Reseller Guide To Selling SEO

How To Sell SEO Like A Champion

The Ultimate Guide To Attracting Clients & Selling SEO Services

 


 

  • Reseller SEO: How To Sell SEO Like A Champion

    Want to drastically increase your agency’s revenue through selling SEO services?

    You’re in luck, because in this guide we’re going to walk you though our BEST advice on how to do exactly that!

    This is a complete SEO agency toolkit based on our experience working with thousands of agencies all around the world for the last 8+ years.

    When you’re done, you’ll be able to confidently offer SEO to your clients.

    You’ll learn everything you need to know to get your SEO services up and running: from attracting clients, to what to say on the phone, to pricing your services, closing the deal, and keeping clients. We’ll also cover the minimum SEO knowledge you need to know in order to sell it.

    Good news: You don’t need to be an SEO mastermind, and you won’t need to add any additional people to your business to get started. If you do it right, it’s quite reasonable to say that you could double your revenue.

    Sound good? Then let’s get your SEO services rolling!

    P.S. Do you want access to a community of agencies who are getting daily tips, techniques, and 1-1 help? Join our exclusive Facebook Group:
    SEO Selling Secrets for Agencies

     


     

    Why Selling SEO Doesn’t Have to Be Hard

    I want to start by showing you why selling SEO is easier than you think:

    Misconception 1: “I Need to Learn Everything About SEO”

    Think you need to learn everything about SEO in order to sell it?

    The truth is you can start offering SEO services by understanding some of the core principles.

    You should know enough to understand yourself how it works as well as accurately explain it to your client…but you don’t need to be an expert at every facet of SEO to get started.

     

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    In fact, knowing everything about SEO could result in you shooting yourself in the foot while in conversation with clients. There’s no better way to create a glazed look in someone’s eyes than talking about SEO in-depth.

    Your job isn’t to become an SEO expert: It’s to translate SEO into a results-focused description that your client can understand.

    That way, you can focus on painting the picture of how results through SEO will help their business. Doing that will help you close the deal.

    Misconception 2: “I Have to Do All the Work In-House”

    It’s understandable to think that you might not have the time or ability to do the actual SEO work.

    Here’s the beautiful thing about offering these services: You don’t have to do it yourself!

    You can consistently deliver quality SEO work to your clients by enlisting the help of a white label SEO service, like The HOTH.

    In case the term “white labeling” or “reseller SEO” is unfamiliar to you, it refers to work done by another company on your behalf and sold under your name.

    At The HOTH, we have a bulk buyer program just for our resellers! Check out our bulk buyer program here to get an idea of what discounts you can expect as a reseller.

    In addition to not having to perform SEO work yourself in-house, white labeling allows you to focus on providing great service to your clients by entrusting the work to professional SEO practitioners.

    We’ve designed our services for scalability and we work with thousands of agencies around the world (and we have over 1k+ reviews to prove it!).

    By using a scalable solution, you can offer SEO services to as many clients as you want without worrying about having to hire and train employees.

    Time is your most precious commodity. To offer SEO services while holding on to as much time as you can, focus on managing the client and let us do the work!

    Want some help getting started? Just book a meeting with us and we’ll get you all set up!

    Ok, now that we have the most common misconceptions out of the way, let’s get into what SEO knowledge you need in order to start selling.

     


     

    SEO 101: What You Need to Know

    Many small businesses think that once they’ve put up a website, they should start getting more sales.

    When this doesn’t happen, they wonder how to get more people to their site. So they’ll do some digging and learn they need to optimize their website for search to get visitors.

    That’s where you come in as a seller of SEO. Your clients want:

    • More leads
    • More calls
    • More form fills
    • $ More SALES $

    So by getting their website to appear to potential customers in the search engines, you drive more people to them and get them “more” of what they want.

    SEO can have an ENORMOUS impact on the number of people visiting a website.

    While it is a technical practice in many respects, SEO is also something that anyone can understand. In the simplest terms, SEO gets more traffic to your client’s website by helping it show more prominently in search results.

    The SEO Process

    Let’s define the basics of the SEO process. There are several major components:

    • Initial Audit
    • Keyword Research
    • OnPage Optimization
    • Link Building

    Here is a short summary of each component. It’s important for you to understand at least this much so that you can accurately explain the work to your client.

    1. Quick Site Analysis + Penalty Check (The Background Check)

    Many clients will have only a minimal amount of SEO optimization done. Other clients may have paid for shoddy work in the past that results in the opposite: over-optimization.

    It’s important to start by auditing the client’s site to check for any penalties caused by poor SEO work.

    This includes things such as too many low-quality links pointing to the site, duplicate content on the site, past penalties, and over-optimization for a target keyword. This is an important step that shows you how much work their site may need.

    This helps you avoid signing clients whose websites will be an uphill battle to rank. They may need to pay you for more work than they are willing to spend in that case.

    You can use our FREE basic SEO Audit Tool here to get a quick overview.

    2. Keyword Research (What Are People Actually Searching For?)

    Once we’ve determined there aren’t any underlying issues, you’ll want to perform keyword research to find keywords to target. You can do this a few different ways:

    Easy Wins:

    One of the best ways to find keywords is to look at what the site is already ranking for in positions 4-30. This means that Google already likes you for these keywords, your just not in the top 3 positions where most of the traffic is!

    We have a free Search Engine Ranking Checker tool on our site you can use to see what keywords a site is ranking for here.

    Pushing these keywords up higher in the search results, ideally to the top of page 1, will result in more traffic.

    Content Gap Analysis:

    Next, we do a Content Gap Analysis: Looking for keywords that competitors are ranking for and the client’s site isn’t targeting yet.

    You can use these keywords to get ideas for new content or to re-optimize existing content.

    We have a free content gap analysis tool that can help you get started.

    3. OnPage Optimization (Dressing The Candidate)

    It’s going to be difficult to rank a website if Google doesn’t know what that site is about.

    OnPage SEO optimization consists of optimizing the content on of each page on a site to include keywords and relevant content to tell search engines and readers what the page is about.

    This includes (but not limited to) optimizing title tags, URLs, meta-descriptions, H1s, images, content, and internal links.

    You can see our enormous guide to on-page SEO here.

    4. Link Building (Getting Votes To Win The Election)

    Links (Backlinks) pointing to a site are one of the most powerful Google ranking signals.

    Links that point to your client’s website are like “votes” for it. More links help give the website greater weight to rank in the search engines.

    But beware – not all votes are equal: A link from a site with a great domain authority like Forbes or USA Today carries more weight than a smaller blog.

    You can acquire links in a variety of ways including:

    Warning: It’s important to build high quality links in the right way to avoid penalties! Google has released many updates over the years so it’s important to understand how SEO is constantly changing!

    These are the basics that you’ll need to know to explain the SEO process.

    Check out our SEO strategy guide for an in-depth explanation of how to get the best results in the shortest period of time!

     


     

    Who Are The Best SEO Clients? (And How To Sell To Them!)

    There are lots of types of SEO clients so we’ll break what you’ll need to know based on a few common customer avatars.

    Good Clients vs Bad Clients

    There are lots of agencies offering to sell SEO for $100 / month or less. This usually includes some basic title tag adjustments on their website.

    This is fine because it’s better than doing nothing, but it probably won’t move the needle for a business in a competitive industry.

    If you sell SEO for a rate this low, you are going to need to manage a lot of clients if you want to increase your revenue, which isn’t easy to scale.

    Attracting clients that have larger budgets allows you to significantly impact your revenue, as well as deliver more meaningful results to them.

    Increase Your Conversions By Niching Down

    You could offer SEO services to everyone, but we’re huge fans of niching down and selling to a specific industry.

    Why niche down? Put yourself in the client’s shoes for a moment: they have a lot of choices when it comes to who does their SEO for them.

    By promoting yourself as a specialist for their specific niche, you gain more credibility by indicating that you’re here to serve THEIR business specifically.

    When you niche yourself down to cater to industries like real estate, heavy equipment rental, or all-inclusive getaway, you can charge more and deliver more value. You’ll start to understand the industry, know typical client issues, keywords, and get a competitive advantage over generalist-SEO companies.

    If you haven’t selected a niche, a good place to start is with your BEST and most profitable clients. Where could you find more of them? What conferences could you sponsor? Could you target them on Facebook?

    By niching down, you can drastically increase you sales conversions!

    Typical Client Categories

    Let’s take a moment to talk about some of the most common clients you might get. SEO is a bit different for each customer, but there are a few general customer avatars you can plan to get:

    Local SEO Clients

    The goal for Local SEO is to get your clients to appear when someone searches for their services in a geographically localized search. These are usually brick and mortar businesses or service area businesses.

    This might look like general contractor [“city name”] or plumber “near me.”

    A few things you’ll want to consider when selling to Local SEO clients:

    • Ranking in the “Local Pack” & Maps: When Google sees someone’s search intent as looking for a local business, it’ll often bring up local listings in the form of the business name, address and location on a map.
    • Google My Business: This is a Google business listing: something many clients neglect to set up. It’s an easy service to provide them, and it makes it far more likely to get their business to appear in the Map Pack.
    • Ranking Website Pages: These are the natural top results in Google that will appear for any search term in order of authority.
    • Local Listings & NAP Citations: Signals provided by listing a client’s business in directories like Yelp and Yellow Pages provide additional local cues to Google.
    • Local Reviews: Online local business reviews impact local SEO. What matters is the quantity of reviews, the rate at which they’re left, and the diversity of where they appear on Yelp, Google, Facebook, and other platforms such as Tripadvisor.

    Check out our in-depth local SEO guide here.

     

    • Don’t have time to read the entire guide right now?

      Let us send you the downloadable version so you can read it when it’s more convenient for you.

     

    E-Commerce SEO Clients

    e-commerce store

    E-Commerce / Online stores are great targets for SEO clients as ranking their pages can often provide huge ROI.

    There are a few things you’ll want to consider when selling to E-Commerce clients.

    • OnPage Optimization & Content Creation: Many e-commerce sites lack content on their product pages, so creating unique product descriptions (not duplicate manufacturer descriptions) is a common technique for E-Commerce.
    • Blog Content: Adding content to an eCommerce store’s blog can help the site to rank for a lot more keywords and get more links. People prefer to link to articles more often than products.
    • Link Building: Getting links from manufacturers, review blogs, guest posts linking back to the blog, and setting up good internal links are all good strategies for e-commerce.

    Check out our in-depth E-Commerce SEO guide here!

    Online Businesses

    For most other types of clients, the content and link building strategy we’ve been talking about is a reliable method to get them results.

    Some other common types of clients are:

    • Publishers: Sites that focus on creating content and making money through traffic-generated ad revenue (like Gamestop) or affiliate revenue (like Nerdwallet).
    • Online Service Businesses: Sites that sell their services online (like The HOTH or Adroll)
    • SAAS: “Software as a Service” sites that earn money by increasing the subscriber base to their software (like Ahrefs, SalesForce, or Buffer).

    Conclusion

    It’s important to understand the differences in each client type category as well as the individual business. All clients are unique, but understanding the facets of each client type and applying a killer SEO strategy to each leads to great results.

    There are lots of different products that you can sell to these clients and you can check out our complete list of re-sellable SEO services here.

     


     

    How Much To Charge For Your SEO Services

    The question you’ve been waiting for: How much should you charge?

    There are a few points to consider here so let’s walk through each:

    Start With YOUR Goals

    First, I like to start with what YOUR business goals are.

    What would you like your monthly income to be from selling search optimization? Since you’re white labeling, what profit margin would get you there?

    To calculate your monthly income multiply: # Clients x Price x Profit Margin = Net Revenue

    There is no “standard rate” for SEO services: The results you deliver to the client should exceed what they pay you.

    Knowing this, you can determine your profit goals.

    The HOTH’s SEO services are specifically designed to be sold for white label purposes. Most agencies charge clients anywhere from 2X to 4X your costs by white labeling with us, and that price can be justified by the management of the client and additional services provided.

    If you want to REALLY scale SEO services, eventually you’ll need some help managing all your clients with the help of a sales staff. You’ll want to factor in a percentage as commission structure to your calculations in that case.

    Next, you need to establish the best pricing model for your new services.

    Pricing Models For SEO

    WE ARE HUGE FANS OF PRODUCTIZED SERVICES AND PACKAGE BASED SEO.

    I had to put that in caps because it is so important. We feel strongly that for the vast majority of resellers, a package-based pricing structure is the best pricing model for closing deals. It’s what we sell and what our white label clients sell.

    SEO can be a confusing, multi-faceted practice and by simplifying the services into a clearly defined package structure & deliverables helps close deals. It’s easier to explain and easier for clients to understand and make a decision.

    At The HOTH we offer individual services for OnPage optimization, Link Building and Content Creation, among other products. Someone who really knows what they’re doing might pick and choose from these services to create their own SEO strategy, but we always prefer selling a combination.

    Package-based pricing also gives you the flexibility to sell a single package, multiple packages, or recurring packages on a retainer or contract.

    To us, it’s natural to offer a combination of services as packages under a managed SEO product because it delivers results for our clients.

    Recurring Revenue & Retainers

    While we do sell a-la-carte services, it’s a huge advantage when you can get clients on recurring billing / retainers.

    In our experience, when running a full SEO campaign, we shoot to start seeing results around the 90 day mark, so setting those expectations up front help give you enough time to deliver results.

    A common thought that we see with clients that tend to have less success is “I’ll try out a couple links and if it works I’ll do more.”

    In our experience, this one-off type of SEO strategy tends be less successful. Google wants to see consistency in the site becoming an authority, so building on a monthly basis yields much higher success rates. You can see our recent case studies here for evidence.

    Using Contracts (Or Not)

    Here at The HOTH, we have a Terms Of Service that everyone agrees to when purchasing our products, but do not have a traditional pen & paper contract signing.

    Contracts can be helpful to clarify responsibilities and protect both parties in case of litigation, however it can also hold up the sales process the more hoops you make your customer jump through.

    I am not a lawyer, so definitely consult with one to discuss your personal situation and how your business works.

    How to Give a Ballpark Figure With Link Profile Analysis

    A lot of clients come to us and ask “How much money would it take to rank #1 for this keyword?”

    This is a really tough spot to be in because SEO doesn’t really work this way any more. There are lots of factors to consider:

    • Page type: What type of page is Google ranking for that keyword? Are they blog articles, ultimate guides, product pages, tools? Would this page type even rank?
    • Content Length: Studies show that longer content tends to rank better. Does the page have enough content?
    • Domain Authority: What is the overall domain authority for the sites that are ranking in the top positions?
    • Other keywords: Often a page will not just rank for 1 keyword, it can rank for hundreds or thousands. Are these keywords integrated into the page?
    • Current Links vs Competitor Links: How many links are you starting with? How many do the top ranking pages have?

    With that said, it can still be helpful to do an analysis to see in general what it would take to rank on page one for a keywords.

    Since backlinks to the specific page is one of the most important factors in ranking, we like to take a look at the average number of backlinks the sites on page 1 of Google have for that specific keyword.

    Then you can multiply the average number of backlinks by average link cost to get an estimate. Then you can add in your margin, and divide by number of months necessary to achieve that result.

    For instance, lets say the average number of backlinks it will take to rank on page one is 50.

    Link Costs:
    50 links x $100 per link = $5,000 Total Campaign Cost

    Agency Margin:
    $5,000 x 2 = $10,000 (Client Cost)

    Months To Achieve Result:
    $10,000 / 6 Months = $1,600 per month

    This way, you can show a client a more realistic ideal of what it will take.

    Obviously you most likely will NOT be building links only to this page. You may want to invest in OnPage Optimization, adding additional content to the page, adding supporting content to the blog. You may also want to get some higher authority links that cost more, so make sure to factor that in as well.

    To be clear, we do NOT recommend promising any specific result like exact keyword rankings, number of calls, form fills etc. There are too many factors involved.

    However, when clients come and ask specific questions, this is a methodology for giving you an idea of what to tell them to see if their budget is in the ballpark. This also can help instill confidence in the client in a realistic fashion if they even want to compete in that market.

    By showing them the raw data of their competitors and where they currently stand, you can justify the prices you will be charging.

    Conclusion

    Now we have covered our recommendations for how to price and package your SEO services.

    If you would like some help on how to integrate SEO services into your business, book a free meeting with one of our account managers here. We help agencies and resellers get started every day!

    Now let’s get into how to create some simple funnels that will make selling 1000X easier!

     

    Want to see literature we use when selling to our clients?

    Check out our white label managed SEO proposal. Feel free to download it, make it your own, and use it when selling to your clients.

     

     


     

    How To Get & Convert Clients: Simple Funnels That Work

    We’re trying to minimize the amount of time you spend selling, so you can make more money!

    Cold selling is one commonly used sales tactic and it tends to be a lot of work.

    Hard selling with cold outreach requires you to play the numbers game. It’s about getting your outbound sales messages to as many people as possible in the hopes that a few become clients.

    This can work, and some people preach it. That’s great for them, but it isn’t our preference.

    In our view, the world is bombarded with sales messages, and people don’t like it.

    Wouldn’t it be cool if you could just attract your perfect customer to you?

    Inbound Marketing and the Automated Customer Funnel

    The long-term strategy we recommend to generate leads is inbound marketing.

    Inbound marketing is the practice of creating content and attracting leads to you vs. running outbound campaigns.

    The Automated Customer Funnel takes them from their initial contact with your brand, through developing a relationship, to booking a call with you.

    It looks like:

    Let’s break down each phase:

    Attracting SEO Leads

    Customers in any industry tend to do their own research, including when they shop for SEO.

    If you capture their attention and help them to solve a problem, it’s a lot easier to position yourself as an authority worth paying.

    By identifying their problems and promoting content that solves it, you’re able to attract and develop a relationship with them on autopilot.

    Here are a few ways to automatically attract leads:

    • Ranking Content: Publish regular blog posts on your site to capture search traffic that is already aware of and considering SEO for their business. Answer common customer questions through blog posts that help educate them as to the possibilities of SEO and gain their trust. This is a great entry point into their relationship with you.
    • Optin Popups & Subscribe boxes: You can use a plugin to set up a popup on the blog posts they land on to capture their email address and continue to build further trust. It often helps to incentivize them to enter it in exchange for a “lead magnet” such as a PDF guide or to see an informative webinar.
    • Offer a Free SEO Audit Tool: A free tool like our SEO Audit Tool gives their website a “score” and confirms to them that yes, there are things on their website to improve for SEO. They enter their website, then it asks them to enter their email address in order to see the analysis results.

    Remember the entire point here is to attract the leads in and capture their contact information. This way they are giving you permission to market to them.

    Check out our article on 10 more ways you can generate SEO leads here.

    Developing the Relationship

    Sales cycles can vary with SEO, but because it’s such a popular channel and there is a lot of competition, you’re going to need time to develop a relationship with the prospect, show them you are trustworthy and convince them you are the agency for them.

    Using email marketing to send them killer content is one of the best ways to develop that relationship.

    You can send an automated sequence of content to your prospect with an autoresponder. You can use software like Mailchimp to set it up. Now every new customer who enters their email can automatically receive a sequence.

    What should you send these prospects?

    We like to send a mix:

    • Helpful articles that answer their questions and demonstrate expertise: For example, these results-driven articles of ours perform well because they focus on how we get impressive results through SEO, or how they could do it if they tried: How We Get 434,886 Pageviews Per Month & The Ultimate SEO Strategy Template For Getting More Website Traffic
    • Webinars: These are a great way to market the value of SEO. You could do them live (and we do), but you can also pre-record them like we did with this one.
    • Special Offers: We send promotions with a limited time deal that help get people off the fence. Don’t overdo this, but weaving in promotions works amazingly well.

    People buy SEO from companies that they know, like, and trust. That is what your content accomplishes.

    If you’d like to know more about getting started with Webinars, be sure to check out our two easy guides for that:

    Next, after our prospect is warmed up, let’s close the deal:

    Closing the Deal

    We have a good amount of clients that will purchase without ever talking to us because ordering is really easy. (We’re big fans of just putting an order button on your website and allowing prospects to purchase when they want).

    With that said, pushing prospects to a phone consultation is one of the best ways to further the relationship, gain that trust, and close the sale.

     

    • Don’t have time to read the entire guide right now?

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    We like to prompt prospects to schedule an appointment directly in a lot of our marketing through a number of ways:

    CTAs (calls to action) in our emails:

    CTAs on our website:

    You can use a really cool software like Calendly that allows prospects to book a meeting with us.

    These inbound marketing tactics allow you to sell WAY more easily because you don’t have to CONVINCE them of the value of SEO on the call. Your content has already done that by educating them.

    Once they schedule a call with you, all you have to do is learn about their situation, pitch and close them.

    Conclusion

    For a more in depth look at how to scale this process, check out this article on how to double your business we wrote when things really started taking off for us.

    Now that we’ve shown you how to get appointments, let’s walk through the sales call itself.

    P.S. Do you want access to a community of agencies who are getting daily tips, techniques, and 1-1 help? Join our exclusive Facebook Group:
    SEO Selling Secrets for Agencies

     


     

    Selling SEO On The Phone: What To Say & How To Set Expectations

    To be able to talk to as many clients as you can book, it’s important to be able to streamline the conversation by guiding the call.

    A common mistake is to just start talking and selling, but this overwhelm and turn the client off.

    Instead, we like to think of these calls as consultations instead of sales calls. Your job is to help connect a customer that has a problem with a solution.

    Plus, because we’ve already warmed up the client with all that killer inbound marketing, so the close should be really easy!

    Here are the proper steps to the sales call:

    Step 1: Ask Questions (Get Ammo For Your Pitch)

    You should be asking questions so that you can understand the client’s market and gain insight on what is important to them in the sale.

    Here’s some examples of questions you can ask:

    “Could you give me an overview of your business?”

    This question helps you understand some basics of their particular business and its challenges. Get to know their business model, how much a client is worth, etc.

    Look for terminology they use, services or products they want to promote to get some ideas for keywords or pages to target.

    “What is your past history with SEO?”

    They’ll give you an indication of their knowledge level and what SEO work they may have bought in the past, if any. This will help guide how technical you can be on the conversation.

    You can probe a little to see whether they’ve had any sketchy work done for their website, so you can speak to how you are different. For instance, even simply explaining how out-dated techniques are not effective and clearly showing the current ranking factors can go a long way.

    “What is a typical sale like for you?”

    The idea with this is to put something in your back pocket to clearly explain the return on their investment to them.

    For instance: If a roofer’s typical roof job is worth $10k, and if they are spending $2k per month on SEO, they could get on a contract for 5 months, and if they even get 1-2 clients, they could break even or get positive ROI very easily.

    Focus the conversation on how much ROI the SEO work you do will generate over time. This can really open their eyes to the power of SEO for their business.

    “What keywords are you looking at targeting?”

    People will often decide on some keywords they want to go after before speaking with you. It’s good to check on this early to see where their head is at in terms of keywords even though you’ll be doing some research for them.

    “What are struggling with? What do you want to achieve?”

    You want to minimize your time on the call while still being effective. That being said, it can pay to give them a moment to answer a more open-ended question like this.

    They’ll feel more understood by you if you give them a chance to explain their answer to this question.

    More importantly, they’ll give you additional signals as to their business’s challenges, some of which can’t be solved through SEO (such as a poor product or bad service on their end).

    Asking what they want to achieve lets you know their expectations for your service, and whether those expectations could be fulfilled (or readjusted) by you.

    Step 2: Do a Quick SEO Analysis

    During the call you can do a live SEO Analysis to get a handle on where they are at currently, as well as in comparison to competitors.

    Being able to quickly rattle off stats, keywords, and opportunities really positions you as an authority while on the call.

    We recommend a tool like Ahrefs to do the analysis.

    Here’s a video that demos this process and what to say during it:

    In the video demo, Greg goes over:

    • Current ranking keywords & easy wins
    • Current Backlinks
    • Competitor Backlinks
    • Strategy Recommendations

    Comparing your client’s metrics to their competitor’s is a powerful psychological tactic. Something competitive in human nature unlocks when you can say “This competitor is getting this much traffic and backlinks.”

    Use Analogies to Explain SEO

    If they’ve indicated a lot of SEO knowledge, you can be straightforward in your use of the terminology. However for the majority of clients, you should explain SEO in a way that’s easy to understand.

    The easiest way to explain SEO to your client is through simple analogies.

    A lot of what you do for SEO concerns gaining backlinks to your client’s site. When they ask about the importance of backlinks, explain the concept to them as being like a vote or a reference.

    If 40 people refer you to a pizzeria, you’ll trust that place a lot more than if only one or two people refer you there. Google is the same: if 40 people link to you versus 1 person, Google trusts you a lot more.

    Then you can explain backlink quality.

    Sites with more authority are like a 5-star chef referring you to a restaurant versus just anybody on the street.

    Getting them a higher quality backlink from a site like USA Today can have more of an impact on their site than a bunch of low-quality links.

    Emphasize that the “votes” gained through backlinks and other work are long-lasting.

    SEO is like a rocket ship: you have to put in a lot to get it off the ground. Once you get it going and their site is an authority, it’s much easier to keep going.

    Setting Expectations

    It’s very important to set expectations when selling SEO.

    Results: It can be easy to go down the rabbit hole. SEO can help bring traffic to the site, but it’s just a piece of the marketing puzzle. Their visitors still have to fill out a form, call them, or give them their email address. Then your client needs to actually answer the phone, respond to the email, close the deal, etc. It’s a good idea to focus on simply the “increasing organic traffic” portion of the equation vs promising a number of calls or sales (you don’t always control that.)

    Timelines: In our experience, it usually takes about 3 months of consistent building to start seeing significant results. Sometimes it can be less, or sometimes it can take strategy changes after month 3. It’s very important to stress that SEO is a long term process (and should be!). You don’t want to do anything aggressive that would damage the site, you want a nice progressive build out.

    Communication: Let the customer know how you are available and put communication as a priority. The majority of lost clients happen because of poor communication. Make sure clients are in the loop at all times!

     


     

    Closing The Sale & Handling Objections

    Ask for the Sale

    Once you’ve explained the required work and the prospect has had a chance to ask you their questions, it’s time to close the sale.

    Ask for the sale while you have them on the phone. If not you’ll most likely have to wait a couple weeks and increase the chance of losing the sale.

    When it seems like their questions are done, Say, “So are you ready to get started?”

    If they hesitate or say they’ll order it later on your website, you can add in urgency by offering a special discount or bonus.

    Say “I can waive our regular set up fee that you’d get charged, but I have to place the order with you to do that.”

    Common Objections

    Pricing is common objection because there are lots of cheap services online. The issues is that many of the online services often stack up deliverables that don’t bring significant results. You can rebut these statements by looking at the other offer and clearly explaining how much more value you will bring.

    Another common objection is asking for a one-off or a trial. Here you can explain that Google really wants to see consistency in your site becoming an authority as opposed to quick pops. Additionally, Google wants to see a wholistic strategy including onPage optimization, links, and content.

    Use Special Offers To Help Them Cross The Finish Line

    You can use special offers to push them off the fence. It’s handy to always have something to give them on top of what you’ve listed.

    To avoid burning our customers out with too many discounts, we rotate deals on different products every month that we promote through email, ads and a feature page on our site:

    You’ll need to figure out what extent to do this on your own. This could take the form of:

    • Waiving the setup fee
    • A discount on one category of the work
    • Discounts on bundles to encourage bigger purchases with better results

    Be selective in your use of these incentives and keep an eye on margins.

    IMPORTANT: Make the Purchase Easy

    To create as little as friction as possible for the purchase, it’s a good idea to have people place their order on your site while you have them on the phone.

    Many firms create contracts for each client that require a signature. There’s something about having them sign along a dotted line that can be a bit deterring.

    It’s easier to let them know what package works best and make the purchase easy.

    However, everyone’s business and clients are different. Yours might prefer giving them something to sign, especially if you got them to agree to 3 months of work or more.

    If so, adjust accordingly. You can use Docusign (https://www.docusign.com/) to create these electronic contracts.

    Once they’ve placed their order, you have every right to jump out of your chair and do a little dance before high-fiving anyone nearby.

     


     

    Reporting & Retention

    There’s nothing worse for a client then seeing you drop off the face of the Earth after selling them on your great service.

    To keep their confidence and get future orders, it helps to ensure their satisfaction post-purchase.

    Post-Purchase Follow Up

    Don’t wait until their first month is complete to follow up – Call them a week after the sale! This allows you to check in, let them know their campaigns are in-flight and answer any questions they have.

    If you wait until their first month is over, they will have forgotten nearly everything you told them, and you’ll have to re-sell yourself and all the things you are doing.

    Monthly Progress Calls

    Calling to check in with them shows that you care about their success.

    Track the work each month to show them what you’ve done and its effect.

    You can do this by:

    • Using Ahrefs to chart the backlinks and position changes of their site in search
    • Keeping a production log of work done.
    • Use a platform like Agency Analytics to create a marketing dashboard for them.

    Ensuring Satisfaction After Fulfillment

    In the business of SEO, ensuring client satisfaction after fulfillment is crucial. That’s why we made sure you knew how to set the right expectations beforehand.

    That being said, unsatisfied customers are bound to happen in any industry. Your reputation for doing good SEO work is more important than keeping money from an individual customer who wasn’t satisfied.

    Offer great support every step of the way, including after fulfillment, by being available for them. If they express dissatisfaction, make sure their expectations are still realistic and try to correct them if not.

    The reality is that every client will eventually cancel, and it’s not always your fault. By setting expectations, over-delivering in value, communicating thoroughly, delivering on your service, and asking for feedback, you set yourself up for success.

    Get Reviews

    Each time you deliver a package for a client, ask them to rate your service by sending them an email with a link to do so. This gives you a chance to intercept any dissatisfied clients before they leave a public review.

    The more positive reviews you can get, the more future prospects will trust you. When it comes to reviews, ASK and you shall receive. Few people review without being prompted to do so.

    If you need help doing this, you can check out our review getting software here.

    Case Studies

    Take note of the results you get clients and keep a log. You can use past jobs and reviews from customers as proof of your ability to deliver great results.

    Not only that, you can use these metrics to create content like case studies for traffic and sales brought through SEO that earns you even more trust before the call.

    We have a couple detailed guides to getting reviews here and here.

    Conclusion

    There you have it: The nuts and bolts of selling SEO.

    We hope you realize that selling SEO is not so hard after all. It just takes some prep work to increase your SEO and selling knowledge, get the leads, and close them.

    Selling SEO can transform your business and expand its earning potential. The beautiful thing about it is that you don’t have to do the work. Even if you have zero experience with SEO, we’re confident you can get set up in as little as a few weeks.

    Don’t forget that as an SEO reseller for The HOTH, you get access to special discounts as part of our bulk buyer program.

    If you’re ready to get started selling SEO, book a meeting with us now. We’d love to help!

    P.S. Do you want access to a community of agencies who are getting daily tips, techniques, and 1-1 help? Join our exclusive Facebook Group:
    SEO Selling Secrets for Agencies

     

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