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Is Hiring an eCommerce SEO Agency Worth It? A Candid Explanation

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Is Hiring an eCommerce SEO Agency Worth It? A Candid Explanation

An eCommerce SEO agency can be your secret weapon when it comes to generating increases in organic traffic.

There’s little confusion about the value of eCommerce SEO. No one is going to tell you that investing in optimization efforts is not worth it. Without question, organic marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach new customers and engage existing customers. Yet, since one of the most popular searches on Google is “Is an eCommerce SEO agency worth it?” we figured we’d offer some insights.

First, let’s talk about the uncontested benefits of eCommerce SEO, whether you partner with an agency or hire someone to author them in-house.

How eCommerce SEO Helps Businesses

Whether or not you decide to hire an eCommerce SEO agency or hire a specialist to take care of your search engine optimization goals in-house, here are some of the benefits you can expect.

Superior targeting

Before investing in SEO, you need to take some time to reflect on your positioning, the competitive landscape, and who your customers are. Specifically, you need to focus on the search intent behind the keywords and search terms for which you want to optimize your website. Some quality time with Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and, if you use it, SEM software will tell you a lot about your intended customers.

Optimizing your eCommerce website for more targeted keywords that are closely aligned with customer interests and intent to purchase can have far-reaching benefits for your online store. Engaging in SEO will help improve your targeting so that you attract interested customers – not just more people.

A better customer experience

SEO involves optimizing ranking signals like site speed and security that are directly tied to the customer experience. Given that users inherently mistrust websites with poor security and that the average customer will bounce after a page fails to load within 3 seconds, SEO can improve the customer experience substantially.

More organic impressions and rankings

 

An eCommerce SEO agency can help generate higher organic rankings and impressions.
One of the key benefits of working with an eCommerce SEO agency is the ability to generate higher organic rankings and impressions for competitive keywords.

The basis of SEO is concerned with getting your website to rank more effectively for competitive keywords and search terms. The more ranking signals you improve as part of your efforts, the more keywords and search terms your website will rank for organically. When your targeting has been performed effectively, this equates to more organic traffic.

Expanded brand recognition

This hardly needs an explanation, given the last section. More effective organic rankings will improve search visibility, thereby increasing brand visibility overall. Also, websites that rank organically are seen as more credible and trustworthy than paid listings (PPC ads) so there’s that.

Offset the costs of PPC and other forms of paid search marketing

Pay-per-click marketing can be a great way to improve brand awareness and visibility, but it can also be expensive. The more effectively your business ranks, organically, for competitive search terms, the less you will need to rely on paid search advertising. Plus, SEO builds on itself over time, so it’s highly scalable and results continue to accrue even after you “stop.” Traffic falls off immediately when you pull the plug on PPC, but not SEO.

Can generate a book of leads for remarketing

SEO can also be used as a highly effective lead generation strategy. Not only can you draw in new leads with SEO, but you can also engage in some crafty development work to capture those leads for remarketing or email marketing purposes. For example, if you get an organic visit to a product page and capture the lead, you just scored a prospect, even if it didn’t deliver a conversion the first time around.

Create a form or a newsletter and encourage leads to offer contact information in exchange for a discount, coupon, or another incentive. That can kill two birds with one stone.

Can improve customer engagement

Since SEO revolves largely around content and other technical factors and on-page optimizations that address site speed, security, navigation, and overall usability, it’s basically impossible to optimize a website without also creating a better user experience. This typically translates to superior customer engagement as well.

They’re not directly correlated, but more often than not, improved usability, social cues, and informative on-page and blog content will do a much better job capturing customer interest and engaging visitors – which can also boost retention.

Ultimately, high organic conversion rates and sales

Last, but not least, as they say, an SEO campaign run by an accomplished eCommerce SEO agency can bring in better-targeted traffic that has a higher intent to purchase and is likely to convert or buy from your online store.

This is the ultimate goal of an organic marketing strategy like SEO – to bring in customers that want to buy, or with the intent of grooming their interest to the point that they convert. Therefore, the most successful SEO strategies result in higher organic conversions and sales, paying for themselves in the long term.

Why an eCommerce SEO Agency Is Worth It

Now that we’ve covered some of the basic benefits of eCommerce SEO services, let’s talk about the specific benefits of working with an eCommerce SEO agency instead of trying to do it all yourself.

The ability to scale resources

An eCommerce SEO company does not have one person working behind the scenes. They employ entire teams of analysts and specialists with different skills, from development to link building to content creation and keyword research. All of them are separate (though related) skills that do best in each other’s company.

Attempting to hire the whole team in-house would almost certainly cost several times more than hiring an eCommerce SEO agency. If you’ve cracked the code, good on you – but for the rest of us, it’s cheaper (not to mention more effective) to let the eCommerce SEO experts do their thing.

Being able to leverage an eCommerce SEO agency’s existing experience

For eCommerce businesses that work with agency experts, there’s also the benefit of being able to tap into a wide pool of skills and experience that can only be cultivated by dedication to a craft.

Few individuals if any have the combined skills and experience as dedicated teams of eCommerce SEO specialists.

Being able to generate backlinks without having to trade or ask for them (and no, you can’t buy them)

 

An eCommerce SEO agency can build backlinks for you without incurring a penalty.
One of the key advantages of working with an experienced SEO agency is for their link-building expertise.

This one is a big one – while there are a lot of optimizations you can make for your eCommerce store in-house, there is one important ranking signal (or a collection of related ranking signals, rather) that you simply cannot. It is building backlinks.

You can trade for them, or try to cultivate them organically. But you can’t just whip them up out of thin air. Considering that backlinks provide referral traffic and either (or are related to) a series of critical ranking signals, no complete eCommerce SEO strategy is complete without them.

And, no – you cannot buy backlinks. At least, if you do, be prepared for a huge penalty when Google finds out. Bought backlinks and private blog networks are now considered black hat SEO tricks that are not sustainable.

The difference comes by partnering with an eCommerce SEO agency that has an established comprehensive protocol for link building that avoids these problems. Instead, experienced agencies tend to invest heavily in developing relationships with content boards and website administrators in a wide range of industries. That gives them access to plenty of high-domain authority websites that can be used for planting backlinks for their clients. It’s more than one eCommerce site could do on its own.

Not having to do it yourself (the eCommerce SEO agency does the heavy lifting)

There’s something to be said for not having to do all the optimizations yourself, or not having to pay to have someone else do them in-house. That’s a lot of time, money and effort spared that can be reserved for more strategic planning and initiatives.

Access to other expertly crafted marketing services

One more advantage of working with an eCommerce SEO agency to fully optimize your eCommerce platform is access to other specialty services. While some companies may fully specialize in SEO, many specialize more broadly in digital marketing.

For instance, here at 1Digital Agency, we provide a broad range of supporting marketing services including eCommerce PPC management, paid and organic social media management, email marketing, content marketing, and more. This is highly beneficial to many of our clients since these services work together to improve brand visibility, reach, customer engagement and of course, conversions and sales.

Take the Plunge: Hire an eCommerce SEO Agency

As you can see, the benefits of working with an eCommerce SEO agency more or less speak for themselves, but we hope this quick guide cleared up any misconceptions you might have had.

If you need to speak with us directly, we’d be more than happy to tell you more about potential benefits that are specific to your industry, because there are many that are. For instance, some industries are paid-search restricted – meaning that SEO is the only avenue to get to the top of the SERPs.

Give us a call at 888-982-8269 to speak with one of our eCommerce SEO experts and we’d be glad to fill in the blanks. We can even perform a free eCommerce SEO audit so you can see where your key opportunities lie.

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