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The Art of SEO by Jessie Stricchiola, Rand Fishkin, Stephan Spencer, Eric Enge

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Selecting an SEO Firm/Consultant

Once you have decided to hire an outside firm, you need to go through some sort of selection process. This can be daunting if you are not already familiar with the space and if you don’t already have some understanding of SEO on your own. There are many solid and reputable companies, but unfortunately there are a large number of bad ones as well.

In addition, there are many different types of projects you may want them to work on. For example, you may have a local SEO-focused project in mind. This obviously becomes one of your major requirements, and you need to find a team with the right type of experience. Similarly, you may have specific contract requirements that will impact which firm is right for you.

Getting the Process Started

Just like a bad hire can be a very expensive proposition, so can engaging the wrong consultant or firm through a haphazard process or by simply relying on a gut feel. Here is an outline of steps for a more methodical, disciplined search for outsourced SEO expertise:

Start with your goals

Connect with your team and make sure you have a good idea of what you want to accomplish by working with an SEO expert. Sometimes it’s as simple as an audit to make sure you’re following best practices; other times it’s training for your marketers and content builders to get them up to speed on how to actively promote the site. If you have a solid list of things you want completed at the end of an engagement, you’ll be better able to judge ...

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