Your SEO company is probably a major contributor in generating leads for your business. If your SEO company disappeared what would you do? The business environment in 2012 has been quite volatile and 2013 looks like it will be the same or perhaps worse. This means that a lot of SEO companies, like other businesses, are struggling to survive.
As in any major market, in Atlanta, there are a handful of truly competent SEO companies. The past few months we have noticed many SEO companies are using PPC advertising to solicit new business. This may be a signal that these companies are bleeding financially and having to go beyond their own skill (SEO) to stay afloat. My personal belief is that any SEO company that uses PPC to augment for their top organic rankings is screaming that they are in dire straits. This should be a red flag for their clients. Again, what would you do if your SEO company went out of business?
Does a good and stable SEO company REALLY need to use PPC advertising for their most important terms? If they are using PPC to solicit SEO clients you need to ask “why?”. Do they know how to get business or not? Are they desperate?
Finding Security in the SEO World
Evaluate Your SEO Company
Because you run a business you can take a look at a business and make a read on their health. We are in an economy where finding new business is not always easy, retaining clients can be tough and expenses need to be held to a minimum. If your SEO company is in high rent office space, has a bloated and overpaid staff, and spends too much on frivolous expenditures they are ripe for failure. In this day and age a very conservative structure means lean and in control, whereas living the high life conveys more risk than success. How do you see your SEO company?
Who Are Their Clients?
As a business owner you understand the critical nature of both cash flow and profit. If your SEO company has a few large companies that represent a significant part of their monthly income they could be devastated if the average age of their receivables on their large accounts goes from 17 days to 90 days. What is the health of their client base? You might be interested in knowing the average days of their receivables. How much do you know about their financial stability?
Among banks, internet marketing agencies and web design companies are considered high risk businesses. Did you know that the SEO, website design and internet marketing industry has a particularly high rate of non-pay and charge backs? It’s a fact and THE reason that most companies in this industry have only PayPal to process credit cards. If your SEO company cannot accept credit card payments they may be unable to prove financial stability to their bank or a credit card processor.
Where Are You In The Pecking Order?
If you are a B2B or industrial company you can appreciate the value of your national accounts and major accounts. Most companies dedicate their best people and strongest resources to supporting their “bread-and-butter” accounts.
So what happens during financial hardships? A business in decline begins to layoff people and cut expenses, right? This means that whatever personnel or material resources that remain are typically applied in majority to support the major accounts (big money). If your SEO company is struggling you need to think about where your company sits in the priority scheduling. Is your company going to be silently ignored as your SEO company struggles to stay afloat? Are you just a monthly payment or a valued client?
Develop A Backup SEO Company
In uncertain times you may need to develop alternative sources for everything – from professional services to the raw or finished products you need. When it comes to SEO services it is much easier to bring on a back-up vendor and quietly engage their services. If you choose a good alternate supplier, the worst thing that can happen is your online marketing results improve. If your primary SEO company should falter you can make a near seamless conversion and maintain your progress in developing a stronger search engine presence.
In all honesty, I’m sharing with you what I have learned from over 30 years of business experience. When times are good it’s easy to laugh, go out for drinks and enjoy your business. When times get tough you need to be far more diligent in protecting your business. This means knowing that the vendors that support your business are stable and committed to providing you a high level of service – exactly what you need yo make it through these tough times. So how well do you know your present SEO provider?