Search engine optimisation can be a frustrating beast. As Google and the other search engines have advanced over the years, optimising your web site to climb the rankings has become more difficult and takes longer.
Added to that your situation is different to everyone else’s - you have a different business, different location and different web site - so there is no manual that will give you a step-by-step guide on how to make sure your web site ranks higher than your competitors. There's too many X factors - too many unknowns for a guide to be useful or accurate.
SEO is part art and part science - somethings will work in every situation, others need to be tried and tested.
As we have mentioned before, SEO is a hundred little changes to a web site. All of them need doing in order to give you the competitive advantage over your rivals and that's why we hate it when we see over providers offering search engine optimisation packages like this:
Here they have three packages, each one increasing in price, the aim being to get you to spend more money. The problem is though that for SEO to work properly, each of the items on the list need to be completed. That's regardless of whether you want to target 15, 25 or 35 keywords.
For example, their 'Starter' package does not include a 'detailed web site analysis' but without doing some research, how will you know what the SEO problems with your site are? Any SEO company who knows what they are doing will start with a full analysis of the site to see what the problems are and then create a to do list of things that need doing in order to start work on the site.
Are they doing what they say they are doing?
Another issue that we've come across recently with two separate customers is when a SEO company gladly takes their money each month but their site doesn't see any progress in the search rankings. One was a staff training company based in Kent who offers group training sessions such as 'customer service training' to medium to large organisations. The company is run by Jackie and she had been paying £50 a month to an SEO company for the last two years to help move her web site up in the search rankings for the last two years.
Each month Jackie would receive the same report, showing the 10 keywords and where they were currently ranked. The problem is that she had received the exact same report for the last two years i.e. the rankings had not changed at all.
Jackie originally approached us to build her a new web site and once completed, asked us to take over the SEO. We did and within a month she had received her first new enquiries through the web site... ever! Previously all of her work had come through referrals or networking meetings, her web site had not done anything to market her business and unfortunately this is because her previous SEO company was not actually doing anything for her.
One way to monitor this is to ask for a monthly report. This should include:
- where they site was ranked for your various keywords and where it is ranked now (so that you can see progression over time)
- how many visitors the site has had (Google Analytics is perfect for this)
- what work has been carried out recently
This should not be a problem for the company to produce because they should be keeping a record of it anyway so that they can monitor their work to identify what is and is not working.
If you need any help with your SEO, please get in touch. We are always happy to talk and answer questions, even if you are not planning on using us for your own project. No sales chat from us, just honest advice. Please get in touch by e-mail or call us on 01493 249293.
We also offer a free SEO check. Just complete the short form and we will analyse your site for you and give you an idea of what work needs doing.