Choosing the right SEO agency could be the best thing you ever do for your company. Selecting the wrong one could be the biggest business mistake you ever make.
Why should you be careful before selecting a SEO agency? Let us tell you now.
When you have poor-quality SEO, you’re putting your online assets at a disadvantaged position.
Nervous & Confused?
If you’re thinking about hiring an SEO agency in Malaysia, we’ve put together 15 questions that can help you make the right choice.
1. How will you improve my search engine rankings?
What this means is that all good SEO consultants have a process, whether they freelance or work for an agency. They probably won’t be able to tell you: “We’re going to get links from A, B, and C websites.”
What they can tell you, is something along the lines of: “We’ll start with an on-site SEO review to identify any areas for quick wins. Then, we’ll identify the best keywords to target.”
2. How will you keep me informed of the changes you make to our website?
Search engine optimization will most likely require a number of changes to your existing web page coding. Thus, it’s important to know exactly what adjustments the consultant plans to make and on how many web pages.
A good SEO company will send you regular reports. The most common frequency is once per month (typically at the end), but some will send you quick weekly updates as well.
3. Can you share information on some of your past clients and their results?
A reputable SEO consultant should be open to sharing a brief list of current and former clients and his or her contact information. You want to see reviews, testimonials, case studies, and who their past clients were.
If they can’t give you any examples of clients who are legitimate businesses, that’s a pretty big warning sign. Either they weren’t able to deliver for big clients in the past, or they don’t have the experience for that level of SEO.
4. Which tools do you use?
The word “tool” typically describes a wide variety of applications when talking about SEO. Tools allow you to process much information in a short amount of time which saves a ton of time and money.
- Reporting tools – While reports could be created manually, it’s a lot easier to create a custom report that combines analytics, keyword rankings, and other SEO metrics.
- Link building tools – These allow you to create hundreds or thousands of links with the click of a button.
- Technical SEO tools – Tools to crawl large sites quickly for a variety of technical issues.
- Research tools – There are now tools to allow you to gather contact information of a large number of people in minutes.
Certainly, these tools help you gather prospects and conduct keyword research.
If your SEO agent mentions tools such as Xrumer, SE Nuke, or Bookmarking Demon, please do stay away.
5. What is your payment structure?
Different SEO companies use different payment structures. You need to know how much you’ll be charged, of course, and also whether the consultant gets paid by retainer or by the project.
Project-based payments are the most common in the SEO consulting industry, and they can vary widely, depending on a project’s size and complexity.
The question is should you be concerned with upfront payments with SEO Projects? This is the golden question that everyone asks but always hesitate to proceed. The answer is, if the service provider is legitimate, means having a physical office within your reach, proper contact information, business registration and they always keep transparency as their business policy, then there shouldn’t be problem with any kind of payment. Of course it’s up to a considerable business negotitation to make a good business deal.
6. How will you optimize our content?
It’s the buzziest buzz phrase of the last few years: “Content is king!”
You need to know a few things such as will you create a new copy or work with our existing content? How do you optimize content and why is it important? Will you be creating new landing pages as part of the contract?
7. Can I meet the team assigned to my project?
Most SEO agencies will send in their best team to win new clients. There’s nothing wrong with that, but chances are you’re not going to have the agency CEO and technical SEO specialist handling all of the work.
Ask if you can meet with the person responsible for your project and, ideally, any other team members involved. You want to know you’re in safe hands and that your contract won’t be handed to an intern or a learning person.
8. Do you currently work with any of our competitors?
You need to be aware of who the clients the SEO agency currently have on their books. Having other clients in your industry is good as it may mean the agency knows what works/doesn’t work in that industry, and they have a good network of resources for your industry.
However, keep in mind, if the agency is working for your competitors, the competitors may be paying more than you and getting more services each month than you are being proposed. Find out the details. It’s your responsibility for your own business.
9. What do you know about our industry?
You want an SEO agency that has at least some experience in your industry. They need to specialize in SEO and have good knowledge of what works well in your industry plus the right kind of writers and networks to be able to create and place good content relevant to your industry.
If the SEO agency does have other clients in your industry, chances are they are going to have a good network of partnerships and assets that will be beneficial to your company too.
10. How often will we be having meetings?
Some agencies will do a weekly catch-up call while others may speak with you once per month. Some may just get on with it and ping you an email/report on an ad hoc basis. You can guide them on this and explain how much you would like to be kept in the loop.
With some efficient tools, the agency can map out all of the tasks and then give you access so you can see what’s going on. Consequently, you’ll need fewer meetings and still get full transparency on work in progress.
11. How will your work tie into our other marketing efforts?
Many SEO agencies or consultants have rebranded themselves as digital marketing or inbound marketing specialists.
When you’re looking for an SEO company, don’t automatically rule out agencies that primarily brand themselves as marketing consultancies. They often still have SEO specialists on board and provide other highly valuable services.
12. Are you up to date with the latest algorithm changes?
Google releases about 500 algorithm changes per year, they aren’t all significant. Most of them have a very minor impact on anyone’s site. In addition, you want an SEO that stays up to date with SEO news. Ideally, they should be active in forums and other SEO communities.
There are, however, a select group of algorithm updates that were significant enough to deserve being named. All SEOs should be familiar with all of these.
13. How do you determine if you are successful?
If your expectations are not met, you’ll feel frustrated.
The clearer you are on what to expect from your SEO consultants, and the better they understand what you need from them, the less frustration both of you will experience.
You need to know the answers to some questions like: Do they aim to increase traffic by %X in Y months? Do they want to see a %X increase in a specific metric? Do they consider themselves successful if they can get a main keyword onto the first page? Top 3 rankings? Number 1?
14. Why should we hire you over other SEOs?
Ideally, when you ask this question, they will respond by pointing to their track record that should include their past successes, current, and past happy clients, and the respect their name and brand have in the industry.
15. What happens when we part ways?
When your contract expires or if you terminate it early, you should still maintain ownership of all of the optimized web content you paid the consultant to provide. On top of that, you should ask consultants whether they charge any fees for early contract termination and if so, to specify them in the contract.
Accordingly, you’ll want to make sure the contract states that when you part ways, consultants will not change or remove any of the content they added, modified or optimized on your behalf.
The key to this entire process is to be thorough. You don’t want to choose a black hat agency who’ll end up landing you in the red. With the questions above in hand, you can feel confident you’re asking a potential agency partner all of the right questions.
Remember, “SEO is a long-term investment.”
Many of the 15 questions we’ve laid out for you in this article are designed to help you weed out shady SEO companies and individuals.
You can ask as many or a few of these questions as you need to ensure you find the right SEO agency before making a contract. It may be a pain, but trust us, a good SEO team can be essential to building a business to 7 figures or more.
Malaysia’s Leading SEO Service Provider – iMarketing MY known in providing trustworthy, honest & ethical SEO services. Our professional team knows the latest trends and best practices. Google Certified SEO experts serve the client with the objective of increasing organic traffic and boosting the client’s business to the new horizon. On top of that, we ensure that the client’s online presence is in place and ahead of its competitors.
Fill in the form below or call +603 2714 2363 to get a consultation.