How To Hire The Right SEO Agency For Your Business: Interview With James Loomstein

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As part of our SEJ interview series, James Loomstein of Digitial Space Consulting joins us to discuss how to go about hiring the right SEO agency for your business.

If you’ve never hired an SEO agency or an SEO consultant before, it’s very likely that you don’t know where to start. You also need to know what questions to ask, and the key things you should be looking for.

James explains the basics of hiring an SEO agency in the video below:

Here are some key takeaways from the video:

  • Andrew says it’s important to find agencies who play well with other agencies. The era of the 500+ employee, full service agencies are over, Andrew believes. Everything has gotten so specialized that you need to find niche agencies to come in to handle specific things. That’s when it’s key to find agencies who are comfortable with working together.
  • There are two types of agencies, Andrew says. There’s strategy-oriented agencies and task-oriented agencies. Andrew suggests if you have people on staff capable of putting together an SEO strategy, then spend your money wisely and just hire a task-oriented agency to do the work of implementing the strategy for you.
  • When looking to hire an agency of any type, Andrew says it’s important to look for stories above all else. Don’t judge based on websites or whether that agency ranks organically for their target keywords.
  • Sit down with an agency and have them tell you stories about how they solved a problem and how they applied critical thinking. An agency telling you they helped someone to increase traffic by 50% isn’t nearly as important as them telling you a story about how they solved a client’s needs.
  • You need to find an SEO agency that’s not only comfortable with the technical side of SEO, but is also adept at critical thinking, understands marketing, and is able to put themselves in their client’s shoes.

Please visit SEJ’s YouTube page for more video interviews.

John Rampton
John Rampton is an entrepreneur, full-time computer nerd, and PPC expert. Founder at payments company I enjoy helping people and am always online to... Read Full Bio
John Rampton
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  • Full Service agencies are good at what they do – James is right – we shouldn’t expect them to have in-house SEO expertise too. Look for an SEO agency that has worked WITH other traditional agencies and build a rockstar team for your brand.
    (BTW you mention “Andrew” in the article text under the video – you might want to change that to “James”…)

  • “Don’t judge based on websites or whether that agency ranks organically for their target keywords.”.. The opposite of this is my point of view before because I think if their site can’t have a rank on search engine, it would be the same for the their clients that they will handle.
    But I just realized that their are also SEO agencies that don’t rank on search engines but provide great results for their clients. ‘It’s really important to look for stories above all else. ‘

    • Jeric agree with you on it, one should not judge an SEO agency based on it’s appearance in SERPS for specific keywords but one should rather take this research to a point where one actually talk to an agency and see what they have to offer and as this interview suggests that you should not ask what they accomplished instead you should ask how they accomplished it. Good point!

  • Saloni Brit

    One should always keep the said things in mind before hiring any SEO agency in order to get proper result. Generally SEO agencies just make fake commitment and do not actually show the desired ranking.

    • I cannot agree more Saloni, but perhaps these agencies are task oriented agencies as the interview suggests and it happens mainly because they don’t know marketing and they really don’t have any idea how to take execute seo tasks strategically.

  • Finally an interview that demythifies seo agency hiring process, I believe an agency should have both skills of accomplishing tasks and generating customized SEO strategies tailored according to its client’s needs and people who are hiring SEO agencies should not really care if this agency has in-house team or not. Remember ultimately the thing that matters is more FREE (i wont use organic only because good seo agencies generate it through lots of other mediums too where it may actually be more converting) traffic. Points noted 🙂

  • John, These are definitely great points to start with for those looking at hiring SEO agencies! Very concise and easy for the small business owner to make sense of. In addition, I would add sizing up a firm, agency or professional by performing a little investigative searching to see if they are listed in search engines for any type of scams, negative reviews, or complaints. This should not be the only indicator but can be used in moderation with what you’ve listed.