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High Rankings Question of the Week

November 30, 2011

To go along with today's article on SEO questions to ask a new customer, I asked my social media followers:

++What questions do you ask a new SEO client, and why?++

Here's how they responded:


Matt_Siltala: The 1st question I always ask them is what they have done previously. Solves a lot of problems and answers a lot of questions.

Realicity: U.S.P., profit per X, highest profit products and services, geographical customer and client areas.Twitter

SupersizedSEO: I always ask what the client understands and what they're expecting to get from SEO. It's a good way to avoid taking on 'bad' clients.

SEOMalc: Do you have access to any topical, non-public data?

Cheilborn: Do you have a budjet to pay us? :)What is your goal? Are you patient?

schikowski: "What do you want to achieve with your site?" Because every site needs an objective.

yankeerudy: What are your objectives? Because results must match them or unrealistic expectations must be changed.

Darren_Moloney: What sets you apart? What's your USP? Define short/long term strategy? If they can't really answer then SEO is maybe not for them.

dongalbraith: "Are you looking for long-term or short-term gains?" So we can begin identifying goals and managing expectations.


Courtney Petty: One question I ask is: "Who do you consider to be your top 5 competitors?" I include "consider" because who they consider to be their top competitors offline may not always be who their top competitors are in search results. It varies but usually their list of competitors aren't competitive in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Jennifer Horowitz: What are your goals and expectations? What are you prepared to spend and what are you prepared to do yourself to meet those goals?
John Tully: To be honest, it's usually the other way around. They ask, "Why should I bother with SEO?" followed by "It's going to cost how much?"

Kevin Gallagher: Mine would be questions related to expectations, goals, demographics, analytics data, budget and conversion rates because are all essential information to build a sensible, achievable campaign.

Ann Donnelly: "What's the demographic you are targeting?" So I can analyse and prepare target keyphrase research, content and link building strategies good for the desired audience as well as SEO.

Nick LeRoy: Who are your competitors? What aspect of your business separates you from them and will make their customers eagerly want to become your customers? If they can answer that the SEO ends up being pretty 'easy'.

Geof Day: What have you tried in the past that has and hasn't worked? Why?


Gisele Glosser: Who designed your site? Would you trust a college student to design your print brochure? Who is your target audience? Do you know what your keyword density is? Has anyone promised to get your site listed #1 in Google overnight (hahaha)? Are you using logos instead of headings? Do you have a global or a local audience? How were your Meta tags created?
Peter Meyers: Same question I ask every client: "What do you do, in your own words?" — you have to understand the business first, IMO.

Dianna Huff: What other marketing activities have you tried and what were the results? I ask this because (1) I don't want to recommend something they've already done and (2) I want to see what their marketing mindset is and why they're not "getting leads."

Bob Gladstein: I ask for as much information as possible about their business, particularly what sets them apart from their competition, what their customers/clients expect of them, and whether those expectations are realistic, and that usually gives me an opening to ask what their expectations of SEO are.

Frank Watson: Do you have Google Webmaster Tools?

George Aspland: We ask a ton of questions to understand their biz, but here’s a few: We ask about their ability and any limitations to quickly make changes to their web sites. We ask questions to understand their target customer so we can develop ways to market to them (SEO, referrals sites & links, social etc.). We ask about site tracking.

Corey Haynes: What are your goals the website? How is your site performing now?

Epicado: Who are you trying to reach and what do you want them to do when they get to your website?

Jill: Thanks to everyone who participated this week. It looks as if most of us have all come up with very similar questions to ask our clients, which likely means we're doing it right!

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