An increasing number of businesses are investing in their online presence. Even if they are a brick-and-mortar business, the online appearance is a must for any business to thrive in today’s world. One of the main reasons for investing in your SEO and online marketing is the number of searches people do for any product or service has steadily increased over the past decade. If you avoid investing in SEO and other online channels people will have trouble finding your business. Making your business show up at the top of search engines like google is possible through high quality SEO consulting services for deploying SEO techniques on your site.
Many companies offer SEO consulting services but the sad truth is that not many deliver. SEO has become more complex over the years and that trend will continue for the foreseeable future.
Professional SEO services on the market vary in pricing and SEO elements offered within those packages. Moreover, you can get custom SEO packages too depending on your SEO goals for your business. When you decide to consider SEO consulting services, your first and foremost homework will be to look closely at the needs of your business and decide on an SEO goal that you wish to achieve through the consulting service.
In this article, we take a closer look at what SEO consulting services are and what main features should be included in these consulting services. Before we dive into the delicacies of SEO consulting services, let’s have a quick refresher of what SEO actually is. This will revise the basics for beginners in the SEO world.
SEO – The Basics Revised
The process of optimizing the search engine rankings of your business for increasing traffic is known as Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Simply put, SEO is an ongoing process to rank your site higher in different search queries of Google by deploying various techniques.
Suppose you own a home service business and want people searching for different home services in your locality to see your website first or in the top five search results. This is possible through a robust SEO campaign. These campaigns fall under the umbrella of SEO consulting services.
Now that you have had the basics revised for SEO, let’s go through the essential features of SEO consulting services.
Essential Features of SEO Consulting Services
These consist of a number of deliverables, from the analysis of your already existing website to the assessment of your technical SEO.
The essential features of SEO consulting services include the following.
Even if your business is not using SEO in any form, an audit of your site and related platforms for SEO is vital for understanding the needs of your SEO.
The SEO audit generally consists of:
- Overall performance reporting of your website with regards to SEO and determining an SEO strategy based on that report.
- The identification of factors that are both on-page and off-page for search position of your website in Google ranking.
- Based on the audit factors above, a thorough SEO audit report is prepared. It includes a competitive scorecard, keyword reports, broken links report, and a future SEO strategy based on these reports.
A robust SEO audit goes through the following elements:
- Page titles and URLs
- Keyword mapping
- Core web vitals errors
- Website speed
- Duplicate content
- Keyword rankings
- Structure of internal links
- Optimization of images
- Rates of website conversion
- Redirected or broken links
- Backlink analysis
- Competitor analysis
Local SEO Audit
Local SEO is a subset and therefore a part of traditional SEO. It looks at the SEO requirements in local terms. This location and area-based SEO falls under the local SEO. It can be done for multiple locations as well.
Since local searches have increased in the previous years, a local SEO is the main ingredient of a successful SEO campaign. Without local SEO, the SEO deployed will be tasteless. This is the reason for the inclusion of local SEO audit in SEO consulting services.
The audit of local SEO will include an analysis of your website with regards to its appearance in local search results. Your Google My Business page will be put to test and after considering local keywords, a robust report for improving the local SEO will be presented.
Every business will have competitors. This stands true for SEO-related competition too. Therefore, to outsmart and outdo your competitors, analysis of their keywords, ranking, and approach to SEO is a vital element of SEO consulting services.
The competitor analysis consists of the following elements as far as SEO consulting services are concerned.
- Identification of your online and offline competitors
- Studying SEO approach of online competitors
- Analyze the market share of competitors to approach a like for like competitor SEO strategy. You don’t want to tangle with multinationals if you are a local business having the same industry.
- Studying competitors search rankings
- Analyzing the content of the competitors and any backlinks too.
After these elements are studied and understood in great detail, a robust performance report is generated for future SEO planning for outdoing the ranking of your competition. Remember, if your business operates in a certain location or area studying and outdoing the local competitors will be the right thing to do. While if you are a global enterprise, you will be competing with both local and international competitors, therefore a mixed SEO study and thereby strategy will be required.
The keywords are those words in SEO that are targeted during the search results. They are usually the words you expect your potential searchers to type in for your product or services and also consist of words pertinent to your overall business. Keywords directly become the part of your content, and as they say content is king. Therefore, researching the best possible keywords for your business and the products or services is the hallmark of a good SEO consultancy.
Your consultant will look to underline the following factors while researching and preparing the keywords for SEO:
- Search volume of the keywords i.e how often will a searcher use the keywords.
- The competition surrounding those keywords i.e. the level of difficulty you will face in ranking those keywords for search results.
- The value-for-money of each keyword is also known as cost-per-click (CPC) of the keyword i.e. how much potential financial offering lies within a keyword.
Some SEO consultants use Artificial Intelligence based content writing modules to research for keywords. They provide the best keywords extracted through an algorithm. However, these SEO consultants charge you on the higher side for AI-based software as they save a lot of time and effort in addition to providing the best possible keywords.
Analysis of Your Website’s Usability
Usability of a website refers to the ease with which people can surf your website. The mathematics is simple, the more user-friendly your website is, the more time people will spend surfing your website. However, if the search engine deems your website to be difficult in providing a good user experience, it will lower your rankings. This will put a negative impact on the user of your website and also the SEO ranking.
A good affordable SEO consultancy service provides an in-depth analysis of your website’s user-friendliness and proposes strategies to improve the usability of your website. Moreover, a responsive design is suggested for making the website accessible to the users of mobile devices. Google’s mobile-first index displays mobile-optimized content higher than the website that is not responsive.
Overall SEO Performance Report
In addition to individual SEO reports related to each element discussed above, an overall SEO performance report is generated keeping in mind the weightage assigned to each element. This report includes all the findings, their impact on SEO, and future recommendations to improve SEO-related issues. You can discuss these insights with your SEO consultant and reach a mutual solution aligned with your business goals.
The Final Word
SEO is the lifeline of any business, be it online or offline with a website. The rankings of your site depend upon a number of SEO-related factors and SEO consulting services are recommended to remedy these factors. Managed SEO services consist of a wide range of elements. These include SEO audit, local SEO audit, keyword research for your business, competitor analysis, analysis of the usability of your website, and finally a robust SEO performance report based on these elements.
Before you set out to engage an SEO consulting service provider, take a thorough look at their SEO consultancy packages. If the package does not include any of the above elements especially the performance reporting, it is not the best package. The reason is straightforward; a good SEO consultant will definitely go the extra mile and show their findings in the form of a robust performance report. You need to closely study the report and analyze it for creating a future strategy for your SEO. This way you can also measure the output by the SEO consultant and make your SEO investment worth every penny!