first thing an SEO company researches.

2. What results should I expect and in what timeframe?

Asking this question will help you to gage what value can be added to your business by paying for SEO. It will also test that the firm has done their homework into your market and the competition you’re up against.

A good SEO agency should be able to predict an approximate timeframe that it will take to achieve page one positioning for each keyword you’re to be optimised for. And they should also be able to predict the approximate number of visitors your website can expect to achieve as a result of this.

Be wary of SEO agencies who promise valuable number one positioning within weeks. For competitive search terms this isn’t achievable without breaking some of Google’s rules (which, eventually, will get you de-listed or banned altogether).

SEO is a long-term game and every project differs.

3. Do you guarantee results?

SEO has a reputation for being mysterious, a ‘black art’. There’s a simple way to bust this myth: come up with the results! If an SEO company is not confident that they can do this, they shouldn’t embark on a project.

4. How have the recent Google Updates affected the SEO tactics you use?

This is an important question as the online world (Google in particular) is constantly changing. You want an SEO agency who predict and are ready for Google algorithm changes.

5. How will you report progress?

You most likely don’t want to listen to SEO jargon or look at graphs that you don’t understand. All you want to see is your website ranking rising in Google and visitor numbers increasing – can they provide you with that? Ask to see an example report and find out how often you will receive them.

6. Who will be working on my SEO project?

You’ll need a responsive, experienced and specialist team who you can meet-with regularly or call/email whenever. Ask to meet all of your team. Make sure that nothing will be internationally outsourced as this can lead to dodgy SEO practices which could get your website penalised in Google.

Keeping up with industry changes is almost a full time job in itself. So if you’re not going to get SEO from an agency who specialises only in SEO, make sure your team are all dedicated SEO specialists.

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