Skills that Good SEO’s Possess- An Analysis
Choosing a great SEO agency for your marketing campaign can be a challenging task. There are lots of agencies out there who specialize in Search Engine Optimization, but how can you trust that each will really push your Google rankings to the top?
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It always pays when searching for an SEO agency to not only look into their past and current client base, but also to ask about their achievements. What Google rankings have they attained for past clients? How long did it take? And how much did the website traffic increase? Generally, it can take around 3 months or more for rankings to increase on Google and traffic should increase from about 50% upwards. At this stage, you may also want to inquire if the agency offers any subscriptions for post-optimization maintenance. A good company should, since maintaining high SEO rankings requires ongoing care.
Range of Services
It also helps to look for an SEO agency that offers a full range of services. ‘On-page services’ like website analysis, content optimization, page optimization, internal link building and ranking and traffic management should be offered. ‘Off-site’ SEO services should include keyword research, competitor analysis, external link building, and off-page promotion. It might also help to ask your prospective company if you’re required to approve anything before they go ahead with it. If they say ‘yes’, it’s a good sign they’re honest and willing to work closely with you. To boost your rankings, an SEO agency needs to employ a variety of tasks, not just one or two, so be wary of companies that only offer limited or dodgy services.
Another thing to look out for is any agency that offers to increase your rankings through suspect methodologies like spamming, keyword stuffing, hidden text, high-ranking doorway pages and link-farming. These are often referred to as “black hat SEO” and can get you banished from search engines, which can be hugely detrimental to your business. Also keep an eye out for automatic, bulk submissions to search engines. Automatic submissions are not considered best practice and it’s must more beneficial for you if a company conducts manual submissions. Always make sure that an SEO agency is open about their methodologies used – any secrecy could mean they are using “black hat” techniques.
It’s important to remember that high prices in an SEO agency do not necessarily mean the best quality. Instead, choose a company based on their client base, reputation and their own site optimization and Google rankings. Similarly, if a company is offering you “guaranteed” #1 rankings for a ridiculously low price, it is probably too good to be true. Collecting several quotes is a good way to start and always make sure quotes are backed by a contract, so you know exactly what you’re getting for your money. It will also help to ask what their payment terms are and if they have any fees for early termination.
Finally, a trustworthy SEO agency should offer and conduct thorough and specific keyword research as a part of their SEO services. Most companies will include keyword research as a given, but be wary of any company that asks you to provide the keywords for their work. While they might ask for your opinion, the keywords used should be based on their research, analytics and competitor scope, not on what you tell them. Remember, they’re meant to be the SEO experts – not you! “Guessing” your keywords is not efficient and a great SEO agency will research your keywords thoroughly before recommending them.