In the SEO industry, WebPosition reports and server statistics provide a
solid gauge of the firm's successes. If a prospective firm's web site does not
post some of these reports, you certainly should ask to have them emailed to
It is crucial that you ascertain who within the firm would work on your account.
Large firms hire many new people and have constant turnover. One of DISCs very
satisfied clients had first engaged the world's largest SEM firm and got no
results. That firm's results may typically be good, but obviously the team working
on this client was not adequate. Go beyond a prospective firm's sales people
-- acquire detailed qualifications and client histories of the individuals who
will work on your account, and speak with those individuals.
As the SEO industry has matured, tools, processes, and labor time have become
somewhat standardized. So prices for the kind of thorough SEO work that virtually
eliminates your risk tend to cluster around the median. Beware of substantial
deviations from average prices if the price is exceptionally low, the firm
is very likely cutting corners or engaging in unethical practices.
Does the firm offer objective feasibility studies to determine whether and
how much you should invest in SEO? ROI for SEO is more predictable than you
might imagine, with variations based on industry and company. An SEO firm that
is sincerely committed to your ROI will offer you predictive reports about ROI
and other benchmarks.
Should you hire an employee rather than contract with a firm? To make this
assessment, you need to know the talents and skills required to do the job well.
To help you decide whether to outsource and who to hire, we have reprinted CEO
Rob Laportes article on outsourcing SEM posted on the Search Engine Marketing
Professionals Organization (SEMPO) web site.