If your business has a website, then SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) should be on your radar. As important as how your website looks and how it works, SEO is what helps people find your website when they use a search engine.
To make SEO work in your favour, you need to get it right. And this is where an SEO agency comes in. As experts in what they do, they can help businesses of all sizes improve their search ranking and take their business to new heights.
But when it comes to your website, you want to make sure it’s in safe hands. This is why it’s important to find an SEO agency that’s reliable, trustworthy, and capable of producing results for your business.
How do you find the perfect SEO agency? Here are our five steps to help you choose the right one.
1. Establish your goals
SEO companies provide different services. Some will be able to offer exactly what you’re looking for, while others might not be the best fit for you. How can you find out? By establishing your goals.
Some realistic and achievable goals for your SEO include:
- Improved organic traffic
- A higher domain authority
- Improved sales
- Reduced bounce rate
- Improved page speed
- An increase in how long a user spends on your webpage
Improving your SEO could just be one thing your website needs. But it could also need a new design, faster loading speed, better performance and better copy. It’s easier to have one agency take care of everything, but this won’t be the case for all agencies. By establishing your complete goals, you’ll be able to start narrowing down the SEO agencies who provide the service you’re looking for.
2. Do your research
After establishing your SEO goals, it’s time to start researching companies. There are some things to consider early on in the process, including whether you want to choose a local company, if a company has expertise in your specific industry, etc.
Any reputable SEO agency will have a ‘services’ page. Whitehat Agency provides a comprehensive list of services, alongside a description of what they are, helping potential clients to quickly establish whether the agency is the right fit for their needs.
Now is a good time to ask for potential quotes and establish availability, which is important factors if you’re on a tight budget and timeframe.
3. Take a closer look
After narrowing your selection to a handful of agencies, a closer inspection is required. Does the company have an online portfolio you can take a look at? Seeing examples of previous projects can give you an indication of results and deeper insight into how the company operates.
It’s also worth looking examining testimonials of previous clients. While a company is unlikely to publish any negative reviews on its website, testimonials will help you see the types of clients the company has worked with, allowing you to form your own judgement.
SEO agencies should be web experts, and their own website should be reflective of this. Don’t be afraid to be critical – you’re making an investment in a service, and you want it to be of the highest standard.
4. Meet with the agency
Whether you choose to work with a local agency or find remote SEO experts, it’s important to set up a meeting before you agree to any work. A meeting can give you a clearer sense of what the agency is like to work with, and help you feel more confident that you’re making the right decision.
Meeting the agency should also give you the chance to meet the team you’ll be working with. This can help you establish some good relationships from the beginning and understand how everyone works. It’s a good way to see how passionate an agency is about what they do, and a chance for them to sell themselves to you too.
When meeting with an SEO agency prior to agreeing on a contract, you should think about asking some of the following questions:
- How can you help us achieve our goals?
- What are your agency’s strengths?
- What is unique about your agency?
- How will you communicate progress updates and results?
- What are some of your most recent success stories?
- How do you measure success?
- What are your terms for parting ways?
After meeting with a prospective SEO agency, you should be able to walk away feeling confident that you’ve made the right choice. If for any reason, something doesn’t sit right, you can continue your search until you’ve found the right agency.
5. Agree on your terms
Congratulations, you’ve chosen the perfect SEO agency! Now it’s time to make sure you get the most from it.
Firstly, you’ll need to provide a detailed brief. One of the key reasons why many client/agency relationships fail is because the brief provided is too broad, or doesn’t provide enough detail. A kick-off meeting to ensure everyone is one the same page will be extremely valuable, saving issues down the line. This can also help you agree on timescales and key milestones so that you know what to expect.
Budget is your next key consideration. Payment terms should be agreed in advance, and you might want to agree on staggered payments, with an initial deposit, and then payments on delivery. The agency will likely have their own payment terms, so there may be some negotiation required.
Working with an SEO agency can be a valuable and beneficial investment for your business. But as with any investment, you want to make sure that you’re confident you’re backing the right horse. SEO is a competitive area, and you’ll find no shortage of companies who are willing to offer their services, which is why it’s important to do your research and find a company that best meets your needs.
With the right SEO agency by your side, you could take your website from strength to strength and ensure success for your business. Let the search for the right agency begin!