Have you ever been faced with an SEO client who wants instant results? If you are in the SEO business – it is safe to assume that the answer would be an emphatic “YES!” Imagine being able to drastically cut down on the phone calls and emails of panicked clients who (after 3 weeks) have decided they should be on page one for all of their target phrases, wouldn’t that be nice?

Establishing the ground rules upfront can, in many cases, turn even the most feisty, anxious and initially untrusting clients into the best client they can be.  In my past five years as an SEO consultant I have put together some rules I follow when giving my initial presentations that are meant to govern client expectations (both initially and throughout the campaigns lifecycle).

Without further adieu let’s take a look at rule # 1.

Rule 1: Get Organized & Educate Your Clients

In my personal experience – 75% or more of clients I have consultations with know very little about Search Engine Optimization. In many cases they have just heard the buzzword and are unaware of what SEO is and what is involved with the SEO process.

This list I bring along with me is meant (more than anything else) to keep ME on track and forces me to cover the key points in educating them about SEO.
It includes discussion points about On Site SEO Factors, Off Site SEO Factors, Some information about search engines and how they work etc.  Of course I refine this list monthly to make sure that there are no major changes in algorithms or otherwise that make the list inaccurate.

Some other key points you may want to cover are:

  1. The importance of backlinks
  2. Onsite SEO is just the beginning
  3. Competition Research and why it takes time
  4. Anchor text and its importance

There are of course many others you can add to the list – but this largely depends on your personal preferences. I personal focus on showing them just how much work goes into SEO and how it IS NOT a “set it and forget it” system. The last thing you want them to think is that SEO is a turnkey, simple, cookie cutter system that any one can easily do for them.

I have done some interesting comparisons, which compare the clients I acquired in the early days (before I was organized with this list) and after. The amount of phone calls and emails I receive from clients in these early stages were as much as 10 times greater than those clients acquired after I created a standardized list.  The clients who are properly educated initially are far better clients – trust me!  In other words, by spending some extra time with them upfront and making them understand SEO – I cut my calls and emails down by 90%! Imagine what you could get done with that kind of free time!

I invite you to leave comments to this post and if you would like to ask for some advice on what to include on your own list – just let me know and I will answer as quickly as I can!

Coming up next – the all-important rule # 2 – SEO Success is Measured in Months Not Days!