SEO: Setting Realistic Expectations
There are clearly numerous ways to generate traffic for a website. Our experience with Search Engine Optimization has proved time and again that there is a very high Return On Investment for SEO. However, it is not a magic bullet and takes time to develop. Often, business owners are talked into low-quality SEO campaigns with promises for fast returns using methods that haven’t been effective for several years. The result is that potential clients are turned off to the entire concept of legitimate SEO due to promises that can’t be kept and unrealistic expectations.
Consorte is much more transparent with our clients than many “SEO” firms. We’re up front with you about what to expect, and we prefer to do some preliminary research to map out projections and ROI before engaging in an ongoing SEO campaign. Below are some common things to expect when you work with a respectable SEO company like Consorte Marketing:
- Where PPC advertising provides immediate results, SEO is an investment. You are investing now to build residual traffic that over time becomes extremely cost effective.
- Although Google and Bing are now much faster at indexing new pages of a website, there is still an incubation period for SEO while the site is aged by building quality links and content, and promoting social sharing over time. Often this can take anywhere from 6 to 24 months depending on how aggressive our marketing is, and how competitive your industry is. We prefer to perform a Keyword Discovery that contains a significant amount of competitive research prior to engaging in a monthly campaign. This gives us a clearer picture of expectations.
- When you have a brand new website, or a website that has few inbound links or thin content, it will take time to age the domain in order to gain rank for popular keywords, so certain parts of our strategy (e.g. link-building) will be throttled down in the early stages as they should grow naturally over time. Those resources (i.e. time) will be invested in other areas (e.g. content development and strategy).
- We typically start with a long-tail approach, targeting less competitive yet highly relevant keywords as quick wins. Generally these hover around 3-word phrases and serve as the foundation for any comprehensive SEO strategy. Over time we will focus more attention on competitive keywords including two-word phrases and possibly single words depending on the level of competition.
- This will be a process. While we will do everything within our control to expedite growth, it may take many months to start noticing results, and longer for major results. Google changes their algorithm often, giving more or less weight to different kinds of content, links and other signals used to determine rank. We must anticipate and accommodate for these changes in order to continue growth. Sometimes it takes time for us and other leaders in the SEO industry to reverse-engineer these changes, and then to develop new strategies for success.
- Your responsiveness as our client will have a direct impact on our rate of growth. There will be times when we need to consult with you about ideas, or to get approval for projects that may have an effect on your brand. For example, we may design an infographic to distribute as part of our link-building strategy, or we may want to make claims about your product or services in a blog post that need to be confirmed. The faster you give us answers, the faster we can give you results.
- A great deal of SEO is technical in nature. This might require a developer you are already working with to make changes to the website. Their ability to execute website upgrades for SEO that precisely match our spec will have a major influence on our ability to get results.
There are no doubt many other things to expect when engaging in an SEO campaign. It’s important to understand what you’re getting into before investing. We pride ourselves in being candid and transparent with our clients. Sometimes this means that we don’t close a deal, where a company with more aggressive sales people wins the bid. But at the end of the day it’s about delivering results and maintaining client satisfaction. We’d rather have happy, long-term clients than churning and burning unhappy clients by implanting dreams that don’t come to fruition.