We’ve all heard the expression: “Never judge a book by its cover.” But how much stock should we put in it? Sure, it’s a very good lesson to teach children about the way that we perceive other people, however, it doesn’t apply well to all aspects of life. For example, have you ever read a book with a poorly designed cover? Because the content within is almost always just as bad!
The same applies when selecting an SEO agency; when looking for a prospective agency to invest your money in, you must be ruthless. Here’s why:
The Best SEO Agencies Practise What They Preach
An SEO agency with a low-quality website is never a good sign. After all, they specialize in optimizing websites for top performance, on-page experience, and SERP results.
As such, if you come across an agency with a website that leaves much to be desired, you have every right to be suspicious.
Here are a few warning signs to look out for:
- Slow page load speed: if a prospective agency’s website is taking more than 5 seconds to load (and that’s on the higher end of the spectrum) then you should run a mile.
- Poor website copy: how good is the quality of content on their website? If it’s generic, stuffed with keywords, reads unnaturally, and is chock-a-block with far too much industry jargon, then you should abandon the search. The best SEO agencies have awesome website copy.
- Messy URL slugs: a URL slug is the latter part of a URL after the backslash (/), and if a prospective SEO agency has messy slugs all over their site, then avoid them like the plague (e.g., “www.nogoodseoagency.com/hasmessyslugs/128863??overthetop/1278#”).
- Rock bottom pricing: also, if an SEO agency has rock-bottom pricing on their website that seems far too good to be true, it is.
- Guarantees: “We guarantee X for only Y in as soon as Z,” is a roundabout way of saying: “We have no idea what we are doing and will likely let you down.”
- Very little social proof / positive reviews: if an SEO agency has no social proof and very few positive reviews then there’s likely a good reason for it. Either they are brand new to the industry and thus untested, or they are inequitable and have nothing positive to offer. Either way, it’s not your responsibility to give untested SEO agencies a chance. For example, a business in Australia might search for “SEO in Melbourne” and seek out companies with hundreds of 5-star reviews and real life case studies that stand testament to their superiority.
SEO can transform your business and there are so many statistics to support that fact, but if you skimp on your agency and hire the first one you come across absent the appropriate due-diligence, it will cost you more in the long-run.
Conclusion: When It Comes to Your Business Be Ruthlessly Judgemental
In conclusion, when it comes to the long-term success of your business you have every right to be ruthlessly judgemental with every SEO agency that you come across.
Why should you invest thousands and thousands of dollars in an agency that doesn’t quite look the part? Unless you have a very good feeling about them (including lots of irrefutable proof), we advise you look elsewhere.