Did you know that 20% of small businesses fail in the first year of operation? Nearly half of all businesses survive after the fifth year, leaving only one-third of businesses that make it to their 10 year anniversary. 

In today’s digital world it is vital for businesses to maintain an online presence.  Tens of millions of people use Google and other search engines every day to search for a range of products and services.  75% of consumers never click past the first page of search results, so it is vital for your business to appear in the first few positions for relevant search terms. In the nearly 20 years since Google became the go-to search engine, businesses have been strategizing innovative ways to outsmart the online giant. But for every advance a business owner makes, Google launches a new algorithm to push them back. In order to stay ahead of Google and its many algorithm updates, you need to be well versed in the complex and layered techniques of SEO.

The strategy of your SEO campaign will be influenced by a variety of factors including the industry you are in and your location. Confused? Think of a search engine as a tool that provides the best answers to user questions.

Due to the complicated nature of SEO, it is imperative to understand your current marketplace and experiment with different techniques to see what works for you.  But unless you are well versed in the latest techniques and standards it is not advisable to attempt SEO on your own.  

How to choose an SEO provider

Unfortunately, there are many SEO providers out there that promise their clients the moon and stars by using black hat techniques.But due to these unreputable tactics, any good results they achieve are quickly diminished when they are blacklisted from Google.  A reputable SEO company will only utilize techniques and tactics that are tired and true to get you long-lasting results. It is important to note that quality and highly effective SEO takes time to achieve, and any provider that promises to get you page one results immediately is suspect.

When it comes to choosing an SEO provider, it is important to do your due diligence. Do they have a good reputation?  The best way to get a sense of the company’s reputation and execution is to check out their reviews and ask for client referrals. A proper SEO campaign has many moving parts, and many agencies only focus on a few key point such as link building or local listings. If their approach is not well rounded your results may suffer. Be sure to ask what metrics they use to measure progress. Run—don’t walk away, from any company that is reluctant to share their metrics or shows you their work. While many of the techniques SEO companies will use are proprietary, they should still be able to explain their methods and how they plan to achieve the best results for your business.

Another element that illustrates the reputability of an SEO company is the way they report back to you. From the beginning, your SEO company should be completely transparent and keep you abreast of the progress of your campaign every step of the way. Stay away from any SEO company that does not provide regular reports on the visibility and improvement of tracked keywords.  Without those reports, it is difficult to measure how well your other SEO efforts are performing. In addition, a good SEO company should be willing and able to make changes if the current strategy is not performing well.  If the SEO company you are considering or working with currently cannot do any of these things it is time to cut ties.

Interested in how SEO can improve your business’s bottom line. Contact one of our SEO specialists today to learn more.