Are you looking to hire an SEO company in Edinburgh, but aren’t sure how you qualify one for the job?
With so many different SEO companies and services on offer nowadays, it can be daunting finding the right one for your business – especially if you don’t know exactly what you need.
Over the years, many people have come to me facing this exact same struggle, and I’ve been able to help them determine the questions they need to be asking in order to qualify an SEO vendor.
Below, I’ve highlighted the most important questions you need to be asking, as well as some of the questions you should ask yourself.
Question 1: Which services do you offer?
The type of services SEO companies in Edinburgh offer can differ greatly from business to business. Ideally, you should be looking for an SEO vendor that will not only provide services to generate more traffic to your website, but also services that help you generate leads from that traffic.
So, before going any further, find out more about the exact services a company is offering, and whether they can truly provide what your company needs. This could involve a more in-depth discussion to address your current challenges and concerns.
Some of the services you’d typically expect from an SEO company include:
- A technical analysis of your website’s SEO
- On-page optimisation
- Content creation
- Link analysis
- Competitor analysis
- Social media SEO
It could be that you already have an idea of some of the services you require, or perhaps you just have a clear set of company goals that you need to achieve.
In which case, my second question is equally important…
Question 2: What results can I expect?
If an SEO company can answer this question right off the bat, it should set alarm bells ringing. They should first take the time to understand more about your business and how it works, before being able to predict the results you can expect to achieve with them.
Watch out for guarantees about getting you to the top in search rankings – if an SEO company mentions this, look elsewhere. It could be they’ll resort to tactics such as building poor quality links to your site, that will eventually result in your website ranking even lower than before.
They should at least be telling you how much more leads and sales you can expect, as well as how much more traffic they will generate (although this should NOT be your main concern).
TIP: A company should also be able to tell you openly how they will achieve these results, and the methods they plan to put in place. If they won’t divulge this with you, you should look elsewhere.
Question 3: What value will you provide in relation to cost?
If you’re like most businesses, you probably have a set budget you want to stick to. Most SEO companies will at least be able to give you a relevant price range upfront, before sitting down to discuss the finer details and the total cost of the services you require.
However, more importantly than the actual cost, you need to ask about the value you will receive for that outgoing cost. After all, if you’re going to be spending, say, £3000 a month on SEO services, you’re going to need to know that it’ll be worth it.
Typically, if a company can’t give you a predicted ROI for the services you’re purchasing (say, an extra £500,000 a year in revenue), then it’s not worth the risk.
Question 4: Can I see some case studies?
If you are to put your trust in an SEO company, it only makes sense that you’re going to want to see some proof that their services get results. One of the best ways of ensuring this, is to ask to see some cases studies.
Preferably, these case studies should be as closely matched to your business model as possible, with examples of wins clearly demonstrated.
Some SEO vendors may even agree to let you speak to their previous customers, but usually this only happens later down the line, when they are sure your company is a good fit and you’re almost ready to come on-board as a fully-fledged customer.
Question 5: Do you practice what you preach?
By this question, I mean, are they following their own SEO best practices? For example, their website should be easy to navigate, lead you down a path, and speak to you as a customer with well-designed landing pages and clever call-to-actions.
Are they using the same techniques on their own website as they are promising to do for you? If possible, ask them to demonstrate examples of how they are using these techniques for their own benefit. They should be able to show you.
Question 6: How will you measure success?
I cannot stress enough how important this is. You need to specifically ask them what metrics they will be tracking in order to measure the success of your campaign, and how often you will be updated on these metrics.
You should expect a monthly report detailing key performance indicators, so you can see the results for yourself. Remember, leads and sales are always more important than traffic and keywords, which should come lower down the scale.
If ALL a company offers you is a monthly keyword report: run.
Question 7: Will I have complete transparency?
A good SEO vendor will have nothing to hide. If they are using software such as HubSpot for their SEO efforts (and you’re paying for it), you should be able to log in and see exactly what they have been doing.
If a company is simply using analytics software, you may not get this access, in which case it will be even more important for them to be able to demonstrate transparency to you.
The very least you can expect is a monthly report that includes the tasks they have recently carried out for you, as well as being able to answer any questions you might have.
The questions you should ask yourself
If an SEO vendor has successfully answered all of the above questions, and you’re still feeling uncertain, there are some questions you should ask yourself before proceeding.
- Do I trust them?
- Do I like them?
- Did they demonstrate value?
- Will I be able to work with them?
- Do they share my company values?
- Did they listen to me?
- Do they have a good understanding of my challenges?
If you can answer ‘yes’ to all of the questions above, there’s a good chance they might be a good fit for your business.
Managing your expectations of SEO
The practice of SEO encompasses a lot nowadays, or at least, it should. This is because SEO is traditionally very manipulative and mainly focused on tactics designed to bring more traffic to your website; not actually convert it.
The truth is that if your website isn’t converting well, adding more traffic to the mix won’t fix the problem, which is why you ideally need a more holistic approach, such as inbound marketing.
Some SEO vendors are starting to introduce other elements such as content creation (as mentioned above) and website flow into their packages, and this is what you should be looking for.
Remember, if ALL an SEO company talks about is keywords and search rankings, without being able to predict a solid increase in leads and sales, they might not be worth your time.
For more on this subject, read my blog entitled: ‘Why SEO is’nt the Solution to Your Business Problem’
I hope you’ve found this blog helpful when choosing an SEO company in Edinburgh. Remember, SEO should be part of a more holistic approach, so asking the above questions can help ensure you’re making the best choice for your business.
Do you have any questions about finding the right Edinburgh SEO company? Pop them in a comment below, and I’ll answer as soon as I can – I’d love to hear from you!