”Do I need an SEO company?”, is a question that business owners ask themselves. There are so many horror stories about working with an SEO company, we thought it would be good to explain our role in your business and why it’s important to use a company providing our services. We explain the costs involved whilst being as transparent as we possibly can.
My Competitors Appear in Google For Every Keyword
When you look in Google and see your competition, and not your own business, this suggests that the competition are using an SEO Company. This is the first part of how an online marketing company like Chameleon can help.
We have the tools and knowledge to look deep into what the competition are doing. Our research is invaluable and takes us just a few hours to identify what your rivals have been doing. We can trace back through years of their data and exactly work out how they have achieved success.
SEO companies like Chameleon use tools that are amazingly complex. Our SEO software is able to gather data about the competition that can be invaluable to fully grasp what is being carried out to achieve such high rankings within Google.
What Tools Do SEO Companies Use?
SEO Companies have to invest in equipment and software. There are many tools available which cover everything from exploring domain names or URL’s to looking at backlinks to check negative value which could lead to a penalty. Researching page titles, on-page content layout, structure, alt tags and anchor text to identify the keywords a webpage is aiming for and what the domain is actually achieving. Our tools show where the domain currently ranks in Google for specific keywords.
Majestic SEO is one of the tools that all good SEO Companies will have in their tool box, Chameleon Web Services SEO consultants use it every day. We believe it is nearly impossible to carry out SEO without this software. Majestic crawls over 750 billion domain URL’s discovering insights on 2.8 trillion keywords, making this the largest web crawler in the world.
Anyone can use Majestic SEO but you need knowledge to understand the information and you have to pay a subscription cost. There are different subscriber levels allowing you to use the software in varying ways. For example if an SEO company is going to be looking at large blue chip companies then the amount of backlinks these domains will have require a greater subscription level than the Silver platform which costs £44.99 per month and allows you to download 5 million backlinks per month. This also provides 5,000 site explorer data rows and you can run 60 detailed reports per month.
If you are looking to carry out a lot of research on companies who rank on page one of Google, there are Gold and Platinum levels which provide even more data to be gathered. For example the Platinum package allows 950 detailed reports and 100 million downloadable backlinks with 30,000 site explorer data rows.
We use Majestic SEO software as an integral part of our SEO process, if a business asks for quotation to carry out SEO services this is one of the first tools we use to check the trust flow and citation of the domain name to see if it has been damaged by a previous online marketing Company.
The team at Majestic came up with a great idea of showing who uses the software to its full potential and we are proud to currently rank 5th on the Global Leaderboard. The Majestic guys added over one hundred awards that can be achieved by using the platform and it takes a long, long time to achieve all the badges. Each badge achieved will boost the companies Majestic score, if you become a high level user then you will appear on the Global Leader page here – https://majestic.com/business
We also have our own business profile at Majestic SEO, it can be found here and explains a little about who we are:-
To provide an example showcasing how powerful this SEO software is we will use the bbc.co.uk website as an example:-
The data available provides a valuable insight into the online footprint that any domain has. Majestic SEO is one of the best search engine optimisation software tools available. We could not run our online marketing business without this software.
We use the SEO software SEM Rush which is very important for looking at competitors. It’s vital to understand everything that you can about your competition such as the organic keywords traffic and Google AdWords keywords that are being used. We are able to setup tracking data to capture specific information which is used every day. The ability to add a domain and analyse the keyword history data over the last year is an important part of our research.
Anyone can use this software at a monthly subscription cost starting at Pro level at $69.95 per month. This allows 10,000 results per report and you can run 3,000 reports per day. SEM Rush also provides the ability to create up to 5 projects tracking 500 keywords.
If you are looking to investigate higher amounts of data on blue chip companies you will need the Business profile which is currently priced at $549.95.
To give an example of the powerful data captured by SEM Rush software take a look at the example of the bbc.co.uk:-
You can dig very deep into the data relating to any domain name and find out valuable information which SEO companies can use to move a clients website up the rankings.
We also use other in-house developed software to identify information which provides us with an upper hand over our competitors in the SEO industry.
Keyword Rank Tracking
An important part of what an Search Engine Optimisation Company does for a client is tracking the keyword positions in search engine results. This is vital to see firstly growth in ranking positions after carrying out SEO tasks but, most importantly, it provides a historical footprint showing growth.
If, for example, Google roll out a new algorithm, a SEO company can identify a problem instantly providing the ranking tracking is monitored daily. With their valuable experience they can fix problems and keep rankings on page one of Google.
At Chameleon we have used most of rank tracking software available, testing them to the limits and this has been a costly experience in some cases with results that we will not share online. We have also been involved in helping some of the leading rank tracking software develop by offering suggestions and improvements.
We currently use more than one rank tracking platform which includes in-house developed software that monitors daily client growth to provide backlink protection against a negative SEO attack.
We invest into more than one paid platform due to the fact that Google makes changes and this can effect our collective softwares usability. We need to have 100% accurate data at all times and comparing between reports is invaluable. For example the mobile roll out on the 21st April meant that many SEO rank tracking software providers needed to understand how to offer this as a solution. Mobile rank tracking is vital with the huge growth of users using Google on mobile devices.
There are many rank tracking software providers including (in no particular order) Pro Rank Tracker, Rank Watch, Rank Ranger, SE Ranking and they all play an important role for an online marketing company.
Anyone can use this software and costs vary on the level of detail required with the number of keywords you are looking to track. Also, if you require daily tracking this can be more costly.
Costing examples can be from £10 to £535 approximately and the required level will depend on the end results required.
At Chameleon we spend in excess of £3,000 per month on tracking keywords for clients due to the volume of keywords we monitor and the type of clients we work with.
To provide some information to show an example of rank tracking software data displaying daily positions which can quickly be shown in a graph output for specific date ranges:-
You can see from the graphs daily positions that, over time, the keyword “seo company in Birmingham” is moving from position 4, 5, 6 and then up to position 2. This is actual real data captured and shows how Google search results fluctuate as marketing companies carry out SEO work. It is for this very reason you should always have a high focus on search engine optimisation due to the fact that SEO does not stop, websites are gaining power daily and this effects Google positions.
Another example of rank tracking software monitoring, again, real data showing our own rankings.
In the examples here we have used our own SEO company rankings and blurred out sensitive data for our own privacy.
You can see in this example that we have ranked position 1 dropping to 2 at times but a constant top 3 position has been achieved for over 12 months. In fact we have been in this position since 2010 and we have always maintained high rankings when Google change the algorithm.
Do You Need To Create Backlinks?
Many companies do not understand the importance of backlinks and we have had conversations with potential customers in the quotation phases where it is believed that they are not important or anyone can build them.
Building backlinks can be very dangerous and if carried out incorrectly, or without checking the history and trust of the domain, a backlink could result in a penalty. You should also not pay for links provided by a link network as this is against Google’s guidelines and will, again, result in a penalty.
We recommend looking at methods of creating a natural backlinking profile by creating content that is both useful and interesting, which connects with the target audience. This will generate backlinks and these are part of the signals that Google uses to identify the relevance and trust of a domains content. There are many methods of generating backlinks which add power and this is a very complex topic that often causes a lot of debate.
Part of an SEO company’s job is to check the back linking profiles to ensure this stays clean. The problems we discover are that many SEO companies create the problems in the first place for their clients by not understanding how Google works and what the requirements are needed to make Google understand a websites content. It requires experience to understand the data and analyse its importance in search results on page one.
Chameleon has ranked number 1 in Google on page one for the keyword “Google Penalty Advice”:-
This has provided Chameleon with an insight into the problems that many SEO companies cause by creating tens of thousands of spammy links to clients domain names on blog sites as comments and forum posts or profiles.
This means that the internet is becoming full of useless data and it is for this reason Google make changes to combat this spam and prevent this adding value to rankings. In 2009 this was a method used by most SEO companies and there was software available which carried out these tasks.
It is one of the most frustrating things as a webmaster to have spam comments auto generated and requiring approval. How many times have you seen this in your inbox?:-
A new comment on the post “SEO Company” is waiting for your approval
Many clients have no idea what this is and we do everything possible to block it allowing clients email accounts to show real emails relating to their business rather than showing lots of spam emails about spam links.
Do not try and create links unless you understand what you are doing.
Finding An SEO Company You Can Trust
Chameleon has been in the internet industry since 2001 and have witnessed a lot of SEO companies come and go. Many have changed domain names due to issues that they have caused in an attempt to grow their own websites rankings.
The SEO sector is obviously crammed with companies suggesting that they are the best and everyone will explain that their methods are better than another. The proof is to look on Google and check to see if you can find them.
There are various websites you can use that will quickly tell if you an SEO company even has a profile online such as www.alexa.com which will show where the website ranks in terms of traffic globally.
The smaller the number the higher the traffic. Alexa was founded in 1996 and is one of the global pioneers of analytical insight. The traffic estimates that are used are based on data from their global traffic panel which samples millions of internet users using over 25,000 different browser extensions. All the data is compiled and then they create a global website traffic leader board.
If you have an SEO company that doesn’t have a profile, perhaps you should start asking questions.
We take pride in being unique, we break the mould providing our clients with ethical SEO services and operate in a transparent manner putting the trust back into the SEO sector. All of our clients often thank us for what we do and for what we have achieved which includes not only growing their business online but explaining how search engine optimising works, helping them understand what they can do to help themselves.
We do not hide behind technical jargon, we break it down into ways that our clients can understand.
We have never used a sales team for cold calling, we do not carry out email marketing, we simply do our job and the achievement results for our clients is the same as what we use to grow our own business.
For example look at the search keyword “Birmingham SEO Company”:-
We rank in position 1 and 2 on page one of Google, this sends a clear signal in our view that we understand SEO and can achieve high ranking results.
To explain things for people new to search, the companies paying for Google AdWords are in competition with each other and bidding an amount of money to have a position in the Google search results due to them not ranking for the keywords. This costs around £13.00 a click for example which results in potential leads as inexperienced Google users think that the SEO company paying for the Google AdWords is ranking in position 1.
Many SEO companies will use Google AdWords to achieve leads and this is because page one has 10 spots making it difficult to achieve results. AdWords is often used as a way to find clients who do not understand how Google works.
Some of the major UK keywords cost a large sum of money and to cover the advertising costs you need to charge your clients a lot of money due to increased overheads.
The list here shows some random keywords that we believe do not add any value to an SEO Company and yet the Google AdWords costs are very high and companies pay for them.
|Keyword ||Avg Monthly Search ||Cost Per Click ||Monthly Cost |
|PPC Agency ||590 ||£33.34 ||£19,670.60 |
|SEO PPC Agency ||10 ||£22.77 ||£227.70 |
|SEO and PPC Agency ||10 ||£22.54 ||£225.40 |
|SEO Agencies ||140 ||£21.82 ||£3,054.80 |
|Out Source SEO ||50 ||£21.30 ||£1,065.00 |
|Best UK SEO Company ||10 ||£21.24 ||£212.40 |
| || || || |
|Total ||810 ||£143.01 ||£24,455.90 |
An SEO company using these keywords would need a budget of £24,455 per month to achieve constant positions in Google Search and we believe this would not have a viable return on investment.
If you look at one of the major SEO company keywords in Google AdWords:-
This keyword alone costs £14.43 a click with a search volume of 2,900 per month and this means any SEO company wishing to attack this is going to spend a lot of money on advertising to try and win clients:-
|Keyword ||Avg Monthly Search ||Cost Per Click ||Monthly Cost |
|seo company ||2900 ||£14.43 ||£41,847.00 |
As a company that can achieve organic SEO traffic we do not do this. We focus on keywords that have a ROI and will drive business to us. We use our in-house developed SEO techniques to gain rankings which saves us thousands a month on Google AdWords costs.
The SEO Company’s Role In Your Business
To summarise all this information and explain what the role of the SEO company does for your business, please read below.
- Investigate and research the competition.
- Understand the competition focus.
- Understand what the competition have done to achieve their goals.
- Identify what competitor backlinks add value.
- Identify what backlinks your domain has.
- Identify what backlinks cause problems.
- Create a plan for natural backlink building.
- Identify keywords that will have a ROI.
- Track the rankings of the keywords.
- Check and fix all the on-page content.
- Identify website improvements to increase conversion rates.
- Check and create profiles that Google uses as signals for rankings.
- Provide advice on how to move your business forwarding using other means.
- Protect against negative SEO.
How To Choose an SEO Company
We recommend if an SEO company emails or cold calls you, first look at why they choose this method of contact as a business model. Having a sales team results in higher overheads in order to win work. These overheads are going to be passed on to the client and the very fact that the company is cold calling suggests that they do not get traffic online.
Chameleon does not spend money on getting sales which means our business spends its money in areas that adds value to our clients. Our work will attract new clients as we achieve rankings for our own benefit, in order to do this we have to understand how to carry out SEO in the most competitive sector – our own.