Congrats on the bold step to seek a digital marketing expert for your business! Digital marketing is the new frontier of advertising. The majority of business is done online, and those that cannot keep up risk being left in the dust. SEO marketing is a useful tool to get online traffic and revenue for your business. While there are many reputable, honest SEO experts out there, a few bad apples can spoil the bunch. Read on to learn more about what to ask an SEO expert you want to work with.
What is SEO, anyway?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. This is the process of using certain keywords to “catch” in common search engine algorithms, bumping your content to the top of the search engine results page. Most people only look at the first 3-5 results on a search engine results page, so making sure your business is on top can make you a lot of money. This is a complicated process involving research and data analytics.
5 Questions to Ask an SEO Agent
Ask About Their SEO Process
All work flows are different, and each company has a unique and complicated process to get their data. That being said, any SEO agent worth their salt will be able to explain the process to you. Ask them about how they conduct keyword research, and what kind of data they use to make their decisions. Ask them how they measure the success of their keywords. A large portion of what these agents do is explain the process, so if they cannot explain it to you or it seems vague, that agency is likely not worth your time.
Whether you want SEO help to increase revenue, brand awareness, find untapped markets or all of the above–the success of SEO is measured in months, not weeks or days. Be cautious of any agency that promises big, overnight results. When interviewing potential agencies, ask the agent representative about what kind of goal posts you can expect from their work, and in what kind of timeline. If possible, ask to see the results from a comparable business they have worked with.
Inquire About Past Work
It helps to do your research before you begin interviewing potential SEO agencies. Check the company’s website for reviews, bios, etc as well as third-party review sites. Any business that has been operating for a while is bound to have one or two bad reviews, but if the majority of the reviews are bad consider it a red flag. Check the good reviews as well to see if they seem legitimate. When you decide to proceed to the interview, ask the SEO agent about other projects they have worked on, specifically companies in the same field. They should have quantifiable data from that experience that you can use to get an idea of how their SEO services could help you.
What Does Progress Look Like?
Ask your SEO agent about expectations, as well as transparency of their process. How will the agency measure your success, and how will that information be shared with you? What kind of analytical tools does this company use and how is that data reported? A good SEO agent will be able to easily answer this for you, and you should leave the meeting confident that they have a plan with specific goal posts and deliverables that they will share with you. You should also feel confident that you can ask about the process at any point and get an honest answer.
Time and Financial Commitment
Time and money are scarce resources in the business world. As a business owner you have to make tough decisions on what to spend on. Ask your SEO agent about how much time you will be expected to give, as it varies from agency to agency. Some may expect a dozen hours a week, others only a few hours a month. There is no right answer, its just about finding the business that would work best for your business.
SEO is the future of online advertising. Almost all business is done digitally, and having a good online presence can make or break a business. At Sterling & Pope, we understand the needs of every business, from large to small, and can help you meet your goals at a price point that works for you. Check out our website today and see what Sterling & Pope can do for you!