Everyone wants change from time-to-time, and sometimes business owners believe a new SEO company will be a fresh approach. But, this isn’t always the case.
Whether financial reasons, disagreements, a lack of knowledge or understanding, or a fresh approach with a new set of eyes was the cause for switching to a new SEO agency, dumping your old firm isn’t always the right option. Yet, it happens.
Since not all SEO agencies are the same or capable of producing the same results, here are six red flags that will alert you when it‘s time to bring back your old SEO agency.
Decline in Ranking
When switching to a new agency, it’s not uncommon to experience a certain level of decline in ranking as a new SEO strategy is implemented. However, the decline should be minor and your ranking should eventually recover and end up in an increase in organic traffic. If there’s a steady decline in ranking that has lasted far too long (over three or four months), the new agency isn’t getting the job done.
One entrepreneur reported an 80 percent loss of organic traffic within a few days of hiring a new SEO company (this is just crazy and I could think of a few reasons why this might have happened). You don’t want this to happen to you as the longer your ranking continues to decline, the longer it will take to climb back up the ladder.
When working with any SEO firm, you need to be in constant contact to be able to understand what’s being done and how the results are being generated. An agency needs to communicate with you to fully understand your business and your needs since SEO is not “one size fits all.” If you find yourself constantly being ignored, questions going unanswered and an overall lack of personal interest for your business, you’re dealing with the wrong agency.
You hired them, not the other way around, so playing phone tag is not an option. You should be communicating with your company weekly, if not daily.
Increase in Spammy Links
An increase in spammy links is a huge red flag you can‘t ignore.
Any good, white hat SEO company works to keep your link profile clean by only establishing creditable links. If your link profile is becoming tarnished by spammy links, chances are the company you hired isn’t abiding by Google’s algorithms or they are taking shortcuts with black hat tactics. Eventually, you’re going to be hit by a Google penalty, suffer a serious decrease in ranking and struggle through a long recovery process. It is not fun.
You should be filled in on everything happening with your SEO strategy from the very beginning. You should also be able to ask your SEO a technical question and get a clear answer that makes sense to you. You should not have to work with someone who is green and lacks important offsite and onsite knowledge. If your new company doesn’t have a clear plan and can’t respond well to advanced questions, your old agency might have been a better fit.
Lack of ROI
SEO can be a big investment and you don’t want to wait forever to see the return. It is true that it generally takes three-to-nine months, depending on the particular website situation. But even if you haven’t reached your goal yet, there are key signs to show whether or not you’ll ever see an ROI increase with a company you’ve hired.
For example, if your organic traffic isn’t increasing from when they started and your revenue is flat, this is a clear sign. It’s time to ditch your new SEO company when they just can’t achieve the same ROI results as the previous company.
The Proof is in the Past
Often, business owners don’t have a firm understanding of SEO and all it involves, so it’s not uncommon to be unsure whether or not an SEO company is actually getting the job done. However, upon switching to a new firm, you might see your old company was actually pretty good; you just didn’t understand the process. Or, maybe you didn’t take that one important recommendation they made. Nothing can change your perspective on good service like switching to a company that lacks quality and results.
Hiring a new agency is a gamble. When you start second guessing your choice about switching SEO firms, it’s time to head back to the familiar where you know there’s a proven track record of success.
If your old company got you good results, and they were not doing anything black hat, there is nothing wrong with switching back — it happens all the time.
Do you have any SEO agency stories you'd like to share? I'd love to read them in the comment section.
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