Get Proof of Services — Stay Informed!
For this blog I wanted to cover what I am calling… proof of services. And what I mean by that is making sure that the person(s) that is doing work for you is actually doing the work. Now you may not want to nor should have to check up on a company that is doing work for you but you may have to. Plus, it helps you learn a little more about what they are doing by knowing a little more about what they are doing, helps you to confirm what they are doing and keeps you informed about what is going on in and around your business. Again, it is sad but sometimes this is necessarily, especially if you haven’t had the opportunity to build the relationship (know, like, trust) with them.
What are they doing?
First and foremost, you need to know what they are doing, or going to do. Often times this comes in the form of a contract or proposal. I would highly recommend that if you made some sort of verbal agreement on something that you follow up with written communication to verify what is going to be done and how much you’re paying for said services. Similarly, if you are provided with a contract, you hopefully understood it or asked about it and were required to sign it stating as such.
Review the contract
I would suggest taking a look at the contract, proposal, agreement that you made with said SEO company or similar type services or industry and verify what it is if they said they’re doing. If they said they are building links for you, back links, then have them send you a list of the links that they’re building at the end of the month. This isn’t something unusual to request and it might be nice for you to see where those links are being built and what kind of websites you’re being linked to.
If you are having SEO services similar to that which I offer (and have explained various components in over the years) like meta tags, title tags. link building, alt tags, etc, I would suspect that you are getting a month report. If not, I would ask for one to include an overview or recap of the specific work they are doing and/or pages/blogs they visited. Hopefully you know your website enough to know that what it looks like and what kind of changes might have been made that weren’t there already.
A side note about the SEO industry
Search engine optimization, SEO, is often seen as something that can’t be verified. This leads to much deception in my industry, which is disheartening for me, however there is hope! While I understand that it may be seen as something that can’t be followed up on, there ARE ways that you can verify that the work is being done. It starts with getting out your contract, looking at what was promised and verifying it… or one step back, knowing a little about what search engine optimization is (as you should if you follow me) and knowing what questions to ask so you are sure you know what is going to be provided, from services to follow up, like in a report.
A side note about the social media industry
Social media is something that is a little bit easier to get proof of service for, in that you would just go to that social media profile and verify that posts were made on XYZ days. Again you’ll have to look at your contract, proposal, or whatever it is you call it, and verify what days, the number of days, the number of posts per day or whatever the agreement was on whichever social profiles. Then, it doesn’t hurt to check them out every once in a while to see what is there. There’s nothing wrong with checking up, it’s also nice for you to be educated on what kinds of things are being posted on your behalf.
The bottom line is to 1 — know what services that you are paying for, and 2 — make sure that they’re being done, properly or well. Hopefully the latter is not an issue and that you are paying for services by someone that you know, like and trust. If not then maybe you need to work on building better relationships, or a relationship, with those folks that are doing work for you. Should you have any questions about services that are being offered to you, services that are already being done for you, or you wish to obtain services similar to those mentioned above, please contact me as I would be happy do so. Either way, I hope that I am a resource for you with such things as search engine optimization, blogging, social media and basically digital marketing.
Let me know in the comments below how you ensure you are getting what you pay for?