The following questions will help you set out on the right path:
1. Have You Worked With Any Relevant Businesses In This Industry?
It is important to know this aspect of the company because they are better equipped to handle yours if they have worked for a similar company. SEO can vary as per a particular industry’s experience. Having prior exposure or first-hand experience in this field can prove detrimental towards helping your company move forward.
2. Are You Capable Of Promising Guaranteed Local SEO Results?
While it might sound enticing to have someone promise you optimal results, this is always backed by practicality or facts. Thus, to this question you should keep a lookout for honest answers since there exist no foolproof method to guaranteeing results. If they still do promise, ensure that they also extend a money-back offer to you in case of failure. Further, take steps to weed out any local SEO agency that seems suspicious of using black hat tactics to work their way ahead.
3. Which Components Of SEO Would You Suggest For Us To Outsource?
Given how diverse SEO can be, it’s not a requirement to outsource all your SEO work in its entirety. Question the prospective local SEO agency on the best aspects they are confident about in presenting positive elevation. See that you can rely on them for at least the most important SEO developing characteristics such as link building, local listings management, and content creation. If they are incapable of providing these, make sure to run in the opposite direction.
4. Which Metrics Are Of Top Priority In Terms of Analysis?
This is an ideal question to gauge their best practice as well as to check compatibility. Check if the metrics that matter are similar for both of you; if you have clashing ideas or goals, you can ascertain that they’re not a good fit for you. Irrelevant metrics that won’t serve you well to boost your standing or retain themselves, in the long run, are a waste of resources.
5. Tell Us About Your Previous Work Or Clients
The portfolio of their previous works is crucial to understanding their previously done job; this should be filled with relevant data and trusty testimonials. It would be ideal if that data is not just descriptive but a visual account of their work, including screenshots or website links.
6. What Should Be Expected In The Form Of Reports?
Having a decent idea about what to expect in terms of weekly or monthly reports would allow you to get your work to set flight. Communication is essential; they should provide you with an extensive and detailed report with a talk-through for better understanding.
7. Which Component Would Still Be Under The Purview Of Our In-house Team
Here, you should hear reassurance from them about their capacity to overtake the majority of the SEO workload; however, note that you are not turning your back on your work and are always in the loop. To ensure this, it is ideal to take up some aspect of the work onto oneself. For example, content development can include the writing of new content or even repurposing previously written content. Thus, any easy partnership of work synchronisation can be established along with creating quality work together.
8. What Would Be Your Strategy To Select High Ranking Keywords For Our Brand?
While there is no definite correct answer to this question, it is ideal that you pay heed to the agency’s reasoning for the keywords it presents. This includes their focus on relevance, searcher intent, traffic volumes, and competition levels as a vital consideration for selecting keywords.
9. By Which Time Should We Expect To Start Seeing Improvements Or Results?
This is a situational question wherein many aspects need to be considered, including your company’s establishment period and previous performance. Again, here one must look for an honest answer; if the agency is promising anything below six months, it is grounds for suspicion unless you already are a top-ranking company.
10. What Is Your Take On The Present Change Of Climate In The Local SEO World?
SEO is a dynamic field that one needs to keep up with to make sense of and retain their place at the top. Thus, it is essential that the local SEO agency you are considering has a firm foot on the ground about what it is, what to expect, how to keep learning, and keeping up with the forever changing trends. Further, their grounds for evaluating future opportunities is also vital. Make sure that they are updated with the recent changes occurring in the field, ask them to explain it to you briefly if required.
11. Are You Equipped To Handle Complex Google My Business (GMB), Yelp, Apple Maps and Other Listing Issues?
This ensures that you are educated on managing the local listings and citations for businesses akin to yours. Check to see if they are using any of these tools, such as Google and Apple Maps, Yelp, Thumbtack, HomeAdvisor, or any other similar platform. Gauge their understanding and prowess to handle these tools to the best of their capacity and per the optimal function provided by the respective platform. Also, learn about their method to deal with catching inaccuracies and fixing criteria.
12. Will You Also Be Providing Review, Monitoring And Response Services As Part Of The Service Being Offered And How Would That Work?
Reviews are highly influential and essentially the life source of a local company; these are the key to conversion and affect one’s local search rankings and visibility. Hence, make certain that they take care and are capable of keeping track of all the reviews with the help of a suitable platform and that they bring any persisting negative reviews to your notice to decide the proper way to proceed with it. If the local agency responds to these independently, you should immediately point them towards the exit since that’s not their call.
The following were a compilation of questions that might educate and inform you about the prospective route to take when considering hiring a local SEO agency.