A Guide to Determining Whether Investing in an SEO Company Is Right for Your Business
If you own a business or are involved in marketing for a company, you’ve likely considered the value of investing in SEO. On one hand, the benefits of a successful SEO campaign—increased online visibility, more qualified traffic, and ultimately more sales—can be significant. On the other hand, SEO can be time-consuming and expensive, and it’s not always clear if the investment will pay off.
As a seasoned digital marketer with over a decade of experience in SEO and content marketing, I have had the opportunity to work with numerous brands across various industries. My name is CJ Lewis, and I am the COO of Arvo Digital, where I lead our company’s SEO efforts. In this article, I want to share my insights and recommendations on the topic of partnering with an SEO company and how to select the best one for your business.
Drawing on my background in the field, I hope to provide valuable guidance to help you make an informed decision about whether or not an SEO company is the right fit for your needs. I’ll cover the pros and cons of working with an SEO company as well as important considerations for anyone looking to hire an SEO company.
Overall, my goal is to help you determine if investing in an SEO company is the right decision for your business.
When to Invest in SEO
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the practice of improving the organic ranking of a website on search engines like Google. This can be achieved through a variety of tactics, including optimizing website content and structure, building backlinks, and improving the user experience.
Several situations indicate when it can be wise to invest in SEO:
- You have a new website: If you have recently launched a new website, it’s crucial to start optimizing it for search engines immediately. This will help to ensure that your site is visible to potential customers and can help drive traffic and sales.
- You have a low-performing website: If your website is not performing well in search results, investing in SEO can help to improve its ranking and drive more traffic and sales.
- You have a seasonal business: If you have a business that experiences fluctuations in demand throughout the year, investing in SEO can help to maintain a steady stream of traffic and sales during slower seasons.
- You want to drive more traffic and sales: In general, investing in SEO can be a good idea if you want to increase traffic to your website and drive more sales. By improving your search engine ranking, you can make it easier for potential customers to find your business online.
When Not to Invest in SEO
There are also situations in which it might not be wise to invest in SEO or when the timing is not yet right:
- You have a very small budget: SEO can be time-consuming and require significant resources, so it may not be feasible for businesses with very small budgets. In this case, it may be more cost-effective to focus on other marketing tactics.
- You don’t have a website: If you don’t have a website, it’s not necessary to invest in SEO because there’s nothing for search engines to rank. In this case, it might be more effective to focus on building a website first.
- You have a very niche market: If you serve a very small or specialized market, it may not be worth investing in SEO if it’s unlikely that a large number of people will be searching for your products or services. *While it’s true that serving a very small or specialized market may not warrant a significant investment in SEO, note that even small markets can see good returns from SEO efforts. While the potential audience may be smaller, the competition may also be less fierce, making it easier to rank for relevant keywords and drive qualified traffic to your website. Additionally, even if the number of people searching for your products or services is small, those searches may still be highly valuable and lead to meaningful conversions.
- You have a temporary promotion: If you have a temporary promotion or event, it might not be worth investing in SEO because the benefits will be short-term. In this case, it might be more effective to focus on other marketing tactics that can drive immediate results.
In general, investing in SEO can be a good idea if you want to drive more traffic and sales to your website and improve your search engine ranking. However, it’s necessary to consider your budget and goals before deciding whether or not to invest in SEO.
Hiring an SEO Company vs. Doing the Work Yourself
If you’re just starting out and have limited resources, it’s understandable that you may not have the budget to hire an SEO company right away. In this case, many excellent resources can help you learn the basics of SEO and get started on your own.
Although, as your business grows and you start to see success, it may be worth considering partnering with an SEO company to help take your online presence to the next level.
An experienced and reputable SEO company can provide expert insights, advanced tools and resources, and a customized approach to help you reach your business goals. While it may require an investment, the benefits of working with an SEO company can be well worth it for businesses looking to expand their reach and drive more qualified traffic to their website.
There are several advantages to hiring an SEO company over doing the work yourself:
- Expertise: SEO is a complex field that requires a deep understanding of how search engines work and what factors influence rankings. An SEO company has a team of experts who are well versed in the latest, best practices and techniques and can provide valuable insights and recommendations.
- Time-saving: SEO can be time-consuming, especially if you are not familiar with the process. Hiring an SEO company allows you to focus on running your business while leaving the SEO work to the professionals.
- Cost-effective: An SEO company can often provide more cost-effective solutions than hiring an in-house team, especially for small and medium-sized businesses.
- Advanced tools and resources: SEO companies have access to advanced tools and resources that can help them track and analyze data, identify opportunities for optimization, and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns.
- Flexibility: An SEO company can adjust its approach as needed based on the performance and results of the campaign, which can be more flexible than trying to do everything in-house.
Hiring an SEO Company vs. Working with an SEO Consultant
There are a few key differences between working with an SEO company/agency and an individual consultant:
- Expertise: An SEO company typically has a team of experts with a range of specialties, including keyword research, on-page optimization, technical SEO, and content writing. An individual consultant may have expertise in one or more areas but may not have the same level of depth and breadth of knowledge as an company.
- Getting work done: For businesses with limited time and resources, working with an SEO company can be a more efficient and effective solution. As mentioned in the previous point, an agency has a team of experts who can handle a range of tasks. In contrast, an individual consultant may only be able to provide guidance and recommendations, rather than actively execute the work. While a consultant can be a valuable resource for advice and specialized expertise, an agency can take on a larger scope of work and provide more comprehensive support to help your business succeed online.
- Resources: An SEO company has access to a range of resources, including advanced tools and technology, that can help them track and analyze data, identify optimization opportunities, and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns. An individual consultant may not have access to the same level of resources.
- Customization: An SEO company can offer a customized approach to the services, tailoring its strategy to the specific needs and goals of the client. An individual consultant may have a more cookie-cutter approach, using the same techniques and tactics for all clients.
- Scalability: An SEO company can scale its services as needed to meet the changing needs of the client, whether that means increasing the scope of the campaign or adding additional team members. An individual consultant may not have the same level of flexibility and scalability.
Overall, working with an SEO company can provide a range of benefits, including access to a team of experts, advanced resources and tools, a customized approach, and the ability to scale services as needed. While an individual consultant may have expertise in a specific area, an agency can provide a more comprehensive and flexible solution for businesses looking to improve their online presence.
Are There Pros to Working with an SEO Consultant?
While there are certainly advantages to working with an SEO company, I also recognize the benefits of working with an individual consultant. Here are some advantages:
- Personalized attention: A consultant is focused on your business and can provide personalized attention and guidance.
- Flexibility: A consultant may be more flexible in terms of their approach and availability and may be able to offer a more tailored solution to meet your specific needs.
- Cost-effective: A consultant may be more cost-effective than an agency, especially for smaller businesses or those with more limited budgets.
- Expertise: A consultant may have specialized expertise in a particular area of SEO, such as technical SEO or content marketing, and can provide valuable insights and guidance.
Overall, while an SEO company can provide a more comprehensive solution and access to a team of experts, working with a consultant can be a good option for businesses looking for personalized attention, flexibility, and specialized expertise at a more cost-effective price point.
How to Choose the Right SEO Company
Choosing a quality SEO company is critical because SEO is an investment in your business’s future. A good SEO campaign can help increase your online visibility, drive qualified traffic to your website, and ultimately lead to more sales and revenue for your business. If the SEO company you choose does not have the experience, expertise, or commitment to deliver results, you may end up wasting time and money on a campaign that does not produce the desired outcomes.
Choosing a reputable, experienced SEO company ensures that you are working with professionals who have the knowledge and resources to help your business succeed online.
Consider a few key things when choosing an SEO company:
- Experience: Choose a company that has a track record of success and a deep understanding of SEO best practices. Unfortunately, some SEO companies prioritize sales and client acquisition over delivering high-quality service. As a result, they may have a few highly qualified individuals who handle the sales process but then delegate the actual work to less experienced team members. This can lead to subpar results and a lack of accountability for the promised services.
- Services: Ensure the company offers the specific services you need, such as keyword research, on-page optimization, and technical SEO.
- Transparency: Choose a company that is open and transparent about its process and methods. Avoid companies that make vague or unrealistic promises.
- Communication: Ensure the company is responsive and open to communication. You should be able to easily contact them with questions or concerns.
- Cost: SEO can be expensive, so it’s imperative to have a clear understanding of the costs involved and to choose a company that fits within your budget.
- Case studies: Ask for case studies or examples of the company’s past work to get a sense of its capabilities and the results they have achieved for other clients.
- Results: When choosing an SEO agency, it’s essential to work with a company that is results-focused and has your business objectives at the forefront of its approach. A good agency will understand the specific goals you want to achieve through your SEO campaign and will develop a strategy that is designed to deliver those results. They should be able to track and measure the performance of the campaign, regularly communicate with you about progress, and make adjustments as needed to ensure that your business is on track to achieve its desired outcomes.
Deliverables are important. Unfortunately, too many SEO agencies prioritize the completion of certain tasks or deliverables over the effectiveness of their work. As a result, they may rush through the key factors of SEO that actually have the greatest impact on search engine rankings and spend an excessive amount of time on tasks that do not produce significant results.
- Guarantees: Be wary of companies that offer guarantees, as it is nearly impossible to guarantee specific rankings or results. Instead, look for a company that is willing to work with you to achieve your goals and is open to adjusting its approach as needed.
- The Approach: The best SEO agencies understand that every client is unique and has different needs and goals. Instead of offering a one-size-fits-all approach, experts will take the time to understand your business, target audience, and specific objectives. They then use this information to tailor their services to your needs, creating a customized strategy that is designed to deliver the best possible results for your business.
A customized approach allows the agency to focus on the areas that will have the greatest impact for your business, rather than using a cookie-cutter approach that may not be as effective. It also allows for more flexibility and the ability to make adjustments as needed, based on the performance and results of the campaign.
Overall, working with an agency that takes a customized approach to its services can lead to a more successful and effective SEO campaign, as it ensures that the strategy is tailored to your specific needs and goals.
Ready to Get Started? Work with Us!
We understand that every business is unique and may be at different stages of growth. That’s why we take the time to understand your specific goals and needs before recommending a course of action. If you are considering incorporating SEO into your marketing strategy, we would be happy to have a conversation with you to determine if our agency is the right fit.
We strive to be a transparent and reliable partner, and we are committed to helping you navigate and grow your business. Whether you are just starting out or are looking to expand your online presence, we are here to provide expert guidance and support to help you achieve your goals.