7 Biggest SEO Client Concerns (And How to Address Them)

7 Biggest SEO Client Concerns (And How to Address Them)

When businesses buy and invest in SEO products and services, they will naturally have concerns. As the SEO agency, it’s your duty to address these concerns. This leads not just to better client acquisition, but also to stronger client relationships.

In this article, let’s dive deep into the biggest SEO client concerns and how you as the SEO provider should address them effectively.

SEO client providing a solution to a client's concern

Table of contents

1. Lack of results

SEO is a long-term game. It’s also influenced by numerous factors, such as algorithm changes and competition in keywords and the client’s industry in general. That’s why one of the biggest SEO client concerns is the lack of results. Clients want to see immediate and tangible results in their SEO investments, and there is a chance that they won’t see these immediately because of the inherent nature of SEO.

  • Set realistic expectations. Some SEO clients have unrealistic expectations, such as getting fast results and appearing on the first page of SERPs. This isn’t always their fault. As the SEO agency, you should be the one setting their expectations, so the expectations are realistic and achievable. Emphasize too that immediate results may not be apparent, but your consistent optimization may result in things that are actually better – sustainable growth and long-term positioning.
  • Educate them on SEO timelines. Your SEO clients don’t have to know everything about SEO, but they should know enough to understand their own goals and concerns and make their own informed decisions. One aspect of SEO they should know is the timeline. They should understand that the SEO process involves multiple stages, from auditing to reporting, and these stages can take time to show progress and results.
  • Provide transparent reporting. SEO clients should feel informed about the strategies you are using, the executions you are doing, and the progress you are making. To accomplish this, you need a powerful reporting system and a consistent reporting schedule. Build confidence to get rid of the lack of results as a major SEO client concern. Show your clients key performance indicators, insights, and trends.

2. Difficulty in measuring ROI

For businesses, SEO is ultimately about making more money through online channels. They are paying SEO agencies like yours to improve their online position and take advantage of this position to earn more money for their businesses. In short, SEO products and services are investments in the eyes of your clients. And one of their biggest concerns is that it may be too difficult to measure the ROI of such investments.

  • Identify key performance indicators. Look for the best key performance indicators for your SEO clients. These can vary from client to client. For example, an e-commerce website may appreciate conversion rates and sales as key performance indicators, but these can be too advanced for a local coffee shop just trying to start in the market. Explain to your SEO clients how these key performance indicators are relevant to the progress and success of their SEO.
  • Employ attribution modeling. Attribution modeling is about assigning a value for each touchpoint that contributes to a conversion. For example, if a user finally converts after seeing an ad for your SEO client’s product, there may be other touchpoints that have contributed to the conversion, such as discovering your SEO client’s brand through organic search and engaging in their social media profiles. By using attribution models, you can help your SEO clients further understand how various SEO efforts contribute to the success of their business.
  • Provide comprehensive analyses and reports. SEO reports are not just raw numbers. With these reports, you can form insights, come up with new strategies, and establish correlations between certain metrics and business goals. Dive into the complexities of insights, trends, and areas of improvement. This can help demystify the indirect link between SEO and business success.

3. Budget concerns

Budget concerns can come in many forms. They can be from the client’s side, such as having a very limited budget. And they can be from your side, such as having confusing pricing structures. To address budget concerns, you need to combine education, flexibility, and transparency. Educate your SEO clients about your prices, offer flexible products and services to cater to their specific needs, and be transparent regarding costs.

  • Be clear with your pricing structure. A lack of clarity in pricing structure can actually lose you SEO leads and clients. It can cause anxiety and confusion, and ultimately, the leads and clients just look the other way and go to your competition. Break down the costs of your SEO products and services. Be as specific as you can. If you have different costs for audits, content creation, keyword research, link building, and so on, then say so.
  • Offer flexible solutions. Consider creating packages that include multiple SEO products and services to cater to SEO clients with multiple needs. Packages are often simpler and easier to understand, not to mention cost-efficient. Also consider making these packages flexible, so you can alter them to fit even more specific needs. With strategic pricing and flexibility, you can even open your agency to cross-selling and upselling SEO products and services, which are always plus points for your digital marketing business.
  • Consider performance-based models. SEO agencies sometimes have payment models that are tied to specific results, such as improvements in conversions, keyword rankings, and traffic. These are super-beneficial for your SEO clients because they are basically guarantees. In an industry that is very competitive and unpredictable, such guarantees are very attractive.

4. Communication issues

Communication issues are often a significant concern for SEO clients. They want to be well-informed in their SEO journey, and many of them are not very familiar with SEO, so that can be a part of communication issues as well. Education, consistency, and transparency are key aspects of communication you should master if you want to build trust and form a strong partnership with your SEO clients.

  • Establish clear communication channels. Who will be the main contact person for the client? How do you reach this person? How often will this person provide updates? These are just some of the questions you should answer with your SEO clients. Also personalize your approach because different clients have different communication styles. An extroverted client, for instance, may prefer verbal updates, while an introverted client may prefer emails and reports. Understand and accommodate their preferences.
  • Develop a regular reporting schedule. Keep your SEO clients in the loop by agreeing on a schedule for reports. Depending on your agreements, reports can come daily, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly, or whatever else you can think of. In these routine tasks, you may want to consider getting powerful reporting solutions that can automate reports for you. You can also do reports manually if you want, but this can create scaling problems in your SEO agency.
  • Try to give 24/7 accessibility. Many SEO agencies have client dashboards. Different dashboards have different capabilities. But ultimately, they make agency-client communication smoother. Depending on the dashboard’s power, clients may be able to check their campaigns 24/7, view reports, make new SEO orders, and more with their agency’s dashboard.

5. Transparency

Effective communication is an important part of transparency. But we already know that. There are other aspects of transparency that you need in your SEO agency to build better client partnerships and foster trust. Clear SEO contracts, accessible educational materials, and feedback loops are great aspects to improve on. They bring down some of the biggest barriers SEO clients are concerned about, namely hidden costs, unclear strategies, and uncertain outcomes.

  • Provide a well-defined service agreement. Your SEO product or service contract should clearly outline the scope of the SEO product or service you will provide, the deliverables, and the associated costs. The more comprehensive the cost breakdown, the better. If there are additional or unexpected costs, communicate them as well. Also, avoid using jargon and use plain language to ensure SEO clients really understand the terms of the agreement.
  • Invest in educational initiatives. Showcase success stories. You can make a portfolio of your SEO campaigns to show your diversity and versatility. You can also write a case study to dive deep into particular campaigns. When you show positive and transformative results, you are being transparent with your SEO clients regarding what you can do. Another way to spark confidence is to provide free educational materials for your SEO clients. They can be webinars and workshops. And they can be supplementary materials that explain SEO strategies and executions.
  • Make a feedback loop. Always seek SEO client feedback. Check-ins and surveys are great at this. Use feedback to continuously improve your client relations and SEO processes. Be responsive and don’t take their comments personally. Ultimately, even negative comments can help you improve your craft.

6. Competitive landscape

The online world is very competitive as businesses compete with the same sets of eyeballs and wallets. It can be incredibly difficult to compete even if businesses have the best SEO agencies on their side. But with the right approach and position, you can give your SEO clients a competitive edge. You have to understand the competitive landscape first and what sets your SEO clients apart.

  • Do a competitor analysis. Conduct a competitor analysis to identify the primary competitors of your SEO clients and learn about their strategies. You can even copy some of their strategies and executions or improve them to get an advantage. You can also select key performance indicators and benchmark them against competitors and industry standards to make sure your SEO clients are either keeping up or getting ahead of the competition.
  • Highlight the client’s unique selling proposition. SEO clients should know their unique selling proposition – their brand story and what sets them apart from other businesses in the same industry. If they don’t, you can guide them to develop their unique selling proposition. Once it has been established, you can highlight it and optimize for it online. Make sure your SEO strategies and executions align with it to differentiate your SEO clients from competitors.
  • Seek insights from your client. Some SEO agencies specialize in particular industries, such as healthcare and home services. Businesses in these industries are more likely to employ their SEO services because they are more likely to be successful. However, not all SEO agencies are experts in various industries. It’s likely that you will have SEO clients who are in industries you are not very familiar with. It’s best to collaborate with them to give yourself an idea about their industry’s competitive landscape. This way, you will be more informed in creating SEO campaigns, strategies, and executions that fit their needs.

7. SEO challenges

Sometimes, the biggest SEO client concerns are the SEO challenges themselves, such as content quality and relevance, keyword and traffic fluctuations, and technical SEO issues. They have these concerns mainly because they don’t trust you yet. You can boost client confidence with an amazing SEO portfolio, detailed case studies, and a killer SEO pitch. But don’t forget to increase the authority and reputation of your SEO agency too because they can help with the initial confidence you will get from your leads. Here are some ways to address these common SEO challenges.

  • Optimize for user intent. Make sure your content is high-quality and relevant for your SEO client’s audience. Answer frequently asked questions in the industry, provide valuable information, address user needs, and make content pieces appropriate for the user’s stage in the buyer’s journey. To pull this off, you will have to properly conduct a content audit, do thorough keyword research, and develop a content calendar.
  • Focus on long-term trends. Instead of reacting to short-term fluctuations in keyword rankings and traffic, analyze long-term trends and optimize for them. Consider diversifying your keywords and traffic sources as well, so you don’t heavily rely on high-competition keywords and traffic sources. Stay informed about search engine algorithm updates as well and be prepared to make the necessary adjustments for your SEO clients. But if you follow white-hat techniques only, adjustments may be minimal.
  • Conduct regular technical SEO audits. SEO is not just about content. It also has a more technical side involving crawlability and indexing, site speed, and site structure. It’s important to conduct regular technical SEO audits to identify technical SEO issues and address them immediately. If you don’t, they may seriously affect rankings.

SEO clients have legitimate concerns you should address

SEO clients have concerns, and they have the right to have doubts and inhibitions, especially because they are paying you and treating SEO as an investment for the betterment of their businesses.

As the SEO agency, remember that addressing SEO client concerns is not just about solving SEO issues. It’s also about building a partnership with your SEO clients and fostering trust. There are also instances where clients don’t even know the things they should be concerned about. You can ask them questions and lead them to their concerns, and then answer from there. This incredible transparency can further improve trust.


  • Andrew David Scherer

    My name is Andrew David Scherer and I've been involved in digital marketing since 2006.. Feel free to contact me if you have questions about marketing your local clients online, I'm always happy to help and share what I know. I've built local businesses from 0 to 6 figures in sales. Leased, sold, and rented a handful of them. And I've had hundreds of them as clients. Marketer's Center gives digital marketing consultants the ability to easily scale their local marketing agencies in a way that isn't labor-intensive and still very profitable. If you want to get my "6 Month SEO Plan" please request a free reseller dashboard account here. You'll also be able to download a price list for all of the services we offer. You can connect with me via Facebook in our Local Marketing Freethinkers group, or via Twitter and Linkedin.

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