SEO – My Process Explained

Forget about technical jargon, I explain everything in plain English that everyone can understand.
My clients…

  • Know what they are paying for
  • Understand the challenges
  • Realise their potential

Most small businesses[1] are looking for a complete SEO package when they contact me. Understandably, clients are always keen to know how much it will cost.

I’ve tried all sorts of fixed pricing models over the 20+ years that I’ve been optimising websites, and I’ve never found one that is both fair to my clients and myself. I now use a method that is fairer to all.

SEO Process Infographic

My Search Engine Optimisation Process

The fixed price package model is the most common that is advertised. I don’t believe offering fixed price packages works well for clients as they don’t cover the true cost of a worthwhile campaign, and often they under deliver.

I can see why fixed price plans are attractive to both an agency and clients. However, my belief is that if a worthwhile job is to be done, you need to really understand the challenges before a price is offered. Every project is unique, and a one size fits all approach never delivers the optimum solution. I believe my clients deserve a better approach.

I have developed the following process to ensure my customers get the best value from their budget. My service differs from many in that I take the time to engage with my clients, and understand their business. An appreciation of  the challenges they face is essential so that an effective solution can be found. Together, we make the right decisions for your business.

You may think that you really don’t want to be involved in the process, you just want to pay someone to do a job. I understand that time is precious, I won’t pester you constantly, but there will need to be a certain amount of interaction between us. If you want to get the best value from my services, you will need to make time for a meeting or two.

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Four stages of developing an effective SEO campaign

Meeting

  • Learn about the business
  • Explain optimisation process
  • Identify online goals
  • Discuss likely costs
  • Discuss payment plan

Stage goal

  • Agree to move forward with confidence

Investigate

  • Assess the online market
  • Identify and assess the online competition
  • Complete initial keyword research
  • Determine current position in search
  • Complete website technical audit
  • Assess website content
  • Provide a detailed report

Stage goals

  • Provide insight into the businesses online presence
  • Provide insight into online competition
  • Determine the quality of the website
  • Provide a solid foundation for the SEO campaign

Meeting

  • Discuss report
  • Present plan framework
    • Discuss website changes
    • Discuss and agree on cornerstone content
    • Discuss performance indicators
    • Agree on productive keywords

Create plan

  • Produce detailed plan
  • Provide fully costed proposal

Stage goals

  • Provide maximum clarity
  • Provide a plan that is acceptable to the client
  • Ensure that the plan is within budget

Next step

  • Client commits to proposal

Changing Your Website

  • Make any website design/structural changes
  • Create and/or optimise cornerstone content
  • Create and/or optimise supplementary content

Next steps

  • Track performance
  • Refine & repeat
  • Review

Why this process works

The greatest advantage of this process is that you are in full control. You don’t need to commit to a full service until you are fully aware of the facts, time implications, and costs. You will find more details about the stages below and my thinking behind them.

Stage one – Assess

Stage one allows us to get to know one another and for me to understand your aspirations. My SEO service isn’t for everyone and it’s vital that we’ll be able to get along and that I’ll be able to do a good job for you.

Ideally you should have a reasonably successful bricks and mortar business with a realistic marketing budget. However, if you are a start-up then I suggest you look at my digital strategy service before you go any further, I may still be able to help. At the other end of the spectrum, if you work for a large enterprise it’s less likely that I’d have the capacity to assist you – my clients are generally small to medium sized businesses.

At the end of stage one we should both be confident in each other’s commitment and have a clear understanding of what’s required.

Stage 2 – Research

After stage 2 is complete, you’ll have a grasp of where your business sits in the online marketplace, along with valuable online competitor and keyword analysis. Additionally, any technical or content problems with your website will have been identified.

You’ll receive a detailed but easy to understand report for you to digest and consider. If further explanation is required, you’ll be able to ask questions at our next meeting should you wish to proceed. Please be aware that this is not a “free” audit as offered by many SEO agencies. This is a detailed online review of your business and your competitor’s businesses .

Stage 3 – Plan

Stage three provides us with the ability to prioritise and make best use of available resources. For instance, we may be able utilise resources that you have in house to complete some of the heavy lifting of stage four. This isn’t always the case, or necessary, but it can be a useful way of keeping costs down. Depending on what the research highlights, we may have to involve your web designer at this point. At the end of stage 3 you will be aware of exactly what I propose, and understand the amount of work involved in getting your website where you need it to be. I provide a clear, detailed and fully costed proposal.

Stage 4 – Act

Results will start to show sometime after the completion of stage 4. I will have recommended some form of visitor tracking and most probably a schedule for refinement. At an agreed time, normally at 6 months from initial completion, I create a report that illustrates how successful the campaign has been and make recommendations for moving forward. In reality, SEO is never finished, there are always new opportunities to exploit on the horizon..

  1. Small business as defined by the government is “a business with 0-49 employees”. See documents available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/business-population-estimates

Content Focused SEO

My methods revolve around high quality content. If your website is thin on content its unlikely that you have a website that works well for you.

There is no quick fix for this, great content has to be produced and published. It needs to be well presented, informative and engaging.

SEO Help

If you'd like help with SEO please contact me to discuss your website