With the world going more digital by the day, businesses have to turn to digital marketing to remain competitive. A very large part of digital marketing revolves around SEO. Statistics state “SEO marketing spend is a $69 billion industry annually.” That means that businesses all over are spending a great deal of money to get in front of customers.
This can be a scary fact for businesses that have no experience in this field and have no clue how to use social media for business. Though SEO can be a learned skill, most business owners lack the time needed to put into learning it. The answer? Delegate the task. There are two options here: hire an SEO agency or keep it in-house, but how do you know which option is best for you? Read on for the pros and cons of each option.
Keeping It In-House
An in-house SEO specialist is obligated only to you. Their job is to focus on your company alone. This gives a greater amount of time to fully learn and understand the business as well as its vision. They spend their working hours marketing one company only so they can, in theory, put more of an effort into it. You also have more consistent access to an in-house SEO manager. You can check in more often, have more input to the campaign, and provide more oversight.
There are downsides, however. Keeping it in-house may be very costly. Not only are you paying a full-time salary and benefits, but you also have to equip that person to do the job. The responsibility of the resources required falls on you. If you are unsure of what is needed, that becomes another hurdle you must get through.
Additionally, you have to find someone capable of doing the job. This may include training someone who already works for you or having to hire someone you do not know. After hiring either as the SEO manager, you can expect a period of time with little to no results as they must learn their new role. SEO already takes some time to gain traction. Adding additional learning into the equation may cost you more than it is worth.
Hiring an SEO Agency
Hiring an agency can free up a lot of your time and resources. It is true that you will generally not be the only company they are working with, but that is not likely to interfere with their abilities. Agencies employ people that have experience in this field meaning that they are already up-to-date on the latest trends, and they already have effective strategies. Yes, the agency will have to spend some time getting to know your company and understanding your vision, but this usually takes much less time than having to learn a whole new skill, i.e. SEO management.
It may also cost much less than keeping it in-house. Agencies are already equipped with the resources they need to do the job. Therefore, you are not responsible for that cost. Also, you pay agencies a set amount according to them completing agreed-upon deliverables, not hourly. You also do not pay benefits.
There is always the fact that an agency will not feel as dedicated to your vision as an internal employee. This does not necessarily affect their ability to do the job. At times, an agency’s lack of experience with your company may be beneficial. Looking from the outside-in can provide a unique perspective.
So What’s the Right Choice?
Both. Neither. It is really a personal decision to be made. You must assess your needs and determine your priorities. Decide how much you are willing to invest, how involved you wish to be, etc. Those answers will help you decide.
Many people are afraid of the risk of hiring externally. It is a valid concern as risks are always involved when outsourcing a job. You may find yourself stuck in a contract with an unsatisfactory agency. You may spend the money with no results to show for it. Even worse, what if that agency works for both you and a competitor?
There are a lot of shady SEO companies out there, but what if you could find one that Guarantees High-Quality Link Placement and works with only one client per industry per city?