Not so long ago SEO’s could game the system as much as they wanted and get away with it. They could use CSS to hide keywords on a page, this made the text the same colour as the page so visitors didn’t see it but the search engine spiders did. Some would stuff the text with their keywords, build thousands of low-quality links with various tools, and have duplicate content all over their site.
But now that has all changed, especially for trying to rank on Google. The Google Algorithm has become a lot smarter and continues to improve. Having your keyword on your page too many times will do more harm than good, it’s not about how many links you have it is the quality of the links that count, and duplicate content will get you penalised by Google as well. Google doesn’t always tell you that there is something wrong with your site, they might just make it so your site never gets higher than page 2 or 3, and who looks there? If you do something really bad then they will de-index your site which means you won’t show up at all, and to get a site re-index is a very tricky thing to do and usually its best to simply start over and not repeat your mistake.
Hiring the Agency that will do SEO Right
These days no business can afford to miss out on the free and often sizeable organic search engine traffic. Some small business owners will try to do the SEO themselves but it doesn’t always work out how they expected it too. SEO is constantly changing, so trying to run a business and keep up to the ever changing world of SEO is tough. That’s why the majority of small business owners will hire a local SEO company at some stage. Hiring an SEO agency is a big decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly, because as mentioned if the SEO triggers a Google penalty then your website could be out of the game for good, or cost you an arm and leg to get fixed.
When you are vetting which SEO company to trust with your business website you should evaluate each one of the SEO consultants keeping these points in mind. Done right SEO can make your business boom, done wrong it will make your business bomb!
- 1. The SEO Consultants Attitude
- 2. Getting Relevant Search Engine Optimised Traffic That Converts
- 3. Backlinks – It’s Not The Quantity Its The Quality That Counts
- 4: Short Or Long Term Effects From Local SEO
1. The SEO Consultants Attitude
Good Attitude: A good SEO consultant will be organised and ask relevant questions so that he can learn about your business. They will ask for
- Access to your site – they will want to analyse it thoroughly and possibly make changes to it
- You to add them as managers for you Google Analytics and Search Console so they can see what Google knows about your site. If your site is not connected to Google Analytics and Search Console you can find out here how to connect your site to Google Analytics
- Information on any previous SEO that has been done to the site, so they know what they might have to fix
- The keywords that you think you want to be ranking for, these will be used as a starting point for their research they will no doubt come back with other keywords which will be more targeted for getting you a ROI.
Bad Attitude: If the SEO consultant doesn’t ask for all of the above and can offer no suggestions as what they think is required to improve your search engine positioning, then the chances are they are probably still living in the days of spammy links and spammy content, this could be disastrous for your website and your business.
2. Getting Relevant Search Engine Optimised Traffic That Converts
Good Traffic: Initially you might see a slight drop in the traffic to your website, but your conversions go up. This is because the SEO consultant will be targeting traffic that he knows will convert and not irrelevant keywords. Buyer keywords usually have fewer searches per month than no targeted for example “Blue Widgets” could have a lot of searches but people could be looking for information, pictures etc. Whereas “Buy Blue Widgets” will have fewer searches but if your site is targeted to those searches you are going to make sales.
Poor Traffic: With a poor SEO Consultant then you could see your traffic go up, and the chances are they will tell you how wonderful they are, but when none of the traffic is converting into customers then what use is it?
3. Backlinks – It’s Not The Quantity Its The Quality That Counts
Good Quality: Backlinks to your website are still one of the most important off-page ranking signals, and are probably going to be there for a long time yet. A good SEO consultant will focus on getting backlinks from relevant websites that have a good domain authority, i.e websites in the same or similar industry as you.
Bad Quality: A poor SEO consultant might look for high authority domains but they probably won’t be relevant. They could be link farms, these are sites with hundreds of different articles on all about different topics. These types of backlinks can seriously damage your website and its ability to move up in the search rankings. They will also a real pain in the @ss for the next SEO to get rid of or “disavow.”
4: Short Or Long Term Effects From Local SEO
Long Term: When SEO has been done right not only does it improve your rankings for the keywords you wanted but it will also push other related keywords onto page one as well. This obviously has an impact on the amount of traffic you will get to your site. Because the pages on your site have relevant content to the keywords the visitor was searching for these visitors will more than likely stay on your site and have a look around and possibly convert to a lead or a customer. Because the time on your site increases, Google considers your site to be valuable and a good user experience and therefore rewards your site with a boost in rankings.
Short Term: When SEO has done wrong, you might see amazing rankings to start off with but it usually doesn’t last. Google does not work fast, SEO is like the tortoise and the hare, steady away wins the day. The search engine spiders have become really good at spotting bad SEO, they can detect spammy backlinks, keyword stuffing, duplicate content, etc a lot faster than what they could a few years ago. Depending on what is wrong you might just end up stuck on page 2 or 3 and no matter what you do it won’t budge, or you might get a message in your Search Console account to tell you that your site has been hit with a manual action penalty, or you could get totally de-indexed!. Whichever one it is it will cause you a lot of headaches, expense, and a lot of hard work to put right.
Selecting the SEO agency that you are going to give access to your website should not be rushed. There are a lot of very good SEO companies but there are just as many bad ones, who can cause serious damage to your business. You must do your due diligence on the SEO companies and remember to keep the above points in mind.