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How To Outsource SEO Services: A Comprehensive Guide

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Boni Satani

January 9, 2024
How To Outsource SEO Services

SEO can be a quite challenging to handle internally. 

As a result, it’s common for businesses to turn to external SEO service providers. 

SEO Services providers have a wide range of specialties, allowing companies to benefit from their skills and knowledge, thereby improving their online presence. 

The array of tasks they handle includes Technical SEO, Keyword Research, On-Page Optimization, Content Creation and Link Building. 

Key Highlights

  • Outsourcing SEO services eliminates the expenses and time of recruiting, training, and maintaining an in-house team. You get access to top-tier SEO experts without the associated overhead costs.
  • Outsourcing also frees up valuable time, letting businesses focus on their core operations without the distraction of managing an intricate SEO strategy.
  • Picking the right SEO services company is crucial and only comes with the right set of steps, as outlined here.

In this article, we’ll cover:

Why Outsource SEO Services?

Reasons to outsource SEO Services

1. Lack of Expertise

A dedicated SEO agency is equipped with deep-seated knowledge and experience. Their expertise ensures that the latest, most effective strategies are employed, significantly enhancing the chances of your website ranking higher on search engine results pages.

Not to mention, SEO is ever-evolving thanks to the periodic algorithm updates that major search engines like Google bring from time to time. These core updates play a major role in affecting a page’s ranking factor.

Now, if you hire an in-house team, you need to impart the training, ensure they don’t get complacent, and always stay updated with the latest trends in the field to ensure your site is always optimized for SEO.

2. To Save Operational Costs By Outsourcing Vs Hiring In-House

The recruitment process is long, arduous, and often expensive. Finding the right talent, ensuring they align with company culture, and training them are lengthy endeavors. 

In contrast, outsourcing is a cost-effective alternative, providing access to top-tier SEO experts without the overheads associated with full-time employees.

3. When You Want To Scale Or Dial Down

Outsourcing allows for scalability, enabling you to ramp up or dial back SEO efforts in line with business requirements. On the other hand, scaling an in-house team will cost you more money and time. 

4. Free Up Internal Bandwidth

Diving deep into SEO can be time-consuming, detracting attention from core business operations. By outsourcing, you delegate this intricate task to specialists, freeing up your and your team’s precious time that can be channeled into growing other facets of your enterprise. This also means you don’t have to oversee and manage an in-house team. 

Steps To Outsource SEO Services

Steps-To-Outsource-SEO-Services

Here’s a detailed step-by-step guide to ensure you’re on the right path. 

1. Define Your SEO Goals 

Define clear and measurable goals. 

Setting tangible goals will guide the SEO process, be it ranking for a set of keywords, improving overall website traffic, or getting more organic leads; being specific about your expectations is crucial.

For instance, a tangible goal shared with the SEO services agency could mention – growing organic traffic from 3,000 per month to 10,000 per month in the next 12 months or improving the keyword rankings for a certain list of pages to help them appear on page #1 in the SERPS., etc.

2. Assess Your Budget

Before you start looking for an SEO Agency, determine how much you’re willing and able to spend. 

SEO services can vary significantly in price, depending on the complexity of the work and the reputation of the agency. 

While it might be tempting to go with the cheapest option, remember that in SEO, as with many things, you often get what you pay for. It’s worth investing in high-quality services that will yield substantial long-term results. 

3. Research Top Agencies That Offer SEO Services

Check reviews and case studies, and ask for client testimonials. Seeking recommendations within your professional network and communities can also be invaluable. Or simply run a Google search to discover reputed agencies specializing in SEO services. Explore sites like Clutch, Yelp, etc. to check their reviews online.

3.1. Ask For Referrals And Case Studies

Beyond just names or numbers, seek detailed narratives. Ask for specifics about the results they have achieved. A compelling case study doesn’t just highlight success; it chronicles the challenges faced, strategies employed, along with the results achieved. 

3.2. Questions To Ask

Engaging with an agency or consultant is akin to an interview. Here are some vital questions to help you gauge their fit:

  • What makes you different? Look for specifics, not just generic answers like “We’re the experts” or “We have so many years of experience”, etc. A response that highlights their unique data-driven strategies or talks about pure results is what you should look for.
  • What’s your process? Understanding their approach, from initial analysis to strategy implementation, can offer insights into their process and attention to detail. 
  • What are your tools? Reliable agencies often use industry-respected tools like SEMrush, Moz, or Ahrefs. Their answer can indicate their investment in the craft and commitment to precise and effective SEO strategies. 

3.3. Assess Their Expertise 

Do they have relevant experience dealing with SEO for your use cases? For example, if you’re a local restaurant, an agency boasting expertise in local SEO and showcasing strategies like optimizing “Google Business Profile” or managing local citations would be invaluable compared to an agency with experience dealing with SaaS or B2B.

3.4. Look For Transparency In Work & Communication

An exemplary agency will willingly break down its strategies. For example, if they suggest a shift towards long-form content, they should be ready to explain its benefits, like how comprehensive content often garners more backlinks and positions you as an authority in your field.

You should not entertain mere claims and empty recommendations without any reasonable explanation.

4. Understand Their SEO Process 

It’s essential to understand the strategies and techniques an SEO agency uses to improve your website’s ranking. 

They should be able to clearly explain their process, from keyword research to on-page optimization, link building, and reporting. Ensure they use ethical, white-hat SEO practices that adhere to Google’s guidelines. Be wary of agencies promising quick results – SEO is a long-term strategy and it often takes several months to see significant improvements. 

Understanding their process will not only give you peace of mind, but also enable you to measure progress and results effectively.

5. Start The Engagement

Based on your assessment now, you can initiate the engagement once you are satisfied with the agency’s approach and expertise. The agency must grasp the specific characteristics of your business. 

For example, the SEO strategy for a legal services company would vastly differ from that of a large-scale electronics retailer. So, ensure you thoroughly assess their expertise and experience before starting out.

6. Monitor & Evaluate The Performance

SEO isn’t an overnight success story. It requires time and consistent effort, and for most brands, it takes close to 10-12 months to see substantial results.

Assess the progress against the goals set. Use tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console to track performance. Ask them to periodically share keyword rankings as well. 

If the current strategies aren’t delivering as expected, communicate with the agency and tweak the approach.

When Not To Outsource SEO Services?

Outsourcing SEO can be a game-changer, but it’s not always the right call. Here’s when you might want to reconsider your decision to outsource SEO services. 

1. When You Aren’t Prepared To Invest Time

It could hinder results if you’re unwilling to invest time in productive communication with the agency. 

For instance, if an agency is revamping your content strategy, they’ll need insights into your business’s unique selling points and target demographic. They may miss the mark without your input, leading to content that doesn’t resonate with your target audience. 

You might blame them, but the fact is your time investment, at least initially, is critical.

2. When You Aren’t Ready For Setbacks

If a dip in rankings during a strategy transition phase or for a couple of weeks will cause you panic, outsourcing might not be for you. Sometimes, strategies need tweaking based on results; a slight dip doesn’t equate to long-term failure.

3. When You’re Fixed On Your Approach Without A Defined Process

It could spell trouble if you’re adamant about an SEO tactic without tried and tested evidence of its efficacy. For instance, if you insist on targeting a certain set of keywords because they seem intuitive but neglect data-driven keyword research, even the best agency will struggle to deliver.

Mistakes To Avoid When Outsourcing SEO

Mistakes-To-Avoid-When-Outsourcing-SEO-

While deciding to outsource SEO services can be beneficial, certain pitfalls might compromise the results. Here’s a breakdown of the common mistakes businesses often make:

1. Going Too Cheap

SEO is an investment; just like all your other investments, you get what you pay for. Opting for the lowest-priced service might initially seem cost-effective but can lead to subpar results or penalties. Remember, effective SEO practices warrant experts and experience, and the agency too, will have these kinds of people on its payroll. Hence, no genuine SEO agency can go below a certain level of fees.

For instance, extremely cheap services might employ black hat techniques, which can result in your website getting penalized by search engines.

2. Choosing Agencies That Promise Fast Results

Agencies promising instant top rankings – something like achieving organic traffic of 10,000 per month in just 3 months, etc., are likely cutting corners or employing short-lived tactics. 

Remember the adage: if it seems too good to be true, it is probably not.

3. Not Providing Feedback & Sufficient Information To The Agency

Vague briefs can lead to misaligned strategies. For instance, if you don’t convey your primary target audience or your brand’s core values, the content created might miss the mark, attract the wrong audience, or even misrepresent your brand.

4. Not Creating The KPIs For Measurement

Without clear Key Performance Indicators, assessing the effectiveness of the outsourced SEO can become challenging. Define metrics, whether organic traffic growth or keyword rankings, to gauge progress and ROI.

Why Should You Consider Outsourcing SEO Services To Zestard?

Navigating SEO can be complex, but choosing the right partner can simplify your journey. If you’re contemplating outsourcing SEO services, Zestard emerges as a frontrunner.

With over a decade of hands-on experience, Zestard has distinguished itself as a pioneer in delivering top-tier SEO services, elevating clients’ website visibility and organic traffic.

Our comprehensive SEO solutions encompass keyword research, on-page optimization, meticulous in-depth site audits, and high-quality backlink strategies. Transparent communication is at the core of our operations, ensuring you’re always informed about the strategies and methodologies we deploy.

The proof, they say, is in eating the pudding. You won’t know its actual taste until you eat it. Our repository of client testimonials and illuminating case studies underscore our efficacy.
To delve deeper into what we can offer you, know about our past projects, and get insights on how we can redefine your SEO strategy, schedule a call with our SEO experts today.

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Boni Satani

Boni Satani is the Co-Founder & Marketing Head at Zestard Technologies. With over 10+ years of experience in SEO, Boni has helped many national and international businesses increase their online visibility and reap high ROI. He frequently blogs for the Search Engine Journal and YourStory. You can find Boni on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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