How To Scale Your SEO Business Without Losing Control
Align customer acquisition and growth potential
If you have a good understanding of the overall performance of your portfolio, it will give you a clearer picture of the types of clients your agency wants or needs. You’ll also have control over when it’s time to slow down new business acquisitions and when it’s time to hire quickly.
For Impression, along with many other variables, these are retention levels of 1-5 that they developed for scaling purposes: focusing on levels 1-3 for now, so big clients with convincing budgets or clients with rapid growth and ambitious goals.
Jovetic recalls a client in the FMCG industry who wanted to triple annual revenue and needed an aggressive strategic mix for their digital presence, including research, paid relationships, CROs and digital public relations. For the SEO side, they used a forecasting methodology that allowed them to calculate the potential organic traffic growth and what that means in terms of conversion rate and revenue.
Then they were able to create a 12 month roadmap and goals for each quarter as their proof of concept was strong and referred to historical conversion rates, year-over-year research trends, to the distribution of devices and even the long tail effect. When completed, it was then incorporated into the larger Numerical Prediction.
Another example was a large international brand that only had 30% organic unrelated traffic, a fleeting SEO history, and a conservative budget to work with.
This is where Impression’s research team got creative with keyword grouping and topicality levels, focusing on specific landing pages and long-tail opportunities that would create a worthy story. confidence and a relevant return on investment on both sides.
It was about recognizing what they could influence and what levers they could pull among the regular challenges of long development queues and limited internal and external resources.
So, using a reliable forecasting methodology will not only help you gain new customers, but also qualify them and assess their growth opportunities. Know when to say Yes and when to say No will help you in your scaling efforts.
Additionally, you can take the equivalent of the Google Ads value from your SEO forecast scenario and calculate your retention accordingly, presenting the company’s ROI and making sure you have an objective benchmark that customer can check and trust.
For example, if it’s a customer with an estimated Google Ads value of $ 300,000 for the planned 12 months, a monthly fee of $ 1,500 isn’t exaggerated. Again, if this is a customer whose estimated growth almost equates to retention, this probably isn’t the right customer for you.
With all of these numbers crossed, you will have a clear picture of the potential MRR going into your wallet.
If this is a client worth pursuing, another crucial fact is getting buy-in. As Jovetic says, a forecast is as good as the alignment around it – which is why Impression has embraced the Owned and Shared Goals framework, setting common goals both across agency departments. and with clients. These are linked to the measurement plan, so that no part of the monitoring process is overlooked and the appropriate expectations are set from the start.
Having this acquisition framework in place ensures that only relevant customers with long-term potential enter the pipeline and the churn rate remains low.
Keep track of business forecasts and goals
Besides the big picture of the client, there is also the agency side that needs to be monitored and measured. Again, a simple and effective measure here is a projected MRR – a target your agency needs to meet in terms of revenue by the end of the year.
Impression has adopted the OKR (Objective and Key Results) framework to be able to treat itself like a customer and set goals at every level. As Jovetic explains, each department has quarterly goals and strives to monitor attrition rates.
The management team uses an operational dashboard in the form of a personalized Data Studio report that extracts data from all the important parts of the business: the time management software with hours tracked by each department, the HR system with individual goals, the financial system with cash flow, etc.
Having all of the actionable metrics in one place allows them to forecast business for their agency and assess potential growth scenarios each quarter.
You don’t need to get lost in too many metrics and KPIs.
One to three key metrics to constantly monitor will do the trick, especially early in the process. After all, most are lagging indicators: “outputs” that can only be explained after the action is completed, such as “customer satisfaction”. You can gauge customer satisfaction after the quarter or year is over and see the trend, but a workable metric, in this case, would be the% of customer goals achieved.
For the SEO department, in particular, you can think of:
- Daily tasks that require real-time data.
- Historical trends you need to be aware of.
- Budgets and resources allocated by client.
The SEOmonitor agency dashboard includes a daily snapshot of your client portfolio and the main internal processes:
- The overall state of your SEO goals.
- The trend of visibility across the portfolio.
- The MRR status across the portfolio and at the individual level.
- The status of monthly reports across the branch and for each account manager.
- Key information for every campaign that needs your attention now – whether it’s quick wins, campaign issues, competitor changes, etc.
To make sure you’re always up to date with important health updates or campaigns from your customers, our platform sends alerts for every status change.
In a word
Each set of KPIs and operational dashboards created is only relevant if it is actionable and “alive”. If you set it and forget it, it won’t help you get the clarity you need.
At every stage of the customer journey, you can measure potential revenue, actual revenue, and room for growth. As an agency, you need to keep the right balance between existing clients and new clients:
- Acquire only clients who are in the long term and provide you with a healthy return on your investment.
- Keep the churn rate low by activating internal processes from start to finish: customer goals, internal goals, periodic reports and business reviews.
This is how you stay in control of the evolution of your agency and have the opportunity to start making projections on where you may be in a year or two.
SEOmonitor is constantly optimizing the agency dashboard to adapt to critical processes within an agency – from campaign monitoring to report management and proposal creation.
These features are part of our SEO platform designed only for agencies.
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