DIY or outsourcing – SEO agencies, freelancers or in-house experts?

Search engine optimisation can bring frustration to start-ups, small businesses and even big companies. Who should take responsibility? Who should perform the actions? Or is it worth doing it all yourself?

One thing is clear: Leading companies have recently realised that classic advertising no-longer interests anyone. Those whose websites are found organically, however, are securing very valuable traffic from potential customers who don’t need to be told what they want. This is where SEO, search engine optimisation, comes into play.

In this SEO Talk you’ll discover how SEO can work in your company and how you can tailor the right strategy. Our guests are: Nick Wilsdon, Dawn Anderson, Eoghan Henn, Jon Myers and Natalie Mott.


Nick Wildson

Dawn Anderson

Eoghan Henn

Jon Myers

Natalie Mott

In the following 7 videos, our experts discuss the advantages and disadvantages of agencies and freelancers and why, end when, you should consider in-house SEO.

Overview


What is the difference between SEO and other digital marketing channels?

SEO is different. SEO requires explanation. SEO takes time. In contrast to other channels, whose performance can often be measured immediately, search engine optimisation success is a gradual process. The payback, however, can be big because the vast majority of clicks go to organic results. One study we performed in the German market showed that 93% of clicks fall to organic search results rather than to paid search results.

The question isn’t whether you should start with SEO rather, when and how?

In order to optimize successfully one must first know what the objective is. What do you want to achieve with SEO? Is SEO really the right channel for your business? What differentiates SEO from other online-marketing practices?

Nick suggests that one of the big differences is the breadth of knowledge and specialisations required. From link building to content marketing and technical audits, it’s more complex than other digital marketing channels..

Choosing the right SEO partner

Lack of ‘buy-in’, hidden links and incomplete knowledge; SEO isn’t a regulated practice and the absent quality standards makes the choice of a partner very problematic. In addition it’s difficult to assess a complex market where every SEO agency appears to be ‘the best.’

How do you take the reigns and find the right SEO partner for your company? Read-on to find out.

Choosing the right SEO partner: SEO agencies

Even in-house SEO teams don’t do everything by themselves and often bring in the required know-how through outside sources.

With experience from many sectors and projects, the range of services offered by Agencies is exceptionally broad. For complicated jobs that you can’t cover with in-house skills, agencies are the best choice.

Choosing the right SEO partner: Freelancers

Natalie tells us that, in her experience, the level of ‘investment’ and buy-in from freelancers can be incredibly high.

Freelancers are a valuable resource when it comes to project-based SEO work. Typically the freelancer can get very close to the company processes and products which makes them excellent for small companies.

Choosing the right SEO partner: In-house SEO team

In-house teams can be very agile, says Dawn.

The obvious advantage of an in-house SEO expert, or team, is deep integration into a business which results in a better understanding of the company’s goals.

For decision-makers, the combined complexity of search engine optimisation and the assessment of service providers requires a good standard of evaluation skill. It is imperative that these skills are grown before buying-in any SEO know-how.

How can one evaluate the quality of an SEO service provider?

What do quality marks, trust seals and awards mean? How useful are recommendations? To make choosing an SEO partner easier, we asked our guests what criteria they would use to assess the quality of an external partner.

The decision to choose a partner needs to be considered carefully. Our experts share criteria that helps to decide between good and bad SEO partners.

When working with an agency or freelancer, what should you watch out for?

In short, good work starts with a situation analysis and the agreement of targets, both in in terms of work-levels and the goals that need to be reached.

What does a productive relationship between customer and external SEO expert look like?

Classic failures and horror stories

SEO can hurt and no-one knows that better than SEO experts that have long-term experience in the business. We were interested in hearing exactly the stories that our guests don’t tell anyone else.

If worst comes to worst: SEO-Horror-Stories from the horses mouth!

SEO has found its place in the marketing-mix. The more complex a company, the more complex the SEO strategy. What’s clear for all strategies, however, is that it always requires someone in-house that can oversee the project and ensure that it fits with company products, processes and targets, even after you’ve found the right partner. If you don’t know anything, you’ll believe everything!


Behind the scenes

When we run the SEO Talk at our headquarters we create a SEO melting-pot with experts coming in from all over Europe. This is what it looks like…

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