If you are a business owner, one of your most effective employees is your website. Having a strong online presence via your website is important for potential customers to find you. Think about when you are searching for a service – when you go online and enter a keyword for a service you’re looking for, say for example an HVAC professional, you may enter “HVAC services near me”, or “top rated HVAC companies”. And once you get a list of HVAC companies, you will likely review the top three to five listed, quickly check their Google reviews or star ratings, and make your selection. Most people won’t go past those first few listed to make their choice.
The challenge for business owners is that if they are not one of the first few businesses that come up in a search, it’s likely they are missing out on potential business. That’s why business owners should partner with a digital marketing agency to ensure their website is optimized so it ranks in the top three to five businesses in an online search.
The primary way to optimize a website is through Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. SEO is the process designed to improve the appearance and positioning of web pages in search engines, so people find your website. This is a technical process, and most business owners don’t have the know-how, or interest in doing it themselves. Having technical experts who understand SEO and can modify the elements in your website to improve your ranking is money well spent if you’re looking to get more customers.
In addition to SEO, there are other elements that impact your ranking in searches including the quality of your website, your social media presence, and the effectiveness of any paid advertising you are doing. Partnering with a good digital marketing agency is an essential part of doing business. While you could hire an employee to handle your marketing, working with a digital marketing agency is a better solution for many businesses. Remember, your website is your most effective, and least expensive employee. It works 24/7/365 and doesn’t get sick, take vacation, or need benefits. That’s why investing a relatively minimal amount to ensure your website is optimized is critical for business owners.
So how do you choose a digital marketing agency? Here are some important factors to keep in mind as you look to sign with an agency.
- What are your goals and desired outcomes? There is a wide spectrum of services provided by digital marketing agencies (who often specialize in specific areas), so understanding your needs will help you find the right agency. Are you looking for help in creating or improving your website? Do you want to have a social media plan but don’t have time to manage it yourself? Do you need a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool? Do you want to put together an ad campaign? Being clear on your needs will ensure your agency provides the best support.
- Understand your budget and what you are willing to spend. A good agency should be able to work with any reasonable budget and set expectations accordingly.
- Ensure there is full transparency in the work the agency does. The agency should provide regular updates on the status of the work being done, provide results, be accessible, and communicate well. Be sure your agency Is clear about the work being done, and the deliverables you can expect.
- Determine the type of agency that best fits your business. You can work with a large marketing agency with years of experience which is often a good choice for larger companies. If you have a smaller business though, you may not get the personal touch that a newer or boutique agency might provide. Are they local or located in another state? This may not matter to you, but often local agencies have a better pulse on the business climate in their area. Either way, ensure the agency can provide the support and attention that you need for your business.
- Pay attention to the claims or promises they make. For example, SEO is the foundation to ensure a website ranks high in searches. In order to rank high, it requires a short term and long-term strategy, and continuous work to maintain. Find an agency that makes realistic promises and is clear about the outcomes they can provide.
Not all digital marketing agencies are the same. The bottom line is that it’s important to make sure they can do the job, and that you like working with them. Contact the experts at Tried and True Digital Marketing to see how we can work together!