hiring SEO

Essential Questions to Ask Before Hiring SEO Experts for Your Business

Hands up if you’re wondering what to ask an SEO Expert before hiring them?

If your hand is up, you’re not alone.

Businesses realise how vital it is to seek the assistance of a top-notch SEO agency. At the same time, they understand that finding the right agency isn’t easy.

This is where we step in.

Use this checklist of vital questions to ask when hiring SEO agencies and experts to help with your business website.

What Is SEO?

First things first. What is SEO? And what does an SEO agency do?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation.

Search engine optimisation is tricky to define as it’s more of a moving target of various website optimisation methods than a hard concept. The goal is to help a site rank high in search results.

It’s a process and involves many different tactics. These include ensuring the website’s design is user-friendly and simple and the development of a complex backlink profile. In addition, relevant, informative content must be regularly added to the website.

This content doesn’t only take your user’s intent into mind but must allow search engines to index the content too.

It’s helpful to understand the way Google™ displays links in search results to pages it considers authoritative and relevant. Authority is mainly measured by the quality and number of links from other web pages.

Put Simply; a webpage has the potential to rank in Google™ as long as other web pages link back to it.

Questions to Ask Before Hiring SEO Experts

When it comes to things to ask an SEO agency, there are a few key points to take into account. The question, “what to ask a digital marketing agency?” has a multi-faceted answer. Before even seeing the agency contract terms, you need answers to a few specific questions.

We’ve laid down some of the most important questions to ask to find the best SEO agency for your needs.

How Long Will a Google Rank Take?

Now, this is a tricky question, a trick question if you will.

If any SEO company answers with “your business will be ranking within a month or two,” you know they’re pulling your leg.

It sounds blunt. But these are the SEO agencies that give the whole industry a bad name.

Of course, there’s a chance that a site with a solid domain authority already in place can move to Google’s first page with a few quick on-site adjustments. But this is unusual, and it’s never a guarantee. No agency should be responding to this inquiry without proper research.

In contrast, an established and reliable SEO agency researches your business and provides an estimate based on strategy. It will never guarantee first page results in a specific period. This is a big red flag

How Experienced Is the SEO Team?

This is one of the most important questions. A knowledgeable team with a wide skill set is critical to the success of your SEO strategy. An experienced team approaches their SEO work with insight and creativity.

Along with this, the SEO industry is constantly changing. Digital marketing skills, therefore, need to be maintained and updated regularly. Your choice of agency must take into account whether the SEO team is made up of SEO professionals who’ve honed their personal craft.

Instead of an agency full of ‘jack-of-all-trades’, it’s better to be aligned with professionals with good experience in niche aspects of the SEO process. For example, some people are very experienced in outreach backlinking, while others have extensive content strategy experience. These are the kind of experts who you want on your team.

An agency that forces their staff to be ‘all-around specialists’ will produce a staff who is mediocre at a few things but not excellent at anything.

Does the Agency Have a Successful Portfolio?

Of course, it’s always a good idea to review a company’s portfolio before making a decision. When doing so, it’s critical to understand what its successes were and how it achieved them.

Their portfolio should clearly outline their strategies and how these were successful in the past. Along with this, their portfolio should indicate what the client’s goals were and how they achieved them.

They should be able to provide data to back-up any statements about how they improved content strategy or how they targeted highly-competitive keywords.

Along with this, a good agency will explain how they could use their successful strategies to help you and your website. How did you use the strategy and why will it work for us? The agency should be keen to show how their tweaks to your website will increase website keyword ranking.

If a company’s details seem purposely vague, think about opting for a more results-in-mind company. You don’t want to spend money on an agency who can’t prove a successful portfolio.

Which Industries Have you Worked in Before?

It goes without saying that, ideally, the SEO company you choose should be experienced in your industry.

Keep in mind that SEO and digital marketing strategies differ significantly from industry to industry. The only way to guarantee SEO success is to have someone working on your website who has a good grasp of your industry.

A good way of illustrating this is to use a real-life example. A website that sells cloud-based software and an auto parts e-commerce store are both online stores that sell goods and services. Despite this, they require two very different SEO strategies.

The goals of the software website could be to sign visitors up to a free trial of their product. In contrast, the auto parts e-commerce store would probably focus SEO goals on ranking for precise auto parts.

Due to their differing goals and priorities, the strategy’s would also differ. The strategy for the auto parts website would be straightforward, while the cloud software website would have a more complex SEO plan.

In order to get visitors to sign up for a free trial, the cloud-based software website would need to provide convincing content. While the auto parts website would prioritize the rank for part manufacturers and numbers.

It’s clear that the unique nature of the business, the industry and the market position all work together to guide the most effective SEO strategy.

How Is Progress Showcased and Reported?

If you aren’t able to understand the way an SEO agency reports its progress, they can’t be very helpful to you. A helpful tip to assist with this to ensure that, before starting with an SEO company, there is a list of relevant keywords compiled.

Progress made over time will use this initial keyword list as a benchmark. For example, if your business begins at the No. 50 position on Google for “Ohio dentist”, it’s obvious that you’ll want to track your progress. At the end of the day, your goal is to appear on the first page of Google, so you want to be able to work out if you’re moving toward that goal or not.

Another useful bit of advice is to ensure this keyword list isn’t too complicated. Many SEO agencies overcomplicate the reporting process. As a business, you need to be able to understand what the metrics mean.

A simple, clear, and accessible metric is therefore what you should look out for when deciding on an SEO agency to work with.

The Next Steps

After reading this article, you should be better equipped to make an informed decision about hiring SEO Experts. Armed with this list of pertinent questions, you can easily decipher which SEO agencies have your best interests in mind.

At the end of the day, your business is your life. In order to keep your sales funnel full, you simply need organic traffic from Google. The importance of choosing the right SEO agency can’t be underestimated. The decision about which SEO agency to hire is one of the most important marketing decision you’ll ever make.

Hiring the wrong SEO company will do more harm than good and can set you back financially for years to come. Lack of a focused strategy and low-quality links that lead to penalties are just some examples of the negative results of hiring an unreliable SEO company for your business.

For more information about finding the best SEO partnership for your business needs, please contact us. We’re more than happy to guide you through the process of finding the right SEO agency for your industry.