Another thing to think about if you’re cash rich but time poor, especially with many people leaving the SEO game, is to buy an existing SEO business. You’re buying existing contracts and/or a client list, and you may be able to pick up some skilled employees, too. Buying a business is a topic in itself and outside the scope of this article, however it’s an avenue to think about especially if you are capital rich and time poor. You may be able to manage such a business part time, as you have less pressure to develop new business from scratch and the existing employees can handle the work at the coal face and deal with clients during the day.
Once NAP has been established, search engines will look to local directories to see if they confirm the accuracy of the NAP. If errors are found (e.g. different addresses or names) then the search engines will lose confidence in which information to display to users. A classic example of this would be a business moving locations and leaving up old information about itself across business directories.
As we outlined in the book SEO for Growth, there is nothing really hard about SEO. You just need to treat your website as an investment, make sure your site is fully integrated with all of your digital channels and marketing activities, and have the discipline to make content marketing and SEO part of your daily routine. In other words, set up your web presence and commit to SEO for the long haul.
Try it on your site. It’s 100% free for 10 days. You don’t need any money or a credit card. Sorry for the pitch, but this is important. Again, I literally created MySiteAuditor because the contact forms on my agency’s website were so unreliable.
You mentioned hustling Craigslist when you first started out. I’m in a similar situation, I just emptied my change jar to keep my internet turned on for a little bit longer while I try to get a business started. Any suggestions on what to try to do to get SEO customers?
Starting my own agency seemed like a fun and easy idea in the beginning. It was portrayed to look easy by all the courses and “gurus” who promoted the idea of starting your own agency. I soon realized the one issue. Getting clients is not easy. Not at all. I learned that I needed to put in a lot of work and figure out a strategy if I was serious about getting clients for my new agency.
Hey Neil – I’ve used some of these strategies myself to build up a 7 figure agency at Powered by Search. As the business has built up we don’t tend to do a lot of ‘free’ work anymore but we do quite a bit of pro-bono work for non-profits who need our help.
I know you mention outsourcing the SEO to another company, but I wouldn’t recommend it to a newbie. You could end up getting burned because most SEO companies these days are useless and use old techniques that will get your website penalized instead of helping it.
Creating quality content for your website can be a huge investment, but it is worth it. Search engines will love it, and visitors will love it so much that they will share it on social media, leading to even more visitors. You can start out by simply creating blog posts on your website, and as your audience grows, you can expand your content inventory to additional types of media. To learn more, see the Beginner’s Guide to Content Marketing.
It ended up morphing into much more than simply addressing your Q! Namely, it mentions how any business can use local search to give website traffic a jumpstart — even those without any offline storefronts.
According to Google, roughly four out of five consumers use search engines to conduct local searches. Yet many small businesses have not claimed even a single a local business listing online, which is a huge missed opportunity.
It takes a lot of work Troy, but as you develop your skills and talents, you can begin to outsource a few things here and there to a virtual assistant. Spend time focusing ON your business in addition to IN your business
The biggest challenge relates to trust. SEO and Internet marketers have become the used car salesmen of tech (no offense to used car salesmen!). There are several reasons why business owners do not trust SEO agencies:
Before starting your own business, it is advisable to work at least one year offering SEO solutions. In this way you can improve your expertise by attending conferences (such as Pubcon, MozCon and SEMPDX), optimizing your websites, write a blog and even an eBook. This is particularly useful for the marketing process, but you can also practice your research and get to know more about post Neil! It’s not always easy to lay down a to-do list for a career in this manner. But it’s good to know that you have succeeded in doing so, and I guess following your footsteps is a good choice to make.
Check out your top local competitors and see which categories they’re using. If you’re competing for the same customers in “real life,” you should be competing for the same online traffic. However, don’t assume that what your competitors chose to do for their site is necessarily right for your site; it’s just a starting point.
On-page SEO for local businesses conforms to some pretty old school SEO tactics. There’s quite a large weighting towards the on-page content in the local search listings, so it’s important that, where possible, you squeeze the most value out of your content.
I’ve struggled with this when clients have moved to another agency. Especially when I’ve done such a great job. Sadly, it’s just part of the agency cycle and can be for many reasons, such as a new marketing manager that has worked with a certain agency in the past and had good results.