This presentation can also been called SEO for CXOs.
I will be speaking to you as if you are the CEO of a large company. Of course, there won’t be many of those in this room, so you may want to convey this message to them.
These questions were asked to show the kind of client environment faced by SEO agencies.
Some clients get amnesia and don’t recall any cautions made by the agency during the sale. They think they will rank #1 for every keyword. Some don’t realise that ranking is harder in some niches than others and takes time. The agency deliverables should list everything that the agency will do.
The number one recommendation we have is to listen to your SEO agency's recommendations - take them seriously! Most clients will take on board some of our recommendations at first, but then fall away after a couple of months when "more urgent" things come along. Maintaining a constant dialogue with your SEO agency is by far the best way to get value for money - and keep them honest! Second, view your SEO agency as a partner and not as someone who is solely accountable for your online success. An SEO agency that does everything will have a hard time maintaining your branding in the content, look-and-feel and code (eg meta tags). By encouraging their recommendations for your in-house team to implement, you'll stretch your dollars further. For example, the more content that you can generate and the more on-page changes/maintenance that you can do, the more they are freed up for the real value adding tasks. I have had clients that request us to put up their blog posts, which is ridiculous. Why pay agency rates for something you/your underlings can learn to do in 5 minutes? If you can do these things, your agency will be free to spend its time unleashing their trade secrets. Thirdly, as an account manager, I readily admit to going the extra mile for some clients more than others. It's not just about the ones I get along with best (although you should have a good relationship with your agency, like anyone you encounter in the business world). It relates back to viewing your agency as a partner. If things are rocky (after an algorithm update, for example), don't tee off at them. You (hopefully) wouldn't slap your wife around straight away if she told you she lost her job. Similar concept here. Seek to understand what happened, what they are doing to recover and what you can do to expedite things. That kind of teamwork gets best results and helps make a great bond.
Some clients forget to mention important details or consider that they might be irrelevant. If Google has banned the site manually, for example, the SEO solution could be quite different (and expensive). Some businesses buy many spare domains but mirror their site on all of the others. Such information should be shared with the agency. Work done by a previously engaged agency should also be mentioned.
If your staff don’t know that an SEO agency has made changes to the website, they might upload a modified page or image that undoes the SEO effort.
Getting the most from your SEO Agency
Getting the most from your SEO Agency by Ash NallawallaCEO, TrainSEM.com/Twemps.com @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Bio• SEO consultant and trainer – TrainSEM.com• Social networking outsourcer – Twemps.com – We engage on behalf of clients.• Moderator, webmasterworld.com• Past SEO agency manager (2000+ clients)• Past in-house SEO• Email: email@example.com• Blog: www.netmagellan.com @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
I invited 100 SEO agencies• Survey with just nine questions• Only six responded: – Optimising – Australia – eBrandz – India/USA – Melbourne IT – Australia – E Web Marketing – Australia – Steak Digital (Dentsu Network) – 100 global cities – BlueGlass Interactive - USA @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
E-Web Marketing - Sydney @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
BlueGlass Interactive – Los Angeles @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
The nine questions1. What is the name of your agency and location (city, country)?2. What is the quality of web platforms that you see in most projects?3. Describe the content on client websites.4. Do client sites have fresh content?5. Do client sites have many inbound links?6. Do client sites have hooks to social networks?7. Do clients have an in-house SEO?8. How many levels deep is the clients in-house SEO (or proxy) from the CEO? (For a one-person business, choose zero)9. Do you have any tips for clients to get more value from their SEO agency? @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
This is what they said @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q2: Quality of platform? @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q3: Quantity of content? @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q4: Freshness of content? @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q8: Position of in-house SEO? @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q9: Tips for clients - Optimising• Understand and get on the same page with expectations.• Make sure you understand timeframes.• Make sure you have an overall understanding about what your agency will be doing on and off site. @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q9: Tips for clients – Melbourne IT• Listen to your SEO agencys recommendations• View your SEO agency as a partner and not a as someone who is solely accountable for your online success. We admit to going the extra mile for such clients. @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q9: Tips for clients – BlueGlass Interactive• Answer questions honestly during the on- boarding process. The more information we have about what your business has been doing in the space, the better.• Also, having information available is always important when working on projects so be realistic with timelines for internal data gathering that can support our work.• If you plan on working with another agency, be transparent about it (as much as you can be) in case what theyre doing affects your other agencys work. @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Q9: Tips for clients - eBrandzA few years back, one of our clients wanteda major upgrade of their website backendand MIS. Luckily their CEO mentioned thisto us. Not only were we able to guide themin this technology upgrade, to avoid SEOproblems, but in the CEOs own words, wewere able to save them a million dollars.So my tip to clients to get more value fromtheir SEO agency is to seek their views onany technology, Usability or marketingdecision. @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Some more tips• Involve your staff and web designer from the beginning of the SEO relationship.• Find out whether any of the work will be outsourced. A cheaper contract usually implies outsourcing.• Tell the agency if major content changes are coming.• Give the agency what they need – without delay! @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com
Download this preso• If you are reading this as a PDF on the conference CD, you won’t see the brief notes. Grab the PPT from: http://www.trainsem.com/pubcon/• firstname.lastname@example.org• Thank you @ashnallawalla – www.trainsem.com