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SEO Agency or In-house SEO: Which is the right choice for your business?

July 5 2015

To outsource your SEO to an agency or do it in house is a very common question. Many people I speak to have tried to do SEO in house and have a go at it themselves or even employ their own SEO team. Results have been mixed, with varying degrees of success. Some businesses like the control of being able to see their SEO team working in front of them, whilst others prefer to leave the headache to some one else

Ideally, it would be great to have both; an external SEO agency advising your in house SEO person or even speaking with you on the latest Google algorithm updates and technological advances, whilst you implement everything. This is great if you love to have complete control, but remember, this would be really time consuming and chew up many man hours – not to mention the cost.

Unfortunately, it’s either 1 or the other. You cannot have both. It just doesn’t make sense. So following are the benefits of each option. After that it’s totally your call. With SEO, all decisions have dramatic consequences. Make sure the one you make is carefully thought out.

SEO Agency Advantages

A good SEO agency is a rare thing to find and if you happen to pick the right one you are going to really profit from it. Choose a dud and you will pay heavily.

Most SEO agencies have the experience, know how, and talent within to be able to get your website ranking. This is a great advantage as all you need to do is pay them a monthly fee and you can focus on what’s important; your business. These guys will have all the necessary tools at their disposal to analyse competitors, provide accurate reporting and generally give you the type of service that you are paying for.

All search engine optimisation agencies live and breath SEO. They spend hours every day researching, reading and trying to stay ahead of what Google is about to do next. I can tell you first hand that our SEO consultants will spend between 2- 3 hours per day doing actual research before they implement any SEO work. For them it’s second nature and they actually love doing this kind of research. After all to be any good at something requires this type of dedication. Outsourcing your SEO to an agency with this kind of commitment, devotedness & single-minded attitude is going to be a huge asset for your business. I want to add a caveat here – this only applies to agencies that know what they are doing. There are still a whole heap of duds out there who have no idea about SEO and pretend to be something they are not.

Good SEO companies will generally provide your business with faster results. Why? Because they are in this day in day out 24/7 and know what they have to do to rank your website. They have strategies in place and all they do is follow their proven formula. If their SEO is working for other companies then it will work for you. That’s the logic. They know what works and what doesn’t. Quicker results if Google compliant, is a massive advantage and one that could be a tipping point in favour of outsourcing.

Most business owners are too busy to focus on the nitty gritty and painstaking analysis that comes with SEO. They have their own worries and issues, let alone wondering what Google’s next algorithmic change will do for their business. Leaving it to the professionals and forgetting about it, is worth it’s weight in gold.

Let’s look at costs now. When you outsource to an agency the monthly fee might seem high in some cases. Compare this to employing a full time person (in Australia) and this cost will seem cheap. You don’t have to deal with all the compliance issues that a full time employee brings nor do you have to worry about sick days, holidays, superannuation etc etc. This again, is another huge victory for outsourcing. Also, think about the software and monthly costs associated with these reporting tools that you now have to fund. By working with an external agency these are all included as part of your monthly package.

You actually have to spend the time looking for an in house person and it will be your sole responsibility for choosing the right person. How as a business owner are you going to know what choice to make?

SEO is a very difficult and serious discipline so what gives you the necessary qualifications to make the right choice. People can exaggerate and lie in interviews and if you pick the wrong person, his or her SEO efforts once employed, could have dire ramifications for your business. It’s better to leave it to the experts with a proven track record. How many times have you employed the wrong person for a job? Think about it. SEO is different it is not a matter of simply replacing them. The things they do today can and will affect you in the long term. The realities of this are extremely serious!

In-House SEO Advantages

An in-house SEO person, will be dedicated 100% of the time on your business. This is their focus and if you have made the right choice and they know what they are doing then your rankings should climb. They will have an intimate knowledge of your business and be able to customise and SEO and content marketing campaign just for your company. This is great news if they have the right SEO strategy in place.

If you are launching a new brand or service or even new part of your business, these in house SEO people should be immersed and absorbed in this. They will therefore be able to bring this to market quickly through their online marketing channels much quicker than an agency.

Which Choice Is Right for You?

You own the business it’s totally up to you. But, form the list above I would like to draw your attention to the number of benefits that outsourcing your SEO has over doing it in house.

As this is just a blog where I am providing you with just the advantages of each, I am trying to remain impartial. But, I feel that employing in house SEO staff is far riskier than outsourcing.

You might think that I am trying to promote outsourcing because Hopping Mad Designs provides and SEO service. But, from my experience in this field, all I can say is that I do receive a number of calls every week from businesses that have tried to do it in house and it has failed miserably. The results were disastrous because they chose the wrong person. This is a critical factor and common thread among all the complaints.

It’s your decision….make the right one.