The Ultimate Guide to Hiring An SEO Expert for Success


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Optimising your website for search engines is one way to gain new customers by driving traffic to your site.

With high search engine rankings, web visitors can easily find your business without much fuss. High search engine rankings also mean you attract the ideal customers for your business – which can lead to more sales.

Hiring an SEO expert for your business

Now, you have the task of hiring an SEO expert to get your website into the premiere top of search engine rankings.

Backlinko explains in their Definitive Guide to SEO the skills an SEO Expert should be proficient with.

On researching for the best candidate for this role, you stumble upon thousands of SEO companies – each claiming to possess the expertise necessary to take your website to the very top of search rankings in your niche.

So how do you choose the best SEO company to work with?

The truth is – finding the right SEO expert is a tedious and time-consuming task since an effective SEO strategy takes months to yield results. It’s difficult to tell whether an SEO company can deliver on its promises until you’re deep in bed with them.

Thus, it’s crucial to carry out a strict vetting process before hiring an SEO expert for your business.

Here we’ve compiled an ultimate to-do list to help you hire the best SEO expert for your business.

Let’s get into it

1. Is the SEO company established and experienced

No matter the stage of your business; growing or established, you should always be looking to work with experienced SEO experts.

Since your business will largely depend on your web search rankings, working with an established and experienced SEO agency should be your top priority.

For one, an experienced SEO company guarantees top of the line expertise and professionalism in their work. More than that, it brings years of SEO experience to the table.

How can you measure an SEO company’s experience?!

You can measure a company’s experience in years, the number of its active clients as well as its case studies and portfolio.

The number of years an SEO company has been in business matters as you can be sure it has the necessary experience gained from working with different businesses over the years.

Years in business also indicate an SEO company’s success in its business. If an SEO company has active clients, it shows that other businesses trust their services.

When deciding if an SEO company has the necessary experience to work optimise your business, reviewing their SEO portfolio shows you results the company has churned out for other websites. And also you get a feel for their SEO processes and strategies.

Most experienced SEO companies have a well-defined SEO process, so it won’t be too difficult to understand if the company is a perfect fit for your business.

Here are a few important questions to ask your prospects;

  • How long has the company been optimising websites?
  • What are their typical results with a similar business like yours?
  • How long it will take to see results?
  • How many clients they have that have a similar business?

There’s always the temptation to save funds when outsourcing business processes. However, SEO services are the backbone of your marketing activities. So avoid going cheap.

Even though you may save funds hiring freelancers and small and medium SEO companies, the reality is – many freelancers do not have the time to keep tabs on your website as they are busy chasing down new business. While small and medium SEO agencies do not have the resources to give full attention to your website. This is why shelling out top dollars to secure the top SEO experts not only saves you time but also gives you the peace of mind in knowing you are working with experienced and established hands.

Consider that a website SEO campaign is a long-term project. It needs time to yield results. This means you’ll be in partnership with your SEO expert for a minimum of 6-12 months. Working with professionals and companies who have a reputation to uphold will serve you well.

2.What should you expect to pay?

One of the most popular questions we get about hiring SEO agencies. aHrefs suggest an SEO Expert will expect to earn between $75 – $150 per hour.

Prices for hiring SEO experts differ. Some agencies charge as low as $1000 per month depending on the scope of your SEO campaign. Other SEO experts charge as much as $40,000 per month based on its authority, expertise, and positioning.

Keep in mind that with SEO, you are paying for the quality of work as well as other services that may come with it such as quality, ongoing support, communication, and professionalism.

When deciding what to pay for SEO services, consider the scope of work you need to be carried out on your website, the solutions you are looking to implement with your SEO strategies, and how it tallies with your business goals.

You’ll be fortunate to pay cheap for quality service, however, we never recommend going cheap. As we mentioned, your website is your top marketing tool and you should consider paying for the best SEO expert to get your business to the top of search rankings.

Think of your website’s SEO as a long-term investment. Investing in the right SEO agency to optimise your website will be a valuable marketing asset for years to come.

3.Can you update your website’s SEO yourself?

Even though you’ll be working closely with the agency to align your SEO campaign with your business goals, outsourcing a business process to an SEO agency means you hand over your most potent marketing tool to an outsider.

Optimising your website for search engines is an ongoing project since search algorithms are always updated.

However, having a basic understanding of how SEO works make for an easy transition period for when you take up the reins from the SEO experts. Ideally, you should look to update certain processes on your websites such as on-page SEO and SEO content publishing. Other technical SEO processes can still be handled by the SEO company.

And that takes us to the next point.

4.Will you get support on demand?

Although you can handle some of your website’s SEO processes, other processes may be too demanding or technical for you or your staff. Well,’ this is why you are hiring an SEO expert in the first place.

One important factor to consider when hiring an SEO company is the quality of ongoing support you’ll receive.

Since the search engine algorithm is updated all the time, Will the SEO agency be on hand to make necessary changes to your website? Does the company offer ongoing support?

Hiring a company that provides top-notch ongoing support is critical for your website’s ranking success as SEO isn’t a one-off job. Certain technical aspects of your website’s SEO must continually be updated. Moreover, SEO requires continuous iteration to get your website to the top spot and keep you there.

Without ongoing technical support, you might find yourself in situations where you’ll need to shell out more in hiring other SEO professionals.

5.Hire only one SEO expert to optimise your website

For convenience sake, outsource your website’s services to one agency. Having one company handle your website’s SEO ensures a smooth and seamless process.

This means making sure the SEO company you are considering hiring provides the full range of SEO services needed to rank your website on the top of search engines.

Your website SEO is your most valuable marketing tool for your business. Making it work requires an easy and smooth system for management.

Again, implementing effective SEO is a long-term process but plays a vital role in your business’ growth.

Other services include anything supporting your business SEO efforts and visibility on search engines. This could be graphic design services, SEO content writing and copywriting, website design and UX, brand building consultation, etc can be necessary for promoting your business marketing effort. If possible, try limiting your SEO process to one company.

6.Request work portfolio and case studies

Perhaps the most important on this checklist. When deciding to hire an SEO expert, the most important box to tick is reviewing the company’s case studies, testimonials, and portfolio.

Ideally, you should look for case studies that highlight the company’s expertise in working with similar companies like yours. Look for its strength, weakness, and area they particularly shine in. This helps you create a clear picture of what to expect in your SEO campaign.

When reviewing the company’s portfolio, research the businesses listed on the portfolio and case studies. Use SEO tools such as Moz, Ahrefs, Mangools, Ubersuggest, Spyfu, etc for analyzing their websites’ SEO improvements. This will give you a good reference point for what the company can do for you.

A great SEO company should have a handful of case studies and testimonials on the work they’ve produced.

Commendable testimonials on the SEO company you are considering is a great sign that your business will be in the right hands.

7.Research the SEO company’s website and Google ranking

A telling sign on a great SEO company is, no doubt, their website. When hiring a chef, one way to tell if you are getting the real deal is by tasting the chef’s cooking, right?!

The same is true for an SEO agency.

An SEO company’s website should demonstrate the value it aims to provide.

Since SEO companies are in the business of optimising websites for high search engine rankings, the company’s websites should be well-optimised and ranking high on search engines – at least in local web rankings for SEO-related searches.

Other than search rankings, Keep an eye out for the prospective SEO company’s website for great SEO practices like UX, SEO content, and technical SEO practices.

You’ll learn a couple of things from reviewing an SEO company’s website;

  • How long they’ve been optimising websites for search engine rankings
  • The quality of their SEO practice
  • The company’s portfolio and clients they’ve worked with

SEO companies that do not display their website should raise red flags for you. Without reviewing their websites, it is impossible to know what to expect from the company.

8.Find out how long it will take before seeing ranking results using their strategy

As we’ve mentioned several times in this guide, an effective SEO strategy takes time to implement. No matter which SEO specialist works on your website, SEO is always an ongoing project. Nevertheless, each company has its unique strategies and processes based on its resources, time, and staff. And the best SEO companies can usually predict how long their processes take before the results kick in.

The SEO experts you are prospecting should be able to estimate( with some degree of accuracy) when you should get ranking results on your website based on their experience working with businesses similar to yours.

When choosing an SEO expert to hire, find out how long it will take to see results. Also, dig into the company’s unique processes or strategies that are specifically tailor-made for your website or business.

9.Define your business goals and to measure your SEO efforts

What marketing KPIs are important to your business? Are you looking to score a solid ROI for your marketing effort or looking to rank on the number one spot in your niche? How do you measure your SEO efforts in a relationship with your business goals?

When hiring an SEO expert it’s important to discuss your business goals and find out if the company can deliver on these goals.

Depending on the companies answer on how it will deliver on your business goals, that will give you a great indication if the company is the right fit for your business.

Although increasing your website’s search ranking is the main aim of your SEO campaign, finding an SEO expert who understands and deliver on your main business goals is incredibly valuable for your business success.


SEO is an ongoing process of iterating your website to strike a balance with search engines as well as web visitors. When done right, it can serve your business for years to come. This means hiring the best SEO specialist to work. The best SEO agency provides the perfect balance of professionalism, expertise to deliver on your SEO goals as well as your business goals. However, you must make the investment to get the best results.

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