How to check your ads agencies: checklist
Increasing website traffic and improving sales figures is a difficult job that requires knowledge, experience and the use of special paid tools. Services of marketing analysis, development and promotion of sites are offered by many performers. This provides an opportunity for site owners to find contractors with great deals. However, according to our statistics on the clients we work with, every fifth customer has a negative experience in communicating with contractors. In three cases out of five, customers were simply deceived.
How agencies cheat
The main reasons for cheating in the SEO promotion and marketing segment are the customer’s low level of understanding of these processes and poor control over the progress of work. To understand the procedure of SEO promotion, business owners need to have at least minimal knowledge. But the vast majority of customers don’t have the time or desire to learn the basics.
The unawareness of customers is used by performers, they make a lot of efforts in order to make the most favorable impression on customers. The contractor is always in touch, is active and sends the client reports on the work performed in a timely manner. However, the site owner has absolutely no idea what the reports are about and pays month after month in anticipation of the promised result. The amount of funds paid increases, but site traffic does not increase, sales do not grow, and search results offer users web sites of other companies.
Checklist for checking agencies
To determine the quality of the work, it is enough to use the minimum checklist:
- Conducting an audit. Before starting work, the contractor collects and analyzes information on the current state of the facility. Based on the information, he determines whether anti-crisis measures are needed or whether the site simply needs to be improved, what specific problems are to be solved, and what measures will be effective. If the contractor offers to pay for the posting of texts and the link budget at the first request, his services should be refused.
- Progress reports. An excessive number of reports, as well as their complete absence, are bad indicators. If there is too much information in the reports, most likely nothing has been done. The absence of errors according to Google Search Console analytics or the demonstration of search results from Serpstat does not mean anything. Obtaining such information does not require the involvement of qualified specialists.
- Excessive activity of the contractor or, conversely, lack of communication. If the contractor does not systematically answer calls during working hours, and in messengers you have to wait for answers for days, the contractor’s services should be abandoned. Most often, excessive activity by such «pros» manifests it self a day or two before making the next payment.
Lack of clearly specified deadlines for obtaining the result desired by the site owner. If a contractor cannot improve traffic performance or increase sales for months, most likely he is simply luring money.
- Lack of information on SEO costs. The Contractor must provide a financial statement with exact amounts or give specific answers on costs. The absence of any information indicates the banal theft of part of the budget amount.
Site owner can independently control the quality of SEO work based on two indicators:
- Site dynamics for key queries (semantic core).
- Analytics from Google Analytics by Google/Organic traffic source, showing clicks to the site based on Google search results.
Ideally, indicators should increase, but one should be aware of the “seasonality” of goods and services. SEO specialists cannot influence seasonality.
Questions for agencies
A site owner doesn’t have to know everything about SEO, otherwise they wouldn’t need a contractor. You can get information about the competence and professionalism of SEO specialists before concluding an agreement by asking a few simple questions regarding:
- analyzing the niche as a whole and competitor sites;
- approximate terms for increasing the number of visitors (based on the subject of the site);
- state of budgets for SEO (open or closed).
You should also ask for a sample monthly report.
The customer of the service has the right to ask any questions in the process of work and to demand accurate answers.
An internet marketing contractor is actually a business partner that the owner of the company entrusts with the advertising budget and information. That is why the choice of a contractor should be taken responsibly.
A good agencies: requirements while choosing
In order not to need to check the contractor with a checklist, you should carefully consider the choice of specialists. Pay attention to the following factors:
- Availability of cases of ready-made solutions. Good contractors will demonstrate not only successfully completed projects, but also ready-made solutions for various business niches.
- Approach to expertise. If the site owner prefers to work with web studios, the presence of an analyst and an account specialist, a marketer and a designer is desirable at the meeting. When contacting private contractors, you should ask about the competence of a specialist in different areas of SEO.
- Availability of licenses, certificates and awards.
- Form of reporting on the work.
The first results of SEO promotion appear after at least 3 months, so you should not expect an instant rise in sales and traffic. However, with the high quality of the contractor’s work, the growth of traffic and sales will be stable and predictable, especially if the correct strategy was initially built based on competitors and individual ways of growth.