The year is 2024, and you are wondering why SEO is still around. After all, you had bought into the notion that it was dying in 2023, but then it surprised you.
And now, your online business is many miles behind your competitors, with your closest money keywords buried in the second page of Google. You know what SEOs say? That the best place to hide a dead body is on the second page of Google.
But don’t worry. Now that you know SEO is not dying even in the foreseeable future, it is not too late to play catch-up game with your competitors. It is not too late to get an online marketing campaign underway and succeed.
For that to happen, you will need to choose the best SEO agency. SEO is like the Game of Thrones – You win, or you “die.” And to win, you need professional SEO assistance in Singapore, or wherever you are based.
So, what really matters when selecting an SEO agency? Ten things matter a lot, as elaborated below:
1. The agency’s experience
Many sources overlook this very important factor – choose an agency that has experience. Do not choose a newbie agency established just the other day. If you do, you will be their guinea pig! They will do all manner of trial and error stints on your campaign.
Whenever a new concept comes up in the SEO, it is replicated all over the industry. Therefore, work with an agency that handles the search engine optimization needs of other businesses.
This means choosing a big SEO agency, and that too has its benefits, as you will see in another point. But the fact is … if they have pulled successful marketing campaigns for other businesses, they can replicate that success with your business too.
2. Go for a big SEO agency as opposed to small ones
When you need the services of an SEO agency, it is because you have a serious marketing campaign underway.
A big agency is going to charge you more than a small agency stuck in a corner street somewhere.
But the charge is not too high if they can justify it with their services. For instance, imagine getting all the services that make a successful marketing campaign under one roof. Managing the campaign from one place makes accountability easy. It also makes follow-up easier.
If you choose a small agency, it might not have all the services. Thus, you might have to get some from other providers, making your marketing campaign somehow scattered.
3. The numbers matter
Marketing is about numbers. In fact, one of the KPIs of online campaigns is to increase the organic and paid traffic to websites within a given time.
Therefore, ask to see their portfolio of projects they have delivered successfully in the past. What numbers did they do?
If they were able to grow a website’s traffic from 10,000 visits a month to 200,000, in how long did they do that?
Of course, using software, you can be able to verify this data, and see whether for sure they did that in the time.
4. High engagement
There are many things happening on the website after handing it over to the agency that you have chosen.
As soon as the agency starts working, they should give you an analysis report, with everything they intend to do.
When they start to build links, they should let you know where, and how many they are building. This makes verification of the work easier.
When they start creating new content for various categories on your website, you need to know so that you can track their performance.
You should be assigned one representative that you can reach out whenever you want to know something.
5. Your budget matters a lot
SEO agencies can charge a lot of money, well, because the work is hard. But if you are on a low budget, don’t give up just yet. You can find a good SEO firm on a low budget. However, they will deliver just a few tasks.
Find a good boutique agency, tell them your budget and ask them what it can get you.
If you think the features you will get justify the price, go for it. When you gather more money, you can always go back for other services.
Please remember that SEO is a long-term game, so results are not going to happen almost immediately. The results of some work being done right now might show after six months. That is why you need to know exactly what you are paying for.
6. The metrics to track
The campaign should track certain things on your online campaign, which should align with the KPIs.
The most important metrics to track with analytic tools are impressions, clicks, and the behavior of the keywords. But these are just a few of the things a good campaign should track.
Any lead generation campaign should lead to increased conversions.
7. Your expectations vs. agency’s expectations
When you are hiring an agency for SEO work, there are your expectations, which include seeing your traffic triple after a week, and then there are the real expectations.
A good agency lets you know how things work, knows where to make promises and where to hold back. After all, even with the help of professionals, many factors determining the success of this campaign are out of anyone’s hands.
Insist on the truth, and nothing else. The agency should never just tell you things that will make you happy. SEO campaigns are grueling and the results take too long to show. It is best that the firm gives you realistic expectations.
8. The promise matters – no promise!
Well, this is contradictory because in the search engine optimization campaigns, there are no promises. No guarantees!
If the agency is giving you any sort of guarantee, run and don’t look back. But still, this does not mean you should not expect results, because there are many achievements to aim for.
For instance, if done well, more content should bring more organic traffic in a few months. So, if they said they will publish 50 posts, they should!
9. Area of specialty of the agency
Before putting your signature along the dotted line, find out the type of SEO the agency specializes in.
If you are in Singapore and you are targeting the local market, you require more traffic from there, and from other countries in Southeast Asia.
An agency that specializes in the SEO targeting one market will do better in that market than one that targets everything and everyone.
10. Terms and conditions
The agency will want you to sign a contract before they can start working. It is important to go through the contract with your lawyer.
If there are any anomalies, the agency should be open to discussing them and altering some clauses. After all, no one SEO job is like any other, so contracts should be customizable.
Do not work with an agency that promises performance-based SEO because this does not work any longer, unless they intend to use black-hat techniques.
The success of your online campaign will depend on the SEO agency that you give the work. But even before you choose one, what do you know about search engine optimization?
Read up about what happens with SEO, so that you can know what to expect, and within what time. Getting some information about this industry enables you to manage your expectations.
Most importantly, the agency you choose should give you a free, albeit shallow review of your website. Also, be wary of any promises made in the SEO industry because they indicate that the firm will use underhand tactics to rank your keywords.