Nowadays, the vast majority of businesses understand that search engine optimization is essential. However, recognizing the importance of SEO and local SEO doesn’t make it any easier for many companies to put in the necessary time and resources while remaining patient when seeing any results. While some businesses choose to do search engine optimization on their own, others consider outsourcing SEO.
If you’ve ever tried to do search engine optimization on your own, chances are you understand why many businesses consider outsourcing. SEO is a daunting task in many business owners’ eyes, particularly those who possess no prior experience with SEO. Without any experience, you don’t know where to start, what is broken, what to fix, or even how to fix it. LOCALSYNC has developed an online scan tool that delivers a detailed report on what is broken with your online business and how to fix it. Want to find out what is broken? Scan your business for free and find out with the scan tool.
LOCALSYNC has also developed a series of online marketing tools to help businesses manage the online business performance, all in one place. This enables locally-focused businesses to manage local SEO elements in a cost-effective way, enabling the remaining marketing budget to be allocated to PPC campaigns or other marketing.
Even with these tools, you will probably need to outsource some aspect of SEO, and there are things to consider before outsourcing SEO.
Things to Consider Before Outsourcing SEO
If you’re thinking about outsourcing SEO rather than having in-house employees run your SEO campaign, here are a few things that you will need to consider before you decide to outsource SEO.
1. What Does it Cost?
One of the main factors that impact a company’s decision to outsource SEO is cost. Not only do most businesses have a budget when it comes to SEO, but they also want to get a good value for the amount of money they’re spending. When done correctly, search engine optimization is not cheap. Businesses should only use white hat SEO techniques and steer clear of any black hat techniques. While black hat techniques may be cheaper and can potentially yield good results initially, these techniques will harm your business in the long-run.
For businesses that can afford to spend $3,000 every month for quality SEO services, the question of whether to outsource SEO is relatively simple. However, not all businesses have the finances to decide to spend thousands of dollars on SEO every year without a second thought.
If outsourcing SEO is a complex investment decision for your business, you should consider how much it would cost you to perform SEO in-house. You can gauge this by predicting how many man-hours it would take for your employees to complete any tasks related to SEO. It would be best if you also considered the learning curve. As you can probably imagine, the learning curve for SEO tends to be very significant. We have found that inexpensive, easy-to-use SEO tools pay for themselves many times over by shortening the time it takes to get SEO tasks completed.
Businesses with minimal SEO needs or a very SEO-savvy team may be able to afford to do SEO in-house. However, many companies would benefit from outsourcing SEO when it comes to value. Businesses tend to enjoy more value per dollar when outsourcing SEO or using SEO productivity tools.
2. What Do You need from SEO?
Another factor you should consider is the nature of your company’s SEO needs. Make a list of all the aspects of SEO with which your business needs. Consider whether you want to outsource SEO entirely or just a particular element. If you only need help with a single part of SEO, it may be a better use of your resources and time to do SEO in-house using marketing tools. For example, it is relatively easy to synchronize all of your local listings using the LOCALSYNC Listing Builder in the Local Business Online Toolkit.
It may take a bit of your employee’s time, but that employee can easily manage all of your business listings and publish content to the local directory network, enhancing local SEO performance and getting customers through your front door. The same goes for publishing social media posts using LOCALSYNC’s Social Marketing tool or running small Google Ad campaigns with LOCALSYNC’s automated platform.
However, if the aspect of SEO you need help with is complex, like altering technical portions of your website or redesigning your website for SEO, you should probably still consider outsourcing SEO.
If you need help with all or many aspects of SEO, you should choose a company that offers SEO management coupled with a complete digital marketing package. Ideally, the provider should offer services like local SEO, content creation, website development, keyword research, technical SEO, and on-page SEO. The provider should also offer a series of tools to help businesses manage portions of their SEO in conjunction with the efforts of the provider. We have found that when the business and digital marketing firms work together on the entire marketing effort, the results are much better.
If you decide to outsource a single aspect of SEO, be sure that the provider you select is willing to work with you. SEO management should be performed seamlessly, so communication between you and the company is essential. SEO is incredibly complex, and it needs to be done correctly.
Finally, it would help if you considered flexibility when it comes to outsourcing SEO. Many businesses have SEO needs that fluctuate significantly from year to year or even from month to month. In most cases, companies that need flexibility are better off outsourcing SEO. This is because it’s easier to scale down or up the SEO services you’re receiving from a third party. If you do SEO in-house, it’s not easy to hire and fire employees whenever you need to scale up or scale down search engine optimization.
However, you should also keep in mind that many SEO providers have their clients enter a contract for their outsourced marketing services. Before you sign a contract, you should review the service contract and negotiate amendments carefully. Be entirely sure about which type of services you’re getting, the frequency, and the process of cancellation. That way, you will know whether the provider suits your company’s need for flexibility when it comes to SEO management.
Outsourcing SEO – Final Thoughts
For many businesses, outsourcing SEO is a big decision that should not be taken lightly. This is particularly true for companies seeking to outsource all of their SEO and not just a few SEO aspects.
At LOCALSYNC, we have taken a blended approach, offering toolkits to help businesses manage their digital marketing (DIY – do it yourself), helping in some areas (DIWM – do it with me), and (DIFM – do it for me).
We believe that to compete, businesses need to stretch their budget to get the maximum value per marketing dollar. With advances in AI, marketing tools, digital information management, online learning, and website development tools (like WordPress), in-house staff can create a strong digital marketing base for a lower price point. As more marketing budget becomes available, outsourcing your CMO and Digital Marketing Team with the LOCALSYNC Digital Marketing Partner may make more sense.
One thing to remember is that SEO is not the only marketing channel that should be employed to get more customers through the front door. Businesses need a complete digital marketing strategy that encompasses SEO, content, content delivery, digital advertising, local content marketing, off-site marketing, offline marketing, local SEO, website development, and technical support.
Have questions? Shoot us an email to start the conversation.