Top 5 Reasons for Ongoing SEO Services

Ongoing search marketing consultingFor many companies, an ideal world involving Search Engine Optimization would be simple, quick and a one-time task to check off a list. An organization would create a website, optimize its content for target keywords and promote the site. Soon, the website would acquire a strong number of inbound links and start ranking for those target keywords. End of story.

Unfortunately, that’s just not the case. In reality, SEO isn’t just about adding keywords and linking. SEO is increasingly social and sits at the intersection of multiple business functions outside of marketing including public relations, customer service, recuitment and branding.

Ongoing SEO consulting is an important part of any internet marketing mix. Truly good consultants save companies significant expenses and contribute to increased leads and sales by providing unique expertise and insight into the technical, creative and increasingly social sides of internet marketing.

5 Tips on Hiring and Getting the Most Value from SEO Consultants

searchWhile Google offers advice on hiring SEO consultants, there’s not much information about how to get the most value afterwards.  There’s an impressive amount of information and resources for webmasters on SEO related topics, but I’m pretty sure Google as a company has never hired a SEO agency and therefore isn’t in the client/vendor relationship advice business.

Having worked as a consultant for well over 10 years in the SEO space with hundreds of companies, large ($100bn) and small (un-funded startup ca 2001), there have been many opportunities to learn the ins and outs of working with companies to effectively provide SEO related services.

Agency + Client = Superhero Link Building Team

Two heads are better than one. How many times have we all heard that in our lives?  When having a brainstorming session, it helps to bounce ideas off of one another to generate the best possible solution. Even when saving the world, is it always important to have a sidekick. Or a team of sidekicks.


The same is true of link building teams. It can be considered a general rule of thumb to say “the more, the merrier” when it comes to the size of a team working on link building, social media and content promotion. An experienced team working together will generate far more inbound links and traffic to the target website than just one person – bent over a desk, Red Bull in hand, click-clacking away on the keyword.

SEO Services: Value Meal or Consulting that Provides Value?

Most people like things simple and “pre-packaged” solutions do well to attract mass market appeal. Just look at the popularity of “value meals” at popular fast food restaurants and other consumer products.

In the business to business world, the simplification of products and services into such groupings is not so practical, “Did you want the #3 or #4 enterprise CRM software package?”. Yet judging by the inquiries many search marketing companies get, it is high in demand: “Can you tell me about your SEO packages?”.

This is particularly true with the trend started at the turn of this century towards the commoditization of search marketing consulting services. At that time the task of improving online sales via search engines was a predictable matter of optimizing meta data and on-page copy, submitting to directories and search engines. Of course, this is the search marketing industry, so things have changed.

Advantages of Ongoing SEO Consulting

When companies consider search engine optimization as a service, it’s important to understand that this kind of consulting comes in a variety of forms with the most popular being: phone consultations, site audits/reviews and ongoing SEO consulting.

Businesses that are very early in their stages of search marketing and not entirely “sold” on SEO as a channel seem to gravitate towards short term engagements. “Can we test SEO for a few months?”, they’ll say. Also, companies that perceive SEO as a set of IT and web development focused tactics also tend to see the promotion of a web site via search as a one-time set of recommendations.

There are serious flaws in the thinking that improving on-page content optimization as a single exercise is going to deliver the ongoing competitive advantage possible of improving bottom line sales that most companies have in mind when they hire an outside resource.

Reader Poll: Non SEO Services for SEO Clients

reader poll

In an interview I did yesterday with the Minneapolis Star Tribune one of the things we talked about was how common it is for search engine optimization engagements to reveal many other marketing and process consulting needs. For example, one of the most common issues we run into is a lack of sales pipeline management.

Many companies do not yet have a firm grasp of their online lead generation to sales revenue, especially BtoB clients with long sales cycles and where many people might interact with a prospect before they become a client.

This conversation got me thinking about how many SEO consulting firms have begun providing additional services and also how other types of agencies have begun dabbling in SEO. I began to wonder what other search marketing agencies and marketing related companies in general have seen on the topic of services diversification. Smells like a reader poll to me!