To Build a Relationship With a Client on SEO

Maeva » Mew 👑
you had mentioned to build a relationship with a client as an SEO you recommended offer a test…what is it exactly that you would do? Just try to rank one page? Or a month of service or what does that look like? Isn't it hard to rank a page without other content to build topic authority?
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Maeva ✍️
I posted it here instead of messaging you privately cause I imagined if I had that question others might too
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Mew 👑
Hey Maeva
,
It really would depend on what the clients goals are to be honest. Ranking is a vanity metric in my opinion but if it is what they want, then yes I would see which keyword is important to them for which page and take the time out to boost it by as many possible spots as I can in about 8-10 hours of work.
In most scenarios there is quick wins you can help with and jumping a few spots can easily be accomplished. Make sure to set the expectation however, as jumping from page 3 to first position probably wont be possible.
The real advice and take away here is to understand what is important to the client and to show you can get it done while building a relationship.
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Eric » Mew 👑
now there is a great blog post idea!!

Alexios
You can share an on page audit to your potential client and explain the details This way the client will understand that if you can find the “errors” you will be able to “fix” them as well

Rienzi » Alexios
this is easy the go to strategy I agree. Buy it only works (close the client) if client is willing/interested to do it in the first place nowadays it's a hard sell unless they come to you for an audit.
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Mew 👑
Rienzi
– agreed, and you're giving them the answers instead of the work. What if they have someone in house? What if they want to use someone else? Lost cause, as most people will use who they already trust.
Build the trust.
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Rienzi » Mew 👑
True story – I turned down a link building prospect coz they're site has too few pages to even consider it and their linkable assets have their H2 filled with exact match keywords etc… Months later they came back and I closed them for a monthly retainer.
Lee » Rienzi
r u not supposed to use exact match keyword on h2 tag?
Rienzi » Lee
not at all and Not like 10 times. 😃
Lee » Rienzi
so a partial match is what u r saying? Like if my blog is about ‘what's best time to book a hotel' I would put “best time” in h2?
Rienzi
Nope. that's the way of the old. Subtopics should be relevant to your main topic. Example: Don't talk about mentoring technique if your piece is about what is mentoring.
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Mew 👑
We should be using inverses and synonyms 🙂
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Alexios » Rienzi
& Mew
. This tactic could take place after the 2ond or 3rd call and upon a request for a face to face meeting, not earlier for sure because it will be a waste of time as Mew says. Also I am not saying to provide the solutions, just the problems… also small business will not know what's an audit at first place. You may loose 3 hours of your life indeed but This is a way to build a trust
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Rienzi » Alexios
a way to build a trust 🙂
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Jonathan Kiekbusch
[Possibly unpopular opinion incoming]
I am categorically against free trials, or trials in general when it comes to SEO.
Scrutinizing your SEO skills on a micro when we can all agree that SEO is a macro effort, just doesn't make any sense.
We all know that SEO takes time, and unless the stars all align and its all JUUUUUUUST right, you wont be able to achieve that much in a few days or a month.
Ok, now that I got that out of the way, let me elaborate and tell you my why on the matter.
I believe that when a business hires an SEO, its always because they dont have the skills or resources to achieve the same thing in house. Meaning that they are looking to invest into people who are better at this than they are. Makes sense right? Basically why we hire anyone.
For our proposals in the agency that I own, we spend an insane amount of time on creating and researching proposals, and one could argue that after watching the proposal presentation that we give, you COULD go away and make a lot of fixes yourself. Since I have highlighted most of the things that are wrong with the site during the presentation.
But the problem is that if the client goes away and does that (spoiler, they wont), they are the wrong client anyway.
In reality, 99% of the time (in my experience) by walking the clients through their website, and explaining to them how you intend to fix it.
With 0 promises, number 1 rankings, none of that. You will build the trust and authority that others never will.
Now why is that more powerful than a free month?
Because in a free month, you will still have a client that doesn't have a clue what all you have done and how much its worth. Your client wont understand the importance of schema and how long it took you to create the code to deploy schema across their 900 page store. etc etc etc.
SO if at the end of your trial the results aren't major, you have just wasted a month and the client wont hire you because well… "the results are just not there".
Sorry for this major rant btw. I really believe that this industry mis-sells their services all the time.
I am sure i didnt make much sense and left a ton out, please ask questions if you have any ❤ ❤
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Tee_Rex
You just made a whole lot of sense…I used to wonder how SEO's would offer free trials…how long will this trial be? How much will you achieve in the set time?
Thanks Jonathan Kiekbusch!
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Mike
Makes sense. We run a pre-sales site audit, explain why fixing the issues matter in business terms then implement right after they sign. We also send a baseline report so the client can see where they were vs how much better off after 1, 3 months and onward.
Mew 👑
Jonathan Kiekbusch,
Thank you for taking the time out to respond here! Definitely some great points of assertion on the matter and I know you guys are pro's when it comes to this part of the business.
I think that my approach to the free month trial effectively works (for me) because I invite our clients as guests to a board like Kanban Flow or Monday, when doing this. To which they usually see a huge work log of everything that was completed. This time isn't really about the work for me either, it's about building the clients trust and the relationship. Getting multiple strategy talks in, learning about who they are, sometimes even meeting their family etc etc…more like a discovery phase for both of us.
I think we do it this way because ultimately our proposal process isn't as tight as it should be. We get them out within 2 hours of research, which to me isn't enough time but we send out 100's of proposals a year. To which I think goes back to a different conversation of how to actually select the business you want to do business with.
Loving the input. Maybe you could give us an example of your proposals? I'd love to be able to model it as a possibility and not give out free work, if you think it's more effective?
Either way, thanks for the other side of the coin my friend!
Jonathan Kiekbusch
That is fair, from what I know, you also work for a much bigger agency than the one I own. We can get away with making 5-10 proposals per month and winning a third or so of them, while a huge agency needs a lot more leads in the funnel at all times. ❤
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Mew 👑
Jonathan Kiekbusch
– Want to trade? 😂😂😭😭
Jonathan Kiekbusch » Mew 👑
Hahahaha, I'm good thanks!
I love my little agency, at this point everything is still "easy" to oversee. Couldn't imagine trying to manage a huge huge client book. 😛

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