The agency-client relationship can be fragile.This can be especially true of SEO agencies, given the long-term commitment required to see optimal results.A lot can change during that time and, sometimes, a client decides it would be best to part ways.I spent more than seven years working at digital marketing agencies and learned (sometimes the hard way) to sense when clients were unsatisfied.There were some common patterns that played out over time.

Here are few reasons clients choose to fire their SEO agency and some actions you can take to avoid getting fired.

1.“We Can’t Implement Your Recommendations”

SEO is fundamental to increase visibility, but it is harder to achieve this if you don’t control the website.As a result, hefty tomes filled with SEO recommendations can end up gathering dust in the client’s inbox.With some larger clients, I’ve seen thousands of technical recommendations go unimplemented.The clients’ (quite valid) argument has been that these only have avalue as they relate to website improvements.Without seeing the light of day, the recommendations are essentially worthless.There are numerous reasons why this occurs.If the client isn’t in a position to give the agency direct access to the site, it usually means going through a web development queue every time a change is suggested.Should other recommendations take precedence over yours, you may find that SEO gets lost in the crowd.

2.“SEO Isn’t Delivering Like Our Other Channels”

The gift and the curse of SEO can be its long-term effectiveness as a performance channel.In theory, everyone is on board with the fact that SEO takes longer than PPC to bring positive returns.In practice, it’s easy to grow impatient when you see how SEO stacks up against PPC or even paid social in the immediate short term.The agreement between agency and client about how long SEO takes to work becomes particularly fraught if things start to trend downwards.Even a slight week-on-week dip in visibility can be cause for concern.To marketers accustomed to paid search, it can be difficult to shift mindsets and accept that there are rarely instant fixes in SEO.Barring a serious technical problem, in SEO these dips can’t be reversed so readily.They must be put into a wider context and investigated in detail before actions are taken.

3.“We’re Not Sure What We’re Getting for Our Money”

A lot of SEO work goes on in the background.We spend a huge amount of our time analyzing trends, identifying opportunities, and preparing documents.We have to put this time in if we want to compile an effective strategy.However, the client rarely sees this. Our processes can be hidden, with only the outputs to show.Some clients have had a bad experience with an agency, too. I’ve seen plenty of clients approach a new agency with a paid link penalty in tow.It’s understandable that this causes a certain guardedness about SEO agency practices in general.If we keep our processes out of sight, that skepticism will only increase.From there, the relationship is hard to retain.

4.“You Haven’t Delivered on Your Promises”

This one stereotypically befalls the salespeople who promise incremental, oftentimes stratospheric, improvements in performance — up and to the right to infinity.This can help get the sale,but then it’s the SEO account team that has to make good on the promise of triple-digit growth.However, this isn’t the exclusive domain of the over-eager salesperson.We can all get a little carried away just through the desire to please a new client.This can leave us with performance targets that loom large on the horizon once the honeymoon period is over.Additionally,this applies to the account team you provide for the client.I’ve seen agencies put forward an account team in a pitch document, then deliver an entirely different set of people once the ink dries on the contract.This makes the client feel like they are being taken advantage of from day one.

5.“We Feel Like We Can Take It From Here”

“What will your SEO agency provide after month three?” Many clients have been asking this question of their agencies lately.The perception is that the heavy lifting of technical SEO and on-site implementations will be done within this period.After that, surely it’s just about occasional maintenance and some reporting, right?This can lead some clients to feel like, after they’ve received the initial audits and strategy documents, they’ve got all they need from an SEO agency.Basically, they think they can “take it from here.”We know they’re wrong (obviously).But the onus is on us to make the case.An SEO specialist can add to any conversation that relates to a client’s website.This is as valid in month 12 of the contract as it is in month one –perhaps even more so.Our efforts have a cumulative effect.SEO practices provide more value through their application over time.This applies to our technical SEO work, content marketing, and digital PR.

Source:Searchenginejournal

Peter Zmijewski is the founder and CEO at KeywordSpy.His expert knowledge on Internet Marketing practices and techniques has earned him the title “Internet Marketing Guru“ He is also an innovator, investor and entrepreneur widely recognized by the top players in the industry.