11 Questions to ask your SEO Agency – Part 1

Posted: August 13, 2010 in Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimisation, SEO
Tags: , ,

Questions for your SEO Company

Put SEO into the Google.com.au search query, and you’ll have approximately 27M results to choose from.  So how out of those 27M results are you supposed to pick ONE agency to outsource your SEO to?

To help alleviate some of the frustrations, I’ve put together 11 questions you should be asking an SEO agency before signing with them.  I’ve then expanded on that to cover off the answers they should be giving you.

Question 1: What is your SEO Methodology?

Look for an agency that covers of the fundamentals of a good SEO campaign, as I have previously posted.  Their entire methodology should be around those three areas:

  • Technical strategy
  • Content Strategy
  • Linking strategy

The worst thing you can do is pick an agency who have no interest in fixing the accessibility issues of your site, and who will simply optimise your site for 10 or 15 or 20 keywords.  The technical aspects are the initial priority, and may take up to 4-6 weeks to fix, depending on how deep and complex the issues are.  The content strategy should be ongoing over the course of the campaign, with constant keyword research and creation of content to match.  Optimising your site for a set number of keywords is simply a cookie cutter model, which becomes a cash cow for agencies after the site has been optimised.

Question 2: How Important is Keyword Research and How Do You Do it?

Following on from, and to expand further on the above point on content strategy, Keyword Research is extremely important.  It’s where your agency can find out how and what your customers are searching for on the Search Engines.  Based on this research, you then optimise the Title Tags, and develop content to match these keywords.

There are a range of quality keyword research tools available, with the most obvious being the Google AdWords: Keyword Tool.  These keyword tools will enable your agency to form a baseline on search numbers, and then estimate the traffic it can deliver through to your site for your products and services.  Now, a good SEO agency will go beyond your base level keywords, and start searching for longer tail key phrases (three or more words in a phrase eg seo agency Melbourne vs seo agency), as this is potentially where they can get some quick wins from.

Question 3: Do You Guarantee Results?

If an agency answers Yes, or even mentions the word guarantee, RUN!!  There are simply too many variables from both the Search Engines and your website.

For example, the Google ranking algorithm is typically updated and changed up to 10 times every week.  Not all of the changes are major however, but they will affect rankings.  Your agency can work around this by ensuring they have experienced SEO practitioners who monitor your campaign for any such algorithm affects.

On the flip side, every client an agency has will vary in their budget and in-house resources.  All the quality keyword search and technical recommendations in the world won’t mean a pinch of salt if the client only has a few hundred dollars a month to spend, and lack the resources to produce content.  A great deal also depends on the nature of your business.  For example, keywords such as car insurance, or credit cards, will take longer to move up the rankings than red ballet shoes preston or digital marketing agency melbourne.

Part 2 to follow next week.

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