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Google has published a new video titled “How to Hire an SEO.” In the video, Maile Ohye of Google Search shares Google’s perspective on search engine optimization and a recommended process for hiring a professional SEO.
Important Information About SEO
Maile kicks off the video with a few important things to understand about SEO.
- There are no magical tricks to get a website to #1
- SEOs potential is only as high as the quality of your business or website.
- SEO will take 4 months to a year to get results
I agree with her on all of these points. It’s good for an organization to understand that SEOs are not miracle workers and SEO takes time to take effect.
One distinction I would make with point #2, however, is that while generally speaking an SEO can’t get a small, new site better search rankings than bigger, established sites, it depends on how well the established sites are doing SEO. If you’re in a field where most organizations don’t optimize their websites, may not have claimed or optimized local listings, and rarely check for problems with their websites that could cause poor rankings, SEO could easily get a new, small organization ahead of bigger, established sites. This is true for churches and schools which is why SEO has so much potential for those organizations who actually do it.
Recommended Process for Hiring an SEO
Maile goes on to recommend a process for hiring an SEO:
1) Conduct a 2-way interview with your potential SEO.
This is exactly how we start our process – with a free phone consultation. In the call, we get to know you and your organization. We learn about your goals, what you’re already doing, your budget and some of the struggles you are facing. We tell you about our mission – to help you live out your mission online – our services, and the success we’ve helped our clients experience.
2) Check references
We encourage this as well
3) Ask for (and you’ll probably have to pay for) an SEO audit
For smaller organizations like most schools, churches under 1,000 in average weekly attendance, and ministries and businesses that have less than 5 employees this is probably not necessary, but for larger organizations this is important for both the organization and the SEO. The last thing either of you would want is to sign a contract for SEO services, then have your SEO surprised to discover major problems with the structure of your website, previous unethical SEO work that was done or Google penalties. These issues could cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars to fix and delay the other SEO work for weeks or months. This is why we are now requiring larger organizations to do an SEO audit before we will agree to take them on as a client.
Here’s the full video which is just under 12 minutes. I encourage you to watch it.
Overall, I think this is good advice from Google.
What do you think of the video?