With eCommerce business getting traffic is crucial. One of the biggest sources and most popular source for traffic is ranking high in the search engines. SEO or search engine optimization is the key ranking high, but doing SEO becomes a full time job and at some point most business have to decide whether to do it themselves or hire an SEO company to do their SEO for them.

The State of SEO

SEO is an industry that is constantly changing. Google and other search engines are constantly changing their algorithms which makes it an ever changing strategy to get your webpages ranked. 2012 has been an especially challenging year for SEO with huge Google updates called Panda and Penguin. These updates wiped a huge amount of sites out of the SERPs ( search engine results pages ), and strategies before Panda and Penguin are just no longer effective. Google updates are not a thing of Google’s past there will always be new ones that you or someone on your team will need to be on top of. Which brings us to time and expertise.

Time and expertise

SEO is not an easy task. It can take years to figure out and once you think you have it figured it out , it all changes. Unless you want to be glued to SEO forums and blogs and looking for SEO products with the latest and greatest techniques, looking for an SEO consultant might be a better alternative if you have the budget.

The SEO consultant/firm

SEO can be a bit of a headache for a business owner. Yes the information is out there to learn but it can takes years of learning and testing to be able to effectively carve out an SEO strategy that can be executed month by month and produce higher rankings. It takes a great amount of time to stay on top of and all business owners would agree that time is money. Sure the cost can be intimidating at first but once the ranking come in, the benefits can surely out way those costs.

Things to look for in an SEO company:

1. Do they do the work themselves?
You want to make sure you work with a company that you can directly speak to the individual working on your campaign. Can you call them up? Do they respond in a timely manner to your email?

2. Are they current?
SEO is no longer all about backlinks. Sure backlinks will always probably be part of the strategy but today’s SEO experts know that website architecture, content, and usability are the factors that search engines are going to be looking at more and more when deciding on which websites to rank in their search engines.

3. Do they meet with you regularly to talk about the strategy and results?
You will want an SEO company that will give you a ranking report at least once a month to go over and will schedule time with you once a month to discuss the ranking and strategies moving forward.

4. Do some research on the company.
Do they provide good content themselves? Who are some of their past clients? Are they a member of any industry groups like SEMPO?

To keep in mind

With today’s ever-changing search engine algorithms, and with the web going more and more social, many experts are agreeing that the future of rankings is going more and more toward the content and usability of businesses websites. Search engines are taking a serious notice of how much your content is being shared, how long users are staying on your site, and how fast they might hit the back button as soon as they arrive. It is more crucial than ever to have a plan to continuously make your website better for your visitors and to increase the conversions on your site with those visitors. With that in mind when choosing between different SEO companies make sure to note companies that offer more than just SEO. You want to find a SEO company that will help on your overall sites performance and online marketing and has a team of experts who will work each month to execute their strategy for you. Please visit on partners page to learn more about the businesses eMerchant recommends for continued business success.