“Every day, there are billions of searches on Google in more than 150 languages around the globe,” Google had said last year. It was a tall claim but there wasn’t anyone who would refute the tech giant’s statement. While Google takes the larger share of the pie when it comes to search engines, there are other players too like Bing and Yahoo. However, the common thread running between them is that these search engines have become a ubiquitous part of our lives.
Our degree of reliance on these search engines has meant that search engine optimization (SEO) has become an important aspect of digital marketing strategy. If you want your business to thrive online and be discovered, you have to invest in SEO. Better search engine visibility might lead to boosting lead generation, increased brand awareness, and eventually result in generating higher profits.
While you might lack the time and necessary skills to improve your site’s search engine ranking, there are SEO experts who can help implement a good SEO strategy for you.
However, you need to prepare the right set of questions for SEO consultants to arrive at the best expert who can give your brand a boost. To set the ball rolling, we have prepared 10 SEO consultant interview questions that you might have to ask to kick-start the process:
1) Can you provide me with a list of past clients for whom you have delivered results?
Most SEO consultants would be willing to share a list of clients with whom they have worked, detailing campaign strategies and end results. It would help you gauge whether the SEO expert is credible and capable of executing your project effectively.
2) What is your SEO philosophy?
There are three major aspects of SEO:
Technical SEO: It refers to code, site structure, and other metrics that could boost your search traffic. An SEO consultant will ensure that search engines don’t find any errors and can crawl your site and its content comfortably.
User experience (UX): It analyses content optimization, navigation, and keyword optimization.
Off-page SEO: It helps improve your SEO presence through effective backlinks.
Modern SEO professionals should be able to give you a lowdown on their approach by involving all three aspects in their strategies. They need to find the right balance between these components so that they can execute your project flawlessly.
3) Can you help my website achieve a No. 1 ranking on search engines?
If the SEO expert says yes, it’s time for you to ask the professional to leave. This is because no SEO professional can guarantee that your website will be ranked on the search engines’ page one index, leave alone achieve the numero uno rank.
The ones who make such promises are most likely using black-hat techniques, which might get you traffic for a short period of time but will ultimately result in a penalty along with reduced traffic and rankings.
4) So how will you deliver results?
Before coming to a meeting, a good SEO consultant will have the blueprint of your website, detailing how and where your website lacks and ways to overcome these challenges. If your aim is to improve traffic, they may recommend keyword optimization or content creation.
If you want more local traffic, they can optimize your local business profiles on the directory. Delivering results depends on a lot of metrics but the bottom line is that their plans should be aligned with your goals.
5) Would you be implementing strategies that involve mobile optimization?
This is a very key question. If the consultant doesn’t have a strategy in place for mobile optimization, you wouldn’t want to hire him. Google recently announced that they are moving to a mobile-first index, meaning mobile optimization has become extremely crucial if you want your website to rank higher.
So you need to look at companies who have the necessary bandwidth to conduct a mobile audit of your site.
6) Do you follow search engines’ webmaster guidelines?
A good SEO consultant would strictly adhere to Google’s webmaster best practices. These guidelines help Google identify and understand your web pages and eventually rank them on its search engine.
They also specifically prohibit 12 common SEO tricks, including automatically generated content, hidden text or links, sneaky redirects, etc.
7) How do you go about conducting keyword research?
Earlier, keyword research meant developing content with keywords inserted at various places. But this practice has become outdated. Modern keyword research refers to understanding the information a user is seeking while searching for a keyword phrase. Search engines then show content related to the intent behind the search.
A good SEO professional should be referring to user intent and speaking about the tools they use to determine keyword intent rather than spamming content with keywords.
Always remember that one high-quality link from a credible website is more effective than other numerous low-quality purchased links. So the SEO consultant should be focused on quality rather than quantity.
9) How do you report on progress?
If you have come this far, you would’ve discussed your goals in detail already. It is now time to ask how often the SEO professional would send you a progress report and how they would measure the success metric. You need to be careful of companies that cannot provide detailed information on how progress will be measured and reported.
10) What happens when we part ways?
It is extremely important for you to ensure that you remain the owner of all the optimized content you have paid for.
Hiring an SEO Consultant from India
According to several studies, it’s been found that companies have to pay most retainers an amount between $251 and $500 a month on the lower end or $2,501 and $5,000 a month on the higher end while contractual projects ranged from $1,000 to $7,500.
Hiring an SEO consultant from India could prove to be cost-effective because the average SEO salary per hour is around Rs 250 which amounts to Rs 4,50,000 per annum. Companies would also get access to a large talent pool.
SEO helps websites rank on search engines. The higher your rank, the more likely it will generate leads and bring traffic to your website. So SEO is becoming increasingly important for businesses to do well and attract customers.
With most companies not having the necessary skill set to work on SEO metrics, they are looking to hire SEO experts to help bring business to their websites.
However, these companies need to prepare the right set of questions for SEO consultants before hiring an expert. We decided to come to your aid by listing 10 top SEO consultant interview questions.