Hiring an SEO Expert? Ask These Questions.
Hiring an SEO Expert? Ask these questions.
There are a ton of marketers out there with varying knowledge, experience, and ethics, making it difficult to know if you’re choosing the right one. Trusting someone to manage your business “under the hood,” is an important decision and positive step- but it shouldn’t be a stressful one. This checklist will prepare you to find the right SEO partner with confidence.
1. Can you tell me about some of your clients?
An SEO expert should be able to describe past or current clients in detail. While they may not be able to provide analytics, they can definitely account for businesses they’ve worked with and positive outcomes as a result.
2. How can you help me improve my search rankings?
A trusted SEO professional will be able to tell you specific strategies for improving SEO. Walk away from any that can’t tell you their methods specifically. Good SEO’s will also provide estimated timelines for achieving results… in which case 6 months is an appropriate amount of time. Any that promise results fast may not be trustworthy.
3. Do you follow search engines webmaster guidelines?
You should hire an SEO that strictly adheres to search engine guidelines. Failure to do so can result in penalties and low search rankings. Read Google’s guidelines for webmaster best practices.
4. Can you guarantee that my site ranks #1 on Google, Bing or Yahoo?
Run from any SEO who promises #1 anything.
5. Do you have experience in improving local search results?
For local brick-and-mortar businesses, appearing on local search results is key to attracting customers in the nearby community. Your SEO should be able to speak to how local search results can help boost your traffic.
7. What makes an SEO campaign successful?
Choose an SEO partner who is an expert at Google Analytics. The right partner will work with you establish web traffic goals, and to help you clearly understand your website’s online traffic patterns via detailed monthly reports. What types of payments do you accept?
Some agencies accept project-based payments, others charge be the hour, and most accept monthly retainers. Some agencies accept a combination of the 3 options above. According to Moz survey by Rand Fishkin expect $250-$500 monthly retainers on the low end, and $2,500-5,000 for high-end. Hourly rates can range from $76-$200. Expect $100 or more from high quality SEO’s.