Search engine optimization is no longer just a luxury. If you want a powerful and effective website that brings traffic and results, SEO is absolutely essential. Choosing the right company can be tricky though, especially if you do not know what SEO companies are for. Here are some tips to help you, as well as best practices to use when choosing an SEO company to market your site.

Cost is King

When choosing an SEO company, you will obviously want to get the best price for your money. However, as SEO companies generally offer different prices for different services and term lengths, pricing can be complicated. An SEO firm in Chicago might have different rates than a tiny one in Boise. The SEO company should be clear on all the fees and services included with the price, in advance. Most will require some sort of initial payment, but will usually develop a payment plan for the remainder of your term. Avoid businesses that require full payment in advance. If you want to pay in full, that’s good, but it can be a red flag if they ask first.

The Duration of the Service

Most SEO companies will offer several options for the duration of service. How long is the best? It depends. Generally, a 3-month term is the absolute minimum you need to see actual results. Most people start with a 6-month term because it is long enough to see the results but not too long if you are not satisfied with your business. Just remember, if your SEO company has a great reputation, the longer you use them, the better outcome you will likely see.

Why So Long?

It is important to understand why continuous SEO service produces better results. SEO is not like reshaping your kitchen, where you do it once, and you relax for 20 years. The very nature of SEO requires continuous maintenance, monitoring, and adjustment. Search engines report that keyword searches are constantly changing, and their algorithms change daily. Any good SEO company understands this and will continually monitor your rankings and work to increase them.