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How to find the best SEO professional or agency for your site

For years you run your business successfully, but you notice that your (online) business lags. No problem if you still earn enough, but what if your competitor grows online and you don't? How long will it take before he undermines your reason for existence?

You decide with some doubt in your mind to hire an SEO expert to increase your website traffic and sales. Smart guys with an understanding of the Internet and getting the job done to sit around the table with you. Meanwhile, you hide the fact that you don't have any clue what they are talking about.

"It's all about focusing on a few keywords and having a clear online strategy," says someone from the SEO group. Of course, you don't want to look silly, so you nod your head in full agreement.

The contract is almost signed. The only thing they still have to convince you of is that it does cost a small but long-term investment. But… advertising on social media costs a lot more. And what has that brought you?

Doing nothing is also not a solution. You have to do something to gain more traffic and online sales. Promises in the field of SEO can, unfortunately, not be made by SEO experts. It depends on too many factors. But you will get results! Even if it's just a huge bill. Because that will follow in any case.

SEO companies will f*ck you

The average SEO employee is young. Very young. Why is that? Because they don't cost that much, everyone can do the job, and the client pays a lot of money for it.

The only disadvantage of these guys is that they don't care about the client. However, they do care about their ego and turnover. They must meet their sales targets to continue to receive poor wages. Most of them are still students or freelancers, and they can't afford to have any income by being fired.

Therefore, you will be f*cked for more reasons than just their ego and turnover target.

SEO is no longer how it was, and the SEO professionals don’t know what to do anymore.

The current generation of SEO professionals really doesn't know how to help their clients. That's because SEO is no longer what it used to be.

Especially Google had smart ideas on how to rank great content from amazing sites higher than other content. But no matter how smart Google was, there were always smarter people who figured out how to be just a little bit smarter.

Many fraudsters and crooks made millions - or billions - by making smart use of Google's failures. Using the same keyword a thousand times in an article on a website used to score higher than a website that only did that a few times.

Placing invisible text with keywords on a page could get high rankings, and links from 100 of your own sites that you created just a day in advance also worked like a magnet. And these were the easy tricks.

If you could find a smart SEO professional, success was almost a guarantee. But not anymore. The tricks won't work anymore, and nobody understands what they have to do next to cheat on Google.

But the customers keep showing up, and based on old knowledge about Google, most of the SEO experts are still doing the same as before, namely selling goldmines. With one difference. They no longer exist.

Why don't the SEO tricks of Google experts work anymore?

Google has learned from its mistakes. She realizes like no one else that if she doesn't give good results after a search, she no longer has a right to exist.

Unprecedented amounts and man-hours have been spent by Google to prevent manipulation of their search results. For the time being, after several significant updates, it seems that they have succeeded. Partly thanks to technological innovation, the search engine has become smarter than all those SEO gurus.

Meanwhile, even within Google, no one fully understands the more than 220 factors that ensure that you can rank with SEO. It is because one factor is important, provided that the other factor is not unless another factor is.

Search result ranking has become a combination of factors that all weigh in whether you can rank high. Because of this amount of factors and combinations that influence each other, you have to be more than an autistic person to understand it. Let alone being able to apply it.

Google's algorithms have become more intelligent than humans

Even the seasoned SEO guru cannot possibly see through the web of factors to serve you well. The problem is that they hire such young boys and girls to keep up with the significant demand. These boys and girls have no idea what they are talking about and have the task of doing what they have always done.

They come across as smart and endearing, but what they do doesn't work anymore. How can you understand what Google itself no longer understands? Google's algorithms are now more intelligent than humans ever will be.

If an SEO provider is ranked high, it doesn't mean they are good.

Most people hire an SEO professional because they know they have to do something with it and because they have found a company or professional online. The article they found is full of fame about the successes of the past, and it makes you believe that he or the company knows what they are talking about… FAULT!

More than 90% of the articles read on Google are in the top 10. If you don’t find the article you are looking for, you should instead use a new search keyword.

Almost all articles you read score high in the ranking, and that gives confidence in the company or professional. But this is misleading. One of the most important factors to get high in the search results is Domain Authority. If a site has existed for years and very often scored high in the past, a new article will - temporarily - also score high.

Google has become very smart, but can't just terminate the Domain Authority that was built up in the past. That takes time. The most significant updates to prevent fraud and tricks were only implemented at the end of last year. It will certainly take until the end of this year before new and better results emerge.

What the SEO professional or company has achieved by getting their content in the top ten search results, will not simply also work for your company. They still benefit from a ranking based on old tricks that don’t apply to you anymore.

Can't you trust any SEO professional anymore?

It is possible to trust an SEO professional. But just like with any expertise you don't master yourself, it's tricky. That is why we give you a few tips.

1. SEO is a matter of a lot of time and a long-term investment

Google - and other search engines - are still unable to find and rank every new website and article every day. It can take days, weeks, or even months to index a new page or site and even longer to make it rank high. How nice it would be if you write a great article, and the whole world instantly finds your new article or site and thinks it’s the best of all time.

Dream on. That's not going to happen unless other established media such as news sites promote it for you.

To rank, you will have to write and post articles on your own site, and other blogs and ask for links to your article or website from other established sites.

If an SEO professional says something else and promises you to rank high instantly, he is probably not trustworthy.

2. SEO is a matter of learning and continuing to learn

What's true today will be different tomorrow. That's true in real life, but because of the thousands of programmers, engineers, and other smart people within Google who keep innovating, that's even more true for SEO.

If an SEO professional says he understands everything about SEO, he's probably not trustworthy.

3. SEO is all about being relevant

There is only one golden rule for SEO. Be relevant. Write content that matters. Teach people something new. Tell something special or offer something the rest of the world is waiting for. If you do, you don't need an SEO strategist or professional. Your site or article will be found and rank high in the end.

The only condition is that you tell or present it in such a way that people can and will listen to it or search for the words you use in your text or on your site. Another important thing is some technical principles.

If an SEO professional says that the words or relevance does not matter, he’s probably not trustworthy.

4. SEO is also about the code of your site

Many SEO experts continue to believe that good, frequently updated, and keyword-optimized content will get you high in Google's search results. And if you take care of enough backlinks from other sites, everything will be fine.

Because of Google's technological innovation, the rapid rise of voice search, and Google's mobile-first strategy, this is no longer the case. Your site must be well-coded.

If the code of your site is not excellent, you will never rank high in the search results. Unfortunately, most of their too young employees of SEO companies don't understand code.

If someone claims that you have to take care of this yourself or that it won't matter, then he probably isn't trustworthy.

5. Social media or Google ads won’t instantly make you rank higher

Many SEO agencies will try to convince you that if you want quick results, you also need to advertise on social media or Google. Advertising can indeed help, but it is not a prerequisite to getting results.

SEO agencies get commissions on their advertising expenses and may charge their hours spent if they can advertise for you. Usually, the results and the bills you receive are nothing but disappointing.

Besides, it is doubtful that you will get immediate results from the advertising and that the agency has the right knowledge about advertising. Again, also, online advertising takes a lot of expertise that most SEO agencies lack.

If an SEO professional or agency says that you need ads to score high in SEO, they probably are not trustworthy.

6. SEO never makes you grow 500% in traffic per year

If you grow from 0 to 500 visitors per month, you have 500% growth. That's a tempting ad if you're searching for terms like "How do I grow in traffic with SEO?" in Google. SEO is not going to provide the solution, and only a few agencies have really succeeded in making this kind of growth come true. Let alone now with the new Google updates. These kinds of growth numbers were only possible in the past. And by the way, 500 visitors per month is nothing if you want to grow a commercial enterprise.

Real and fast growth in visitors only arises if you become popular through the right PR, the right price, the right product, and then also told or presented in a way that people want it. SEO will support your growth but is a long-term investment that contributes and is necessary but rarely contributes to your short-term growth and sales.

If an SEO professional promises you fast growth through SEO, he’s probably not trustworthy.

SEO remains the best way to increase your online sales and leads

Indeed, SEO is still the best way to increase your online sales and leads. Whatever you do will either be more expensive or only have a short-term effect. So you need a clear and affordable SEO strategy. That means an SEO expert.

But if you only find an SEO expert and no developer who knows what technical SEO tweaks are needed, you still have nothing. At least, in most cases, the effect will be minimal.

So how do you tackle your SEO strategy?

SEO works as a depth investment in combination with a development professional

Fortunately - despite the negative tone of this article - there are plenty of SEO agencies and professionals who can help you. The requirement is that you can spend a long-term budget and therefore have patience.

Another requirement is finding a partner with technical knowledge of SEO. Someone who can do SEO programming and development.

Be in charge if you start SEO

Make sure that you are on top of your SEO strategy and execution and know exactly what your agency does. They cannot determine your strategy. You have to be involved in that. If you leave everything to your SEO agency means asking for trouble.

So you need an SEO partner, but you can't leave everything up to the partner. Nobody builds a house without having their own ideas, a clear opinion, or substantive knowledge about it.

Building your own house requires a daily commitment to get it the way you want it. That also applies to an SEO strategy and execution. Immerse yourself in the opportunities and pitfalls of SEO and only then find a partner who can help you. In this way, you avoid expenses that lead nowhere, and you avoid big disappointments by not getting what you want.

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