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Mistakes Most Businesses Make When Choosing a Digital Agency

October 28 2015

Most businesses have little or no idea exactly what a digital marketing agency does.They have heard the term thrown about yet they really do not have a thorough understanding how a digital agency can benefit their business. Most Australian business owners know that they need help with their SEO, social media, content marketing, web design and conversion rates, but they tend to go to individual agencies for these services rather than getting 1 agency to handle everything. Finding a top notch digital agency is tough. Choosing the wrong one, unfortunately is too easy.

Don’t make the mistake of choosing an agency based on price. Cheap deals are a recipe for disaster.

There are a lot of players in the market all saying pretty much the same things. They are all promising that they can get your website to page 1 of Google, they say that they are experts in user interface design and have the ability to make your website conversion focused. They basically talk the talk, but can they actually do what they say.

Unfortunately, we see far too many businesses spend way too much money with digital agencies because they believe the hype and stories they are told about how they are able to turn their business around, get their phone to ring and increase sales leads…..ALL THIS IS FAKE AND YOU WILL GET ABSOLUTELY HAMMERED ONLINE, if you choose the wrong type of agency who is simply looking out for the next sucker to come along.

So, I though I would detail in point form some errors of judgement businesses make when selecting their digital agency.

# 1 Mistake: Most businesses want to be on page 1 of Google. Let’s face it. It’s the best place to be. The issue here is that most businesses when searching for an SEO agency type the words “SEO” or “SEO Agency’ into Google and they quickly click on the first 3 businesses they see. The error with this is that those first 3 SEO companies are the ads and choosing any of these companies is what I would consider an extremely grave mistake. Why? Because, they have paid money to be in this position and this is not what SEO is about.

SEO is all about getting your organic rankings NOT paid listings. In fact, it’s the exact opposite of SEO and these guys know how to play the game. They put really catchy, too good to refuse, attention grabbing headlines in their ads like: ‘ PAY WHEN YOU REACH PAGE 1’ or ‘ SEO FOR 1 MONTH FOR FREE’ or ‘PAY ON PERFORMANCE SEO’ or the very worst one ‘ PAGE 1 GUARANTEED RANKING’.

All these headings are right there in your face ( Google designs it this way), and most people click on these ads. They are in a hurry and they click the first thing they see. Once they are in contact with the SEO agency they are then handled by seriously good sales people that will promise anything to get the sale. It’s a real con job and they even lock you into 12 month contracts which are really hard to get out of. Fancy a legal battle? Then go with any company that have PPC or paid ads when it comes to SEO agencies. These guys will do nothing once you sign up and will use the money you pay them to refinance their ads. It’s a scheme and it works really well. Most people cannot see the difference when they are looking quickly online and this is the trap and this is what you need to be aware of so you avoid this.

As soon as you complain or try to get out of the contract, they will start proceedings against you. How do I know this? Because I have to take phone calls from so many people who have been ripped off in this fashion. All I can say is make the right decision when choosing your SEO agency; DON’T EVER go with companies that have paid adverts there. Golden rule = if they cannot rank their own website they are going to do nothing with yours. They will swear blindly that they prefer to be there as paid ads as it’s too expensive and too much time and hassle to rank their own website What a load of rubbish. They would kill to be there.

# 2 Mistake: They choose a so called digital agency that talks about customer conversion rates and being able to get customers to buy from your site better than anyone else. Don’t fall for this. Most of these agencies do nothing more than change a banner on your home page and make you believe they have moved a mountain. It’s complete and utter rubbish. If they talk about conversion rates and increase in site traffic make them show you examples. remember it’s easy to throw these terms and buzz words around to try to fool you into thinking they are experts in this field.

My advice here is to work with an agency that can show you an extremely strong web design portfolio. Given there are so many free web site templates out there it’s important for the success of your business to partner with a agency that will design your site from scratch based on a brief. NOT some crappy free template or a recycled template that they have used before. If your website is going to work for you then it must be a fully customised design that takes many online digital variables into account.

# 3 Mistake: You base all your decisions purely on cost. If I had a dollar every time someone said to me: ‘ we are starting our business and we are on a very limited budget’ or ‘ the other guy is charging me $x for this, what can you do?’ or ‘ what types of cheap SEO packages do your offer’, I would be a rich man. Basing your marketing decisions on cost, especially when it comes to Web and SEO factors is a really bad start for your business. Why? Because there are too many people out there who are more than happy to cut their rates to buy your business and in turn deliver absolutely nothings. THAT’S RIGHT. They will take your money, do nothing with the SEO and if you are lucky you might get your website ( which will all be done offshore) in 6 months time.

Cutting corners, reducing marketing budgets and going with the agencies that are prepared to do your work for next to nothing is another serious error. I totally agree when businesses are looking to shop wisely for the best value on offer. But bear in mind that their are sharks out there circling looking to make as much money as they can. They know all the tricks and short cuts and you will be the one who looses.

# 4 Mistake: You get cold called by an SEO or digital agency that says they have gone through your website and can see a lot of mistakes. They assume you must be doing some form of SEO and will fabricate an issue with your site or in your SEO strategy that is complete BS. I personally have had other SEO agencies contact some of my client’s and tell them the most ridiculous stories and lies when it comes to their SEO, back linking and on page compliance. All lies, all bull, designed to trick you into believing them. Once they have you locked into their contract you are stuffed – this is why at Hopping Mad Designs we never lock you into any type of contract.

OK, you have read these 4 mistakes that most people make and yet you may still be a bit confused about the role a digital agency can play in your company, and what can go wrong if you choose unwisely. If so, please give me a call  02 9360 8514 and I will be more than happy to show you what a credible, reliable, established and proven digital agency can do to generate more sales leads for your business through our online marketing capabilities.