Hiring An SEO Consultant In Portland? Ask These Questions First
If you’re planning to hire an SEO specialist, then you certainly have a great deal of choice available to you. In fact, Portland being the largest city in Oregon, it’s safe to say that you’ll find dozens of highly skilled SEO experts in the area – with hundreds more all eager to win your business. With this in mind, it can often be difficult to know which search engine optimization company to hire.
In this guide, we’re going to share several questions you should ask your potential local professional SEO consultant, so you’ll be able to get some indication of their skill level, as well as decide whether they’re a good fit for your business – so let’s begin.
Question 1 – How will you boost my search rankings?
One of the most important questions to ask your consultant is what they’re actually going to do when it comes to improving your rankings. There’s no denying that each SEO firm is likely to have their own ‘secret sauce’ approach, so while they may not detail the precise steps they’ll take with your website until they’ve had time to perform in-depth research, they’ll certainly be able to share the primary methods they employ.
In general, you should expect to see a few on-page optimization tactics, combined with a hefty amount of time and effort spent on improving your off-page optimization. This could involve improving your social media presence, performing outreach campaigns, and even creating ‘link bait’ content that will earn a steady supply of backlinks for years to come.
Regardless of the methods used by your SEO consultant and local web design professional, it’s vital to ensure they stick to ‘white hat’ techniques – without engaging in the shadier ‘black hat’ strategies that may work in the short-term, but can also subject your website to damaging penalties that can destroy your rankings overnight.
Question 2 – Can you guarantee a number one ranking?
While the guarantee of a number one ranking may sound enticing, it’s actually a huge red flag that you’re dealing with someone who may not be telling you the whole truth. In general, it’s impossible to guarantee a number one ranking, because even the most highly skilled SEO pro consultant doesn’t have control over the search engine rankings entirely.
Of course, it’s always possible for a consultant to highlight their best success stories – and they could even share some of the number one rankings they’ve achieved in the past. But if they give you a 100% promise that you’ll win the top spot, then it’s best to run a mile.
Question 3 – How will we communicate?
Knowing how you’ll stay in touch is very important – because you don’t want the hassle of chasing your consultant for updates. Even worse, you may be left in the dark for weeks or months at a time, with no idea what’s going on behind the scenes.
With this in mind, it’s wise to set up a formal communication agreement before you sign on the dotted line. Regardless of whether you want email updates, phone calls, or even Skype sessions, it’s a smart decision to agree on this beforehand, so you know exactly what to expect while you’re working together.
Question 4 – Are you familiar with local SEO?
If you run any kind of local business, then one of the things to focus on will be ‘local SEO’ – which simply refers to the improvement of your search visibility when someone searches for smaller local company’s.
For small local businesses and service providers, search engine optimization can be a fantastic investment simply because so many people use the internet to find local services.
By ensuring your SEO expert is familiar with SEO tactics, you can be sure that you’ll experience these benefits – and another great perk is that SEO tends to be quicker and more effective, giving you a quick return on your investment.
Question 5 – Do you follow the Google Webmaster guidelines?
The Google Webmaster guidelines should be considered the holy grail by any experienced SEO expert, simply because it’s not worth risking the penalty that occurs when you violate them.
Fortunately, most professionals are well aware of these guidelines, and they certainly won’t use ‘black hat’ optimization tactics that are likely to cause you trouble in the long run. Ultimately, it’s wise to ask your consultant about these guidelines and discover their opinion on the matter. Of course, if they haven’t even heard of them, then it goes without saying that you should find someone else to trust with your website!
Overall, it’s safe to say that you’ll find a wide range of potential SEO professional and web designers in Portland – but it’s vital to do your research before you trust anyone with your SEO campaign. Fortunately, if you keep these questions in mind, and insist on comprehensive answers to each one, you’ll have a much better chance of narrowing down the candidates and ultimately picking an search engine consultant you can trust.