When shopping for a digital marketing agency to do SEO, you really have to do your homework. If you hire the wrong people for the job, one of two things could happen. All their work could end up doing nothing (which is the best case scenario) or they might get you severely penalized by Google (worst case scenario). Fortunately, good SEO service providers aren’t that hard to find. When shopping for a team to work on your website, what out for these qualities.
1. Years of Experience
It takes years to learn and practice SEO. So ideally you should go for an agency that has a proven track record and a list of satisfied clients. But what if you want to give a (relatively) new player a shot? Good SEO experts do what they can to brush up and maintain their skills even when they don’t have clients. They usually start by working on their own sites first to prove their SEO chops.
2. Updated on the Latest Google Algorithm Changes
Google updates their search algorithm continuously to improve their user experience. This means that the SEO techniques that used to work in the past, especially black and grey hat SEO, are obsolete. In some case, websites and agencies that practice these techniques are even penalized. This is not a problem if the expert you’re talking to wants to focus on white hat techniques. I bet the only complaint they would have about the whole thing is how Google has a nasty habit of naming their updates after adorable animals.
3. Well-rounded SEO Plan
SEO is an art and a science. It has both technical and non-technical components. At the same time, a website’s SEO ranking isn’t completely dependent on its content and performance. An SEO specialist considers all these factors when working for their clients. So if your “expert’ tells you that you only need to do onsite SEO or you don’t need good content, it might be best to start looking for his replacement.
A good SEO consultant knows that you’re running a business and understands that your website needs to perform as intended. So they don’t just focus on ranking on search engines. They study your market first to know what keywords they’re likely to use when they plan to buy. They also look at whether your website converts well with visitors. SEO experts also regularly monitor if there’s a need to change strategies to adapt to changing needs of your market.
5. Good Communicators
Your website is a reflection of your business. But once you optimize your site, some changes need to be made. That’s why it’s important for SEO teams to be good communicators. They need understand what you want to happen for your business and they need to explain what properly what they need to do in order to make that happen. SEO isn’t witchcraft. If they can’t explain what they do and how they’re doing things, they probably don’t really understand what they’re doing.
With SEO, there’s only so much you can control and forecast. That’s why good SEO companies know that it’s unrealistic to guarantee a #1 ranking on any search engine. Search agencies don’t show preferences or give favors to ‘special’ SEO experts. It’s all done though the algorithm. So if your digital marketing agency is telling you they can get you on the first page of Google in a ridiculously short amount of time, best to turn around and walk away.
Don’t waste your time with SEO teams who’ll just run off with your money. Do your research and take the time to find a good digital marketing agency and SEO service provider. Your business will thank you for it.