Search Engine Optimization has become an overpriced and under-reported sector of the internet marketing industry. Knowing which company to trust, the big ones or the one-man operations is a tough call. This is largely because of the huge number of SEO companies that claim to be great, but who are just American sales companies of Indian, or Filipino labor. There should be an easy solution to the problem; buy directly from the people doing the work. Unfortunately, it is usually very difficult to do that, and that is why big SEO firms can charge so much money to do it for us. Let’s talk about why it’s difficult, and how you can overcome the obstacles to save money on Search Engine Optimization.
The first, perhaps, the most obvious obstacle is that most people don’t speak the language that people overseas speak. In the Philippines, people speak Tagalog, and one of 170 other dialects, and English. Some people are surprised by this, and to others, it is not a surprise. You would be hard-pressed to find someone in most cities in the Philippines who do not speak English. The beauty of the situation for American companies looking for SEO Outsourcing help is that Filipinos are taught American English from elementary school through college. This is slightly different from Oxford English that is spoken in England, Australia, and many other places around the world including India. India was a British Colony, and they speak Oxford English. Great news for people in the UK who are looking for SEO Outsourcing! In reality, the difference in English is not big enough to impact your SEO efforts.
Ok, great, they speak English, but how do you find someone who understands Search Engine Optimization enough to hire them? There are countless job boards that you can use to find your outsourced labor. Most of them require a fee, but it is well worth paying for services that connect you to qualified people. Beware of people who abuse the job boards, however. You will find that most job boards only require applicants to fill out a form where they describe their skills. This adds an important interviewing step to the process. Make sure to set up a Chat or Skype interview with your potential employee, before you hire them. Ask them questions about Search Engine Optimization tasks that you will be assigned to them. This will help you identify who will be able to help your business, and who just needs a job.
The next obvious challenge is managing someone once you find and interview them. If you are an expert with Excel or Google Docs, and you happen to find an SEO expert overseas who is too, you can probably give them assignments, and monitor their work in a couple of hours every day. If you don’t know how to use spreadsheets very well, however, this step is the most difficult to solve. There are many paid task management solutions available to help with this. Generally, you should expect to pay a monthly fee for your task management provider.
The learning curve can be steep if you try to do it alone, but it is doable and highly valuable. Big SEO firms wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t profitable. The standard for SEO fulfillment in the industry is about 10%. This means that 90% of what you are paying goes to pay the sales team, lead generation groups, spiffs, and advertising efforts for the company you are buying from. Then they pay the person doing the work 10%. Outsourcing your SEO efforts can save you as much as 90%. To me, that is worth the hurdles.