How To Choose the Best SEO Company For Your Business
We all get the emails: “Sign up with our SEO services to get your website on the first page of Google in one week!”. If you run a business, your inbox is probably full of spam emails with claims like this.
So how do you sort through the spam to find an SEO company that will actually help your business? We’ve compiled the factors that you should consider when hiring an SEO company, including best practices and red flags. Your first tip: those companies blowing up your inbox with ridiculous claims? They’re not the best choice for your business.
When it comes to choosing an SEO company to help bolster your online presence, it isn’t always easy to know which company is right for you. Running a successful online campaign is complex, and when you hire an SEO company, agency, or consultant, you put your trust in them to promote your business online. If your company is on the hunt for SEO services, there are some things to look out for to help you in your search.
Why You Need an SEO Company
Before we discuss what to look for in an SEO provider, consider why you need SEO services.
SEO, search engine optimization, drives traffic to your website by helping it to rank higher on search engines like Google. Since most people turn to the internet nowadays for everything from where to get their next meal to real estate listings, web traffic can have a huge impact on customer leads, sales, and the overall reputation of your company. A great, high-ranking website instills confidence in customers and can significantly boost your business.
Set goals for what you expect from your SEO provider and ask them if they can provide what you’re looking for before you commit. These goals should be realistic, of course: if a company makes promises of outrageous accomplishments in a short timeframe, it should send up a red flag.
If you’re unsure whether or not your business needs SEO services, try out our free tool to check out your website’s SEO score. We’ll tell you how well-optimized your website is at no cost so that you can determine whether hiring an SEO company is the right choice for you.
Use the tool below to check your website’s SEO score at absolutely no cost to you: simply enter the URL of your website’s homepage or any blog post and see how optimized it is for one targeted keyword or phrase. We’ll send you the website’s score and a full PDF report to the email you provide.
What To Look For in an SEO Agency
Finding the right SEO company depends on your business and your expectations; what may work for one company may not be right for another. These factors should come into play when considering the best SEO agency for you.
Proven Track Record
An experienced SEO company should have a track record that proves they can follow through on what they offer. Check out reviews, client testimonials, and case studies to see how they performed for other customers. A good SEO company will be happy to showcase their successes to earn your business.
If you know one of the other businesses they’ve optimized, try searching for the main keywords for that business and see how well their websites rank on Google or other search engines. You can also consider asking for a referral from a company they’ve worked with.
When considering a company’s track record, you should also consider how well they market themselves. If you want a company to help get your business on the first page of Google for your chosen keywords, what does it say if their business isn’t even on the first page? Google “best SEO company in (your area)” and start by vetting the companies that come up first – if they aren’t search engine optimized themselves, they probably won’t be able to get you there either.
Realistic Expectation Setting
If a company boasts that their services will put your website first on Google in a week, steer clear. SEO takes time and hard work, so you should be wary about false promises or any ridiculous claims.
A trustworthy SEO company will outline clear goals and expected timelines for achieving those goals. It may feel frustrating that you can’t see immediate results, but this simply isn’t realistic. Put your trust in a company that is transparent about what they’re doing and when and how they’ll get you the desired results.
Experience in Your Niche Industry
An SEO company may have happy customers and a proven track record, but do they have any experience in your specific industry? If they’ve worked with businesses in your niche, that’s a great sign that they may be the right fit for you. If they haven’t worked in your specific niche, they could still be a good choice based on their other experience, but it’s important to consider whether or not they will understand your industry.
How personalized will your service be? If a company is swamped with business, it’s important to make sure they still have time to cater to your needs and can be reached easily so that you get a response in a timely manner. You want to work with a company that cares about your relationship and has time to take your questions and perform the duties they promise.
A good question to ask is how many accounts your account manager is handling at once – he or she may be busy, but if you’re one of over 60 or 70 clients on their plate, they may be too overwhelmed to focus on your business. Your account manager isn’t the only one working on every aspect of your SEO services, but they are the main point of contact. A good number is 30 or fewer clients; keep in mind, however, that if they only have 2 other clients it may mean that they aren’t an experienced enough company.
Work with a company that is transparent about how they do what they do. There are shady SEO practices (also known as Black Hat SEO) that some companies try to essentially trick Google or other search engines, but these methods will ultimately fail.
Look for a company that uses the best practices for SEO and can explain how and why they are following the practices that they are using. A good SEO company will be happy to explain what they are doing and how they expect it to help your business. You should understand where your money is going, how it is being used, and how their services are benefiting your business.
Cost is always a factor when making financial decisions for your business. When it comes to choosing an SEO company, you shouldn’t overpay for services, but you should also be wary about anything suspiciously cheap. If an SEO company or consultant is charging a ridiculously low cost, it probably says something about the quality of the service you’ll receive in turn. You may have to pay a little more for a reputable SEO company, but your ROI will make it worthwhile at the end of the day.
Ask how your potential SEO company charges clients; is there a flat fee, hourly, or based on services offered? If they offer one flat fee for everyone, this may raise red flags – the price should reflect the level of service your company will receive and how much work needs to be done. A high quality SEO company will break down cost and what you’re getting for that price.
Most of the actual work your SEO company performs can be done regardless of location, since the work is done primarily online. Still, location may be a factor for your business if you want to work with someone who you can meet with in person (without the added time and expense of flying). A local company may better understand your business’ market since they also work in the area.
If you’re comfortable discussing goals and expectations over the phone, your SEO company does not have to be local. There are other factors that are more important than location, and it’s certainly better to work with a reputable SEO company in a different city than a shoddy one near you.
Find the Right SEO Company
Now that you know what to look for – and what to avoid – you can find the right SEO company for your business. If you’re still unsure what SEO services would benefit your business, give us a call to set up a consultation or click here to contact us today.