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6 Ways to Improve the Onboarding Process for SEO Clients

  • Felix Rose-Collins
  • 6 min read
6 Ways to Improve the Onboarding Process for SEO Clients


Onboarding new SEO clients allows an SEO agency to start immediately. After all, SEO is a long game and gives clients an in-depth view of how a positive relationship can be established between clients and businesses.

However, many may think that onboarding is only for SaaS companies, but this isn’t the truth. All agencies must start a client relationship with the proper foot. After all, leaving a bad first impression on your clients will hurt your long-term relationship.

Well, don't worry because these guidelines will help you improve your onboarding process for your clients and team.

Well, don’t go anywhere because, in this article, we will show you the six ways you can use the onboarding process for your SEO clients.

6 Ways you can improve the onboarding process for your SEO clients

6 Ways you can improve the onboarding process for your SEO clients (Image Source: pixabay.com)

1. Set the right expectations

Whenever you set up an SEO campaign, it’s super important to know that the client will understand how much time it takes to see the benefits of your product and service, regardless of how talented you may be at setting up SEO campaigns for businesses.

Your clients should know that it may take months to see a return on investment when setting up SEO practices on your site or content. Nevertheless, clients should understand that it won’t always be a linear result.

For instance, you might start an email marketing campaign and send out hundreds of emails where you expect 10-20% of recipients to open and click through your emails. However, with SEO, you can’t make these kinds of assumptions due to the following reasons:

  • Each content that is SEO focused has a different set of keywords
  • Each company targets keywords in different ways

2. Use user onboarding tools

If you want to make things easier for your SEO clients, the best alternative you can go with is to start using a user onboarding tool. Moreover, whenever you use these tools, they can help simplify the onboarding process.

User onboarding tools perform special tasks that make your onboarding process easier than ever. You don’t have to have any technical knowledge, and it allows you to analyze data and put the onboarding vision in your hands. All of this is important for the retention, engagement, and growth of your SEO clients.

Nevertheless, here are some of the best onboarding tools you can use:

  • Appcues
  • JavaScript and jQuery
  • Live social proof
  • Clearbit
  • Mailchimp

3. Set up a welcome message

If it’s one thing the onboarding process wants, it is to receive a welcome message as soon as possible. Whenever you’re welcoming your SEO clients, it makes them feel confident that you have made the right decision to keep them as your clients. So sending out a warm new welcome is the way to go. It’s best for long-term relationships and boosting customer engagement.

Tell your new clients how happy you are to have them on your team and work with them. Don’t forget to share important information such as contract copies, policy information, contact details, and other relevant information.

Introduce new team members and that they will be in contact with them shortly after they send out the email. Each email should include the next steps that need to be taken by your team, and one of the biggest mistakes you can make with SEO clients is leaving them behind without any welcome and follow-up message. For instance, below, you’ll see an example from Trengo.

Set up a welcome message (Image Source: google.com)

4. Define what kind of role SEO plays in digital marketing

Your clients need to understand what role SEO plays in digital marketing and your everyday strategies. In order to be successful in investing in SEO, you need to reach your target audience and buyer persona through the right content.

Let’s be honest now; without any content, there can’t be any SEO. Your client should be experienced in SEO or pay someone to set up SEO-focused content marketing campaigns built around the proper keywords for their target audience. Keywords differ for each audience and even in each location, you live in.

5. Make sure to set up a three-stage checklist.

You may be wondering what we mean by a ‘Three stage’ checklist. Let’s deeply go through each of the stages:

The preliminary stage

No matter what happens, you need to know more about your client and gather preliminary information. Here is some basic information you should collect:

  • Promoting your value proposition- what makes your business stand out from competitors
  • Your short and long-term goals
  • Your SEO marketing budget
  • Competitors
  • Your current SEO goals and your client’s point of contact

During this stage, you can do two important things: Assign project roles within your internal team and set up meetings.

Whenever you are assigning roles to the people within your organization, you need to make sure you have the following roles assigned:

  • SEO strategist: The ones that lead your project
  • Copywriters: Even though they don’t seem necessary, a copywriter promotes your products and services in words. Let’s not forget that without content, there is no SEO.
  • Product managers The person that should be contacted between you and your SEO client.

Furthermore, we have meetings. Meetings are an excellent alternative for introducing new team members involved in the project. It immensely helps you and your clients get on the same page.

The assessment stage

The assessment stage is important for assessing your client’s SEO status and health to know what to do next. To say the very least, you can ask your SEO client to access the following:

  • Google search engine and Analytics
  • Any content management systems (CMS) they may have
  • List of domains owned

Lastly, you want to aim to execute an SEO audit. It’ll give you in-depth details on the insights you can gather to improve your client’s site. Here’s what you should do:

  • Run a site crawl: There are different tools you can use to check any SEO errors you might have.
  • Check if URLs aren’t copied: Check if all website versions point to one website version whenever they are searched on search engines. You can use Google to identify if there’s only one site URL and assign canonical tags to it.
  • Identify SEO ranking status: We recommend using Ranktracker for this, as it accurately assesses SEO rankings.
  • Ensure there are on-page SEO elements: Provide a meta title, meta description, heading tags, internal links, external links, and ensure there is no duplicate content.

Above all, it’s important to run a competitor analysis. Identify who the top competitors are, and check how well SEO-optimized your competitors are.

Planning stage

Last but not least, we have the planning stage. During this stage, you need to identify the major issues during the SEO audit. Here is what you can do:

  • Identify problems you can fix during the SEO audit
  • Identify your strengths and weaknesses during the assessment stage
  • Define your goals and outline the strategies
  • Set up meeting schedules for meeting targets and much more.

6. Don’t forget to set up regular reporting of your SEO progress

Above all, you want to know what insights you need to gather from the Google search engine and Google Analytics and how your SEO is connected to your revenue line.

For example, if your SEO client is running an online shop, you want to show how your SEO optimization strategy is increasing shopping cart ads and how much lead generation you have from ads.

In order for an onboard process to be successful for SEO clients, you need to meet the client's expectations, explain what kind of role SEO is playing in a digital marketing strategy, provide them with SEO optimization tactics, and even assign people in their roles to take action on regularly reporting SEO progress.

If you don’t have reports on your progress, you can never know what will go wrong and what you must adjust. Therefore, it’s important to know if you’re heading in the right direction or not.

The final word

That’s all for this article. These are the six ways you can improve the onboarding process for your SEO clients. Without any content, there can’t ever be any SEO optimization, and in order to perfect it, we need to know what we are doing.

The onboarding process for SEO clients is as important as ever and what we should never forget is that the easier we make it for understanding, the better it’ll be for your SEO clients.

Assign the correct roles, use the proper tools, and make sure to always provide SEO reports. If you do this, everything should go your way! Even if it doesn’t, continuous reports will help you make adjustments along the way!

Felix Rose-Collins

Felix Rose-Collins

is the Co-founder of Ranktracker, With over 10 years SEO Experience. He's in charge of all content on the SEO Guide & Blog, you will also find him managing the support chat on the Ranktracker App.

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