Maile Ohye, Developer Programs Tech Lead at Google, shares her advice for hiring an SEO Consultant (Search Engine Optimization) to improve the searcher experience—from initial query on Google and your website’s ranking to user experience once visitors click through and conversion optimization.
Key Take-Aways for Those Looking to Hire an SEO Consultant
(1) There are no quick fixes, tricks or magic bullets to catapult your site to Page 1; SEO is a long-term initiative (it should take about 4-12 months to for improvement to result in potential benefit to your organization);
(2) Conduct a two-way interview: Good SEOs should understand your organization from a holistic perspective and be genuinely interested in your organization’s short- and long-term success—not solely focused on page rank;
(3) SEO success is dependent upon the quality of your content and website, so technical infrastructure and/or site architecture may need to be changed;
(4) Request a technical and search audit as well as a description of issues that need improvement, the SEO’s approach, prioritization of recommendations and corroborated documentation from Google;
(5) Your organization must be ready to commit to implementing the SEO’s recommendations and testing / iterating; Without buy-in from management, hiring an SEO consultant is likely premature without commitment and investment in implementation.
Rule of thumb: what’s good for users is good for SEO.