2020 Checklist for Selecting the Right SEO Company for Your Campaign

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New year, new reputation.

Impossible? Not with the right SEO partner. The dawn of a new decade is the perfect time to throw old habits out the window and take concerted action to lessen their not-so-flattering side effects.

Choosing the perfect fit from among reputable reputation management agencies with in-house SEO knowledge is no easy task, of course. Here’s your 2020 checklist — a cheat sheet, if you will — to cut through the confusion and settle on a partner who’ll actually do right by your good name.

  1. They Go Beyond the Keywords

Some SEO companies still act like it’s 2005. Their entire business model is built on the idea that strategic keyword placement and behind-the-scenes meta tag optimization is all that’s needed to rank on Google’s first page. 

To be clear, keywords and meta tags do affect SEO, but they’re only two factors in a dizzyingly complex equation. Top-flight SEO companies know better.

  1. They Offer Something More Than a Commodity Service

In a world of no-coding website builders and natural language chatbots, it’s tempting to believe that SEO can be a one-size-fits-all service as well. 

Don’t believe it. Low-cost, consumer-grade SEO might boost your search rankings temporarily, but it won’t set you up to consistently outperform your competitors for search terms that actually matter — nor will it effectively suppress search results detrimental to your business or personal reputation, if that’s what you’re after.

  1. They Understand the Dynamics of Reputation Management

On that note: Any SEO company worth its salt should understand the dynamics of reputation management. In a world where quality content is king and search algorithms reflect that, it’s vital that every highly visible search result pertaining to you or your company is something you’d be proud to show your kids — or that whale of a prospect you hope to nail down on the next call.

  1. They’re Not Bogged Down in the Minutiae of Public Relations

Some SEO companies are too eager to get outside their lane. They moonlight as public relations pros, “spraying and praying” pitches to more digital outlets than you can count. 

Unless your budget can bear a sustained PR campaign that actually nets high-value exposure — think New York Times, not Sandy’s New Times Blog — then you’re better off with a company that mostly works behind the scenes. 

  1. They Know Their Way Around the Content Universe

The best SEO companies know the content universe cold. They hire quality writers and editors, and understand the complexities of obtaining quality links on third-party publications for safe, effective link-building. To any SEO company whose services stop with the web properties you actually own, say, “Thanks — but no thanks.”

Choose Wisely. Your Reputation Depends on It.

That’s no exaggeration. 

Countless companies claim to offer effective, comprehensive SEO services that bolster your reputation in the offing. Few actually make good on that promise. Your reputation, or your company’s, is too important to stake on “maybe” and the possibility of an ephemeral boost in Google’s search rankings.

So, choose wisely. Nothing less than your digital future could depend on it.