If you’ve tried your hand at search engine optimization for your clients but you haven’t quite gotten the results you hoped for, it may be time to start thinking about outsourcing the work. Every SEO firm is unique in terms of service, experience, and price, so if you want the best possible results for your budget, it’s important to understand why outsourcing is beneficial, and what types of firms tend to see the most success.
Throughout this guide, we’ll help you understand the main motivations for outsourcing your client’s SEO, the considering factors for choosing a firm, and best practices for working with a firm moving forward.
First, let’s take a look at some of the questions you should be asking yourself before you decide to hire an outside firm. Outsourcing your work isn’t always the best option, and before you choose a firm, you should know exactly why you’re looking for one in the first place.
Before you get any further, it’s time to consider what your long-term goals for the campaign are:
You should also consider whether you’re interested in outsourcing the entire SEO campaign, or just a fraction of it. If you already perform some tasks yourself, you should outline a list of services you’ll need from an outsourced firm, such as:
Once you have a loose idea of your main goals and needs, you can start looking for an SEO agency that can help you get the work done.
First and foremost, you need to find a firm that offers all the services you need to have performed. Not all SEO agencies are full-service, meaning there are some firms who specialize in content marketing or exclusively deal in backlink building. For the average outsourcer, a full-service firm is usually the best option, since it covers the full scope of work needed to achieve the best results, but for an account manager who already has specific services covered, a specialty firm might be the better choice.
Next, you want to consider the cost of outsourcing. You probably already have a general idea for your budget, but it’s important to make sure you get a good deal and spend enough money to get a quality service. SEO firms that advertise themselves as extremely cheap generally deal in poor practices, such as spamming backlinks or writing low-quality keyword-stuffed content. These obsolete SEO strategies could actually harm your campaign in the long-term, so it’s important to invest money in a quality firm. More money doesn’t always mean better service, so do some research, ask for some client references, and find the best firm you can for your target budget.
Finally, you want to get a feel for your firm’s expertise and working relationship. Any SEO firm that guarantees a specific result, such as a number one ranking by a specific date, is probably lying in order to get your business. With the ambiguity of Google’s algorithm, constantly arriving new updates, and the unpredictable factor of competition, it is impossible to make any accurate prediction or guarantee of results for an SEO campaign. If you’re outsourcing your client’s SEO, you need to find a firm that understands this and knows what type of results are the most valuable for businesses. You also want to find a firm that’s easy to work with, and one that has your client’s best interests at heart.
Once you’ve selected a firm to work with, it’s a good idea to go over a few things at the beginning of your working relationship to ensure a positive and mutually beneficial path forward. Make sure all of your expectations and goals are clear in the beginning. Some topics you’ll want to cover include:
Outsourcing a client’s SEO isn’t the best strategy for everybody, but if you’re looking to get better long-term results and you have the budget to support the transition, go for it. Finding a trustworthy, reliable partner to build your client’s search engine dominance might take some time, but once your partnership is established, you’ll be in a much better position to help your client grow.