how to choose your seo agency


SEO is the foundation of a good visibility on the internet. It is therefore essential to put its management in good hands. Agencies claiming to specialize in this field are legion, but not all are competent for all that. In order to better understand who will improve the Google referencing of your site, some criteria are to be taken into account. They will guarantee a quality relationship with your agency and a better monitoring of your performance over time.

1. Know the requirements of your project

Your role in the company may not imply an in-depth knowledge of SEO. If you are a business or marketing manager, you know the nuts and bolts of SEO, but not necessarily its subtleties.

Even before contacting a top seo company in France, it is important to know the criteria for a good website SEO. It starts with the structure of your site and its pages: a coherent tree structure, relevant keywords and title tags wisely used are just a few of the many elements that will allow your site to gain places in the precious ranking established by Google.

Depending on the size and activity of your structure and the current state of your site (old, recent or undergoing redesign), the needs will be different. These can range from technical optimization of the existing site to complete support during the redesign. In order to choose your SEO, know precisely your requirements and have an idea of the precise situation of your site. The agency's role will then be to analyze in depth the technical defects and provide advice for the referencing. The better you know your site, the easier it will be for you to judge its relevance.

Beyond the actions carried out to improve the referencing of the site, ask yourself first of all about the quality of navigation for the Internet user: are the objective and the functioning of the site clear? Is the information or purchase path simple and intuitive? These elements also count in the popularity of the site and contribute to its good ranking.

If the basis is good, the optimizations of natural referencing will be all the more efficient.

2. Make a first selection

To identify the first candidate agencies, there is nothing like an internet search. Indeed, who, better than a SEO agency, knows how to properly reference its site on Google? The good ranking of an agency's website can be considered as a proof that the agency has mastered the workings of SEO.

However, this is not an absolute truth. Independent consultants or smaller agencies with more modest claims can be just as competent. Moreover, their approach is often more personal and tailor-made than that of a large agency, which sometimes resorts to mass automation via, for example, large, less qualitative netlinking campaigns.

Also consider word-of-mouth and, if possible, interview marketing managers or webmasters to find out if they are satisfied with their agency. You will then be able to request quotes for your natural SEO.

3. The agency's attitude: an essential listening capacity

Following your first contact, the reactivity and attitude of the SEO agency are revealing of many things. With a qualified agency, listening plays a major role in the customer process. A phase of questioning and analysis of the need by the agency, from the first contact, is the sign of a qualitative approach.

Whether it is by phone or in person, the quote for your referencing must be detailed and each element must seem justified to you. To do this, ask for SEO quotes from several agencies to compare their rates for a complete SEO. You will thus establish a global estimate of the available SEO offers and choose, according to your budget, who to entrust with the advertising of your website.

The agency must be curious about the structure of the site and even before that, the objectives and policy of your company. These will enable him to draw up a typical profile of your customers and thus to know on which keywords to position themselves.

If recommendations or promises of hasty results are to be taken with caution, concrete examples of website optimizations, based on a first analysis of your site, will be a proof of competence. A competent interlocutor will be able to identify the first gaps in a few clicks.

4. Understanding the agency's strategy: what to ask for?

In order to understand how the agency manages its client accounts, you can, for your part, learn in depth about how the agency operates and how SEO is designed.

To assess the knowledge of your interlocutors, not only ask what ranking factors the agency intends to work on, but also find out if it intends to go even further, with actions it has designed or imagined itself to further refine the structure of the websites.

Any excessive automation of actions, such as massive netlinking, are measures that may appear to be effective, but they tend to harm the quality perceived by Google, and therefore the ranking.

Be sure of the type of keywords targeted by SEO optimizations. These are to be defined according to the profile of your customers, which the agency must seek to know in a specific way.

VSEs, for example, have a budget too tight to compete with big companies on very generic keywords (such as "car rental" or "hotel booking"). It is then up to the SEO agency to propose alternatives, such as referencing on niche keywords, which will allow you to improve your position on Google more effectively and bring qualified traffic to the site.

Finally, agree with the agency on the calculation of the return on investment. The criteria may differ from one structure to another, and the readability of the results must be optimal for you.

More generally, even if it has established processes that it applies to all its clients, the agency must be able to adapt to your needs.

5. Optimal transparency on services


The nature of the services must be explained to you in a concrete and comprehensible manner. A competent agency will be able to put itself within your reach, whatever your level of understanding of SEO.

The agency must be able to give you clear examples of current optimizations that it carries out on its client accounts and explain to you, in a more global way, towards which objective its different types of action are aimed.

Before defining an action plan, the agency will conduct an in-depth SEO audit, analyzing the entire structure of the site and its content. This will result in both positive and negative points: a qualified agency will also be able to point out the aspects of the site that do not need to be corrected, thus avoiding offering you a surplus of sometimes useless corrections.

In the agency you choose, a specific contact person will be dedicated to the management of your SEO. With this person a relationship of trust is established in principle. It is this person that you can contact in case of emergency or to study actions, and who will provide you with concrete answers on a daily basis.

Your referrer will also ensure rigorous reporting, most of the time on a weekly basis. A tool such as Google Analytics is frequently used to obtain complete data and analyze the behavior of Internet users.

In his report, your account manager will indicate what actions have been taken since the last report, and will make recommendations for the next period.

The agency must clearly indicate the nature and frequency of the follow-up, while adapting it to your structure and needs.

6. Going beyond SEO

Many agencies offer complementary services to SEO. These can sometimes effectively compensate for a weak natural referencing or having little potential.

Whether or not it offers the management of these levers (SEM, social networks, affiliation, ...), the SEO agency can provide recommendations including other levers. It is sometimes necessary to admit that the possibilities of progression in SEO are limited and that other solutions may be more suitable for your situation.

A new approach to request for quotes and SEO audit may be to consider other levers. The rates for a referencing on Google vary according to the type of referencing (natural or paid). In any case, there are many ways to improve the referencing, get well informed on the subject.

7. Measuring the promise of results

Optimizing a website for SEO is done according to established rules, which often bring positive results. However, the extent of the results depends greatly on the site itself, its activity and its audience. Therefore, it is not possible to announce with certainty numerical results. A serious agency knows this and will propose actions to optimize natural referencing, but will not commit to a precise level of performance.

It is important to keep this point in mind and to take the promises made by some agencies into account. Any commitment of this type made by the agency must be contractualized, otherwise it may be considered invalid.

Your commitment to the agency must be clear. A serious agency does not need to use long-term contracts to retain its client. A reasonable commitment period is one year maximum. Any renewal of this commitment must be announced in advance, there should be no tacit renewal.