SEO as a service might be a little bit more difficult to evaluate than PPC, for instance. It’s usually way more difficult to tell exact ROI (return on investment) of SEO efforts. For this reason, many companies have a lot of doubts about investing in SEO. Here are some points, which may make it easier for you.
Are people looking for you online
If you are in a B2B market, there are many cases when SEO might not be the best choice. For instance, investors are probably not going to look for a construction company to build an office in Berlin online. They might be looking for you using your brand, so you have to make sure your site is indexed by Google and branded. Of course, you also might want to make sure that your website is friendly for users and meets Google guidelines. So it is a good idea to get an SEO and UX audit and then apply the recommendations. But long term SEO optimisation will not be the best investment. If you still believe that power of SEO will significantly benefit your business, test PPC first to see if you are getting enough queries and what could be the keywords optimised. Don’t forget that unlike PPC SEO is a long term strategy, therefore you need to make sure one day it can actually pay off.
Can you measure
Another crucial question is – can you measure SEO efforts? One of the biggest strengths of digital marketing is it measurability. Therefore, you need to make sure that you will be able to see if SEO actually brings you money. This is especially relevant for businesses which do not sell online. Sometimes all the business or agencies track is contact page visits. But this can be really far away from actual conversions. So make sure you are tracking some valuable conversions to measure the success and have some valuable arguments in meetings with an agency. More valuable conversions can include contact form submissions or call tracking which can help you to identify which users calls you after visiting your website through organic search.
Is your brand known
That’s an important question to ask. If people don’t know and presuming don’t yet trust your brand maybe you should invest in some banner advertising or PR or some other more traditional media where you can reach more people in less time with your key message and expose your brand to them. Now, you might say that if people are able to easily find me online, eventually they’ll know my brand quite well. And you might be right, but how long will it take for people to find it out and start buying? You can start seeing first SEO results in 3 or maybe even 4 to 5 months depending on the market and current stage of your website, then people will come, but will they buy? Will they trust your product just because they found you. In this case WOM might help you at some point, but until you reach that point it might be too late. So if your brand or business is new to put all stacks on SEO only, every marketing channel has its own time and place.
Do you have the money
This questions is not as simple as it sounds. The real question is do you have enough money to buy high quality SEO service. If not, then don’t buy whatever you can afford. Also the attitude: “Lets buy it cheap to see if it works” is not that promising. If you will save money on SEO, one day you might be forced to pay way more just to fix the magic some affordable SEO agency did. So even when you decide that SEO could really help your business make sure you choose the agency which does SEO not discounts. If someone is trying to sell you SEO they might tell you how it works, but the most important question to answer is: “is it going to work for my business” and if “yes” how we are going to measure it.