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By Guaranteed SEO // Apr 02, 2013 Categories: SEO

5 Things To Do Before Hiring An SEO Company

Tips For Successfully Working With Your SEO Company

I know SEO

Successful internet marketing is not a single undertaking, it’s an ongoing ever changing process.  The most effective online marketing campaigns are built out of multiple parts and fuelled by planning, creativity, and a deep understanding of how the internet works when it comes to getting your page noticed.  While we’ve spent a lot of time going over the planning and creativity aspects of online marketing, what may be less clear is how to carry out the more technical aspects of online marketing such as search engine optimization. Navigating the waters of search engine optimization can be tricky business and is an area of a business’ marketing strategy that is often better left up to professionals.

The problem is, when trying to find an SEO company who will help you reach the marketing goals you have set, how do you weed out the legitimate firms who are fuelled by passion for the industry and superior technical know how from the less reputable businesses who are run by people with a firm grasp of acronyms and black hat SEO practices?  With so many SEO ninjas, gurus, and wizards out there, it can be difficult to find a firm you can trust and work with. While finding the right SEO firm can be difficult work, it is important work, and it is possible.

Search engine optimization is a a key piece of any internet marketing pie.  It will help your site be located on the internet meaning it is that much easier for your great content to be enjoyed by your current audience and potential audience.  Knowing that contracting an SEO company as part of your online marketing strategy is important, how then do you go about finding a firm who you can trust and work with?  Here are some tips for finding and developing the important working relationship between your business and your business’ SEO firm.

1. Do Your Homework!

Before you make anything official with any SEO company, make sure you have done a thorough background check on the company you are considering hiring.  Here, it is important to note that there are two types of SEO practices – white hat SEO and black hat SEO. In the instance of black hat SEO, the SEO expert will use a number of questionable techniques to get your page noticed.  Black hat SEO tricks are bad, however as they often result in sites which do not engage with your audience, they come off “spammy” and to make matters worse, black hat SEO practices often get your page penalized by Google or removed from their listings all together. At least a few times a year we are contacted by companies that hired “black hat” firms, sometimes without knowing it and were doing great right up to the point where they were not doing anything at all. Hero to zero hurts!

When you are hiring an SEO firm, remember that the firm’s own Google ranking may not be earned, but rather achieved through a series of tricks and cheats. Instead of relying on Google ranking, do your research.  Take a look at their website and judge it. Are they open? Do they provide the info you need or some pretty bullet points? Do they have a credible blog and social media? Do they walk the walk or only talk the talk? Look for customer reviews and take note of what these reviews are saying before you make hasty decisions about which SEO firm you are going to hire.

2. Ask Questions, But Ask The Right Ones

Ask teh right questions to find the right SEO Company for you.When working with an SEO firm, it is important to have open communication between yourself and the people who will be working for you.  If you’ve had bad experiences in the past with other firms, this is even more important.  You need to make sure you are comfortable with who you have hired and the product they will be delivering.  You and your SEO experts need to be on the same page and they have to be reachable. The first step in developing a relationship with an SEO firm is to ask questions.  Before signing anything with anyone, make sure you ask what changes they recommend for your page.  While your page might look stunning and be full of awesome videos and exciting things for your audience, it might not be coded in such a way as to be practical to grab the attention of search engine web crawlers.

If coding is the problem with your page, a lot of the changes that happen aren’t going to be “visible” ones which could lead to some confusion as to what exactly you are paying for.  Make sure you are clear on what your SEO firm is doing for you. Make sure, as well, that you know who is doing the work.  There are a number of shadier SEO firms who will outsource their contracts over seas or to college students meaning you are paying a lot for poor quality work more often than not.  The simple questions “Will your firm be handling my site directly?” and “Can I talk to the person who does the work?”  can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

If you have questions that the SEO company you are working with will not answer, your best option is to walk away.  In these cases there is usually something unethical going on and some reason why you, the business owner, is geeing left in the dark on a number of things.  Like any relationship, the one between you and your SEO firm will thrive off of good communication.

3. Familiarize Yourself With The Basics Of SEO  

While an actual SEO expert will have extensive knowledge in a number of disciplines, you can rest assured that what you are paying them to do is not rocket science.  Rather, the basics of SEO are something that are quite easy to wrap your head around, and by simply reading a Wikipedia page, you can better prepare yourself for what is in store when you sign a contract with an SEO firm.

Before getting into deep discussion with any SEO expert, guru, or ninja, make sure you have at least some idea about what search engine optimization actually is, and is not.  Not only will a little bit of research help to weed out an expert who just learned a few acronyms to dazzle you with, but it will help you understand the SEO expert you are working with better and lead to an improved relationship.

4. Understand That You’re Hiring An SEO Expert Not A Magician

When it comes to search engine optimization, it is a process, not a magic trick or witch craft.  To achieve the results you want, it’s going to take time.  If you come across an SEO “expert” who claims they have the one trick, or the secret sauce to get your page ranked number one by tomorrow, you can rest assured that this is a scam.   Instead, real SEO done by real people in real offices, is an ongoing, ever evolving process.  While you and your SEO firm could work for months and finally have your page ranked number one after six months, tomorrow you could see thirty new competitors set up shop on the internet and lower your Google ranking.  Search engine marketing is an ongoing battle and is not something that generates its most favourable results in the least possible amount of time.

5. Develop A Long Term SEO Strategy – Refresh It Often

blogging tips

Work out a strategy and implementation steps. Keep them current – things change!

Often times, the most profound impact search engine optimization will have on your business will be the changes that come much further down the road.  When you are working with an SEO firm, it is worth your while to develop a long term SEO strategy with that firm.   When talking about the future with your SEO expert, remember that the internet does not stand still.  While you might fight the good fight and find yourself on top for a little while, tomorrow the internet tides could turn and suddenly you could find your page drowning in waves of other websites belonging to your competitors.

Over the  long term, your SEO firm will help you stave off huge changes and will help minimize fluctuations in your Google ranking.  Developing a long term strategy in co-operation with your SEO expert means the changes of tomorrow are more likely to be anticipated today and thereby will be easier to adapt to.   Guaranteed SEO is a search engine optimization company driven to success by the passion of the people who make up our team.  We are not gurus, wizards, or ninjas.  we do not have a secret sauce, or a magic potion for overnight and long term success.

What we do have is a wealth of expertise in the field of search engine optimization, link building, PPC management, internet strategy and developing effective attractive money making websites,  backed by seventeen years of experience and a still burning passion for delivering results to our clients.  For more information on how we can work with you to achieve your internet marketing and search engine optimization goals, please contact us.

We look forward to a long and healthy relationship with you and your business! Get started on your internet marketing and call us today at 1-866-588-8282.  

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