We all know that SEO is time-consuming. Most of the small businesses lay blind faith in SEO agencies claiming to skyrocket their rankings but end up either wasting money or ruining their website. Here’s how you can identify whether your SEO agency is doing a worthy job or harming you?
Every SEO agency in the market claims to have the best search engine optimizing professional for your website. Most of the small businesses fall prey to their gimmicks by trusting them blindly without reviewing their portfolio. Eventually, either your website gets a penalty due to unethical and black hat SEO strategies being followed or the rankings get totally disrupted.
So, I am listing 5 basic things using which you can easily check, from the first day itself, whether your SEO agency is genuine or is just fooling you around.
1. They don’t have anything to show
We all know that SEO may take around three, four or even more than that to show significant results but that doesn’t mean that your company has nothing to show you. You have every right to ask for the deliverables. They should be able to show you all practices and strategies they have been following in order to get desired results.
Even during the first month of the contract, your SEO Company should be able to provide you with SEO audit, in-depth competitor analysis and content optimization of your website.
2. No questions asked
The top SEO and digital marketing agencies do ask for your help to proceed further such as your expectations, any particular area/s for improvement, problems you are facing, past audits, any penalties etc. For ethical actions, they would need your access to various web components such as:
- Admin panel
- Google Webmaster Tool access
- Google Analytics Tool
- Targeted keywords
- Past audit reports
If they are not asking anything, there could be chances that they may be following unethical practices to gain ranking that may harm your website.
The top professional SEO companies take the client’s relationship to the partnership level to build a good reputation and earn recommendations for the work.
3. Strategy Sharing
If you get any of the replies like “We can’t share…”, “It’s complicated” or “It’s confidential” upon asking the plan of action, it’s time to switch the SEO firm.
Being a client you have every right to know what all practices, strategies or approaches are being followed by the company. A true company would be following all the white hat techniques and would be more than happy to share the strategies or action plan with you.
4. Manual Penalty
A manual penalty is a penalty by Google that is generated as a result of manual reviews performed by Google officials in case of any suspicious activity on the website. If you receive a manual penalty within a couple of months after commencing your SEO work, check with your SEO service provider.
It may or may not be their fault, but cross-questioning and careful thinking may help you find out the reason behind the penalty. Also, keep a check on the backlinks or inbound links from Google Webmaster tools and make sure that no link is coming from spammy or suspicious websites.
5. Sudden drop in traffic and rankings
There could be various reasons behind a sudden drop in traffic or rankings. Google algorithm updates are just one of the reasons. Keep an eye on your rankings and make sure that your pages are ranking for the right keywords. If there is a steady decline in your rankings, connect with your SEO agency. If anything sounds fishy, ask them to suspend everything immediately.
Consult the best digital marketing consultant in order to stay on top of market trends and ensure the right white hat practices are being followed.
The main objective of any search engine optimization is not merely visibility but also includes traffic, leads and conversions.
So, next time when you get into a contract with any SEO agency, make sure that they:
. Have deliverables
A top-rated and purely professional SEO firm may not be able to give you first-page rankings but they will have evidence of whatever they have done. Proof of work can include things such as audit reports, action plans, link profiles, content optimization, weekly/monthly report etc.
SEO is a flux. Things that work on Monday might not work on Wednesday.
. Offer you recommendations/suggestions for improvement
If the SEO is not working, think carefully. Are you following the recommendations shared by your SEO agency? The SEO firms may suggest you certain things necessary for the SEO improvement. These suggestions may include:
- Starting social media channels and integrating them with your website
- Starting a blog and optimizing the content of the homepage as well as other pages.
- Changing robot.txt and creating sitemap.xml
- Improving speed of the website and switching to a responsive template
- Getting technical and SEO audit done by a professional digital marketing consultant.
These recommendations are not made to up sell their services. In fact, these are indented to make your SEO work fast and help you gain visibility sooner.
. Revenue goes up
In some cases, it may happen that your traffic may get decreased but your revenue gets a pump. This is because the best SEO agency focuses on giving you more targeted and niche specific traffic- that converts!
You should understand that your ultimate goal is to get traffic that is conversion-oriented and not a lot of random traffic.
What can you do?
Well, you have been working with a firm for 3-4 months and no visible results. What to do?
- Relax SEO takes time. Get yourself acquainted with latest SEO knowledge. It may happen that your SEO firm might be working on obsolete technologies.
- You should know your expectations with the SEO firm.
- Keep monitoring them.
- Follow their suggestions for improvement.
SEO plays an important role in the success or failure of a business. You can’t just hand it over to anyone- go for the best SEO agency.
Are you also facing any problems with your SEO firm or wish to know more? Connect with me for an accurate and authentic consultation on SEO, digital marketing and audits.