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Online Marketing Services: Are You Really Getting What You Pay For?

Online marketing has become crucial in modern businesses for a lot of reasons. Over the years, a lot of agencies, consultants, and management teams have built businesses out of learning the tricks of the trade and helping adapt your brand to the different mediums on the internet. They can be an invaluable ally in helping you learn what’s what and really make the best of a campaign. But there are plenty who will take a business owner’s poor understanding of online marketing to give them the short end of the stick. Here’s how you make sure you’re not on the unlucky hoodwinked many. 

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Know precisely what you’re looking for 

Even experts can only do so much without a specific direction to take their expertise in. There are a lot of broad “online marketing agencies”, and many of them can do the job. It’s a good idea to know what exactly you’re looking to get from the online world before you open up negotiations with them. It can help you find which kind of services work best for your strategy, whether you want to improve website visits and grow brand visibility or increase revenue by building leads. 

Know what you’re not looking for, too 

On the other hand, it’s a good idea to know the techniques that just don’t work. Keyword stuffing, as described by is one of the once hugely-popular techniques that has now become kryptonite to good SEO. Other spammy marketing techniques worth avoiding include auto-playing media on websites, a cluttered, hard-to-navigate webpage, unoptimized pop-ups, fake reviews and so on. Think about not only how you want to market, but do a little research on the less effective ways of doing them. That will help you spot the providers looking to make a quick buck for something that sounds impressive but nets you very little long-term return. 


Make sure you can always see the data 

There are plenty of analytics to help you measure the effectiveness of different techniques, too. Google Analytics, for one, can help you get low-down on how traffic finds and uses your site. Great providers track analytics on the long-term alongside you. Some will even help you use metrics to find where your current efforts are ineffective like SEO audits at If they don’t use any analytics, then how are either of you supposed to know what’s effective? If they don’t share those analytics, then they might be trying to keep results quiet for a reason. Perhaps because they’re not very good. 

Look for the proof 

Online reviews are a great place to look for some opinions on a service, but they’re not always trustworthy, either. They should be a starting point, but it’s worth asking the providers for references or even by looking at their own site and online marketing. If they have those working impressively, they should be able to do the same for you. 

Just remember, not all poor results are the fault of consultants and you need to understand when it’s your own goals or your own brand that could use a little refreshing. Otherwise, the tips above should help you steer in the right direction of reputable services.

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