SEO (search engine optimization) can be intimidating for novices. I completely understand why. SEO is a complex task that requires you to pay attention to many areas. You’ll need content writing, competition research, building links, and taking care of over 100 other responsibilities. You’ll also need to have the experience to perform all these actions –You’ll need to make sure you stay up-to-date with the most recent Google algorithm changes.
Outsource Your SEO Strategy the Right Way
Most businesses who practice SEO outsource it to some degree, whether they hire an agency or work with contractors. This can be a great way to support your SEO campaign but it can also be a disadvantage. It is important to do your research.
How SEO Outsourcing Goes Wrong
Let’s begin by listing the most serious ways that SEO outsourcing could fail.
- Penalties and black hat practices In the SEO world, that means using techniques like spamming links, writing low-quality content at high volumes, and even keyword stuffing. These tactics may be able to provide a temporary gain, but only for the contracting agency to cash it. In all cases, you will eventually face a Google penalty, which could negate any benefits you may have received.
- Scams and lack of work. There are companies that don’t exist. They’re just shell organizations designed to con you out of your money. Someone might claim to be optimizing your site, but in reality, they may not be doing any work. Although these outright scams are rare in the SEO industry, they can lead to a loss of revenue.
- Value and cost. It is also important to balance the true value and cost. SEO services that are high-quality and cost-effective can be expensive. This is because it requires expertise, time, resources, and other resources. If you have to pay $10,000 per month for SEO services and only get $9,800 in return, it’s not a wise trade. SEO is an investment that is well worth it, but you should be careful not to overpay for outsourcing.
Researching Potential Partners
How can you avoid these problems?
It is a good idea to do extensive research on potential outsourcing partners before you hire anyone. There are two options when it comes to who you should hire.
- Agencies. In exchange, however, you will typically have access to more experts and support throughout the SEO process. Your account manager will usually be yours and there will be built-in guarantees to ensure you are satisfied with the work done.
- Contractors. contractors tend to be more affordable and flexible. Individual contractors can be hired to assist you with certain tasks, such as writing or link building, or you can mix and match them to create your own team. You might save money, but you will need to put more effort in and take higher risks.
No matter which direction you choose, you will need to do your research on every potential hire.
- Expertise. Is the team new to SEO or have they been in the industry for decades? Is their knowledge of your company and the industry extensive or a more general one?
- High-level strategy/services offered. Find out which services the partner offers and what high-level strategy they will follow. It’s a sign that they are not able to answer your questions or try to avoid them. A good SEO professional will be able to explain the process to you and convince you that they can create high-quality work. SEO strategies that work are a combination of technical onsite improvement, quality content generation, and value-focused linking with authoritative publishers. Link spamming or content spamming are not going to work.
- High-quality work. You will need to do some research to determine the level of work that this person or organization can produce. Asking for examples is the best way to determine this. Which examples are the most memorable content that this company has produced? What are the most popular live links pointing back at their site? You may have to change your mind if you are not happy with this part.
- Testimonials and reviews. Next, take a look at testimonials and reviews left about the company by clients. A lot of people will leave negative reviews if an agency or contractor uses black hat tactics or scams people out. Although it is not a guarantee you will get excellent service, having positive reviews and testimonials can be a good indicator.
- Past results. Seek out proof of past results. Do they have any proof of ranking increases that they have achieved for clients in the past? While new professionals in the industry may still be able to get good results, it’s better to work with someone who has had success over time.
- Communication. Reach out to potential candidates that you have found through your research, and begin talking to account managers and professionals about managing your campaign. Are they polite and prompt? It’s a good sign that you will get the customer service you deserve.
The Working Relationship
price. You also have to consider the cost of the services that you are receiving. While a company might have all the right boxes, it may not be worth the cost if its service packages are too expensive.
While finding the right partner and researching them is a good first step, you must also invest in your working relationship to achieve great results.
- Transparency is a must. You should be able to see all the work your SEO partner does, right down to the words they use for offsite content or the changes to your backend code. You should consider it a red flag if your contractor or agency refuses to provide information on their work or is not clear about what they are doing.
- Insist on regular reporting. It is also important to insist upon regular reporting. You should see your partner not only showing you the work they are doing for you, but also the results. How has your ranking changed over time? What is the traffic to your website? These metrics can be combined with conversion statistics and onsite sales to calculate your ROI.
- Ask questions. Don’t assume your SEO expert knows more than you if you don’t understand something. You’ll learn more about SEO as you go along, and you will be better equipped to make decisions about your campaign. It could be a sign that trouble is ahead if your partner cannot answer a question or dodges a question.
Hold the team accountable.
Last, make sure that the individual or team is held accountable for their performance. Ask them what they will do if your rankings drop for a keyword. After several months of hard work, you may not get the results you want. Ask them to compensate the difference or refund you partially.
It can be extremely profitable to outsource SEO. You’ll have access to some of the best minds in the business, and you can save money by outsourcing SEO.
The worst-case scenario should not scare you from doing your research well in advance. You should also keep in mind that not all SEO companies will provide a return on investment (ROI).