Websites listed on the first search engine results page (SERP) of Google earn 91.5% of the share of traffic. This is just one reason why search engine optimization, or SEO for short, is crucial to the success of your website. But you already know that, which is why you’re wondering whether or not you should handle your SEO in-house or outsource your needs.
In this guide, we’ll cover the many benefits of outsourcing your SEO needs to professional digital marketers. Some of these benefits align with budgetary concerns while others fall into the category of expertise, for example. Keep reading to see why you need to work with the pros.
Benefits of Outsourcing Your SEO
Sure, you could handle SEO in-house by stealing time from your employees’ current workload or by hiring new staff to handle the tasks. And sure, that’d probably keep your website from falling off the edge of the proverbial earth. But chances are, it won’t allow your online properties to thrive like they could under the guidance of a professional marketer.
If you’re reading this guide, you’re already starting to think maybe it’s the best thing for your business. Maybe you’re just looking for confirmation that it’s worth your money to work with another firm to meet your digital marketing and SEO needs. Check out these 9 outsourcing benefits.
1. Market Your Website On The Cutting Edge
Did you know that Google changes its algorithm 500 to 600 times every year? Algorithm changes can have significant impacts on your position in SERPs. You need an SEO pro who can:
- Understand these changes
- Keep a lookout for when they go live
- Make technical changes to keep your site ahead of the competition
- Communicate how these changes might affect other in-house stakeholders
If Google is making that many algorithm changes each year, that means on average they’re changing how they rank sites 1.36 to 1.64 times each and every day. An in-house marketer who never had SEO listed in their job description might struggle to stay on top of the latest shifts.
Keeping ahead of technological changes isn’t just about Google’s algorithm, either. An SEO pro will know about social media network changes, about plugin updates and functions, and the rapid developments that can affect every aspect of digital marketing. Staying abreast of the latest digital marketing trends can be a daily task in and of itself.
2. Access To A Pro’s Experience
Even if you train existing or new employees on how to do SEO, they may be able to make improvements to your SERP ranking and website traffic, but if something goes wrong, they might be lost in the dust. A major benefit of contracting a professional digital marketer is the experiences they’ve already had.
Unless you’re working with a just-out-of-the-gates company, your professional digital marketer will have been thrown curveballs dealing with SEO for other clients in other industries–some of which might match your own. They’ll be able to pivot faster when it matters most, minimizing damage and sometimes setting your website up for even more success.
There’s a huge difference between understanding SEO and being an SEO expert. It’s like going to a 25-year-old doctor versus a doctor who’s been practicing medicine for 25 years. If you’ve got some kind of uncommon illness, chances are you’ll heal faster if you go to the more experienced physician.
3. A Broader Range Of Expertise
How does expertise differ from experience? To us, expertise describes the repertoire of skills an SEO professional brings to the table. When you go for outsourced marketing help, chances are you’ll be working with a professional who knows how to do more SEO-related tasks.
And believe us, those tasks are myriad and varied. Nowadays, SEO touches on everything from web design to off-site link building, from social media marketing and content development to back-end technical tasks like coding and working with robots.txt files.
If you go with an in-house employee, they might be able to learn about keyword research and title tags pretty quickly. But will they have the breadth of skills that a professional digital marketer has at the fingertips? The answer is no.
Learning such varied skills not only requires a lot of time and experience, but also the ability to focus only on SEO and its related strategies and tactics. If an employee also has to worry about pumping out weekly press releases or putting together a traditional marketing campaign, or sales, they won’t be able to devote the necessary time to develop the broad range of skills required to thrive at SEO.
Let’s look at an example. Your website loads in 4.7 seconds. That’s too slow, and your bounce rate is off the charts.
Just a one-second delay can lead to a 7% reduction in conversions. Someone without the broad expertise of a professional digital marketer might think it’s a server issue and kickstart a switch to a new server that could end up costing you time and money.
But the fact is, there are many issues that can lead to a longer page load, and someone new at SEO might not know them intimately enough to fix them. The fix could be so simple–for example, a missing or outdated caching plugin. A professional SEO will be able to quickly diagnose and repair the issue so your site loads faster and users stay on-site long enough to possibly convert.
4. Get A New Perspective
When you ask an employee to brainstorm solutions, sometimes it can be like asking a doppelganger of yourself to come up with new ideas. We tend to pick up on the mannerisms and sometimes thinking styles of those around us–this is great for making societies come together, but not so great for digital marketing.
Working with an outsourced digital marketer can offer you fresh eyes on SEO problems and solutions. Even if you don’t choose the first idea a professional SEO comes up with, it might spark new innovations which could launch your brand into a new traffic tier.
New perspectives don’t only apply to problems and solutions. They can also reveal exciting new opportunities. For example, there may be a new path to valuable backlinks from sites with high domain authorities.
You and your employees might not come up with those opportunities, and that’s alright–especially if you have an outsourced SEO pro in your corner.
5. Get Consistent Service
There’s nothing like consistency for SEO. Search engines love it because end users love it, and search engines are all about the end-user experience these days. If you keep your SEO in-house, you run the risk of inconsistencies.
Why? The average employee remains with a company for less than 5 years. As though employee turnover wasn’t bad enough for morale and your budget, imagine the havoc it could wreak on your digital marketing.
Great SEO requires daily and weekly consistency. Let’s say you train an employee who becomes your in-house SEO (in addition to their other job duties). Not only is their time split but just about the time they’re becoming an expert, they walk into your office and hand in their resignation.
Now not only do you have to find someone to replace them, but that person will have to train fresh in SEO. If you’d been outsourcing your digital marketing, you’d still have to find a new employee, but you wouldn’t have to worry that your website traffic might take a hit.
The thing about SEO hiccups is that while most of them are fixable, there’s no such thing as a quick fix in SEO. Everything takes a little time. Putting your digital marketing in the hands of employees who might leave your company in a handful of years or less is like playing roulette and betting the reputation of your website and social media profiles.
6. Stay Focused
We’ve hinted above that asking employees with other job duties to suddenly take on SEO is a bad plan. The foremost reason this is a bad idea is not only will they be unable to devote the time SEO demands, but their other duties may suffer as well. This issue can be compounded if you–the leader, owner, president, or CEO of your company–take on the tasks of maintaining your site’s SEO.
You and your employees should be able to focus on what they do best. Remember the saying, “Jack of all trades is a master of none.” Repeat it to yourself every time you feel the urge to send an employee for SEO training instead of working with a professional.
When you have to focus on SEO and your other duties, you risk being pulled in too many directions and snapping under the pressure. Then everything could fall apart. Play to your strengths and make sure your employees have the opportunity to do the same.
7. Get Scalable Services
If you’re building a new website, you’ll need more SEO work than if you’re maintaining a website with already-stable SEO. But, if you hire someone in-house to work on SEO, it’s a lot harder to get away with cutting their hours than if you outsource your digital marketing needs.
Working with an SEO professional allows you to choose the services you need when you need them. This saves you time and money–and it may just save your reputation as an employer too.
You can also scale services back up when you need to. Maybe your annual SEO review reveals that there are a number of problems or opportunities to address. For a few months, you might bump up your digital marketing services.
Compare that cost to how much you’d have to pay in overtime to keep employees late every night to cover workloads such as these. Don’t forget too that asking employees to work more may upset their work-life balance, and for many employees, that might be enough to convince them to spruce up their resumes.
8. A Predictable Budget
Regardless of the scale of SEO services you need to outsource, you can set a budget that will be adhered to. SEO professionals know how much work they can complete in a given amount of time. They can give you a rate–usually monthly–and stick to it.
They can offer predictable services for that budget. Note that we didn’t say predictable results. There’s a difference between services and results.
For example, no SEO professional can tell you when you’ll hit the first page of Google, but they can tell you how many hours it will take them to write and market a 1,500-word blog post. The first is a result, the second is a service.
Either way, any time you can make your digital marketing budget more predictable, it’s easier to measure and rely on a return on investment, or ROI.
9. Lower Costs For Staff Training
By now, we hope you’re on board with us in determining that it’s not always the best idea to convert your existing employees into SEO professionals on the side. We’re not trying to beat a dead horse, but it’s important to stress the benefit of lower training costs because this benefit can significantly improve your bottom line.
We’re not saying don’t train your staff in any SEO. They need to understand basic concepts, especially if they’re in your marketing department. However, whenever you take on SEO in-house, understand that it’s not a one-time training.
Training needs to be constant. We can’t say how many hours a month it will take because every employee is unique and learns at a different pace. But what we can tell you is this: SEO and digital marketing change so often that without constant training, your online presence will not stand a chance against your competitors.
We’re not trying to tell you that you have to hire an outsourced SEO professional. You don’t. Feel free to ignore all of these benefits of outsourcing.
However, if you want your company to thrive online, you’d be doing yourself a disservice to ignore the plethora of advantages to working with an experienced digital marketing professional. From website design to getting your message out to the world, SEO professionals can help your brand not only survive, but thrive, online.
If you still have questions about outsourcing your digital marketing needs, drop us a line.