SEO or search engine optimization seems to be the buzzword nowadays, with almost all online businesses trying to get in on the SEO train. However, many companies have the misconception that SEO is the magic pill that will cure all your marketing woes and give you the instant exposure you need.

SEO, just like all online tools, is just a method and strategy. It will only work if paired with other good marketing practices, like good customer service, follow up, clear brand messaging and the like. Here are some things that SEO companies can’t solve for you

Too much red tape in marketing

SEO companies can’t solve organizational issues in your marketing department. These include things like having too many levels of approval, lack of flexibility in your SOPs, not taking in diverse opinions and lack of a core marketing strategy. This will affect the effectiveness of your branding and whether or not your message reaches consumers. The best way to solve this is to sit down and review your internal processes, workflows and approval levels to minimize unproductive steps.

No clear marketing direction

Imagine this. You have a good product, and you want everyone to have it. You start targeting everyone everywhere. The baby boomers, the Gen X-ers, Millennials, post-Millennials, the works. You expect everyone to fall in love with your product. Then it turns out no one gives a hoot. Why?

That’s because all marketing strategies need a clear target market. If you don’t have a clear plan, no amount of outsourcing to an SEO agency will help you. In fact, SEO agencies need your direction in order to formulate their own strategies too.

Low-quality content

An SEO agency is there to ensure that your content gets the maximum exposure it deserves on search engines. However, if your content just isn’t interesting, relatable or engaging, this won’t help spread your brand either. You can get to the first page of a search engine but if your content is long-winded, boring and devoid of creativity, no one’s going to click on it.

Poor customer support

SEO agencies will drive traffic to your site but it’s up to you to provide good customer support. Answer their questions online, have customer engagement activities (events, competitions, giveaways, etc.) and perform customer follow up. If there’s a problem and you’re not there for your clients, your brand won’t do well, even with the best SEO agency.