SEO, or search engine optimization to give it its full title, is one of the most important things when it comes to your online presence as a business. You need good SEO to drive traffic to your site and place you above competitors in search engine searches on keywords relevant to what you do. Without it, many people who would be impressed by your business and service will never even know it exists. Good SEO also means that all the content you take the time to produce will reach as many people as possible – fulfilling its potential as a marketing device and giving a great return on investment.
Why Many Companies Outsource SEO
It is possible to manage your own SEO (if you are a small business), or have someone do it in house (if you are a larger enterprise with the resources to have someone on board for this). However, for most companies it is more convenient to use an SEO consultancy. SEO is an area of marketing that is pretty technical, and also very fast moving as the search engines continue to evolve and change the ways they rank pages. This means that a lot of dedicated knowledge is required to understand SEO well enough to create strategies that work. This is something small business owners generally don’t have time for, and so it is generally more convenient and more cost effective to outsource this aspect of your online presence.
Managing Your SEO Company
The problem with outsourcing SEO, as indeed with outsourcing anything that is important to your business, is that it requires some management from your end. You’ll need to have initial discussions about what your goals are and review the kind of strategies your consultant suggests before they can be put into place. You will also want regular reports showing the performance of your website and the improvements caused by your SEO company’s efforts. However, micromanaging SEO consultancies has been shown to actually have a negative effect. It can be tempting to want to know all the details of what people you hire are doing, but any kind of micromanagement takes chunks out of your own time, reducing the cost effectiveness of hiring someone else in the first place!
The Right Balance
When outsourcing, you do indeed want to ensure you are getting the level of service and the results you are paying for, however SEO is not an exact science and your company will need some time to implement, review and tweak strategies. When it comes to managing them, try and find a balance where they are accountable, you are informed, and yet they have the freedom to work within their own tried and tested parameters and test things out without having to constantly explain what they are doing and why!
After a while working with your chosen SEO firm and some proven successes, you should find you get into a nice pattern of mutual trust that can help you partner together to drive your business forward on the web.