How to Get SEO Results: Plan vs. Execution

I recently had a phone call from a business owner who was in a very interesting situation. He had been working with another marketing company that he hired to design his company’s website and work on SEO for it. He told me that he was not satisfied with the performance of this particular company because their SEO efforts had not resulted in any increase to his website traffic whatsoever.

He needed our help.

I asked him what steps had been taken by the other company to improve his website traffic. He wasn't sure. I recommended that before we started a discussion about our product, he should get a list of the things that his marketing company promised him as well as what this company had done so far in their efforts to achieve these goals.

He got back to me only to inform me that he’d had no luck obtaining the details of what had been done. He did, however, show me the company’s proposal. It outlined their promises, many of which were never delivered. You should be vary careful who you hire, especially if it looks too good to be true

A few highlights included:

  • Keyword research: After four months, the client had still not received any deliverables. He made multiple requests and was finally was given few keyword suggestions, all of which he considered obvious.
  • Individual page optimizations: The company promised to bring the client’s pages to full optimization based on the current best SEO practices. It took me only ten minutes to ascertain that nothing had been done to this end.
  • SEO based content development: The company had promised to produce web content but failed to deliver. When all was said and done, the client was required to provide 80-percent of this content himself.

The Worst Assumption in Marketing

The marketing company this client had hired kept insisting that it takes time to see results, which in many cases is correct. However, there was big problem lurking underneath this particular statement: no action had been taken to execute the strategy, thereby leaving no chance for any results to be achieved.

Results and activities are two separate things; however, the former is dependent on the latter. Only after the action items are implemented should you expect to start seeing results.

I suggested my plan of action, which involved two main steps:

  1. Refine the plan and actually deliver on the required work
  2. After the work is done, measure the results and continue to refine

Good Strategy and Good Execution

SEO is not magic. It’s is about having a good strategy and following through with a good execution. You have to know what to do and then do it well. After both requirements are satisfied, you then have to wait and to the fruits of your labor.

This client signed up for our SEO services. We developed a 6-month roadmap and started executing it month by month.  There was a plan in place at the beginning of each month, and a deliverable with visible results at the end of each month. It was made clear to the client what was being done and how each action impacted the website.

The results started rolling in within the first few months of our involvement, and the company experienced the highest amount of traffic in its history.

Final Thoughts

The point of the story is that you should never expect any results without first seeing what is being done to achieve to those results. The activity and results are separate but are very much interconnected with each other.

When you work with a marketing company, be sure to find out what the deliverables are for each of their promised actions.  The work needs to be done first and then, based on that work, you may start seeing results.