A lot of people have heard about SEO nowadays and most website owners think it is great to hire an SEO specialist to rank their website on Google’s 1st page. They look for a freelancer or a company and, without knowing anything about SEO and often because of wrong expectations, they hire someone to do the job.
Today, I will help you set the right expectations and eliminate the chance of future disappointment.
So, here are the 10 Things you should know when hiring an SEO Specialist.
1. SEO is a long-term marketing strategy. It takes time. It is a lot of work that can’t be done overnight. Depending on the niche, sometimes a website may need a few months to show on Google’s 1st page and sometimes, and in some competitive niches, it may take over a year. And the harsh reality is no one can predict when exactly your website will show up on the 1st page. But once you hit that 1st page… man, the leads will start falling. It is definitely worth the wait.
2. You can’t and you shouldn’t rank for every single keyword you can think of. Google’s job is to show the best results for the user’s query. Sometimes your content is just not the right fit. And this is OK. For some queries, Google will show businesses, for some queries Google will show articles and for some other queries it will show directories.
3. Take some time with your SEO specialist to research the keywords that will fit your business best. If you have a lot of strong competitors, you may start with some longtail keywords because it is easier to rank for those. It all depends on the initial research, so do not neglect it.
4. An SEO’s primary job should be to get more relevant traffic via organic search to the website, not just to rank the website on keywords that won’t bring you any traffic. Good SEOs get more traffic – great SEOs understand a client’s business and get more leads or sales for a business.
5. Just because a website does not show on a particular keyword, that doesn’t mean the SEO hasn’t done their job. A website’s ranking depends on a lot of factors and some of them the SEO can’t control. For example, the reason could be anything from personalized search (Google personalizes the results for every user based on location and previous searches) to the way the keyword phrase or search query is worded.
6. Once you know which keywords you will focus on, you and your SEO specialist should create a strategy - which webpage will rank for which keywords.
7. You must work together with your SEO guru. At the beginning, your SEO magician will need a lot of information from you. For example, what are the most common questions you receive or how do people refer to your services, or what services do you provide. My practice shows that a lot of business owners just give their websites to a freelancer or an agency and aren’t involved in the process AT ALL. However, I believe you will agree with me here that the person who knows your business best is you. So collaboration between the website owner and the SEO service provider is essential.
8. Think of a way to distinguish the results from the different marketing channels, so you know where to invest more. Search engines like Google drive 300% more traffic to sites relative to social media and between 70% and 80% of all users completely ignore paid advertisements. So you should definitely analyze the results from each marketing campaign. A lot of business owners miss that and have no idea what their best marketing channel is.
9. It’s important to understand that SEO generally counts on good, unique content that’s created and posted on a client’s website. In order to be as relevant as possible and true for your business sometimes the SEO specialist may need some additional information from you.
10. Google has specific guidelines called the Google Webmaster Guidelines that all websites should follow. So sometimes you may want something from your SEO pro and they may say NO. Listen to them, as they are the people with the experience or you may get yourself a manual punishment from Google for not following the guidelines, which will cause your website drop from the Google positions it already has.
That is just a very small part of the things you should know when hiring an SEO specialist, but it is a good start. Once you hire an SEO freelancer or an agency, you will start learning more about how Google and SEO work. I would like to help you further with your website, so check these two SEO freebies. You may also check the article “What Is SEO and How It Works - The Truth”
I hope this article (and the 2 freebies) made SEO a little bit more understandable. I wish you all the best and I hope that you get more traffic to your websites.