The Agency Guide to White Label SEO: Everything Resellers Need to Know
White label SEO is an appealing service for digital marketing agencies.
Especially if SEO isn’t your jam.
Maybe you’re laser-focused on customer acquisition, service and website management.
You might be all about the backend or e-commerce, and you just aren’t interested in hiring in-house SEO specialists right now.
Still, it’s getting harder and harder to acquire and hold onto customers without SEO.
Why Agencies Need to Offer SEO Services
It’s one thing to set up and manage an online business for a customer. It’s another to attract the right people towards their business.
There are few customers who wouldn’t be interested in expanding their reach, earning more targeted organic traffic and improving conversions. Your existing customers may already be wondering why you can’t provide SEO services—even worse, they may be actively shopping for an agency that does.
So, SEO should be on the minds of agency owners and employees at all times.
As proven time and again, SEO is one of the most effective ways to generate organic traffic and leads for your business. According to Internet Live Stats, there are over 3.5 billion Google searches in a day.
Compared to other search engines, Google remains the most used search platform with a staggering net share of 73.3% as of writing (to compare, second in the list is Baidu with 11.69%).
Based on the statistics above, therefore, you and your customers are missing out without SEO.
Think about the volume of search queries in a day, you can tap into potentially hundreds and thousands of your target audience. It’s a great thing to advertise to potential customers clients, and an even better upsell for existing customers.
Don’t think of it as an additional service—think of it as a complementary service. More importantly, you don’t need an in-house team to offer SEO services to clients. You can outsource it, reap the many rewards, and still turn a decent profit on it.
Why Agencies Should Consider White Label SEO
Referred to as white label SEO, you can sell the outsourced SEO services to clients as part of your agency’s own services.
You can brand the SEO reports with your logo so clients will acknowledge the work as your own, even though you’re outsourcing the entire project to a third-party service provider.
White label SEO reselling is becoming practice for digital agencies of all kinds, from web design and branding agencies to backend management and e-commerce agencies. No additional manpower is required, so the cost of reselling white label SEO is much more affordable than hiring new employees.
With a white label SEO, you don’t have to be an SEO expert. If clients have SEO questions, you can forward them to your white label SEO provider and get all the answers from them. Again, clients don’t even need to know that someone else answered for you. What matters is that the answers adequately address the questions. When reports and data are needed, they’re branded with your logo.
Finally, white label SEO complements your current services. Your customers already trust you, so they’re very likely to trust you with their SEO rather than looking for an additional agency or freelancer to hire. It’s much easier for them to have all their web services managed by one reputable, trustworthy and well-organized agency, so it’s an easy upsell to anyone with a slight interest in SEO.
So, now you just need to know what to expect from your white label SEO provider.
I’ll show you exactly what services white label SEO entails, how to choose the perfect white label SEO provider to collaborate with your agency, and what questions you should ask the provider before hiring them.
The Agency Guide to White Label SEO: Everything Resellers Need to Know
5 Primary Services to Expect from White Label SEO
When you’re looking for a white label SEO provider, you want to make sure you’re getting all the right services.
I’m sure you already know that SEO is focused on ranking for keywords in Google’s SERPs and delivering organic search traffic to websites. But it’s a little more involved than just that.
You’ll want to make sure your white label SEO provider can complete the following five SEO tasks to a high standard.
1. On-page SEO Audits
An on-page SEO audit will analyze your client’s entire website and its ability to rank highly in Google results. This includes keyword optimization, technical factors and UX.
A good white label SEO provider will scan through the entire site, identify pages with SEO issues and categorize the issues according to importance. The result will be a comprehensive report outlining the complete performance analysis and a summary of SEO issues.
The audit should include:
- Empty meta title and description
- Broken links and pages (404 errors)
- Images that aren’t optimized (not compressed, no alt tags)
- Website security (HTTPS versus HTTP)
- Migration issues (domains, redirects)
- Site loading speed
By observing these factors, you and your client can start thinking about how to improve UX and SEO.
A stellar white label SEO provider may go the extra mile to recommend specific fixes and improvements in this report, but the decisions about what to act on and what to share with the customer should be left with your agency (the reseller).
Questions to ask a provider:
- Can people without any SEO experience under your audit report? Technical SEO audit is a practice that non-SEO will probably never understand. Therefore, as the one providing SEO services to customers, you need to send them an easy-to-digest audit report. It will help clients know why you must tweak their site for SEO purposes. The report should at least help break down technical terms and dumb down the language for laymen to understand.
- Can you put me in contact with previous or current customers? The real issue when working with white label SEO on technical SEO audit is trust. Since they’ll need to audit and optimize the customer’s site, they’ll likely request access to the backend. Before that happens, you’ll need complete assurance from the provider that they’ll do their work—and nothing else. Having recommendations from their other clients is one way to find out if they’re trustworthy. Either way, you can try limiting their account privileges if you want to put them on a leash.
- Can you restore the site back to its previous state if things go wrong? When implementing changes to a site based on audit report suggestions, there’s always a chance that the site breaks. You want to avoid this scenario at all costs, but if it does happen, you need a guarantee from the white label SEO provider that they can restore it back to normal at a moment’s notice. A broken site results in lost visitors and wasted sales opportunities for your clients.
2. Keyword Research
Keyword research is crucial, as it’s beginning of every SEO strategy.
Before starting on any SEO tasks, your white label SEO provider needs to conduct keyword research. The goal is usually to find keywords that have relatively high search volume and low competition, and that are highly relevant to a site’s pages.
You want to make sure that they’re going to be totally responsible for this step, and that they’re always getting this step right.
Questions to ask a provider:
- How do you do keyword research? There are two types of keyword research: standard and competitor-based. The former requires the white label SEO provider to find keyword ideas from seed keywords. The latter entails find keywords for clients using its closest competitors. There’s value in both types of keyword research, and it’s ideal that the provider performs both methods to extract new keywords.
- What types of keywords will you target? The correct answer will depend on the type of site you want to optimize with the help of the white label seller. If your client is selling something through his or her site, then the white label SEO seller will need to research for commercial keywords. For any customer who’s more focused on content marketing and providing information, the seller will need to search for informative keywords. The seller will need to consider searcher intent and other keyword factors such as keyword length, search volume and niche competition.
- What tools do you use for keyword research? Keyword research requires targeted tools—there’s just no real way to do this manually. This means that the white label SEO seller will be using something like Mangools KWFinder or Ahrefs. Of course, the SEO seller may not want to disclose the tool it uses, or they’ll have a proprietary tool that they use for this SEO task. In any case, you can ask them for a sample of the keyword research they’ve done for a particular topic or seed keyword.
3. Link Building
Link building is arguably a task that every website needs to undertake if they want to rank highly in the SERPs. Rankings can be achieved without any backlinks, yes, but it’s much more challenging. No backlinks means low (or no) Citation Flow, Trust Flow and Domain Authority.
Long considered to be the most important and influential SEO factor, the more backlinks from authoritative sites related to their industry a site has, the higher its search position will be. Therefore, developing a campaign to acquire links for client sites is a must in every SEO strategy.
Apart from the SEO benefits, backlinks are also highly valuable for acquiring targeted referral traffic.
So, linkbuilding is also a big selling point for customers with any interest in SEO, web traffic and generating leads. It will undoubtedly come up if you start offering SEO services. Make sure that your white label SEO provider offers this service and knows how to build up a diverse link profile—and that they’re focused on quality, never using spammy links.
Questions to ask a provider:
- What types of backlinks do you build? It’s important that the reseller is focused on building diverse, unique and quality backlinks. Hopefully, they’ll let you know about the specific SEO metrics they aim for each backlink to have (like Domain Authority, Citation Flow and so on).
- Can I see samples of links that you have built for your previous clients? If the provider can talk the talk, then it should also walk the walk. The samples it will show you will indicate the kind of links they can build for your client sites. However, expect it to send you the best links they’ve created so far. If possible, ask for lots of links they’ve built for the same client. From there, you’ll see the overall quality of their linkbuilding skills.
- Do you ever build black hat links? Lastly, make sure that the white label SEO seller doesn’t dabble in black hat SEO. It’s difficult enough to build links as is—what makes it even tougher is if the seller builds spammy links that damage your clients’ sites. You’ll determine the quality of the links once you receive the samples.
4. Keyword Rank Tracking
To identify whether or not the SEO efforts are bearing fruit, you’ll need to track search rankings for target keywords in Google (or wherever else your client is interested in having them).
The higher the search ranking, the more effective the SEO strategy is. If there’s a decrease in search rankings, your white label SEO seller needs to tweak the strategy. Not only should you ensure that the seller will send you (and your clients) regular reports about this, but you may also want to have your own keyword rank tracker in place to keep a careful eye on things.
(Of course, we’ll always recommend Monitor Backlinks for this and for tracking backlinks, as noted earlier.)
Questions to ask a provider:
- Do you track local or global rankings? It’s possible that a white label SEO provider only covers global rankings and not local pack rankings. If your client wants to rank for local search, then you need a provider who will accommodate those needs. Local SEO requires certain tactics that aren’t as effective for SEO on a global scale.
- When do you track the rankings? Some service providers may only deliver ranking reports every three days, if not every week or month. It ultimately depends on the preferences of your clients. Ideally, it’s preferable to track the daily rankings to get a better idea regarding the movement in the search positions of your client’s site pages.
- Do you send the ranking reports or can we access it from your dashboard? Ranking reports are normally sent in PDF form via email. However, it’s possible for some to give dashboard access to your clients so they can personally view the search rankings at their own leisure. The latter provides more flexibility for clients.
5. General SEO Reporting
Clients will need to receive regular reports of your agency’s SEO progress.
Since your clients may not be SEO-savvy, you need to present them with a report that they’ll easily understand. It’s difficult to break down SEO data into tiny bits and pieces that clients can nibble on. Therefore, you need your white label SEO to come with reports that are both detailed and easy to read.
The use of visual elements such as pie charts, graphs and the like is a great way to break down the SEO report in an approachable way. A quick summary of each metric or KPI will also help clients feel like they know what’s going on at all times.
Questions to ask a provider:
- What KPIs do they usually track for clients? This question will depend on the type of site your client is running. Normally, however, SEO reports are goal-oriented and stick to scalable metrics that produce results for your client sites. For example, if the seller refers to site traffic alone as a KPI, then it’s probably not analyzing the site properly. To make sense of the site traffic, the seller needs to determine specific goals like pageviews, conversion rate, click-through rate, cost and others.
- Are you just reporting or analyzing the data? There’s a difference between reporting and analysis. The former is merely stating what happened to your site on a period using the given KPIs. The latter provides actionable items on how to improve your site based on the provided data, and discusses why the results may be the way they are. Website analysis is highly preferable to just reporting.
- Are you able to hop on a call if the client requests a better explanation of the report? Some clients may prefer to discuss data and analysis on the phone. Since you’re probably not fully aware of what’s included in the report, you may need the expertise of the reseller to help break down the details further. Hopefully, they can accommodate the occasional phone call request to reassure the client.
5 Factors to Help You Choose a White Label SEO Provider
There are lots of white label SEO providers out there, so let’s not discuss each of them. All it takes to find them is a quick Google search.
Instead, let’s talk about what you need to look for. This should help you narrow down your choices and help you make an informed decision.
We have already discussed questions you need to ask sellers about the different services they offer. In this section, we’ll dive deeper into the factors that make a white label SEO provider the right one for your agency.
1. Check Their Website
A good white label SEO provider practices what it preaches. In other words, it must itself have a website optimized for search engines.
Not only should it be easy to search for them on Google, but the site should also observe the best on-page SEO practices. Just from looking at the site alone, it should observe the latest design trends, be easy to use and load quickly.
Another factor to consider when checking the website of an SEO seller is its backlink profile. As mentioned, it’s one of the most crucial factors that determine how a website ranks on organic search. Therefore, a site with backlinks from authoritative sites is a great indicator of a trustworthy white label SEO seller.
To get a better sense of a site’s backlink profile and overall quality, use Monitor Backlinks’ Free Backlink Checker tool. This will show you top backlinks and all key domain quality metrics:
Using the tool will help you unearth all of the reseller’s site relevant backlinks for your review. It also shows you relevant SEO metrics about the site’s quality based on its link profile. Factors like Moz’s Domain and Page Authority and Majestic’s Flow Metrics will help you synthesize the kind of backlinks built by the site.
2. Find Reviews or Ask Their Clients for Feedback
You don’t want to go in blind with a white label SEO seller—or any third-party service provider for that matter.
As an agency, you pride yourself in offering clients the best services to help their online business succeed. And it wouldn’t do it any favors if you mistakenly hire the services of a substandard SEO seller. It will dilute your brand’s image, destroying all the hard work you put into building its reputation.
To avoid such mishaps, you need to do your due diligence before choosing your SEO seller. It’s one thing if they’re offering the services that you want to provide for your clients. It’s another whether or not it has a good reputation in the market.
A quick Google search for “[name] + white label SEO review” should show reviews written by its customers.
Comparing the different reviews side by side will help you determine if they’re easy to work with and follow through on their promises.
Another site you can visit is Ripoff Report. It features scams of and complaints on different companies for people to avoid doing business with them.
Search for the name of the SEO seller here to see if they have negative reviews on the site. If it does, consider the date and the volume of complaints about the business.
If the review was published five years ago, for instance, and there wasn’t another incident reported on the site since then, it’s possible that the seller turned in a new leaf. To be sure, you can bring this up to its customer support for an explanation of the situation.
3. Ask the Seller to Showcase Samples and Case Studies
Similar to having an optimized website, the seller should be able to provide proof that their services work.
In my opinion, this is non-negotiable. If they can’t substantiate their claims about how good their services are, then don’t hire them as your SEO seller. It’s that simple.
If they can show you proof, make sure that it includes the following information:
- The state of the client site before taking over its SEO
- What they did to improve its SEO performance
- Results of their SEO strategy over time (look into the site’s ranking report, since it’s an indicator of whether the launched campaign was useful or not)
- SEO reports that they share with clients
The third point is the most crucial among the rest because clients are interested in results. If the SEO seller can produce actual results, then there’s no point in hiring them.
4. Find Out Their Payment Options
You should expect a variety of payment options, ideally including bank accounts, credit cards, PayPal and even other online payment platforms.
When it comes to the pricing itself, you can either find a seller with a flat rate per number of clients, or for a seller with more customizable options.
Flat-rate sellers will usually be upfront about the plans and pricing right on their website. When sellers encourage you to reach out to them, you can assume that the seller offers bespoke SEO services.
Done-for-you SEO services are ideal if you want to keep things flexible, and personalized for each client.
They keep the prices for their white label SEO packages private, and you’ll need to reach out to them to learn about the pricing.
Assuming that the prices are up for discussion, you can try and shave off a few dollars from the package to get the most out of their services. By not setting up their prices in public, the seller gives you leverage to find a better price for you.
In these cases, you should expect to act as SEO manager when using the seller’s platform—you’ll need to be the middleman between each client and the SEO seller, making sure that all the right data is recorded, analyzed and reported clearly. The flat-rate sellers let you be more hands off and provide the same things for every client. Each has its own advantages, so this is up to you.
Let’s check out a few examples.
SEOReseller.com allows you to choose from different digital marketing packages that you can offer to your clients. You can see how much you should charge your clients for the package and how much you’ll pay the reseller for it. It’s up to you to decide whether to stick with the SRP or sell them at the price you’re comfortable with.
Another seller platform is The Hoth. You’ll just see price ranges while browsing, but they’ll display the final price upon choosing what you need and signing up for their reseller program. You can take a tour of each module or book a consultation with one of their SEO experts for advice. There’s no SRP either—that’s up to you!
Put Their Customer Support to the Test, Review Their FAQs
To reiterate, it’s your agency that’s on the line here. If their SEO does a terrible job for your client, then your agency will take the brunt of the criticism.
Therefore, make sure you get good answers to all your questions and concerns before proceeding. Leave no stone unturned.
The questions provided above for each service should cover the things you need to ask the seller. You can also come up with your questions based on any other relevant factors for choosing a white label SEO provider.
Ideally, you want to list down all questions you have about the seller, and send those at once, so you don’t go back and forth with them. Before sending these though, check if the agency has answers to any of your questions on their FAQ page.
If not, you need to reach out to them via email or call instead. Scheduling a call with them is better so you can get immediate answers to your questions.
Final Thoughts on White Label SEO
Choosing a white label SEO seller for your agency is a big step. Therefore, by following the tips and advice featured in this post, you should find the right one that will help bring your agency to the next level.
The customer always comes first, so you’re going to be deciding on what’s best for their sites.
At the same time, you also need to be happy with the white label SEO you’re working with. It shouldn’t make your work harder. Finding a seller that you’re comfortable working with is crucial to the success of your agency.
Follow the tips above, and this should be a smart, valuable venture for your agency.
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