As amazing as search engine optimization can be for businesses, it’s never a sure thing. In fact, 90% of your success depends on the SEO agency that you invest in. The question is: how can you be sure you hired the right company to handle your digital marketing needs?
In this article, we’re going to share seven signs that may indicate that it is time to sack off your SEO company in favor of a more capable alternative. Here’s what you should look out for…
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1. It’s been over 6 months and you have nothing to show for it
This is a tricky one as it’s not uncommon for SEO to take up to 12 months and beyond to yield a sustainable ROI – particularly in a more competitive industry. However, if it’s been over 6 months and your SEO agency has been unable to show you any progress whatsoever, then it may be worth applying some pressure and/or considering firing them.
Don’t jump the gun too soon! But they must have something to show for your time, money, and patience.
2. You’ve received manual action from Google
No SEO agency is created equal and some are more than happy to bend the rules to deliver short-term results. If you have received a manual action from Google due to spam problems, on-page guideline violations, or indeed unnatural backlinks, then you have every right to be concerned.
The fact is, no reputable SEO agency will do anything to jeopardize your business or put your website at risk. A manual action is a very good sign that it’s time to sack off your chosen SEO agency and find a trustworthy alternative.
3. They produce sub-standard / AI-generated content
If the quality of the content that your SEO agency is producing for your brand is average at best, you should have your concerns. Similarly, if they are relying on AI to produce average-quality content en-masse and charging you a premium, then you should be equally disappointed.
The best SEO agencies will create a solid content development strategy coupled with superior, people-first content to boot.
4. They are ranking you for irrelevant keywords
It’s not uncommon for low-quality agencies to focus on vague and largely irrelevant keywords in order to get fast and easy rankings. If they can show you a dozen #1 rankings, they look like heroes; however, if those keywords aren’t bringing you any more business then it’s all for show.
5. You frequently speak to different campaign managers
Do you have a dedicated campaign manager? Or are you frequently being passed from pillar to post? Sure, everyone needs a day off from time to time, however, if you don’t have a dedicated campaign manager who speaks with and reports to you at least 90% of the time, then they clearly do not value you as much as they should.
The best SEO agencies will afford each client a dedicated campaign manager who will take excellent care of you.
6. They were cheap and guaranteed results
If you signed up originally because they were so cheap that it almost felt too good to be true or because they guaranteed results (or both), then you should be cautious. There’s a good chance that you may have signed up for a lost cause.
Speak with your agency and encourage them to report on their workings. Where is your money going? Why is it so cheap? And how on earth can they guarantee results when nothing in SEO is certain?
7. They have made no improvements to your website
Unless your website was perfect to begin with (which is highly unlikely), your SEO agency should have a number of positive improvements to make in the early stages of your campaign. If, however, they haven’t had any suggestions and are simply taking your money to throw at link building and other offsite activities, then you should be wary.
Onsite SEO – and indeed technical SEO – are vastly important for the viability and long-term success of any digital marketing campaign.
Remember, SEO has the potential to revolutionise your business, but only if you are working with a capable agency. With the wrong agency, you’ll only be wasting your time and money.
In conclusion, if you have ticked off some if not all of the above, then you should seriously consider firing your SEO agency and looking for a better alternative. Only this time around, make sure you do your due diligence. For example, if looking for New York City SEO, be certain to take the time to look for an agency that has a load of positive 5* reviews, social proof, and case studies for you to review.
You don’t have to take any risks or act on faith alone. Instead, demand the very best and settle for nothing less for your business.