With Literally hundreds of self proclaimed SEO and PPC “Experts” to choose from, finding the right agency to match your needs has become a bit of a minefield. That’s why I’ve created this ten point guide to finding the agency or freelancer that best suits your needs.
1. Service deliverables
What core services are at the heart of your management, does your fee cover copywriting costs, social media, paid search across the ‘big three’ platforms (Google, Yahoo, Bing)? What additional services are included that most other agencies don’t include, Mobile PPC, Google display network etc. Be wary, some agencies may reel you in with the lure of a broad range services only for you to find out they all have an additional cost. Be sure of what’s included from the get go.
If you outsource both PPC and SEO, in an ideal world the same agency should manage both services for you, or at a stretch they should have a good relationship with each other. SEO and PPC should hold a symbiotic relationship, with PPC giving you coverage on keywords you have yet to achieve organic rankings for, as well as informing you of immerging keyword trends.
2. Contract terms
What terms are available? Is there a rolling monthly contract option or do you have to be tied in to a long contract. Depending on the seasonality of your industry, you may not require PPC management all the way through the year. If a longer term contract is more convenient for you, can they offer you a management fee reduction or any additional service?
How important is face time for you? Would you prefer to deal with somebody local to you, do you need to see them frequently for updates? If your based in Hastings but you get your services from an SEO in Manchester how will this affect the success of your campaign?
4. Proactive not reactive
What strategies or measures do they have in place to ensure that your campaigns are at the forefront of your industry? A good SEO and PPC agency should keep you up to date with industry innovations that may affect your campaigns. A proactive agency (or freelancer) ensures small problems aren’t able to escalate to the point where they impede your campaign.
What modes of reporting are available, do they have an online system that you can log on to. Will you have access to the Adwords account to view what’s happening? What information do you need to know and what information would be good to know?
Is this prospective agency experienced in your niche, direct or similar experience means that they may have a better grasp of what your trying to achieve and can bring the lessons learned from previous clients to your campaign too. What results have they achieved for others, don’t be fixated on being number 1 in Google, proof of meeting Clients financial goals should suffice!
How quickly will they respond to last minute campaigns or the need to change an account immediately? Do their terms and conditions stipulate how soon you can expect changes to be made, if not find out specifics.
8. Intellectual Property
Do you retain ownership of any content created (SEO content, Articles, Adwords accounts), although the practice is now fading out some agencies still hold on to ownership of the PPC account, meaning that if you choose to part ways further down the line you may be asked to purchase the account from the agency.
9. Management fees
How much does the service cost, does the price reflect what you get in return. Is the management fee a percentage of spend or is it a fixed management fee. Are you expected to pay your click spend up front to the agency, if so what happens if they go under.
10. Gut feeling
How have you found their sales process, have they been overly pushy, and how long does it take them to return requests for information. The sales process can give you some insight to the inner workings of the agency and the quality of service you will receive if you sign up.
For more information on Upsearch SEO and PPC management feel free to give us a call on 0161 488 2970.