When to Hire an SEO Company: 7 Things to Consider
SEO is vital for the success of your website business. A study shows that about 75% of companies invest in search engine optimization (SEO), but the big question remains; should you hire an SEO firm?
SEO professionals help your website rank for various keywords faster. But when choosing them, ensure they are in a position to deliver excellent results and meet your goals and expectations. Perform background research and ask them as many questions as possible to determine whether you can work together.
Things to consider when hiring SEO Agency
1. Better Expertise and strategies
An agency should offer excellent SEO knowledge because it’s their area of specialisation. The agency must have the ability to exploit the best and most powerful tools, strategies, and resources to cope with the changing SEO environment.
SEO is growing fast with new changes every day. Search engines like Bing and Google always give new SEO updates, making it hard for businesses to keep up. Google released six significant updates in 2019, and its algorithm is constantly tweaked many times a month.
A good SEO agency follows Google news, closely monitors SEO forums for algorithm updates, and understands their impact on search results optimisation strategies. You can rely on these agencies to monitor your site for algorithm updates and give you advice on how to proceed.
2. Growing your sales, not just traffic.
Powerful SEO is not only about traffic. An agency should research keywords that focus on user behaviour and the industry language. This helps in getting the right traffic to your site. Discovering and targeting search-intent keywords means attracting users who understand what they want and are willing to purchase. A professional will ensure the excellent performance of your site.
An agency should analyse Web analytics and performance data to identify areas of your site that offer excellent opportunities and have the potential for long-term growth.
3. Get good Insights to tune your business.
How do you use your business to understand your customers better? Perhaps you use statistical information from data analytic tools like Google Analytics to monitor KPIs and traffic in your site. However, if you do not understand SEO strategies well, you may not gather useful insights from that data.
A professional SEO agency should monitor page performance using Google Analytics to identify why your site pages are struggling. The professionals can assess your high-value pages, make changes accordingly, and follow up later to measure the strategy results. SEO results take time to appear, and you should not change things too often.
4. Numbers Speak for Themselves
Online browsing is dominated by traffic from internet searches. According to BrightEdge, organic traffic adds up to 51% of all website traffic. Google receives over 5.6 billion searches every day, which indicates that users get what they need, and therefore, it makes a profit of over 40%.
SEO is an important marketing strategy and offers the best return on investment in the digital world. An agency should help oversee the search optimization channel to bring excellent results to your business.
5. Achieve your long-term goals
The success of any business or brand is based on the goals you set. However, if you put these goals with analytics data in your mind, you stand a better chance to increase your revenue.
A reliable SEO company should help you make wise decisions that will help you reach your goals. The company should focus on the bigger picture and the specific strength of your brand. They should be creative, innovative, and knowledgeable to ensure the success of your SEO campaign.
Don’t hire a professional that focuses on only one SEO aspect. Look for those who understand page speed, load time, excellent user experience, and on-page optimization.
6. Their previous works
Always check the previous work of different clients of the SEO agency you’re considering. Conduct a case study to determine what the results will look like for a particular service. Usually, the results outlined in the case study do not reflect the actual metrics that you may expect to see when working with an SEO firm. The marketer mainly points out the outliers, so you should understand that the case study’s results may not indicate your experience.
Consider cases with recent dates since SEO strategies are constantly evolving. These case studies will give you a clear picture of the results you expect to see. Always go for case studies one to two years old, not anything older than that.
7. Their transparency in SEO Process
The SEO firm should develop a Growth Hub for their clients to view the status of their SEO campaigns. They should notify you when the articles are ready for approval and give you access to every strategic asset.
Most reputable SEO companies provide transparent communication, but others do not. Choose an SEO provider willing to show you the progress of their work. They should be transparent about their deliverables and their status. Give yourself ample time to review and monitor the progress, asking for clarifications and making adjustments as needed.
While there are many SEO companies you can hire, you can trust them for your business. SEO is an ongoing process. So, you need to choose the right SEO firm with the correct SEO knowledge and meet your critical expectations if you want your business to succeed.
Analysis #2 – Trends Related To Authority Score, Keyword Difficulty, and Average CPCHow does domain authority vary across industries? Does it correlate with how much you’ll pay for ads? Does keyword difficulty have an effect? We dug into this data to see trends for each industry. Authority Score measures your website’s Domain Authority which also influences rankings. It grades the overall website quality based on the number of backlinks, referring domains, outbound links, etc. Authority Score is also relative to your industry.
Average Authority Scores Across All IndustriesThis first chart shows the average website authority score for businesses in each industry.
- Websites between 40-50 are considered average
- Websites between 50-60 are considered good
- Websites above 60 are considered excellent
Average SEO Keyword Difficulty Across All IndustriesNext, we looked at the average keyword difficulty for terms in each industry. Most content creators target keywords with low difficulty and high volume which is easier for some industries than others.
Industries with the highest difficulty were Public & Local Services at 49.02, Money & Insurance at 47.72, and Education and Training at 47.62.
To improve their search rankings, these industries will likely need to spend more time on their SEO strategy or invest more heavily in paid ads.
Industries with the lowest difficulty were Shopping & Fashion at 36.26, Sports at 35.12, and Beauty & Well-being at 33.75. It will be easier for these industries to find keywords to rank for.
Across all industries, the average keyword difficulty for SEO is 41.
What does this mean in practice? Relativity matters when looking for low-difficulty keywords.
For example, say you’re a business in the Money & Insurance industry and find two terms you’re not ranking for. One has a keyword difficulty of 45 with a search volume of 12,000, the other has a keyword difficulty of 40 with a search volume of just 6,000.
Understanding that 45 is below the average difficulty in your industry, targeting the higher volume term might not be a bad idea. You could also target related keywords as well and use paid ads to boost some of the more difficult ones to expand your reach.
For industries with low average keyword difficulty like Beauty & Well-being, target easy-to-rank-for terms to increase traffic, then use CRO strategies to leverage that traffic.
Average CPC (Cost-Per-Click) Across All Industries
The final graph of this section looks at the average CPC for each industry. We were curious to see if any correlation existed with the average authority score of company websites. Here’s what we found:
Analysis #3 – Average Number of Backlinks Per Industry and Their Most Popular FormatsBacklinks matter—that’s nothing new. What about the format of those backlinks? Is a text backlink better than an image backlink? How many backlinks is enough? That’s what we aimed to find out.
Average Number of Backlinks Per Industry
The average number of backlinks varies quite a bit by industry with the most belonging to:
- Public & Local Services at just over 6.5 million per site
- Media & Publishing at just over 6 million per site
- Education and Training at just over 4 million per site
These industries include more trustworthy business sites such as essential local services, news outlets, media publications, universities, certification platforms, and more.
The lowest average backlinks belonged to Beauty & Well-being, Animals & Pets, and Utilities. This could indicate each sector focuses more on social media or they have a lot of new business sites.
Money & Insurance coming in very low was surprising to me. I would have expected the industry to average at least as many backlinks as Shopping & Fashion at just under 1 million per site.
Distribution of Backlinks by Format
We also looked at the distribution of backlink types across each industry to see which performed best. The two backlink types that stood out were:
- text backlinks
- image backlinks
NOTE: the graphs below represent the total number of backlinks for each industry, not the average for each company website.
Text backlinks were the most popular across all industries:
- Public & Local Services received the most at just over 1.6 billion
- Education and Training was next at just over 1.5 billion
- Business Services followed at just over 1.3 billion
- Media & Publishing was the last with just over 1 billion
- Electronics & Technology at close to 180 million
- Media & Publishing at just over 100 million
Analysis #4 – Target Keyword Intent and the Intent That Led to the Most TrafficLastly, we looked at target keyword SEO intent in each industry based on the following categories:
- Commercial intent keywords: related to specific brands or services (“find a Starbucks near me”)
- Informational intent keywords: searching for answers to questions (“How to unclog a tub”)
- Navigational intent keywords: users looking for specific pages (“Comcast login page”)
- Transactional intent keywords: users are ready to buy (“buy converse shoes”)
The most popular keyword intent was informational at more than 40 percent of target terms in all industries.
These are generally top-of-the-funnel keywords, meaning users are still early on in their journey.
The next highest intent type was transactional at between 15-20 percent of terms per industry.
These users are ready to buy so creating content that targets these terms or using paid ads is a good idea.
Next, we looked at which intent keywords drove the most traffic to company sites in each industry.
Conclusion: Summary of FindingsThere were a few surprises in this data—and a few things that turned out exactly as we expected. For example, backlinks matter. Google has been telling us that for years, so I wasn’t surprised to see the highest-reviewed business websites tend to have a pretty high volume of links. What was surprising was the variation in the types of backlinks between different industries. This data can be incredibly valuable for sites looking to build a more effective backlink profile. I was also interested in the differences between the types of keyword intent most sites target for SEO (primarily informational) versus where they are getting their traffic from. Depending on your industry, this data could highlight incredible marketing opportunities or gaps in your current strategy. Which finding was most interesting or useful to you?
This seems like it might be a good result because it gives us multiple methods to try, along with photos so we can see exactly what’s happening.
Let’s click on that to see what they provide.