How to Have a Successful Relationship with Your SEO Outsource Partner
Your outsourced SEO partner plays an important role in the overall success of your brand. After all, there’s a good chance they’re managing your company’s social media, creating content for your website, and even writing your company’s blogs – all of which are direct reflections of your brand. If you want results, it’s crucial that you build and maintain a successful relationship with your SEO outsource partner. Here are some tips for doing just that.
Choose the Right Partner from the Start
In your personal life, you can only really build a relationship with someone you like – someone whose personality meshes well with your own, and someone whose views tend to align with yours. The same can be said for your SEO partner. Choosing the first company that offers you the right services at the right price isn’t always the best idea. No two companies are the same, so it’s important to shop around and choose the right digital marketing partner from the start.
Some things to consider when it comes to making sure that your SEO partner is the right fit include:
Familiarity with your industry or niche. Has the company worked with other companies in your industry or niche before? Do they understand the nuances and technicalities? If not, you may find yourself spending a lot of time explaining what your brand does.
Consistent communication. If you are struggling to get a timely email response from a real human being, then it’s probably a good idea to move on to the next SEO specialist. Communication is vital for the overall success of your SEO campaign.
Willingness to answer questions. If this is your first time introducing SEO into your marketing or website, and especially if you’ve never had a real online presence before, you likely have dozens of questions. A good SEO partner will sit down with you and answer all of those questions in a way that fits your company and brand.
Provide Critical Information
When you partner with an outsourced SEO service provider, it’s important to provide them with all of the information about your company that you can. Your partner will check out your existing website and social media to get a feel for what your online presence is like, but when it comes to SEO that really works, the more information you can share, the better. Some of the things to think about include:
Your goal for your website. Ultimately, SEO is all about sending more traffic to your website, but it’s up to you to determine how to handle that traffic once it arrives. Are you just looking to improve your rankings for visibility, or are you focused on increasing your conversion rate? These things really do matter, and they influence how your SEO partner approaches your website and its content.
Your brand’s mission. What do you want to accomplish with your brand as a whole? Does your product or service make lives simpler? Does it save lives? Is it good for the environment? What is it about your brand that makes it unique? These help your SEO partner determine some of the search terms to rank for with the content that makes up your website.
How you want people to view your brand. What’s your brand’s personality? Are you strictly professional? Do you like to incorporate humor into your brand’s persona? Is being trendy important to you? Do you want to be viewed as the authority in your niche? Once again, the way your SEO partner approaches your website will vary greatly based on your answers to these questions.
What kind of future do you want for your brand? Where do you want your brand to be next year? In five years? In 15 years? What’s your overall plan for your business?
Develop Your Strategy
Developing an SEO strategy is an integral part of your success, and that strategy comes in two different forms: on-page and off-page. When search engines like Google evaluate your site and compare it to their algorithms, these are the two main areas they consider. Your SEO partner can help you develop and execute both of these strategies, but your input is critical.
On-page SEO is all about optimizing the various parts of your website that you can change and control, including things like your blog, geotargeted pages, and even individual web pages. In other words, it’s focused on what your website or web page is about as a whole. When you choose keywords or phrases you want to rank for, those rankings are ultimately determined by on-page factors. Some of the things you will want to consider include page content, internal links, headings, title tags, and even things like load times and mobile-friendliness.
Off-page SEO is a bit different in that it focuses more on the overall authority of your entire domain. Unlike on-page SEO, which you can change immediately, off-page SEO takes time to develop. You’ll need to consider things like inbound links, social media marketing, guest blogs and posts, brand mentions, and even influencer marketing. Of all of the various ways to execute off-page SEO, you’ll want to focus most heavily on backlinks to your site from others, and quality is far better than quantity in this regard. Building and maintaining a good relationship with your outsourced SEO partner involves developing and executing strategies for both on-page and off-page optimization that work best for your brand.
What does offpage SEO look like?
3rd party content
Local & national citations
Google My Business (GMB)
Communication is critical when it comes to your relationship with your outsourced SEO partner, so make sure you are ready to communicate often. SEO is not a one-and-done type of project, and it takes time and plenty of communication. In the beginning, during the “getting-to-know-you” phase, frequent communication is especially important. Both parties will have questions, and the sooner these are addressed, the more quickly you can start reaching your SEO goals.
Ideally, you will want to assign one point of contact from your brand to work directly with your SEO partner. This individual doesn’t have to be the owner of your brand; it should be someone you trust to be in charge of the SEO initiative. When your SEO partner knows who to reach out to with information and questions, it simplifies the entire process. If your SEO partner has to speak with a different brand representative about the same project with each interaction, things tend to get lost in translation, people get confused, and everyone loses precious time.
Be Open and Honest
When relationships between brands and their outsourced SEO partners go bad, it’s often due to a lack of open and honest communication. As an example, there may be a time when your SEO partner creates a piece of content that you don’t particularly like. Maybe it doesn’t adequately represent your brand, or maybe you feel a different approach would be better. In situations like these, the more quickly you reach out to your SEO partner, the better. They want you to be satisfied with everything they do, and they will always be willing to make it right.
This honesty and transparency are important for building a relationship, too. As you communicate what you do and don’t like, your SEO partner learns more about your brand, including its personality and nuances – the things that make it unique. Each time this happens, it strengthens your SEO partner’s knowledge and affords them more opportunities to optimize your website, your content, and your social media perfectly.
Set the Right Expectations
Finally, building a good relationship with your outsourced SEO partner requires setting the right expectations when it comes to your results. All too often, brands expect that their SEO partners will be able to triple their website traffic in a week. Unlike your marketing campaigns, which can drive traffic to your website in droves when done correctly, SEO takes time. On average, it will take somewhere between six and 12 months for you to see considerable results. This doesn’t mean you won’t see results at all; it simply means that it will take time for traffic to truly ramp up.
Remember that SEO plays mostly to search engine algorithms, and time is an integral part of those algorithms. Your SEO partner could come in and perfectly optimize your website for you in a week, but search engines prefer to see consistent results rather than immediate ones. Over time, as your SEO partner continues to add optimized content to your website, you’ll start to see your search engine ranking page results increase. It’s consistent growth over time that matters, so be sure that you are setting the right expectations from the beginning.
When you choose a good outsourced SEO partner, you can feel confident that they will do the very best they can to help you reach your goals – whatever those goals may be. Communicating often and openly, providing all of the information you can, and having the right expectations will go a long way toward building a strong relationship with your outsourced SEO partner.
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