With so many SEO companies out there, all claiming to be experts, it can be a challenge to hire a professional SEO company that is worth your time and money. Aligning yourself with a company that turns up to be less than reputable can cost you money and, even worse, damage your professional reputation. You can even find yourself ostracized from the big search engines, which can spell disaster for your online marketing endeavors.
To ensure you are dealing with the right kind of company, ask them these questions during your interview process:
Can you provide me with some references?
You may run into a situation where an SEO company will tell you that they can’t disclose their client information to you because it’s confidential. In some cases, this is true. In others, it’s a convenient way for companies to get around the issue of providing references. A good company, however, will be only too happy to provide you with contact information for their clients because they want you to see how good they are at their jobs.
What kind of results can I expect to see from your campaign?
Marketing is about results. To get an idea of whether an SEO company can deliver the goods, ask them what kind of results you can expect, especially in terms of increases of traffic to your site. A reputable company will be able to provide you with an estimate of the percentage in traffic increase you could expect to see.
Will you create doorway pages for me?
If a SEO company offers to create what are known as “doorway pages” for your site as part of their search engine optimization program, steer clear. These pages violate the TOS of many of the biggest search engines and will cause your site to be banned from the search engines. Be aware that because doorway pages have become a swear word in the SEO industry, companies have come up with new ways to describe the same thing. Phrases like “specialized content pages,” “targeted entryway pages” or “special/specialized content pages,” a red flag should go up. The companies who use these tactics are using black-hat marketing strategies and they can seriously damage your company’s reputation and chances of success.
When you hire a professional SEO company, be sure you are hiring a reputable one. Your time, money, professional reputation and even the success of your business can live or die by the choice you make in SEO companies, so choose wisely. One of the best ways you can safeguard yourself from a suspect company is to conduct adequate research in advance. And remember: If you get a bad feeling about a certain company, there’s probably a reason for it. Instinct is rarely wrong. Listen to it.