I have noticed of late that we are getting a large influx of business from the fallout of poor experiences with some Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). We have had this since opening last year for web design and development but to see it for SEO makes my personal beliefs on the issue more prominent. There is too much conflict of interest in Digital and not enough focus on client ROI.
What I have been noticing is that these clients are leaving is because of one of or a combination of the reasons below:
(a) They are unsatisfied for a specific or number of reasons including lack of reporting or a lack of results
(b) They have been pushed aside because a shinier ‘more attractive’ client has come along
(c) There was a major f#@kup along the way that knocked the relationship and rankings off course
Now behind the scenes I know that:
(a) is caused by poor management by companies not focused on client results, but focused on improving their cash-flow by doing less work once the client is signed
(b) is usually caused by a similar focus when a client is sold a dream smooth experience and then doesn’t hear from the provider until the cheques start bouncing. I also know that a lot of companies are quite happy to take on competitors from the same industry. I don’t know how that works if the service provider is ethical and they don’t disclose or discuss that with client’s number one competitor – doesn’t that seem like a poor deal for both clients involved?
(c) is likely to be caused by service providers using outdated methods for SEO including keyword cramming, poor content, meta stuffing and other spammy second rate techniques that get penalised heavily by Google when they introduce a menagerie of algorithm changes such as Penguin, Panda and the community labeled Pigeon.
These are usually attributed to companies outsourcing their work offshore to those without sound knowledge of current best practice SEO.
Now I might sound like I am having a diggy at these companies – truthfully, I am not. They have their reasons and place, I am sure. Don’t worry – this is all not just about getting some sponsored linx.
I am merely giving business owners and marketing managers a tip for what to look for in a viable SEO agency and a chance to give other agencies some insight into how we flip the expectations and experiences our clients have had previously.
(a) We make it very clear from the outset what frequency we will be doing reports to PROVE the results we have gotten for clients and we stick to those dates. We often offer other services “SEM” agencies don’t offer or certainly don’t have expertise in including Conversion Rate Optimisation, Social Media Marketing and improving the websites design with our design and development services to further enhance the value of our SEO services.
(b) We only ever take on one SEO client from one industry during one contracted time period and we don’t shelve clients if their competitor from high street shows up wanting our services. We are an honourable client result focused agency and we honour our commitments to clients. As above, we communicate regularly with clients and answer their questions because the only stupid questions clients have are the ones unasked and therefore unanswered.
(c) Our new SEO Director and Partner at Studio Culture, David Bobis, not only has proven experience in SEO in a modern context, he comes from a solid background in communications, advertising copywriting and marketing work both here and abroad – thus we emphasise more on quality of work that is engaging and shareable, rather than keyword stuffing and blackhat SEO.
The targeted traffic that come to the site actually ‘engage with the page’ because of the way it has been written. David manages a staff of 3 dedicated to SEO onshore and in our Brisbane office who have strong backgrounds in design, SEO and content creation. 25% of their hours at Studio Culture are spent on ensuring they are on top of the SEO game and on top of Google algorithm changes.
Joe Fox is Studio Culture’s Business and Development Director.