Finding a qualified Sandton SEO agency is challenging. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 7 questions you should ask any company before hiring them.
1. How will you decide what keywords we should target?
“Keywords” what searchers will use to find solutions to their problems. You want your website to rank for these keywords, so that you can offer your product or service as a means for solving their problem. A qualified SEO agency understands the importance of the keyword selection phase.
Effective keyword selection is nothing more than picking keywords that will bring your business a return on investment. The best strategy is target keywords that have low competition so that you can get some “easy” wins. Lower competition keywords, also known as “long tail” keywords, generally have the best conversion rates and will give you the bump in revenue you need to start targeting more challenging keywords.
2. Will you analyze my competition?
Some search engine optimization companies skip right past this stage and it can be detrimental to your campaign. Before finalize your keywords, it is imperative that you analyze the website that are currently ranking well. Competition analysis allows you to see how much resources will be necessary to rank, en estimated timetable for achieving rankings, and important intel on what your competition is doing to rank so well.
Many SEO campaigns fail because companies don’t take this step seriously, and end up trying to rank for keywords that require a ton of resources and time.
3. How do you “optimize” my website?
In order to rank well in Google or other search engines, you must optimize your site and make it search engine friendly. Companies that understand this stage well will focus on a few key elements on your site including site speed, mobile friendliness, META information, keyword placement, 404 errors, broken links, duplicate content, and site architecture.
4. Do you believe content is important?
There is no other form of marketing that can have a bigger impact on your business than content. Content is the only marketing channel that can stand the test of time. That is, as long as it valuable and designed to genuinely help your prospects and customers. Well-developed content can attract links and social shares naturally, which will build the authority of your site and make the organic growth process easier. All content efforts should be focused on building “evergreen” content assets. When executed correctly, evergreen content will drive traffic, leads, and new customers to your business forever.
5. Do you think social is important to SEO?
Social is big right now and Google has made changes to their algorithm to recognize its impact. There is a ton of evidence showing that increased social media marketing activities can help improve your rankings and visibility in the search engines. At the minimum SEO companies should secure all your branded properties across the Internet. And if the resources allow it, you should consider increasing activity on the major social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google +, YouTube, and Pinterest. You’ll need to decide what platforms are best your business specifically since your target customers may frequent certain platforms over others.
For example, if you’re a photographer, there’s a good chance your content will do well on Instagram and Pinterest. If you’re a new station, you’re content would be more appropriate for Twitter.
6. What types of links are you going to build?
Link building can make or break any SEO campaign and it is critical that the SEO company you work with is up with the times. Outdated link building techniques are not only ineffective, but they can actually land your website a penalty. The only types of backlinks that actually work and will keep your site safe, are contextual links from relevant websites. Smart SEO companies will reach out and building relationships with relevant blogs and websites within your industry. These relationships make quality link acquisition easier. The best types of links have an editorial process, so avoid any companies that appear to be getting links from sources that anyone could get them from.
7. Do you consider your SEO practices to be white or black hat?
“White” hat and “black” hat are terms propagated by the SEO industry. White hat means using SEO strategies that Google would approve of. Black hat means using strategies that Google wouldn’t approve of. These classifications are overblown and silly, but you should always work with a company that understands the value of on-site optimization, content development, social media, and quality link acquisition.
I hope this guide was helpful and make you use these 7 questions whenever you’re thinking about hiring a Sandton SEO company.
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