Outsourcing Your SEO in 2023
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Strategies which helped your business improve its organic search rankings in the previous year may not work this year. Search engines are constantly improving their ranking algorithms, as the way people search changes.
In 2023, marketers believe there will be a shifted focus on personalization and anticipating what the customers want. Beyond topping search results, SEO will be more aimed toward conversion.
SEO is the core of organic marketing, but it is dynamic and ever-evolving, so to stay in front of your competition your business must also evolve.
Which is why 60% of businesses outsource SEO to specialists while the rest assign it to an in-house expert team. Whether you’re a startup, a business strategizing ahead of launching a new product or aiming for a new market demographic, or someone who hasn’t tried SEO yet, outsourcing is the best option to get your SEO done professionally.
Why do companies outsource SEO?
As of 2023, organic traffic is responsible for 53% of the total website traffic. Like how businesses outsource virtual staff for its plethora of benefits, outsourcing SEO offers brands a solution to pinpoint important strategic objectives while leaving the difficult task of achieving those to SEO specialists.
Increased efficiency by reducing workload
Optimizing your website pages to appear high in search results is already time consuming. If you include the months it takes to design an effective SEO strategy, implement, and evaluate what works for your business, you’ll have less time to focus on your core business.
The same burden follows your marketing team. If they’re working for your organic search while doing critical tasks like content creation, they won’t have the time to keep up with SEO’s learning curve. And if they’re inexperienced with technical SEO, mistakes along the way can further drain your time and resources.
You can save time, resources, and reduce the workload for you and the in-house team by outsourcing to experienced SEO specialists. Minimizing the risks, while maximizing the results.
Cost-efficient comprehensive solution
Hiring and training an in-house employee has higher overhead costs than outsourcing. With SEO, training never stops. You have to spend time or money, to learn how the ranking algorithms work, with search engines continuously refining their ranking process, and new tools to learn for increasing SEO effectiveness.
An outsourcing agency is more complete – a comprehensive solution in their packages like technical site audits, off-page and on-page optimization, content creation, competitor analysis and more. You do not have to recruit and train a team which can take months.
Improved scalability and flexibility until end of projects
Whether you’re doing it yourself or you have an in-house team, doing SEO can get challenging when responsibilities pile up. Service providers have a reserve of skilled and experienced SEO specialists you can immediately integrate through outsourcing.
When a project ends, you can easily pause or stop your contract with your service provider. While you pay in-house employees the same no matter how much workload they have for the day or month.
Other businesses are also outsourcing a part of their overall SEO strategy . Below are some notable statistics why businesses outsource SEO.
- 40% of SMBs outsource some or all of their SEO responsibilities. Small businesses outsource SEO to tailor their content to their goals. With smaller budgets than large multi-location businesses, they can maximize the resources they have by outsourcing their SEO projects. And this also helps businesses keep their online presence in line with the current SEO requirements.
- 91% of large, multi-location businesses have at least one full-time SEO resource. 36% of enterprises have at least six or more full-time SEO employees while the rest have at least one full-time employee dedicated to the company’s SEO responsibilities. But 10% of these enterprises have yet to hire an SEO expert to fill the gap in their online presence.
- 68% of B2B marketers might transfer a mid-level marketing position’s salary to an outsourced SEO campaign. Most B2B firms believe that SEO gives them the opportunity to stand out from the competition. They also expect an SEO campaign to be a blend of content marketing and technical SEO.
- 47% of large businesses outsource nearly half of their local SEO work. Businesses that utilize both an in-house SEO and an outsourced agency for packages, niche expertise, and specialized services.
Although businesses who utilize the internet to market their businesses have a 40% greater chance of expanding more quickly than those who don’t, it still doesn’t guarantee traffic and sales – that comes with carefully implemented SEO plans.. So if you’re still DIYing it, expect the possibility of mediocre results.
Should SEO be in-house or outsourced?
According to SparkToro, 19.15% of businesses spend between $0-$500 per on SEO, while 26.6% of businesses spend between $2,500 to $5,000 monthly on SEO.
Given the costs for hiring in-house, outsourcing becomes a viable alternative for businesses to leverage specialist SEO skills at an affordable price. Through offshore outsourcing, and the ability to hire SEO professionals on a casual or part-time basis, it gives companies the flexibility to grow and maintain their SEO initiatives.
Higher overhead costs. Operating SEO takes a lot of time and it can even drain resources away from your core business.
Cost-efficient. Paid over a fixed price within the timeline set aside for the project.
Continuous upskilling. Usually hiring and training specialists generates more expenses because of the SEO learning curve.
Experienced and upskilled. Service providers set time to upskill their employees outside of the working hours you hired them for.
On-site availability. They work in your office near you.
Virtual availability. You can communicate with them through communication tools. Meetings on audio and video conferencing tools are scheduled hours or days before. You can easily check their progress and milestones on project management tools.
Non-scalable. Even sifting through candidates can take at least one to three months. Training them can also take months.
Scalable. They have a talented pool of expertise constantly upskilled available when you need to expand.
Slow onboarding process. Your hiring and training process can take months before you can absorb them in your SEO team.
Fast onboarding process. Your chosen outsourcing partner can assign a member or a team immediately after hiring them.
Depends on your existing team and post- onboarding.
Faster turnaround times . Service providers can also set up temporary teams for you quickly.
Payment for salaries, taxes, and benefits continue even after the end of projects unless you lay them off.
End of projects
Payments stop after the end of projects. Service providers are also open for returning clients.
Lack of resources, strategy issues, and scalability were the biggest SEO difficulties in the last 12 months. Outsourcing SEO has more advantages when it comes to implementation, speed and scalability.
Your service provider can take what you have and depending on your budget support it with a full SEO strategy, including keyword strategy, organic lead generation, content marketing and more.
- Your past SEO efforts are not giving you results: This is mostly for businesses that offer a brand-new product or service. This is also for some businesses who are DIYing SEO to mediocre results.
- Your team does not have the time and resources for SEO: When you start your SEO from square one it can cost a lot of time and resources. Service providers are always prepared for businesses who want to start their SEO campaigns immediately.
- Your SEO campaign is not significant enough to justify hiring an in-house employee: One-time SEO focuses on helping new websites to achieve its short-term goals. During busy campaigns, you can scale your SEO workforce with an experienced service provider.
- Your team needs more expertise: You can relieve your in-house team of learning new niches or specializations, which takes their time. By outsourcing to service providers you can tap into a talent pool of experts in those niches.
- You need your SEO campaign to have faster results: An experienced SEO service provider can avoid common mistakes through pre-planning and preparation, followed by execution. As they’re doing this day-in and day-out, you will benefit from their knowledge and experience. Since expert SEO professionals have a low to no learning curve, less experienced professionals will still need time to learn and figure things out before they even start.
Google can have 3.5 billion searches per day, but you can only grab a handful of prospects within six to twelve months of SEO efforts. And when you’re doing SEO right, you’ll see improvements in your organic traffic.
SEO Challenges 2023
Planning for your SEO strategy this year should include the potential challenges your SEO specialists need to overcome.
According to 3,600 SEO professionals, the following are the biggest shifts and industry changes in SEO:
AI and Machine Learning (18.7%): AI-generated content is not perfect and can make mistakes- it can also deviate from the context. And overuse of low-quality AI can be detrimental as it is not always SEO friendly. Often, search engines take it as spam. One example is ChatGPT which can provide AI-generated content in seconds. But in its current stage, it can’t still replace human writers.
Google Updates (18%): What worked last year may not work this year with Google algorithm updates. Brands are also left frustrated as the popular search engines never reveal their main ranking factors.
Third-party cookie deprecation (13.9%): It was initially expected by 2022, but Google scheduled the loss of third-party cookies in late 2023. This is while the search engine tests Privacy Sandbox which supports cookieless marketing.
Challenges when outsourcing SEO and how to address them
Before you outsource SEO, you should be aware of the challenges you may face, so you can take steps to adjust and keep your SEO initiatives on track.
Your outsourcing partner veers away from your goals: Many service providers can improve your search ranking but attract the wrong traffic. Before you lose control on where your website ranks, always overcommunicate. Keep regular tabs on your analytics and what your SEO is doing. You can use communication tools like Slack and email for small talks and use project management tools like ClickUp and Asana when checking milestones.
Your outsourcing partner does not have a workflow strategy: SEO is comprehensive and there’s a lot of things that go on all at once. To solve this friction, ask about the workflow management tools and gameplan your SEO specialists will use or implement.
Your outsourcing partner does not achieve your expected results: Always give clear expectations to your SEO specialists. Once they understand your goals and expectations they can confirm whether they are realistic or not. Higher ranking might be one of your goals but it should not be everything. Break down big goals into SMART KPIs so you and your SEO experts have goalposts to mark progress.
SEO trends and best practices 2023
53% of all trackable website traffic originates from organic searches making it the most valuable marketing channel there is. But with the new changes in search engines and its ranking algorithm, your business should learn to adapt to top SEO trends and practices in 2023.
1. SEO in product listing of online retailers
According to Statista, retail ecommerce in the United States alone will exceed one trillion dollars by 2023. As online shopping continues to accelerate, retailers seek for the services of SEO service providers to put their products and services at the front of the customer’s search queries.
- 0-2 seconds is the optimal speed for high ecommerce conversion rate.
- Actionable keywords have a better opportunity to reach more traffic. You can incorporate them in your product description and alt tags.
- 72.9% of online purchases were made through mobiles. Ensure that your website is mobile-accessible.
2. SEO in video marketing
Pages with videos are 53 times more likely to rank on Google’s search result’s page. According to Hubspot, video is here to stay with people skimming text and audio while giving most of their attention to videos.
- If your business has a channel, embed your videos to increase views, comments, and shares, which inturn will improve your search rankings.
- According to Wyzowl, Youtube, Facebook, and LinkedIn are the top three platforms marketers use to share their organic content.
- Video contents relevant to your product and service should address a customer need. Incorporate keywords in video title, description, and tags.
3. SEO in voice searches
41% of adults and 55% of teens are actively using voice search daily. AI and machine learning can recognize keywords and phrases effectively. Conversational queries are also expected as digital assistants like Siri, ALexa, and Google Assistant hold casual conversations with its users, discuss topics, and interpret subjects.
- There should always be a FAQ (frequently asked questions) on your website. This is where you anticipate the questions your target audience may ask.
- Make sure your website and pages are targeting questions or conversational keywords.
Outsourcing SEO can implement all these best practices into your SEO strategy and overhaul for the year.
Outsourcing SEO Checklist: How do you know if your outsourcing partner is the right fit?
Budget constraints, lack of resources, and limited time can be one of your reasons to outsource SEO. After weighing the pros and cons and finally making the decision, you’re still overwhelmed by the number of service providers to choose from. So to make things easier, here is the checklist for you to find the right outsourcing partner.
Proof of claims
- A high ranking on organic search results page.
- Good reviews from past clients.
- Sample or portfolio of previous works.
Check: Pricing details & Timeframes
- A flat-fee pricing option.
- Detailed breakdown of expenses.
- How long does it take to see results
Expertise: Ask these questions
- What is your background in SEO?
- What is your process?
- What metrics do you use to measure SEO performance?
- What does your workflow management look like?
- Do you offer other digital marketing services? (This is important when you need to scale in the future)
Usource helps start or improve our clients’ SEO strategies. Our methodical, analytical, and data-driven approach help increase your website’s visibility, streamline online presence, and achieve your business goals.