The flashy city centre agency:
They look the part! Having very cool offices in the heart of a big city with features such as pool tables, swings and impressive interior design. Unfortunately, all of this costs big money which will be reflected in your quote for SEO work or website design.
Things to ask: Although the team you will meet during the sales process will likely be of a senior level with a wealth of experience, find out who will actually be working on your campaign on a day to day basis. Ensure that if you’re paying top money that you aren’t being provided with someone who is new in post or doesn’t have the experience that would merit the substantial fee.
Benefits: Having a large team can mean that there are certain individuals who are experts in specific areas such as pay per click, design, link building, coding instead of using a ‘Jack of all trades’
The ‘Outsourced Indian SEO Company’
They certainly don’t look the part and they’re most likely to make contact via email in broken English and offer unrealistic results for a fraction of the price.
While it’s true that the cost of Indian SEO and website design staff is vastly cheaper than their counterparts in the UK it doesn’t come without risks. While website design may be manageable, it can be perilous to have an unknown company who may employ ‘black hat’ tactics to have control of your website and be in charge of mass link building. In my experience many companies have had to pay a considerable sum to have a reputable SEO consultant rectify the damage of a spammy, low quality campaign.
Things to ask: If you are thinking about employing an SEO agency based in India, find out if the individuals who are writing your content can write to a high standard of English. Having meta descriptions, page titles and blogs written poorly and or grammatically incorrect can have a potentially catastrophic effect on your businesses online presence.
Benefits: It will be cheap!
Individual Consultants and Small Businesses
There are masses of individuals around the world who provide SEO services from their homes or small to medium sized offices. Like any service business there will be a wide range of abilities and experience.
The benefits: When paying an individual consultant who works from home or small offices their overheads can be considerably lower than larger agencies who are paying dozens of staff members, pension contributions, offices, business rates and more.
Things to ask: Find out what experience the individual has and ask for previous examples of results and testimonials from existing clients if possible.
There certainly isn’t a perfect one size fits all type of company but this should hopefully give you some ideas of what to look for and ask when having an initial meeting. Our advice is to meet with individuals or companies that you’re thinking about using and make sure you feel confident in them as an individual.