"Hire me, hire me! I'm a good SEO Expert. I can get your website to page 1 in 10 days!"
We have all heard of these fast Get Rich Schemes, right? And how many times have you gotten burned or how many people you know have gotten burned? I am sure it's way too many to count. But from those lessons, we all have learned a valuable lesson "What goes up fast, comes down fast." This is exactly what happens with shady, Black Hat SEO Techniques. Your site can lose traffic, significantly or even worse. Your site can even get penalized by Google or just disappear all together.
Also if an agency promise you that you will be on the first page of Google really fast, that is a red flag to run because it takes 3-6 months before SEO starts working. It is not an over night walk in the park. But I am going to tell you how to hire the best SEO Company.
- A good SEO company first analyze your website to see what areas need improvement and fixing, plus look at your strongest areas. Also during that process, the site's online presence is measured (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, search engines, Google, Yahoo, DMOZ, etc) to get a good ideal on how the site is doing online.
- A good SEO company does a technical and search audit on your website. This Detailed Audit Report should include On-Page (title, keyword position, page load, alt text percentage, url structure, content analysis, internal linking, crawlability, server connectivity, response codes.) Off-page (Domain Authority, backlink power website ranking) Analysis, site functionality, and Competition Comparison.
- A good SEO will tell you what is best for your customers to have the greatest experience on your website. Things like using descriptive page titles, image resolution, updating your site's features and infrastructure, having a mobile-friendly website, using schema mark up, and making your website a "Google Friendly Site, etc."
- A good SEO will be generally interested in your business vs only interested in the search engine part of it. The right company will ask general questions to get a good feel of who your customers are and how they can help you. Questions like how does your online business make money? What other social networks do you use? How does your customers find your website? Are you using any other type of website marketing, Facebook, etc? What is your company's social media goals? What makes your content different from your competitors? These are must ask questions.
- If the local SEO company has prior clients, check their references. Getting feedback from past clients on how useful the agency was, how great they worked with their developers, marketers, team, useful tips, is key. You just want to make sure the person is someone you will feel comfortable working with.
- Lastly, if the SEO Company mentions anything about using paid links to increase your site's reputation, RUN CHARLIE, SEE CHARLIE RUN!!! That type of shady practice can get your site banned from search engines like Google, Bing and others.