How to Choose a Local SEO Agency?
Having your own website is the first step towards making your online business visible to your potential customers. With almost every company going online nowadays, it’s no reason why you shouldn’t. After all, taking your business online allows you to enjoy massive benefits compared to just settling with an offline store.
Based on online reports, 93% of online experiences start with a search. As a result, promoting an online business while incorporating SEO into the mix can be a really effective tactic. However, it only works if you hire an expert SEO agency to manage your SEO efforts.
Choosing the best search engine optimization agency might be a bit daunting with all the choices out there. However, it doesn’t have to be that hard. Here are some tips that can help you:
Define Your SEO Goals
To find the right local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency for your website or business, you need to know your SEO goals first. What exactly do you want to achieve with hiring a local SEO agency? In most cases, it could be to increase your business’ exposure, ranking or gain more organic traffic.
While they do sound great, you need to come up with tangible figures which define success. For example, how many unique website visitors do you want to get per month? What is the exact figure that you can consider an effective ROI for your business?
Always keep in mind that SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is not an overnight process. It often requires a lot of time and consistent optimization and research effort. As such, you have to develop a roadmap with clear milestones to help you gauge your progress. Without it, an Search Engine Optimization agency might find it hard to work with you.
Check Their SEO Portfolio
By checking a Search Engine Optimization Agency’s website, you can have an initial assessment of the quality of their service. This can be done by checking their portfolio. By taking a look at their portfolio, you can understand the types of businesses they serve. Try to look for a previous work that is related to your niche target.
For example, if you sell auto parts and noticed that the SEO Agency has worked with a number of automotive-related clients before, it could mean that they are experienced within your niche and know how to make your website achieve amazing results. Also, if their portfolio includes a wide range of industries, it can only mean that they are versatile and can easily adapt to any SEO (Search Engine Optimization) project.
Find an SEO agency with metrics that work for you
Once you’ve outlined your goals and narrowed down your options to a few SEO agencies, it’s time to make sure that you and the SEO agency that you choose to work with have a clear method of charting your progress once you get started. In other words, what is the end SEO goal of ranking for specific keywords?
Before you choose your next SEO agency, it’s crucial that you and your SEO consultant are on the same page when it comes to Key Performance Indicators or KPIs. KPIs are metrics that can apply to virtually any aspect of a business and can mean a host of different things within SEO itself. For example, a company with a new product will have different objectives than an older company with an established clientele.
But KPIs go way beyond that. In other words, we have access to so much data that it’s easy to get lost in it or track the wrong KPIs. This also means that you need an SEO agency that understands which metrics are the most important to your business and can condense that information into something that you can digest. Here are a few of the most important KPIs to consider:
Organic sessions: How many people visit your website through an organic search? This is often considered the most basic, and most important, KPI in SEO. Beyond that, you can look at other factors like the average number of page views, duration per visit, number of unique visitors, and bounce rate.
Conversion rate: What percentage of visitors buy your product, sign up for your newsletter or engage with your content?
Keyword rankings: Which keywords do you rank for and, overall, have your keyword rankings increased since you hired your SEO agency?
Google crawling mistakes: Google crawling is the process by which a Google bot systematically indexes your website’s content. If Google struggles to read your website, it cannot index it in a way that shows up in search, which negatively impacts organic traffic.
Page load time: The time it takes for a page to load directly correlates to how quickly people leave your site. According to Think with Google the bounce rate, meaning how quickly people exit your website, increases by 90 percent when page loading time increases from one to five seconds.
Read Reviews and Testimonials
One of the best ways you can get unbiased opinions regarding a company is through reviews and customer testimonials. In order to find out whether an SEO agency can live up to their promise or not is by reading testimonials and reviews made by their previous clients.
You can find a lot of online reviews on sites like Yelp Glassdoor, and Google. While some companies include testimonials on their website, they’re often fabricated and won’t display their negative side, if any.
You can also request a case study by calling the agency or submitting an online form. This is one way you can use to know what they’re truly capable of. Another effective method is to request a reference. A reputable SEO agency should be willing to put you in touch with some of their latest clients so you can talk to them regarding the services and their experiences with the agency.
Request for an SEO Consultation
Whether you’re nearby an SEO agency or thousands of miles away, you can always request for a consultation. Most agencies will be happy to schedule a FREE 30 minutes consultation with you. Through a consultation, you can have an initial assessment of how they handle their clients, their professionalism, and how well they can perform on your project.
It’s important to create a relationship with your SEO agency, hence you should make use of this method to know how well you connect. Find out if you can easily understand what they’re trying to say, if they’re explaining everything in detail, how well they communicate with you, and whether or not they’re proposing reasonable budgets and timelines.
Some may even be willing to arrange a meeting personally, hence you have to make sure to ask them specific questions.
Define Your SEO Budget
Before you even give an SEO agency a green light, make sure their services are well within your budget. Don’t go for a service you can’t afford, and make sure you plan your budget in advance. It’s always advisable to ask about an agency’s package deals and any possible discounts early on so you can gauge whether or not their services are within your budget.
Most SEO agencies have several SEO packages that you can choose from, each having a different budget and offers.
Always remember that SEO is not an overnight process. Don’t believe an Local Search Engine Optimization Company that promises you significant results in just a day or two. In most cases, it may take months before you can even see a noticeable result. Use these tips, and you can surely find the right SEO agency to promote your business.