If you are a website owner, I bet you have ever received an email from an unknown person telling you that your rankings are terrible and that they can help you appear among the top on Google’s index. Some of the emails these “SEO consultants” send are quite compelling, and you may be tempted to hire them.

Should you ever pay for SEO services? The answer to this mind blogging question depends on several factors. Let’s take a look at some the factors:

What Is The SEO Consultant Offering?

Yes, the first thing you should consider is what the SEO expert is offering. I have received hundreds of emails from random “SEO experts” and here are the common things that you will find in their pitches:

• More Backlinks: The SEO expert will give you a long pitch of how he can help your website get more backlinks. They will tell you that they have been in the business for long and have helped many who get backlinks. Don’t be misled! Buying backlinks violate Google’s terms and policies and will hurt your SEO instead of improving it.

• Pay Per Click: The expert will also offer to run your Google Ads and manage you Ad budget. What will you get from this? Your website will appear Google’s paid ads section.

• Audit: What is an audit? An audit, also known as on-site optimization, is where you will have someone evaluate how your blog or site is performing regarding load time, keyword density, titles, structure and anything else that affects your site’s rankings.

• They Will Offer Local SEO: This is where an SEO expert or agency tries to improve your site’s ranking on Google map and other local search results by improving your location, G+ profile and so on.

• A full custom Package: The pitch will also include a full management package. The expert will tell you that the full management package will help your SEO strategy adapt a more modern approach to search engine optimization. The package may include the following: paid search marketing, content creation, Social media and other things related to SEO.

• Spam Your Competitors: This is probably the most horrifying thing you will read in those emails. These experts will tell you that they can help you spam your competitors so you can rank better than them. What do I mean by spamming your competitors? This where you create a false rumor about your competitors so people can use your products or services instead.

Some of the things these ‘SEO experts’ offer are useful while some are totally against Google’s guidelines and are very risky. So should you ever pay for SEO services? Well, while there are some services that go against Google terms, there are those services that can benefit your website, and Google is okay with them. So the answer is yes you can pay for SEO services. You should, however, be careful when dealing with an SEO agency. Make sure you consider this factor before you hire an SEO firm:

I. Who Contacted Who?

If an SEO company contacted you first, don’t hire them. They could be scammers or new in the game. Either way, hiring them will only lead to frustrations. Hire an SEO company that is made up of a team that is qualified and has been in the business for years.

II. Was The Email Personalized?

If the initial email starts with “Dear sir/madam,” don’t hire the SEO agency. The agency does not know who you are, let alone what your business is all about. If the initial email was personalized, you could hire them because they took the time to study your business and know what it actually needs.

III. Portfolio

Does the SEO Company have a portfolio? Credible SEO agencies have rich portfolios and will gladly share their previous customers’ contact is you ask them to. A rich portfolio is a clear sign of experience and expertise. If they don’t have a portfolio, ran!

IV. How cheap are Their Services?

Good SEO is never cheap. A reputable SEO agency will never charge a few hundred dollars for their services. For this reason, if an agency offers super cheap SEO services, they could be scammers.

V. Is There Any Information About Them Online?

I agree that Googling about a company can never truly tell you is a company is genuine or not. We are in the digital era, and reviews can be faked. All in all, you need to ensure you spend some time researching the SEO Company you want to hire. This will help you know a more about them. You should also conduct offline research; ask your friends and colleagues if they have ever heard of the SEO agency. If they have never heard of it, it’s time to find another company.

Here are some search engine optimization services and products that are worth your time and resources.

1. Analysis Tools

Analysis tools will help you know how your site is performing when compared to your competitors. The information you get from this tools will help you come up with relevant SEO strategies.

2. Plugins and Enhancement Tools

There smart people out there who have created plugins and enhancement tools that will help improve your SEO. Some of these plugins and enhancements help make navigation easier, which, in turn, attract more visitors.

3. Yoast SEO

Many bloggers are now using Yoast’s SEO plugin because it helps improve their SEO performance. You can decide to spend a few dollars to purchase the premium version. It will help make the SEO process easier.

4. The human side of SEO

If, your website, is performing poorly on search engines, hiring someone to help you with SEO can be wise. You should, however, be careful and ensure you hire someone who knows what he/she is doing.

If you know how SEO works and can do I yourself, then well and good. If you don’t know much about SEO and want to hire someone, make sure you do online and offline research before you hire; this will help you choose an SEO expert who is knowledgeable, experienced and qualified. Big thanks though to The Las Vegas SEO Consultants for this post on SEO and finding the right company. You can get a free quote from them here.