Should You Hire An SEO Agency? Here’s What They Can Do!

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Introduction

No one can deny how many things have changed, especially since the internet came into existence. This technological advancement alters how people transmit and receive information. People today often use their smartphones and other devices to find answers to their questions or concerns, rather than reading newspapers and magazines to keep up with the latest trends and news. They only need to type the words, phrases, or sentences about what they want to know, and search engines like Google will generate several web pages related to their inquiry on search engine results pages (SERPs). 

Google and other search engines can showcase relevant search results with the help of search engine optimisation (SEO). SEO is an integral part of digital marketing, which is the process of improving the presence of a website so that it will rank number one on the search engine results page. Search engines use SEO in their algorithms to improve the relevance of their search results to help users find what they are looking for as quickly as possible.

The same goes for businesses. They also implement SEO in their digital marketing strategy to increase the relevance of their website’s content, drive potential customers to their website, and encourage them to make a conversion.  

Since SEO is ever-evolving, most businesses prefer to rely on experts. They either form an in-house SEO team or outsource from an SEO agency. If you are contemplating which one you should do to resolve your SEO needs, let us first explain what an SEO agency is.

What Is An SEO Agency?

An SEO agency is a business that practises SEO and implements SEO strategies on behalf of clients. They help their clients to create compelling content to promote products or services on their website and other relevant platforms to stay ahead of the competition, as well as increase traffic, leads, and conversions. 

All of these are possible with the help of various professionals working in an SEO agency. The collaboration of their expertise help satisfy a client or business’s SEO needs. 

Part I: Understanding An SEO Agency

Understanding who and what an SEO agency is, including what they can perform, is the key to working successfully with them. Grasp the SEO services offered by an SEO agency to have a complete understanding of them. Below are the common types of SEO services they offer to their clients. 

The Different Types Of SEO Services 

Alt Text: 9 Different Types Of SEO Services

File Name: 9-Different-Types-Of-SEO-Services.PNG

1. Keyword Research

As the name suggests, keyword research is about researching keywords that people are searching for online. These are words, phrases, or sentences that people type on a search bar to learn something related to the concerned topics. 

An SEO agency will group the researched keywords into categories so SEO writers can create relevant content to capture the target audience’s attention. An SEO agency will conduct keyword research by using various tools such as:

2. On-Page SEO

On-page SEO is optimising a website’s web pages so they will attract more potential customers, drive traffic, generate leads, and earn conversions. Due to the nature of the work of on-page SEO, some people prefer calling it on-site SEO since it involves optimising the elements on the platform to help a website rank higher on SERPs. 

LEARN MORE: Your Beginner’s Ultimate On-Page SEO Guide For 2022

When implementing on-page SEO, an SEO agency will optimise the following elements:

  • Content quality
  • Meta tags
  • URL
  • Headings
  • Keyword usage
  • Image name and file size

3. Off-Page SEO

For off-page SEO, the optimisation process is done outside a client or business’s website.  To attract the attention of potential customers and drive traffic, an SEO agency or anyone implementing off-page SEO will post various content on other websites to increase brand exposure and awareness. 

Link building and social media are two effective techniques of off-page SEO. The former involves acquiring backlinks from credible websites. This can be done by posting quality content that most people will consider using as a reference and include links to the client’s website.

ALSO READ: 8 Quick Tips For SEO Backlinking

The latter off-page SEO technique is social media, which involves posting content, from videos to blog articles on social media platforms. Doing so will help reach out to the target audience, and brands can showcase a different side of themselves. 

4. Technical SEO

Technical SEO is another example of SEO services in Singapore, which is related to website and server optimisation. Improving these complex aspects help search engine bots crawl for relevant content before indexing the web pages and showing on SERPs based on search inquiry. 

The following are what an SEO agency considers when implementing technical SEO:

  • Web page loading speed
  • Acquiring SSL certificate
  • Removing or replacing faulty links
  • Delete duplicate content

5. International SEO

An SEO agency will implement international SEO, also known as global SEO if you want to expand your customer base on a global scale. It is a method of optimising a website and its content for other countries to improve international presence so that a client or business can attract more potential customers worldwide and earn more sales.

DISCOVER: Local and Global SEO: What’s The Difference?

6. Local SEO

Before any business gains an international presence, local customers should know them first. To raise local brand awareness, local SEO is the best SEO strategy a company in Singapore can do, which is a method that focuses on a particular country. 

Many local businesses implement this method to help them attract local customers’ attention and increase the local search visibility of their websites. For example, if you own a pizza place in Singapore, your website will most likely appear on SERPs when people search for these keywords online. 

ALSO READ: The Importance of Local SEO for Small Businesses

Including a specific place right before or after keywords help localised content. Visual Objects’ report stated that 76% of local consumers would look up the company they have in mind online before considering visiting its brick-and-mortar location in person. 

For example, in this image, the user is looking for a ‘cake shop in Singapore’, and Google generates the web pages that contain these keywords despite the arrangements in the search results. The search engine also includes a list of nearby cake shops with a map so the user can determine the nearest one to their current location and how to get there.

7. E-Commerce SEO

E-commerce SEO is a strategy implemented by an SEO agency to increase the visibility of an e-commerce website on SERPs. If done correctly, people searching for a particular product that the said e-commerce website sells will most likely appear on SERPs and acquire more traffic. 

Below are some of the best e-commerce SEO strategies an SEO agency performs to increase website traffic:

  • Create quality content on each product page
  • Allow customers to leave feedback on their purchases
  • Simplify the elements and structures of an e-commerce website to ease the customers’ purchase journey
  • Start a blog page to share helpful information, such as tips

DISCOVER: 10 E-Commerce SEO Best Practices To Increase Traffic In 2022 [With Free Checklist]

8. Video SEO

Another SEO service that SEO vendors offer is video SEO. Given 82% of website traffic comes from online video streaming platforms and downloads, it is not surprising that many businesses are showcasing their products or services via online videos. 

Retrieved this image of the most popular video content type  from Statista 2022

Statista has found that online videos are 92.7% more popular online formats for sharing educational content to product reviews worldwide. Not all online videos, however, are popular, only the optimised ones. Many people prefer to watch something brief but contain valuable information. Below are other things that you can do to optimise your video content:

  • Choose an ideal video hosting platform
  • Create a video transcript
  • Make an engaging thumbnail
  • Insert keywords in video titles and descriptions

LEARN MORE: 4 Ways To Optimise Your Video Content 

9. SEO Copywriting

SEO copywriting is no different from copywriting since the purpose remains the same: to write promotional materials. The only difference between the two is that SEO copywriting has a distinct persuasive approach and considers SEO. Web pages which utilise SEO copywriting tend torank higher on SERPs since these have proper keyword usage, which improves content relevance.

Here are some tips that can help improve your SEO copywriting:

  • Create a captivating headline
  • Include external and internal links
  • Insert a reasonable number of keywords

READ MORE: SEO Copywriting: How To Optimise Your Content?

The Benefits Of Working With An SEO Agency

Outsourcing SEO needs from an SEO agency can benefit your business in many ways. For example, to attract local customers, implementing local SEO strategies can help increase your local brand exposure. 

Here is how an SEO agency in Singapore can benefit your business: 

1. Saves Time

Working with an SEO agency allows you to focus on other aspects of your business besides promoting products or services through SEO strategies. Without the assistance of an SEO agency, you will have to devote most of your time to learning SEO and putting what you have learned into practice. However, due to your lack of experience in this field, implementing your SEO knowledge does not guarantee excellent results

2. Cost-Effective

Acquiring a partnership with an SEO agency is also cost-effective since you will gain access to various SEO tools.  While most SEO tools have free versions, these have limited features that barely provide data that can help you create compelling content. 

ALSO READ: SEO Pricing In Singapore: Expectations And Reality

That is not the case when you hire an SEO agency for your company in Singapore. Since most SEO vendors subscribe to premium versions of SEO tools, they gather more invaluable insights, which can help them think of better ways to improve your online presence, generate leads and earn conversions. 

Partnering with an SEO agency is also cheaper than forming an in-house SEO team because you do not have to worry about monthly salaries and other benefits you need to provide to each professional. You only need to pay for their SEO services, which can be upfront or in instalments. 

3. Take Advantage Of Industry Expertise

Outsourcing your SEO needs from an SEO agency is an excellent way to take advantage of their industry expertise. Since they have been working in the SEO industry for years and working with countless clients, they have more practical SEO knowledge that can help meet your goal. 

Furthermore, some SEO agencies are Premier Google Partners, so you can rest assured that your SEO needs are in good hands. They can help you to increase brand awareness and conversions. 


Part II: Creating An In-House SEO Team Vs Outsourcing SEO 

Instead of implementing SEO themselves, most businesses prefer to create an in-house SEO team or outsource their SEO needs from an SEO agency. If you cannot choose between the two, check out the pros and cons below so you can weigh your options and make an informed decision. 

The Pros And Cons Of In-House SEO Team

Pro #1: Communicate With Your SEO Team Directly

When you create an in-house SEO team, you can communicate with them directly. For example, if you want to increase your customer engagement this upcoming holiday, ask your in-house SEO team to make compelling campaigns that you can post on your website and social media networks.

You can communicate with your in-house SEO team in person since they most likely work in the same building or office as you. You will hear their response immediately as you no longer need to wait for their reply about your inquiry.  

Pro #2: Make Adjustments Quickly

Perfections do not happen right the first time. There are always revisions and adjustments needed to achieve perfection. With an in-house SEO team, last-minute adjustment is possible. Since your company’s SEO needs are the only thing they are working on, you can expect to receive the revision within a day. Immediate modification can help you post your content on time. 

Con #1: Training Is Difficult

The disadvantage of forming an in-house SEO team is the training for them to become more proficient in SEO. On average, it takes one to three months before your staff in an in-house SEO team can reach the basic level and another six more months to learn the advanced SEO level. 

Con #2: It Can Be Costly

Another downside of in-house SEO teams is you will have to provide monthly salaries and other benefits, like sick and annual leave. In short, they are like regular employees working in your company. 

You also need to purchase the premium version of SEO tools so your in-house SEO team can use something to assess and create better campaigns. A premium subscription to an SEO tool is usually around S$100 or more per month, which can go up to thousands of dollars if you plan to subscribe long-term.

The Pros And Cons Of Outsourcing SEO

Pro #1: Has Experience Working With Different Industries

Every established SEO agency has tons of experience working with companies from various industries. When you hire one, you can rest assured that they most likely will know what they need to do to meet and satisfy your SEO needs. An SEO agency has accumulated experience working with businesses in the same industry as yours, thus they not only have knowledge in SEO, they are also knowledgeable when it comes to applying SEO strategies that are effective for your industry. 

Pro #2: Manage Your Campaign Stress-Free

Since an SEO agency has prior experience in creating and handling campaigns for a particular business that targets a specific target audience, clients can rest assured that they do not have to be hands-on in managing their campaigns themselves and leave everything to their dedicated account manager. 

In most cases, a dedicated account manager will submit a social media calendar proposal to clients and seek approval so they can prepare future campaigns.

Con #1: They Might Not Be Familiar With Your Company Culture Or Ethics

Even though an established SEO agency has experience working with various industries, they may not know how your company works. Your chosen SEO agency in Singapore will spend most of its time learning more about your company, from brand image to tone of voice. 

Con #2:  Scheduled Meetings Are More Frequent

Outsourcing your SEO from an SEO agency means you will be working with a third-party company with experienced and vast knowledge in SEO.  Since they are not working solely for your business, you will have to schedule meetings with your chosen SEO agency to discuss your SEO needs and the SEO strategies they will implement. 

Scheduling meetings takes some time because you have to inform and wait for the response of your chosen SEO agency. Forbes mentions that there is a 90% chance you can receive a reply within a day or two. The duration of waiting time can delay the entire process. 

Part III: What Is It Like To Work With An SEO Agency?

Even though SEO is nothing new, many businesses have not implemented SEO in their digital marketing, let alone worked with an SEO agency. If you plan to hire one for your company, here is a list of what you can expect when you partner with an SEO agency. 

  1. Things To Expect When You Partner With An SEO Agency

1. Kick-Off Meeting

A kick-off meeting with an SEO agency is similar to a college introduction. You will discover who is behind the excellent SEO services and successful SEO campaigns. Besides your dedicated account manager, also known as SEO consultant, below are the other professionals you will meet and greet:

  • SEO Writer – the one who will write content for websites and social media 
  • SEO Editor – the one who will edit and polish any content 
  • Graphic Designer – the one who will create images and videos that complement the content 
  • SEO Specialist – the one who will assess the keywords to use, review the keyword density, and other elements related to SEO
  • Website Developer – the one who will manage and improve the website, including its performance and website design 

2. Hear Unfamiliar Terms

It is natural to encounter unfamiliar terms if you are new to SEO. You have to tell your chosen SEO agency how familiar you are with SEO during your initial meeting so that they can educate you throughout the process. That should help you understand their plan and what SEO strategies they will implement to improve your campaigns. 

DISCOVER: 50 Essential SEO Terms That You Should Know

3. Discuss SEO Audit And Strategy

Before a kick-off meeting begins, most businesses will ask for an SEO audit report to have a better understanding of the areas they need to improve. Once you have chosen them as your SEO agency, they will discuss the data shown in the SEO audit report and explain everything in layman’s terms. 

From the gathered data, they will also discuss the SEO strategies that can help improve the existing campaigns and content. 

CLAIM NOW: Free SEO Audit Report With Analysis To Improve Your Website’s Ranking On SERP

4. Routine Updates

Apart from the initial discussion of SEO audit and strategies, the dedicated account manager assigned by your chosen SEO agency will update you as often as possible. The routine update can be weekly or monthly, and your chosen SEO agency will talk about the performance of your existing campaigns and content marketing proposals for future campaigns.

Part IV: Hiring An SEO Agency: What Questions Should You Ask Them?

If you intend to partner with an SEO agency, be aware that the hiring process is the same as in-house recruitment. There are factors you need to consider, such as:

  • An SEO agency’s portfolio and case studies
  • Client reviews
  • The cost of SEO services
  • KPI metrics
  • Meet in person

LEARN MORE:  How To Outsource The Best SEO Agency For Your Business?

Once you have narrowed down your choices, consider asking these questions to your shortlist of SEO agencies. Doing so can help gauge how reliable they are and whether or not they are the one you should hire as your partnered SEO agency

3 Questions To Ask An SEO Agency

1. Can You Tell Me About The History Of Your SEO Agency?

Learning more about the history of your chosen SEO agency will give you a better idea of how long they have been in the SEO industry, the projects they have done, and the achievements they have received in the past few years. 

2. May I Ask For Your Portfolio Or Case Studies?

Besides the portfolio and case studies on their websites, you should ask an SEO agency to show you their recent ones. These materials will help you assess how good they are at implementing SEO strategies and the things they have done for their clients to improve their campaigns to drive more traffic, generate leads and earn conversions.

3. What Metrics Should Be Analysed, And Which Should Be Given Priority?

Knowing the metrics that an SEO agency is looking at from the beginning can help you examine the best SEO practices they implement for a company if they are aligned with your goal. 

The Bottom Line

The future of your business growth is in your hands. Whether you create an in-house SEO team or outsource your SEO needs from an SEO agency, what will happen next highly depends on your choice. 

Since SEO continues to evolve, along with the shift in users’ behaviour, many businesses consider hiring an SEO agency to reduce their stress in managing their campaigns. After all, they have more knowledge and experience in implementing SEO because they have done it several times, so you can expect them to be more up-to-date with the latest SEO trends and techniques. 

Contact OOm at +65 6391 0930 or leave a message on their website if you want to learn more about what an SEO agency can do for you.