As an SEO specialist, I work with a lot of small local businesses, office managers and business owners alike. It is well understood among digital marketing agencies that their clients don’t know everything about SEO and the kind of work that goes into it.
But there are a few things that most business owners should understand before starting any SEO services.
We want to help you.
Well, the good ones do anyway. The purpose of SEO is to help your business succeed and thrive in an online world. Your SEO agency is only as successful as you are as a business. You should be able to think of your SEO agency as an extension of your own marketing department. They should have a relationship with you and understand your goals and want to help you succeed in them.
If you aren’t showing up in the search engines or getting more leads from your website, then something has to change. If you don’t feel like your SEO agency is helping your business, then find someone else. But don’t quit before you’ve even gotten started.
That leads me to my next item…
Organic SEO takes time.
Don’t give up on SEO if after three months you’re still not ranking on the first page of Google for your services. SEO is a long-term investment. If you want it to work, you have to be committed for the long haul, and trust your agency. If you don’t trust the people who are working on your SEO, then I’ll say it again – find someone else.
There are many, many factors that go into helping a website rank for certain key phrases, and these factors are constantly changing too. So, find a good SEO agency (or hire someone in-house) that you trust to do it for you.
Not all keywords are equal.
Some keywords are more valuable than others. Some are easier to rank for than others. And some are simply for the sake of vanity (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). But understand that not all keywords are equal. It might take three months to rank for one service while it takes another six to eight months to rank in the top ten results for another.
There might be certain phrases that you think you need to be ranking for, but a good SEO agency will do the research to find out exactly which variations of that keyword will provide you the best opportunity – which keywords will bring in more traffic, which ones will be the easiest to rank for, and so on.
Some keywords you might just want to rank for because you see that your competitors are ranking for them, but they might bring you no actual value as far as leads and traffic is concerned. We like to call these “vanity phrases”. You want to show up where your competitors are, you want to be number 1! And there’s nothing wrong with that. But you want to be sure that you are focusing on the phrases that do provide your business value before spending time and effort on those that don’t.