One of the members asked “Who is the Best SEO company in Leeds” a couple of weeks ago and it started quite a debate! One of the common answers was “surely it’s whoever appears top for “SEO Leeds” in Google”.
For me it raised some interesting questions and points. The conversation initially was simply whoever appears top in Google. I then added a comment saying that a lot has to depend on the age of the domain (therefore age of business). How much focus is spent on the clients instead of the SEO’s own blog or website? A classic example here is how many solicitors don’t have wills.
SEO for Dummies
One member suggested that you could simply go any buy a book “SEO for Dummies” and this would solve all your SEO needs. Actually I love this idea; it backs up my philosophy when it comes to working with clients.
In my opinion one of the factors that makes an SEO Company or SEO Agency the Best SEO Company in Leeds (or any town for that matter) is that the SEO Company should be open and actively teaching and training the client in SEO. I hope my SEO Blog reflects this, not only does it mean the client is more involved, but it means the client can give clearer directions as the client can integrate the new knowledge into his own business (the client of course understands his business better than anyone else could ever understand it).
It also means that an SEO campaign becomes far more effective, imagine if I am working on a campaign and on top of that I have staff in the client’s business blogging in the right way, adding content in the right way, engaging with their target audience in a more productive manner. If the client is taught and guided throughout, the client will start naturally link building without even realising!!
It’s a win-win situation, any SEO company that doesn’t share the knowledge and doesn’t explain in simple terms what they are doing, in my opinion are not worthy of the title SEO Leeds.
SEO is nothing more than Common Sense
After all SEO is nothing more than common sense, it’s not black voodoo magic its simple common sense, if Google sees people talking about a particular site in a particular way Google believes that site should be shown to more people. If Google sees that people interact with a site in a particular way, whether that be the time they spend on the site or the number of pages they view, or if they fill out a form, again that gives Google another signal that the site is worthy of a high rank. If Google sees that a particular site sent traffic to another site and that traffic/user was not only engaged with the first site but the second too, Google believes that the first site is doing a good job of referencing the web and again it deserves a higher rank.
If Google sees that your business is listed in many places, you are seen as that bit more important to a business that isn’t listed in any places.
Are the key factors, but hopefully the above demonstrates common sense.
Anyway back to the topic! So yes I would recommend the new SEO for dummies but like anything experts have their place and I would hope this only enhances any campaign, by giving the client more of an understanding of the jargon and more involvement in the campaign and the ability to challenge their SEO consultant.
Is a recommendation always worth its weight in gold?
There then came the usual recommendations from other members of the group, members recommending other members as the best SEO in Leeds. Is this because they have used them or is it because they are friends or is this simply because someone told them they were the best? Who knows!
One member gave a great piece of advice, take time to speak to some different SEO companies in Leeds (or any other town!) and create a picture for yourself, and more importantly find a company that shows an understanding and actively wants to get involved in your business.
Vanity, Sanity or Reality?
Any SEO consultant or agency can bring traffic to your blog or website, any SEO consultant can change ranks for particular keywords, but surely the Best SEO consultant has to be an SEO company that understands ultimately that’s not what you are after. Surely you are after more sales, more leads, and more enquiries. It’s like my favourite financial saying “Turnover is vanity, profit is sanity but cash is reality”.
Does your SEO Company understand that? Does your SEO Company actively want to help you, does your SEO Company understand that getting to the top for a particular keyword may make you happy in the short term, but truly is it bringing you more business?
The best SEO Company should be analysing things like Google analytics to see if the traffic they are bringing is relevant, they should be setting up goals in analytics to create an easier way to see a return on investment. I read a great post recently with some simple steps on how to add some simple widgets to your Google analytics dashboard.
So back again to the topic, another great question came up, why does it need to be Leeds based? Very good question! I suppose the answer is it doesn’t, yes you have the benefits from having a local company of being able to have face to face meetings, which of course are important. But at the same time a good SEO company or agency should be able to adapt and be able to break down barriers using online techniques, whether that be utilizing online meetings, Skype video and conference calls or using one of my all-time favourite simple utilities enabling you to share ideas instantly – Jing . I find the free version sufficient and I have it running on my desktop at all times!
Exact Match Domains
So what about exact match domain names…. SEO Leeds finds two exact match domains at the top of Google.
So is the answer simply, find your best keyword and buy my-best-keyword[dot]com. No it is not!
Exact match domains in most cases are nothing more than spam; in fact both the examples found for SEO Leeds have a company name that is nothing similar to SEOLeeds!
The best SEO Company should be providing a long term robust solution, both of these top results suggest to me that it won’t be long before they get penalised. Google is already wise to exact match domains in a few cases there is a good argument for them, but in this case? No definitely not, neither company is called SEOLeeds and both companies have other domain names for the main brand, it may be seen as clever and it may be working right now, does it have longevity? No, I have seen and experienced many cases where this activity will simply cause a penalty and blacklisting from Google.
Another member makes a good point, another downside of exact match domains, means you exclude yourself from other keyword searches, take the example of having a town in the domain name, well you won’t appear for any other towns.
Understanding your target audience
Another member highlighted the fact that typing “Leeds best SEO Company” or “Search engine Optimisation experts Leeds” gives you very different results. He made an extremely valid point; the best SEO Company needs to be able to understand you target audience, your clients and your customers. What is your target audience typing into Google or Bing? Keyword research, and by that I mean proper keyword research and competitor analysis should highlight what keywords are being used across the search engines and more so regular interaction with tools like Google analytics should help the best SEO company determine what words and phrases are worth working on and what words/phrases aren’t.
Again it comes down to relevancy and engagement and the end goal, surely the client wants the sale, irrelevant as to whether they are top for “a-vanity-keyword”
Another member made the point that surely an SEO company that can promote their own brand far more than A1 SEO Company in Leeds is of far more interest. You want a digital marketer not a spammy company purely after your money!
What does “the best” even mean?
The latest comment on the thread made some valuable points, best for whom, best in what way? Does being at the top for SEO Leeds mean best value, best results, most talented? The answer is the Best SEO Company in Leeds ( or any other town ) is the company that can deliver exactly what you need, so you need to identify what you need first and not focus on purely traffic and ranks but more on finding the right person you can work with on a long term basis, and someone that you will put you in a position where you mutually benefit from each other, someone who is going to be open and give you tips and tricks along the way and make the campaign as effective as possible.
You may have guessed but this post is also an experiment, having never worked on the term SEO Leeds I currently rank in position #85 for this term. Let’s see what this post manages to do to that position!
For more advice or a free consultation, please contact me on 0113 320 21 21 or connect with me on LinkedIn.
Updated Ranks 18/2/2011, 24/2/11, 4/4/12, 30/5/12, 30/7/12
“SEO Leeds” moved from #85 to #79 to #54 to #43 to #27 to #13
“SEO in Leeds” now in position #9
“Search Engine Optimisation experts Leeds” moved from Not in the top 100 to #46 to #5 to #10 to #4 to #3
“who is the best SEO Company in Leeds” moved from not in the top 100 to #1 still at #1 to #2 still at #2
“best seo company in leeds” moved from not in the top 100 to #14 to #3 to #2 still at #2
“SEO Company in Leeds” moved from #74 to #26 to #10 to #9 to #8 to #5
“Leeds best SEO Company” moved from position #96 to #17 to #2 still at #2
“SEO Leeds Blog” moved from position #16 to #8 to #4 still at #4 to #3
“SEO Halifax” not in top 100 but lets see…
“Leeds SEO Agency” moved from position #56 to position #44 to #18 to #15 to #9
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