There’s just too many questions, especially when it comes to search engines and internet marketing. As a strategically competitive Search Engine Optimization (SEO) consultant, it is my job to keep “time spent” to a minimum, when evaluating a potential sale. This theory should abide true for all of us, and as a SEO consultant or webmaster of any kind, not only should you have your business running successful, you must be successful in all areas of your life — even if some of you have to pretend.
Provided here are a selected few, in which I’ve placed together to make a questionnaire. This is a client questionnaire — this questionnaire was created for you to hand out to potential customers. These questions will assist you in the overall SEO process, providing you with almost all of the information you’ll need in order to manage their SEO campaign, This is the same questionnaire I will be using in this new year of 2013.
Please don’t copy and paste this content anywhere else online. It can be copied and used in emails, and copied to be used for offline marketing, and that’s it.
1. Which website analytics tracking system do you use (If Any), and can we gain access to it?
Web analytics are the key to measuring the current level of SEO success (or lack thereof). They’re also the key to determining whether any future SEO implementation is helping to bring more targeted traffic. Therefore, it’s critical for me to have access to this information regardless of the level of SEO service I’m providing. If you use Google Analytics, it’s very simple to add new users to the account and in most cases it’s fine to provide report-only access (rather than admin). Along with Google Analytics, I also ask for access to your Google Webmaster Tools (GWMT) account. These days, if you have Google Analytics access, you can usually add the same website to your GWMT account as well, which makes the process easier.
2. What’s the purpose of your site and who is your target audience?
Some of you will try to cop out: “Well, the purpose of our site is to sell our product.” And your target audience? ”Umm … anyone with a credit card?” Not very helpful. If you don’t have a good handle on who the people are who are buying YOUR PRODUCTS, how will I be able to help you bring those people to your website?
3. Are there any other domains or sites that you own or control, or that you used to use instead of the current domain? (PLEASE list them ALL.)
This information is important so that if needed, I will be able to gain assess to any duplicate content issues. I need to know whether that other site I found that is using nearly the same content as yours, is owned by you, or if someone scraped yours. I also need to know if you’re using multiple domains as an SEO strategy (so I can smack you!). I added this one to my questionnaire when I kept finding doorway domains or other sites that my clients *forgot* to tell me about. Even those who really do forget or who purposely don’t tell me about their additional domains aren’t getting away with anything. I usually end up finding them during my website audit process. So if you’re a client, do us both a favor and come clean from the start. This will save us all some time down the line! (And I was just kidding about smacking you.)
4. What have you done so far (if anything) about optimizing your site?
Please mention anything and everything. It’s better that you haven’t done anything. Please answer this question as truthfully as possible, from what you can recall.
5. Is there anything that you may have done that the search engines may not have liked regarding previous optimization efforts for your site?
Is there a be a big mess that needs to be sorted out — e.g. all kinds of paid-for spammy-anchor-text links. We will find out.
6. List the websites of your three biggest competitors. Why do you feel they compete with your site?
Do you know of any of your marketing competitors, either in your local area or from online? If so, please list them all.
7. What do you feel is your most unique selling proposition (USP)? Why would these clients come to you as opposed to anyone else who offers the same or similar products and services? What’s different or better about your product or service?
We will go over this questionnaire with you. If there’s anything that you don’t quite understand, that’s ok. We will help you to understand everything, as we move forward, and then again it isn’t necessary that you understand everything.
8. After a potential customer visits your website, what specifically do you want them to do?
If the only answer you have for me is “Get a sale,” then you will very likely need to add some other smaller conversion points, such as signing up for a newsletter or updates, following you on social media, filling out a contact form, calling you, etc.
9. Do you have any social media accounts (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Linkedin) and if so, what are the user names and passwords to each one?
We look to make sure you’re social media marketing strategy is solid and implemented correctly . We also look for links, duplicate content, etc. If you aren’t comfortable with providing this information, we will walk through this step, while you correct anything that should be corrected.
10. Is there anything else you may have for me, that you think will provide a more complete picture of your site?
If you are someone who is interested in “starting an SEO campaign” and are answering this questionnaire, prior to getting started, we’re proud that you’ve decided to take that first BIG step toward taking your business, to the next level. Please do your best to answer these questions at the best of your ability. When you’re done answering all of the above questions, please email the answers to firstname.lastname@example.org
We are excited to get you started and hope that you’re just as excited as we are