How to prepare for an SEO sales call

I was born a salesperson. Developing up in Texas, my father had me operating at Trader’s Village, marketing anything from belt buckles to hat pins (and just about every other trinket you can think about).

You didn’t have to know substantially about the products. You just essential to know how to haggle pricing.

Promoting Search engine optimisation solutions is various. You need to have a eager knowledge of the product or service/company you symbolize. And extremely importantly, you must have an understanding of how (or if) an Website positioning exertion can advantage the prospective buyers you are speaking with.

If you’re not a single of the companies that send out a just one-sheeter to show the a variety of Search engine marketing deals you present, you are hoping to customize an strategy for your prospective clients. In my opinion, we ought to do a little bit of significant lifting just before owning our initial calls with potential customers. This article will deliver some ideas on how you may well want to strategy the initial contact.

Original thoughts to question the prospect

Very first, I advocate that you inquire your prospect to supply some first information and facts so that you can do the homework for the preliminary contact. It’s practical if the prospect has presently offered you with an RFP detailing the scope, in-house crew abilities and availability for the Search engine optimisation exertion. If they have not accomplished an RFP, you can down load the Web optimization RFP at my company’s blog and re-brand it/use it as a template for what you could want to present them.

In lieu of that type of data, you really should get started by asking (at the very least) these four issues:

  1. What are you hoping to achieve with this Search engine optimisation effort and hard work?
  2. Who are some competitors that you feel to be carrying out well?
  3. What form of in-dwelling assist do you have for this exertion?
  4. What have you performed (if anything at all) historically for Search engine optimization? (Probably they have existing action?)

With this information, you can dig into matters and establish how you will condition the phone.


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Do the analysis

I start out by on the lookout at the prospect’s web-site. I want to examine to see if there is any quirkiness. Let’s get in touch with this a “mini-audit.”

Should really you supply “work product” on a gross sales get in touch with? Actually, I’ve debated this dilemma back and forth for a lot of many years. I have settled on the thought that individuals nonetheless really don’t have confidence in SEOs, and we should devote a little a lot more effort to set up have faith in (and to teach). So I see this as “you must give before you get.” It’s excellent karma.

What is associated in a mini audit? A handful of issues:

Run a crawl on the prospect’s site

I use Semrush. I limit the crawl to 500 pages, just sufficient to get a sense of their website’s “brokenness.”

SEMRush Audit display screen capture

Conduct web-site queries on their domain (and for their competition)

When functioning web-site queries, if you’re unfamiliar, you research on Google for web page:www.sitename.com and/or site:sitename.com. You will see the URLs that Google is mindful of.

An example of anything that you might be hunting for would be acquiring subdomains when searching non-www (i.e., staging.sitename.com). You may well come across other strange URLs or subdomains displaying in the success, so search at them critically.

Highlighting these possibilities to cleanse up the research benefits and make their manufacturer shine could guide to a new customer romantic relationship. They will appreciate your capability to be inquisitive.

Examine their organic and natural performance

I run a Semrush Organic Overview report for the prospect and their competitors.

Make sure to filter to exclude any brand name mentions:

Filter illustration

How much “traffic cost” are they noticing vs . their competitors? Here’s what that appears like, comparing Travelocity to Expedia:

Travelocity Traffic Value (worth) example
Expedia Visitors Charge (benefit) example

The “Traffic Cost” metric is Semrush’s attempt to offer a “replacement cost” metric to clearly show the approximated worth of your organic presence (i.e., if you experienced to pay out for this site visitors by way of Google Adverts, what it could perhaps expense you, per month)

How quite a few key phrases are rating in the top rated 10 (as opposed to their competitors)? Are these “good” keywords and phrases or junk?

Run a Domain Comparison report (I use Ahrefs for this) to figure out no matter if the prospect is aggressive with those web sites/domains.

Ahrefs Domain Comparison instance

Suppose you see a competitor undertaking well with their backlinks. In that case, you should really operate a fast Site Explorer report through Ahrefs and verify some of the “better links” (type by Domain Authority) and see precise examples for how the competitor is getting these useful backlinks. If anything is applicable to your prospect, share that on a call as an illustration of what they may possibly want to look at carrying out.

Ahrefs Web-site Explorer drilling down on distinct illustrations

Is there a rationale why Expedia has inbound links from CDC.gov and PrivacyShield.gov, and Travelocity does not? At a bare minimum, you can create some dialogue to understand much more about them.

Your aim in accomplishing all the higher than is to assist to establish whether or not an financial commitment in Search engine marketing is viable. Suppose you occur to recognize that many of their competitors have a substantial natural research presence (better than your prospect), yet their domain authority is roughly the same. In that situation, one could argue that the potential is there. They will need to establish a better web site, develop improved written content or repair technical merchandise standing in their way.

Obtaining the contact

The far more clarity you can carry to an work that quite a few marketers see as “the darkish arts,” the far better. The much more men and women fully grasp how Search engine marketing functions, the additional likely they will devote in it.

If it continues to be perplexing, they are far more possible to opt for the less costly (just one-sheeter) Website positioning program.

For this motive, I typically host these calls through GoToMeeting. I’ll share my display, share my analysis, acquire their concerns and reply them right (probably even by conducting extra investigate on the get in touch with with them).

The plan of the mini audit isn’t to give every thing away. The notion is to demonstrate an case in point of how you look into points that you might want to deal with all through the Search engine marketing engagement (and demonstrate them that you’re able of finding alternatives).

Authentic-earth example

I a short while ago received an inquiry from an e-commerce enterprise. They had been positive they experienced been strike by Google’s July 2021 Core Update. I verified through Semrush that they experienced misplaced a considerable presence in Google. I also verified by way of archive.org that they created sizeable adjustments to their site navigational structure at that similar time.

So, was it the Google update? Or, as is a lot more normally the situation, were they not informed that the navigational variations they built impacted their natural presence.

I gave them this cost-free advice, hoping that they will determine that I’m an honest broker and, simply because of that, they will want to do organization with my agency.

If they do not do business enterprise with us and consider the cost-free guidance and run, I sort of figure that they aren’t the form of people that I would want to get the job done with anyhow.

At the very least I have done my element to distribute some good mojo. Give right before you get.

Summary: Offering Web optimization starts off long before the sales contact

When marketing Website positioning, be organized. Planning is just one of the keys to having new shoppers. How you do that is by:

  • Knowledge your prospect: Their would like, desires, resources and Search engine optimisation background.
  • Executing your investigation: Obtaining Search engine marketing challenges and options.
  • Demonstrating your professionalism: Your expertise, honesty, method and curiosity.

After you’ve correctly bought people Web optimization products and services, the actual do the job can start out. Go out and aid your purchasers thrive!


Thoughts expressed in this posting are people of the visitor creator and not essentially Search Engine Land. Team authors are stated here.


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About The Author

Mark Jackson is the President and CEO of Vizion Interactive, an agency started in Dallas, Texas in 2005 and specializing in Website positioning Services, Compensated Media Providers (Research/Show/Social/Movie/Amazon), Area Listing Administration and Conversion Amount Optimization. Mark was a co-founder of the Dallas-Fort Worth Lookup Engine Advertising Association and Kansas Town Research Engine Advertising Affiliation and has been a contributor to Research Motor Observe, ClickZ, Pubcon and the Research Engine Methods conferences.

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