Sadly I have had many conversions with small businesses who were taken advantage of by so-called "digital marketers." As the search industry has become more standardized, it's now much easier to see who knows their stuff and who doesn't. To help you make an educated decision about which SEO agency to hire, check out the infographic below. We've put together 15 questions you need to ask before hiring an SEO agency.
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The goal of this question is to understand if they have a basic understanding of the industry. Their answer should be something along the lines of; "SEO is the process of marketing a website to the search engines and its users to increase visibility and click-through rate."
This question is a little harder to answer since success will be determined by a number of outside factors like industry, competition, current site status and company goals.
SEO is constantly changing. Google makes more than 500 updates to their algorithm each year. When hiring an SEO, make sure they are up-to-date on search engine algorithms.
This question will give you insight into how they do what they do. Listen carefully and you can learn clues about their work ethic, follow-through and consistency.
While SEO can be complicated, keeping clients aware of what's going on helps make them feel more secure. Since many have been burned in the past, open communication is essential.
Not all SEO is created equal. While most of us in the industry are self-taught, this question will help you understand whether they learned their skills from pros or hacks.
While Google is moving more and more towards understanding topics, keywords are still extremely important. This question will help you get an idea of their processes.
Successful online marketing is the result of using all of the tools available to help you get results. This question will allow you to understand the scope of their abilities as well as their knowledge of the industry.
Today's SEO world is full of tools, tools, and more tools. Some are better than others. If you aren't familiar with a tool they use, ask them to give you more detail.
Keeping track of keywords, rankings, strategy, and links can get real messy, real fast. If an agency has an organized system that will tell you a lot about how they work and the results you can expect from them.
When it comes to link building, there is a right way and a wrong way. If they outsource overseas, pay-to-play or won't give you a clear answer, be very afraid.
This is kind of a trick question. If they have been penalized in the past, that's a good indication they have used some black-hat tactics. Conversely, if they've helped a site that's been penalized recover, it shows their skills.
Simple: "47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less."
There are two major types of redirects, 302 and 301. Knowing when and how to use them is crucial to passing page rank and indexing your site properly.
Success is measured in a number of ways. See what they find important and compare that with your idea of success. If your vision and their vision don't match, you probably won't work well together.
While this isn't a complete list of questions you could ask, it will help you get a better understanding of who the agency is and whether or not they know their stuff. Here at SMA Marketing, we pride ourselves in delivering personalized SEO strategies that deliver business results. To learn more about our process, click here. You can also view our pricing and packages here.
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