How to Choose the Best SEO Company for Your Business
How to Choose the Best SEO Company for Your Small Business
Obviously, to find the best SEO agency for your business you would take the assistance of Google or another search engine in the first instance. You may use terms such as “best SEO company near me”, “best SEO agency UK”, “best SEO companies in the UK” etc. Google gives you the best results based on its 200+ algorithmic factors. There is no doubt that the best results will appear on top SERP’s of Google but it is possible that some of those results are not relevant for you e.g. you could be a small business and are looking to pay after results, or are looking for an SEO trial and the top 10 results could belong to the companies handling SEO campaigns of large businesses and may not even offer a trial or pay after results SEO service.
There is no doubt that Google presents us with the best results but we should also do some further research to make sure that the SEO company that we are choosing to promote our business is genuine, reliable, honest, transparent and offers white hat Google guidelines based SEO services. In this article we are going to look at some of the factors that you should consider while choosing an SEO agency for your local small, medium or large business.
1.Track Record: An SEO company’s past track record will tell you half of the story but only if you are looking at the genuine statistics of the company, and not ones that are made up and are written on the company’s website without references. You can check a company’s track record in terms of:
Google Reviews or 3rd Party Website Reviews such as Trust Pilot, Which, Angie List etc
Testimonials of Customers
Contact Existing Clients about Their Experience
2.Transparency in Pricing: A clear pricing structure for services shown on the company’s website gives customers good confidence and shows that a company doesn’t believe in hidden pricing strategies. It is also true that not all businesses can show their prices clearly on their websites due to variation in customer requirements and their offered services, however marketing prices can be easily set and shown on a company’s website and a further custom quote can be created based on client requirements. If an agency shows clear pricing for their services on their website and offers custom quotes based on client requirements it should be considered a positive signal.
Also, a genuine SEO agency wouldn’t rush to commit you to any contract; in fact, they should give you plenty of time to try and use their services to make sure you are happy with the services. Once you are fully satisfied with the company’s performance then you have the discretion to commit to a long term contract with the agency.
3.Transparency in Work Being Conducted: Based on your end goal, an agency should be able to explain to you in detail what work needs to be done on your website both on-site and off-site. The majority of SEO marketing and web design methodologies are in the public domain and there is no secret recipe. The major difference between SEO agencies is the quality of work they conduct for their clients’ websites. Having a clear idea about the work that needs to be conducted on a client’s website is important for transparency for both customer and business. SEO agencies that clearly explain their approach, techniques and methodologies to their customers before starting the work prove their commitment and trustworthiness.
4.Measurement of Results: A company without a clear results measurement strategy can easily mislead its customers. When you choose an SEO agency for your business, prior to starting the work you should discuss with the agency in detail what their results measurement strategy is, and how the agency will show the return on client investment. There are a number of parameters that you can use to measure the marketing results e.g.
Conversion Rate Tracking
Website Traffic Analysis
Number of Incoming Calls
Leads, Sales Figures & Revenue Calculation
5.Business Details: Another aspect to look for when choosing your SEO company is the business details of the company on its contact page. The majority of companies display their business details in the footer section of their website or on their contact page. You should be looking for the business’s physical location, premises and contact details including landline, mobile, email. Some SEO companies also show their staff pictures to further enhance their business’s credibility. You can always cross check the business details of companies on government or registered body websites where the businesses are registered. Having genuine business details helps website visitors in their decision making.
6.SEO Company SERP’s for its Own Keywords: This is an extremely important factor because if a company cannot achieve good positions for its own keywords on Google SERP’s, then it is highly likely it wouldn’t be able to help its customers. You should check the SEO agency’s own rankings on Google, and there is also no harm in asking for the SEO company to send you a list of the keywords for which it ranks high on Google and other search engines. This will help to prove that the SEO agency is capable of achieving good results for your business website.
7.Word of Mouth: It is natural that when you have a good experience with an agency, you do not mind passing the details to your family and friends, and you also recommend that agency’s services to other businesses. Word of mouth is extremely important; speak to other businesses to find out if they have used a good agency in the past and if they can recommend an agency to carry out your business’s marketing operations.
8.Competitors: This is a very simple but effective strategy. If any of your competitors are doing very well online and you are very convinced with their strategy, you can find out which SEO marketing agency is running their campaign. Generally SEO companies advertise their business in the footer section of their client’s website e.g. “SEO by Company”, “Marketing by Company”, “Web Design by Agency” or “SEO Services by Agency”. Or if you are unable to find the SEO agency’s reference in the footer section of your competitor’s website, you can also contact your competitor for help – it’s highly likely they wouldn’t be willing to help you but there is no harm in trying.
9.False Promises: Beware if an SEO agency is guaranteeing first page rankings on Google in a short time span or is making too many promises in advance because nobody has control over Google and nobody can predict the results in advance. SEO is a time consuming process, and a 4-9 month time frame is generally required to achieve good rankings for competitive keywords on Google if the SEO campaign is executed as per Google quality guidelines and using white hat SEO methodologies. Do not rush to achieve too much in a short time span, do not go for cheap and low quality SEO services, and beware of false promises.
10.Google Guidelines Based Services: Check with your SEO company in advance to make sure they do not follow black hat SEO methodologies to achieve quick results and generate hundreds of spam and unnatural links for your website to influence your website rankings. SEO should be done as per Google quality guidelines and links should be arranged naturally in moderation from high domain authority, trustworthy, reputable and genuine websites.
11.Inbound Links: There is no doubt that inbound links are one of the most important signals of Google rankings but arranging hundreds of spam links on poor quality websites can harm your website rankings instead of putting any positive impacts on your website. Before starting the link building campaign, you should check with your SEO agency how they are going to arrange inbound links and what type of links they will be. Inbound links should be naturally placed in the body content of the blog article. Inbound links to your website should be genuine, high domain authority, high page authority, and from reputable and trustworthy domains.
12.Aim of the Campaign: Defining the goal in advance makes things clear for both the customer and the agency. You should have a clear goal and know what you want to achieve, and know what budget you have to fulfil that goal. Based on your input, the SEO agency should layout the full strategy for achieving that goal and what time-frame they require to fulfil that goal.
13.Customer Service: Communication between an SEO company and its client is extremely important. When you choose an SEO agency, you should consider factors such as how effectively the agency communicates and how much time they take to respond to your queries or concerns. Customer service information can be found in previous customer reviews or testimonials. A good agency communicates well with its clients and in a timely manner.
14.Knowledge: Before you hire an SEO agency, you should check what marketing knowledge the staff possess, and what certifications or experience they have in the field. Many marketing experts are self-taught or come from different educational backgrounds. SEO professionals also contribute to many marketing journals and blogs, which could be a good source to check what kind of information they share with the community and what knowledge they possess.
There is no doubt that you should take other factors into consideration while choosing the right SEO partner agency for your business, such factors being referrals, location, performance, results, testimonials, agency processes, experts knowledge, price for services, company marketing strategy, company size etc.
To sum up, if you combine the Google search results that you retrieved for your search terms (e.g. best SEO company near me”, “best SEO agency UK”, “best SEO companies in the UK” etc) with some of your own research on the agencies based on the 12 factors above, it is highly likely that you will be able to filter out the best SEO agencies that deliver high quality genuine services at affordable rates.