Quite a few business owners feel that SEO is an expensive activity that does not deliver tangible business value and very often there is a gap between outcomes and expectations.
However, this viewpoint is subjective and as such cannot be applied in a blanket way to SEO as a whole, because SEO plays a highly significant role in optimizing a website and bringing in traffic from diverse sources. It is a continuous activity that helps maintain the optimization levels of a website, ensures repeat visitors, leads to conversions and increases sales.
The reason why SEO fails in certain cases is when business owners hire firms that don’t have SEO expertise, set unrealistic targets with them and usually don’t have a clear vision of their online business goals. It therefore becomes vital to let these business owners know that SEO has evolved and today it is possible to Outsource SEO in simple easy steps without losing time and money.
Be;ow are some guidelines that can help business owners to outsource SEO to a trustworthy SEO company and set clearly defined targets with them.
Search for a reliable SEO firm
This requires patience and tact. You have to find the right firm and the right person who will carry out your SEO. The person must be an experienced SEO professional with hands-on expertise in white hat SEO and fully knowledgeable about organic SEO.
If your choice is correct, then the chances of success of your SEO campaign are high. If your choice is wrong, you will lose your time and money and may also end up losing your trust and faith in SEO. To outsource SEO with success, avoid firms that offer cheap solutions, or promise guarantees to rank your site on the first page of Google. Instead you should ask them for references and work examples.
Take a holistic view of SEO
When you outsource SEO, it is not just search engine optimization per se. It is your entire internet presence since SEO is a subset of search engine marketing (SEM). Therefore, you must assess whether your future SEO partner has the capability to manage your complete digital marketing strategy that includes content, social media, PPC and SEO and able to provide you recommendations on the same.
Define and set targets that are measurable
Without defined targets and matching deliverables, any strategy to outsource SEO will not be successful. You have to determine what is the goal of your business with respect to SEO and convert that that into a measurable target that you can see after a period of say 3 months, 6 months or more. Whether it is increase in number of visitors, higher Google rankings, more traffic, or more Facebook followers?
Setting targets that are not measurable and on general terms may lead to situations of disagreement or conflict as subjectivity sets in.
Set out a roadmap for SEO
The first and foremost task is to conduct an audit of the website to assess its strengths, weaknesses and vulnerabilities. Based on this audit, it will be possible to determine the specific on-page and off-page SEO activities that need to be done. Since an SEO campaign may run for a number of months, a detailed roadmap with milestones, targets and deliverables on a month-wise basis is very helpful.
Monitor the progress of your campaign
When you outsource SEO, you need a mechanism to monitor the progress and ensure that it is on track. This can be done by seeking a monthly report on activities done, milestones achieved and tasks planned.
Start lean and then expand the engagement:
As SEO activities take a while to mature and deliver results, it is a good idea to start lean with a low budget and then expand it gradually. For this, it is important to evaluate performance and tweak it when required in a flexible manner. Required scale can be added when results appear to be on track.
Build a balance between in-house and external skills
It might not be a bad idea to build in-house skills that can be handled by your own team. This means that you would only need to spend money on those tasks for which your team does not have the skills, example technical SEO. Your internal team might focus on providing content, interviews and creating videos and audios.
To outsource SEO is not like to outsource any other task. It requires a solid SEO roadmap with well- defined milestones and targets and this is possible with a lean approach and low budget.