Link metrics are (understandably) the starting point that most SEO professionals begin with when assessing a number of outreach targets.
While link metrics are not full proof by any means, they provide a useful way to broadly collate your outreach targets into some kind of order of priority.
However, becoming overly reliant on link metrics alone can be, at best, less impactful and, at worse, be a downright dangerous strategy that could end with catastrophic consequences for the site you’re link building for.
Finding the right balance between authority, relevance, and traffic value is key in developing a successful link building strategy.
Effective link building is instrumental in getting sites to rank well in Google. When targeting a list of potential link partner sites, how do you separate the good from the bad?
The answer is to use link metrics with caution and only in conjunction with your own expert judgment.
Common Link Metrics
There are many different metrics SEO professionals can use to measure their link building activities.
As with everything in life, some are better and more valuable to us than others.
In essence, link metrics provide you with a programmatic measurement relating to the site you are looking at.
For example, the kind of insights you can ascertain include:
- The volume of backlinks a page or site has.
- The quality of backlinks a page or site has.
- The approximate amount of traffic a site gets.
- How spammy a site is or isn’t.
Below is a summary of the most common metrics SEO pros tend to use when undertaking an outreach campaign:
Page Authority by Moz
Page Authority (PA) is a score that has been developed by Moz and is a figure that depicts the likelihood of a certain page ranking.
The page is scored between one and 100 using a logarithmic scale. The higher the figure, the more likely a page is to rank.
For example, a popular page on the BBC website could have a Page Authority of around 50+ (once it’s been live for a few months), whereas a new page posted on a local newspaper website would have a much lower PA.
A “good” or “bad” Page Authority is subjective in reality and the score is best used comparatively in order to find the most effective page or site to build a link from.
By building quality and relevant links from pages with a higher PA score, you’re more likely to positively influence the authority of your own page.
Always remember though, a new page on a website will start with an initial PA of 0.
Once the page is indexed and scored by Moz, you will (over time) start to see the true PA of the page. This can take a few weeks at least.
Domain Authority by Moz
Domain Authority, or DA as it’s commonly referred to, is another Moz metric that operates in a similar fashion to Page Authority.
However, instead of measuring the likelihood of a page ranking, it predicts how likely an entire domain will rank.
DA is a popular metric used to measure the authority of a site. Many clients and SEO teams will set a minimum DA when link building and it’s generally a useful marker when initially deciding which sites to earn backlinks from.
Sites with a higher DA tend to have a number of high-quality backlinks pointing to them.
Again, sites like the BBC, Google, and CNN have a high DA, while smaller businesses and startups generally won’t yet have accrued anywhere near the same volume authoritative backlinks and therefore will have a lower Domain Authority.
Quality Over Quantity
Obtaining a higher DA relies upon quality over quantity. A large number of low-quality backlinks will in fact be harmful to your score, particularly if the links are coming from irrelevant sources.
One point to note about DA is that it is also important to consider where on a website your link appears.
For example, you could earn a link on a news publication with a DA of 95 from a singular new page, that is one of a hundred or so new pages published that day.
If no other domains link to that page, then it will effectively become siloed.
Contrast this to getting a link from a DA 70 site but on a page that has been live for 15 years and is linked from the homepage.
A link like this is likely to be much more valuable than the one from the news publication as it is well linked internally and will have already accrued lots of authority.
Spam Score by Moz
Spam Score is a metric that gives an indication of the percentage of spammy links pointing to a site.
The score, which can be accessed through Moz’s Link Explorer tool, uses 27 common features taken from sites that have been penalized or banned by Google.
You can then breakdown your inbound links, monitoring their Spam Score, which can then be investigated further and disavowed if you so choose.
Some of the factors Moz consider in their Spam Score include:
- Number of Pages: Domains with a small number of pages are common in spammy sites.
- Google Tag Manager: Tag manager is rarely present on spammy sites.
- Contact Details: The presence of a telephone number and email address is usually a sign that a site is real.
- HTTPS: Few spam sites are investing in SSL certificates, so if a site is HTTPS it is usually a good sign.
- External Outlinks: Spammy sites often have either unusually high or low external outlinks.
- Presence of Poison Words: Spammy sites are often associated with certain niches and Spam Score looks out for poison words within topics such as adult content, gaming, and pharmaceuticals.
In our experience, Spam Score is a somewhat unreliable metric as we have found sites that for example may not have updated their SSL certificate but are still ranking well with good content.
Furthermore, some of the automated factors it looks at, such as a “telephone number and email address” just create too many exceptions. In short, we find traditional link metrics much more useful.
Trust Flow by Majestic
Trust Flow is a metric from Majestic that measures how trustworthy a site is by calculating the number of other trusted sites link into that particular page.
Majestic collated a number of seed or trusted sites and state that “sites closely linked to a trusted seed site can see higher scores, whereas sites that may have some questionable links would see a much lower score.”
While a higher Trust Flow is intrinsically a good thing, it should be used in tandem with Citation Flow.
Citation Flow by Majestic
Citation Flow works hand in hand with Trust Flow as mentioned above.
As a standalone metric, it isn’t one that is overly worthwhile reporting back to a client, as it doesn’t really become as relevant unless compared with the same domain’s Trust Flow.
A ratio of 1:1: is very good. In cases where the Trust Flow score exceeds that Citation Flow score, the site can be considered particularly authoritative (although not always desirable).
However, if a site has a Citation Flow that far exceeds the Trust Flow, it’s a sure sign the site has a high volume of low-quality links pointing at it.
Domain Rating by Ahrefs
Domain Rating is a similar metric to DA but is delivered by Ahrefs.
Highlighting the strength of a website’s backlink profile on a scale of 0 to 100, the metric looks at the “link popularity” of a website.
The way it is calculated is by analyzing how many unique domains that have a followed link to a particular site. The Domain Rating is then taken from those domains and a score is calculated using Ahrefs’ own formula.
Nofollowed links aren’t taken into account with DR and only the first link from a particular domain affects your DR score.
Organic Visibility by SEMrush
Knowing the organic visibility of a website is essential when building links and often something that is often overlooked.
We have found that earning links from sites with high traffic volumes are more lucrative compared with links from sites with lower traffic volumes.
Although this is just our experience and not a definitive rule, one thing you must avoid is getting links from sites with no visibility whatsoever as it is likely that sites like this have been penalized.
SEMrush defines their visibility metric as “showing how often your website is found on the Internet”.
The metric calculates every keyword the domain is ranking for and then produces a traffic score accordingly.
The Limitations of Relying Solely Upon Link Metrics
While it’s important to use metrics to sift through an initial list of outreach targets, there are a number of important limitations to be aware of.
Many link building metrics won’t tell the whole story, and in many cases, SEO professionals can become so transfixed on metrics they forget the overall goal – increasing visibility, rankings, and traffic.
When looking at link metrics, it’s prudent to consult a range of different tools in order to gather as much information as possible.
That said, your own judgment and assessment are equally as important as any set of metrics data.
Below are some examples where an over-reliance on link metric(s) could lead you to make a bad decision about whether to outreach to a site or not.
- You may have a high visibility score according to SEMrush, but the domain in question could be attracting completely the wrong target audience. Here, you need to look at the topical relevance of the site, something which Majestic can help with but again, the human eye is really what you should be relying upon
- Sites can have strong link metrics but have little value in terms of traffic and visibility. These sites should certainly be avoided and are even likely to have been, or be, penalized. We have seen sites with DAs of over 40 or 50 with almost no visibility.
- Moz’s Spam Score is affected by (among other things) outbound, nofollow links. This can be a problem when building links with real blogs that see plenty of engagement in the comment section. They could be viewed as spam and have a negative impact on the metric, despite the fact users are engaging with the content positively. Moreover, Spam Score is also impacted by whether a site uses SSL. It means that sites like http://law.uky.edu/ which has a DA of 71 get a spam score of 7% (despite it being a law school at a university).
- A brand new site may have a low level of authority but this might grow quickly in the future if they create great content. In fact, you may find it easier to get featured on a site which is relatively new as fewer people will be aware of the site itself.
- Dropped domains (or domains that have a number of other sites redirecting to them) are often used to hoodwink visitors into thinking the site is more authoritative than it is. The link metrics of the site will reflect the equity of the redirected domains but often this will not be reflected in the visibility score.
Examples in the Wild
|Site||Domain Authority||Trust Flow||Citation Flow||SEMrush Traffic|
Above you can see four sites whose link metrics are in no way commensurate with the SEMrush traffic score.
While you might say an article submission site is an extreme example (given that most SEO professionals worth their salt would not go near one), this does demonstrate the fallacy of relying entirely on link metrics alone.
The site with no visibility at all (theroxyonsunset.com), used to be a local theater in Hollywood, but is now being used as a travel site.
When we crawled it, we found it was linking out to several reputable travel and tourism businesses (whether they sanctioned or were even aware of links is another matter).
The point is a link from a site like this is extremely undesirable – you are basically getting a link from a high “authority” site that has no visibility whatsoever.
Should We Just Abandon All Metrics?
Do you agree with what we are saying?
Do you have your own opinions on metrics and how we should measure the domains we are looking at for link building?
Let’s continue the conversation in the comments.
How to get more from your links
- SEO strategists focused on link building often forget that it’s much easier to optimize their existing link equity than it is to build more.
- Large enterprise and ecommerce websites with thousands of landing pages often spread PageRank too thin, sending link equity to pages that are unlikely to ever rank.
- SEO strategists can achieve dramatic ranking improvements by changing the internal linking profile of their websites to concentrate more PageRank on their highest-value landing pages.
- An iterative approach to internal link edits with a crawler, A/B testing, and site rollbacks allows webmasters to make adjustments until they get their PageRank distribution right.
Over the past decade, some SEOs have loudly proclaimed that the art of PageRank sculpting is dead. As is often true when armchair technologists voice their opinions with clickbait headlines, they got it dead wrong. In fact, the larger the site and the more PageRank it has, the more effective PageRank sculpting can be.
PageRank-driven link algorithms are Google’s original authority metrics. They are still the fundamental basis for how authority is evaluated on a per-page and per-domain basis. PageRank even underlies the PA/DA metrics from Moz and UR/DR from Ahrefs. Google uses its PageRank algorithms to separate the signal from the noise in its massive 30 trillion page index and provide high-quality search results.
Call me a traditionalist, but one of the reasons I love experimenting with PageRank is because it is an onsite strategy that I have 100% control over. Earning new links is great, but it’s time-consuming work. Maximizing the value of my existing links is much easier than building new ones. For websites with large existing backlink profiles, it’s often more immediately impactful.
Not trying to use PageRank to your advantage is a major missed opportunity, particularly for enterprise-level or e-commerce sites with hundreds to thousands of landing pages. This post will break down three powerful PageRank strategies that I use with my clients to improve their rankings. But first — some history.
How PageRank sculpting died and why it should come back
Once upon a time, Google offered full transparency about their PageRank calculations for any page on the internet directly from their database. SEOs knew which pages had more PageRank and did everything they could to capitalize on it.
One of the ways SEOs used to do PageRank sculpting was by using nofollow tags to direct more link juice to specific pages. Google responded by making it so that all links on a page transfer the same amount of equity, regardless of nofollows. Also, Google decided to deprecate and later fully shutter their PageRank API endpoints.
Although we no longer have a window into PageRank metrics, it is still being distributed across our sites, so thinking about where we are sending it is really important. I regularly see large websites with multiple landing pages that target too many competitive keywords. Ninety-five percent of their pages get no traffic, but their PageRank is being stretched across all of them.
Some ecommerce sites have a product page for every SKU in their catalog, resulting in too much PageRank being sent to inventory that’s low-value, out-of-stock, or unlikely to rank on Google. Those ecommerce sites that dynamically create new pages from a template for every city or state often only rank for keywords with low search volume. Those kinds of pages usually don’t have enough unique content for Google to see them as valuable, so sending link equity there is a complete waste of precious PageRank.
New ecommerce sites with thousands of product SKUs right off-the-bat never work because they’ve spread their site authority across too many pages and don’t have enough PageRank for the pages that matter. When you look at successful large sites like Amazon (which has over 300 million landing pages), they put their most important product segments into the navigation menu, so they can direct their domain’s PageRank where they want it for SEO purposes.
So how do you shift your page PageRank in a way that actually has an impact? You do it through internal links. Internal links spread around your link equity from one page of your site to another. Here are some of the internal linking strategies that I’ve used to shift PageRank and produce dramatic results for large websites.
#1: Reclaim lost PageRank by redirecting broken internal pages
A page that is 404-ing cannot rank in search results and doesn’t pass PageRank to other pages. One of the first ways you can get more out of your links is by redirecting those broken internal links to your highest-value landing pages.
As we build our websites over time, site structure changes, and URL permalinks can change too. This is especially true for older websites with a lot of history, as well as larger websites with lots of web pages. The links that point to your site are static, so it’s very common for older backlinks to point to broken pages. It’s also common that old internal links in blog posts or other content regions of our site point to pages that no longer exist. Google’s crawlers see all of this, and it reflects the poorly on-site quality.
To reclaim that PageRank, you just need to create redirects from the 404ing page to the appropriate landing page. Here are a few strategies for finding your broken backlinks and 404ing pages:
- Google Search Console: Check your 404 logs to see a list of broken links and pages
- Audit your incoming backlinks: Use a backlink analysis tool to test the pages where the incoming links are going to make sure they are resolving. If you know how to code, you can build a simple Python script to do this for you.
- Analyze server logfiles: If you’re tech-savvy, check your apache or Nginx log files to find 404ing pages, especially those crawled by Googlebot.
It’s a good idea to do this regularly, especially for dynamic sites with a lot of content. I like to run my crawler across our sites every month to make sure all of the internal links are pointing to valid landing pages without any 301 redirects or 404ing broken pages. This is a signal to Google that there’s a webmaster looking after the site and the site is high-quality.
It’s important to think about whether the content of your redirected pages is topically relevant to the old page. Universally redirecting 404s back to your homepage is lazy and not a great idea. Once you identify the broken links pointing to your site, find landing pages that would make sense to redirect them to.
Also, keep in mind that the PageRank algorithm has a “damping factor”. Each time PageRank transfers from page to page, it incurs a 15% loss, including across redirects. For internal links, there’s no reason to be losing 15% of your internal PageRank. For external links, a 301 redirect lets you capture 85% of the link equity, which is much better than getting 0% with a 404.
#2: Concentrate the PageRank of your domain onto the pages that really matter
Google uses the internal linking structure of your website to calculate the amount of PageRank on each page. Most sites have the bulk of their PageRank on their home page, which then passes link juice through to the rest of the site. Pages that are closer to the homepage, like those linked to in a navigation menu and footer, or pages that are internally linked to frequently, will always have more PageRank.
Image source: Linkgraph.io
To identify which pages on your site you should remove or push deeper, check Google Analytics to see which of your landing pages aren’t getting organic traffic. It helps to build a list of the pages you want to take PageRank away from, as well as the highest opportunity landing pages on your site that you want to push more PageRank towards. Here are a few strategies for how to concentrate PageRank where you want it to go.
- Use your header and footer: They serve as a kind of buoy for PageRank across your domain, so linking the most important pages on your site in them concentrates your PageRank onto those important pages.
- Remove the worst performing pages: To make your internal linking more effective, don’t have pages in the header and footer that don’t get traffic or rank well. Remove links to them from the home page, nest them deeper into your site, merge pages, or remove them altogether.
- Create category pages: Category pages are a great way to build silos of PageRank that you can concentrate on select pages. Prioritize the items on these pages, and link to pages that matter the most near the top of the page.
- Use a site:search on Google: The order in which your pages appear will help you understand which pages that search engines see as the most important by PageRank.
- Use Blog Content: Blog content allows you to link to your high-value landing pages in a way that is contextually relevant. This helps reinforce topical relevance, depth, and authority for your most important pages.
#3: A/B test your PageRank sculpting
For those who want to attempt some heavy PageRank shifting, it’s important to take an iterative approach to your internal link edits. It helps to use a version control system (like Git) or site snapshots that you can deploy and crawl in a staging environment. As I make my edits, I recrawl my site in the staging environment each time to see how much more PageRank I’m getting on the pages that matter.
Once I’m ready, I’ll deploy the new version live and then monitor my keyword rankings for the affected pages over the course of a week or two. If you’ve picked the right pages to prune and promote, you should see a nice lift in keyword rankings where it matters. If not, you can easily rollback.
PageRank sculpting works best when used on a site with high-quality landing pages with good UI/UX and strong core web vitals. As with all SEO strategies, they work best when combined. If your primary pages are not high quality or have poor UI/UX, no amount of PageRank shifting is going to get them onto page one.
Overall, larger websites run a greater risk of spreading link equity too thin simply due to their size. But for those that have quality pages, PageRank sculpting is an ideal strategy for helping Google recognize the pages that matter most.
What are your thoughts on PageRank sculpting? Have you ever tried your hand at it? Feel free to share your thoughts and queries in the comments section.
Manick Bhan is the founder and CTO of LinkGraph, an award-winning digital marketing and SEO agency that provides SEO, paid media, and content marketing services. He is also the founder and CEO of SearchAtlas, a software suite of free SEO tools. You can find Manick on Twitter @madmanick.
Top 10 Best Chicago SEO Companies: The Definitive List 2020
Finding the best SEO companies in Chicago can revolutionize your Google rankings and transform your business.
With our unbiased list, you can find the best SEO company for your brand.
Using verifiable data, we’ve assessed the SEO companies in Chicago IL to give you a definitive list of the top SEO service providers in your area. Scroll down to take a look at our detailed ranking criteria or read on to find out who’s come out on top.
Top 10 Best Chicago SEO Companies for 2020
- Straight North, LLC USA (34 points)
- Digital Third Coast (28 points)
- Walker Sands (26 points)
- Chicago Web Design SEO Company (24 points)
- Comrade Web Agency (24 points)
- eBizUniverse, Inc. (23 points)
- Linchpin SEO (23 points)
- Northcutt (23 points)
- Thrive Internet Marketing Agency (21 points)
- Scott Keever (21 points)
1. Straight North, LLC USA
Billed as a full-service digital marketing agency, search engine optimization is just one element of Straight North’s services. Ranking in the top spot, with 34 points, they’re the first port of call for many companies in Chicago IL that want to increase brand awareness, acquire new customers, and grow their business. Now operating from eight locations, including LA and NY, the last 10 years have been a rapid rise to the top for Straight North. Having acquired a number of businesses, they’ve grown their services to ensure a wide range of specialisms, including SEO for small businesses, Google penalty recovery, and email marketing.
With a domain rating of 73 and a heap of do-follow links pointing to their site, it’s not surprising Straight North comes out on top. As well as offering a range of SEO services, they also provide custom web design, PPC advertising, email marketing, display advertising, and graphic design, so they could be a great choice for businesses that want a comprehensive digital marketing campaign. Their goal? To Make Every Click Count®.
2. Digital Third Coast
Coming in at close second is Digital Third Coast, a self-titled digital marketing agency that provides Chicago SEO services. Working across three broad areas, their focus is on SEO to boost your organic traffic, Link Building, Social Media, Paid Media, and Digital PR. One of their major priorities is producing high-quality content and media to achieve results, both in terms of organic searches and paid advertising.
A fairly high DA and a decent number of do-follow links push Digital Third Coast (DTC) up our rankings when it comes to the best SEO companies in Chicago. In terms of client feedback, it seems DTC sweeps the board. With over 95% of their clients choosing to continue working with them after a year, according to their website, it’s clear they must be doing something right!
As well as being a Google Premier Partner, Digital Third Coast Chicago SEO company have won a slew of awards, including the 2019 Clutch Award for Top Search Engine Marketing and Top Small Business SEO; 2019 Award of Distinction for Content Marketing at The Communicator Awards and have been named as a top 3% global agency by Google.
With glowing testimonials and widespread industry recognition, DTC continues to achieve impressive results on behalf of their clients, proving the title of being one of the top SEO companies.
3. Walker Sands
Walker Sands digital marketing agency was founded in 2001 and has grown substantially since then. As well as offering data-driven SEO services, including content marketing, link building, keyword research to enhance your organic traffic, the SEO agency also provides clients with a range of web development services, creative services, demand generation, and branding.
Placing emphasis on filling the sales pipeline by increasing organic traffic, they provide exceptional campaign tracking, monthly reporting, and analytics. If you want easily verifiable data to show how and why your SEO is working, Walker Sands may be the agency for you.
Working primarily with B2B clients, their high DA, and a ton of do-follow links highlight their prowess within the industry. In addition to commercial success and recognition, they continue to impress clients in Chicago IL and the surrounding areas.
4. Chicago Web Design SEO Company
Building on 12 years’ experience, Chicago Web Design SEO Company (CWDSC) is situated in S Riverside Drive but has locations in seven other cities and services over 70 towns. Working mainly with companies that are already up and running, CWDSC may not be the right fit if you’re a budding entrepreneur or a start-up. For entities that are already established, however, CWDSC can offer a great range of services.
Founded by now-CEO, Jack Lombardi II, the company claims to be the ‘most trusted web design and SEO company in the Midwest’. Offering web design, reputation management, and lead generation, as well as search engine optimization, CWDSC services a growing number of niche markets. Clients include contractors, dentists, eCommerce stores, plumbers, accountants, and attorneys, so there’s a significant range of markets to explore.
Brand building SEO services start at $179 per month, rising to $500 for local SEO services and $750 a month for eCommerce SEO. With custom options to suit all businesses, CWDSC pride themselves on working with a wide range of small and medium businesses.
5. Comrade Web Agency
Another full-service digital marketing firm, Comrade Web Agency is known for working across specific industries. Their clients include attorneys and law offices; senior living facilities; manufacturers; e-commerce providers and small businesses.
First and foremost, Comrade operates as a web design and development firm. Believing that your website is the ‘heart and soul’ of your company’s online presence, it offers tailor-made web solutions to make your site stand out.
Using digital marketing to create loyal brand ambassadors, Comrade’s approach aligns your long-term goals with action to deliver measurable results. A relatively high DA, combined with overwhelming positive client reviews and a respectable number of do-follow links sees Comrade Web Agency tipped as one of the best SEO agencies in Chicago.
6. eBizUniverse, Inc.
Founded by Thomas Varghese, eBizUniverse now has an in-house team of 12 and offers full-service digital marketing. Recognized by UpCity as a Top SEO Agency, the firm has also been distinguished for its social media marketing services.
SEO is only one of the firm’s specialties. You’ll find web design and web development expertise, video creation, social media marketing, and much more is also available. Having increased one client’s leads by 320% in just two months, the mix of marketing tools certainly seems to deliver value-added results. For the Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, eBizUniverse secured number one and two organic rankings on Google’s MAP Pack, increased reviews by 300%, and almost tripled leads in just one month.
Despite a moderate amount of do-follow links, eBizUniverse maintains a relatively high DA, which perhaps highlights just how popular they are. Receiving fantastic feedback from its clients, the firm continues to go from strength to strength.
7. Linchpin SEO
Also receiving 23 points in our unbiased rankings of the best SEO agencies in Chicago, Linchpin SEO has earned an impressive reputation. Offering web design, as well as SEO and full digital marketing services, Linchpin SEO prides itself on getting their clients the recognition they deserve. They design a custom SEO strategy for the best ranking results in search engines. Their SEO strategy includes effective link building, relevant keyword research, content marketing to get you the best organic traffic results.
With tailored solutions for small businesses, growing companies aiming for local growth, and enterprises aiming for national growth, they offer digital marketing solutions for organizations of all sizes.
Founded by Bill Ross, the management team consists of specialists from across a variety of industries, which enables them to serve numerous markets and sectors. A core team of five makes up the management team at Linchpin SEO but numerous staff operates from the company’s five locations.
Already receiving a high number of traffic and benefiting from a super high number of do-follow links, it’s clear that Linchpin SEO practices what they preach.
Focusing primarily on growing enterprise, cloud, and e-commerce revenue, Northcutt operates by implementing a four-stage approach; SEO strategy; substance; relationships, and exposure. This Chicago SEO company has worked with numerous well-known multinational corporations, there’s no doubt Northcutt can deliver what they offer.
While they’re not tailored towards smaller businesses, they do offer measurable results to companies that are ready to grow their enterprise. Using over 1,200 fact check via their technical SEO system assessment, they use scientific approaches to fill pipelines.
Having grown with the industry, Northcutt offers a range of dedicated SEO services, including keyword research strategy, ADA compliance auditing, Google penalty recoveries, KOB analysis, and much more to help grow your business with organic search.
With a search engine optimization approach that’s designed to target every element of Google’s SEO assessment criteria, they leave no stone unturned when it comes to getting results. Known for successfully targeting highly competitive keywords, they thrive on making big businesses bigger.
9. Thrive Internet Marketing Agency
Also receiving 23 points on our rankings, Thrive Internet Marketing Agency operates as a full-service solutions provider to brands who want to launch, grow, and succeed. From web design and development to SEO, PPC, and Amazon Storefront and Branding, they offer an exceptional range of services.
Launched in 2005, the firm’s HQ is situated in Texas but has many offices around the U.S. Working with local, national, and international businesses, the large in-house team offers a rich variety of specialisms.
An Official Member of the 2020 Forbes Agency Council, Thrive Internet Marketing Agency also received the 2019 Agency of the Year award from AdWorldMasters and was rated one of the Top SEO Companies in 2019 by Clutch.
Working with businesses across a range of industries, Thrive boasts impressive results and glowing client reviews. One client, a transport company, achieved a 32.44% increase in organic traffic and a 30% increase in conversions (year on year), which highlights just how effective good SEO can be.
10. Scott Keever SEO
Advertised as the #1 Ranked SEO Agency, Scott Keever SEO has ranked more than 100 websites on page one of Google. With a 97% client retention rate and double client visibility rates on average, the agency offers fantastic results.
Offering web development, website design, and social media services, as well as SEO, Scott Keever SEO operates a full-service marketing agency. Working with businesses across all industries, there’s no limit on what they can accomplish for you.
Monthly plans start at $1,000 but clients aren’t asked to enter into any type of contract. This means you retain complete flexibility and, presumably, will only continue to partner with the agency if you continue to benefit from impressive results. This certainly showcases the agency’s confidence and is sure to be an attractive proposition for smaller companies who don’t want to risk investing resources in long-term contracts.
A Google Partner, BBB Accredited Business with an A+ rating, and a 2020 National Excellence Award Winner, Scott Keever SEO is based in N Franklin St and works with clients in Chicago and beyond.
Finding the best Chicago SEO company isn’t easy. To ensure we bring you the most accurate and up to date information, we undertake detailed research and analyze the results, so you don’t have to.
Remember – all the information we use to rank these local SEO agencies in Chicago is publicly available and verifiable. What’s more, our rankings are independent and unbiased, so you won’t find any paid promotions or advertising here.
We ranked SEO companies on a number of factors, including:
- Presence of an SSL certificate
- Page loading speeds
- Domain authority
- Number of Google reviews
- Average Google review score
- Number of do-follow links
- Total traffic
- Mobile-friendliness of site
Every assessment criterion was placed into a category, companies being given a score for each of these categories. As you can see, it was Straight North, LLC USA that came out on top when every criterion was researched, collated, and used to calculate a score for each category.
Start sending inquiries today
Our rankings of the best SEO companies in Chicago 2020 is designed to give you easy access to the top firms in your area. Using objective criteria, you can see which agencies come out on top and which SEO companies deliver the right range of services for your business.
Not every firm on the list will necessarily be the right for your brand, however, it’s a great place to start looking for your next SEO partner. Take a look at each of the sites, examine their case studies, and decide who you think is best placed to help you drive your business forward and meet your SEO objectives in 2020.
Top 10 Best Miami SEO Companies for 2020 [100% Unbiased]
Are you searching for the best SEO companies in Miami? There are many SEO experts out there, but how do you know which digital marketing agency does the best search engine optimization job to boost your Google rankings and drive more organic traffic to your site? Lucky for you, we’ve put together the top 10 Miami SEO experts in the area! I hope this list of search engine optimization companies saves your business time, so you can start getting new clients sooner. You can use any of these digital marketing agencies for your SEO campaign, social media, and other business needs.
These Miami based SEO experts know how search engines work. You can count on them to help your business increase search engine rankings. Digital marketing experts know the way to get a boosted conversion rate and take your website to the next level. Miami search engine optimization experts will build an effective marketing strategy, keeping your long-term goals in mind.
This list is completely unbiased, and we haven’t received any payment from companies looking to be put on this SEO list. The rankings were created based on a series of criteria that we explain at the end of this post.
So, strap yourself in and check out the Miami SEO list below:
FREE Download: Only work with the best SEO companies on the planet when you download our free SEO company vetting checklist.
Top 10 SEO Companies in Miami
- WEBRIS Agency (34 points)
- On the Map Inc. (30 points)
- The Miami SEO Company (23 points)
- Egochi (22 points)
- Wegacha (22 points)
- OptFirst Internet Marketing (21 points)
- Pacific54 (20 points)
- Alphametic (20 points)
- Link2City (19 points)
- Vortex Communications (19 points)
WEBRIS Agency: Bilingual Digital Marketing in Miami, FL
WEBRIS Agency, Miami, FL is one of the best fully bi-lingual marketing companies offering SEO services in both English and Spanish. They proudly promote white hat SEO services through their website and can call upon over 50 years of SEO expert experience. WEBRIS team offers a lot of excellent high-quality SEO campaigns for your Miami business. They handle various SEO services to get improved search results– both on and off-page. On their site, they claim to offer consistent long term results for clients, rather than just one month of great results and a dip back down again. The WEBRIS SEO team is also very diverse, with a great blend of technical and creative experts.
During our research, we found that they came out on top in just about every single category. The only one they came second in was the Domain Rating, but they made up for that with over 1200 reference domains. Their website dominates the total search engine traffic stat, and most importantly, they have the most Google Reviews. To go alongside this, we found the average Google rating was five stars. That’s as good as it gets, making them well worthy of the top spot in our rankings. You should consider them for high-quality link building services, thoughtful keyword research, and smart content optimization.
Whether you need a local SEO campaign or general search engine optimization strategy, this digital marketing team is ready to help with organic search. Miami SEO experts will make sure your keywords are up to date, optimize your website, advise on the web design. Customers mention that the results speak for themselves and highly recommend this internet marketing agency.
On the Map Inc. Free Instant SEO Analyzer
On the Map, Inc. agency is aptly named as they hope to get your business on the map by improving your web presence through SEO. They provide proven local SEO results, as shown by the numerous case studies on their website. You can clearly see they deliver on promises to drive traffic and can get your business to the number one spot. On top of that, they offer a free consultation. Whether your goal is Local SEO or you target the entire world, it’s vital to check on your website health often. It allows you to solve any problems on time, and provide the highest quality user experience.
Again, you get an extensive marketing service that begins with SEO website analysis to find your KPIs. This is highly important to build search results speak strategy to help your business grow. Everything is covered by their team, from keyword research all the way down to customized content and custom reporting. With over ten years of experience in this industry and multiple awards to their name, this is a fine Miami SEO agency to choose from. Our rankings criteria found that they competed with the top spot throughout the search engine optimization process. In fact, they were the top-rated website for Domain Rating, earning 75 compared to 66 in second place.
All of their work is done in-house, which helps to avoid any delays for your company. A great feature that we found on the website is that they have services for common Miami industries. Their clients’ SEO campaign list includes Dentist SEO, Photographer SEO, and so on. Customers love them on social media and emphasize their search engine optimization marketing strategies. They will design an effective SEO strategy business owners will love. Miami SEO experts working out a way to take your project to the next level. They can save your company time to generate search engine organic traffic by building a strategy that covers on-page search engine optimization, off-page link building services, social media signals, email marketing content strategies.
The Miami SEO Company: Search Engine Optimization That Works for Your Business.
As soon as you visit the website, there’s something you’ll enjoy – an offer for a free online website consultation. Who doesn’t like to get free things, right? Sergio Aicardi and Jason Hawkins started The Miami SEO Company because they felt the majority of SEO agencies were rip-offs. They’ve grown the business of Miami SEO services into an impressively sized digital marketing team with digital marketing experts in multiple internet marketing services – from content writing to link building to PPC. These Miami SEO experts will cover all your online marketing needs. They help websites increase organic search results, social media growth, and other business marketing needs.
The company is a Google Partner, which gives confidence they’re certified, online marketing professionals with all rights reserved. They offer a complete SEO package tailored to your business, they also provide web design services if your business needs them. Through our digital research, we found their website performed admirably across most metrics, with a 4.7 average Google rating being the standout. One slight blot on the page was the website taking over 3 seconds to load, but they still did enough to get third place on our list.
Egochi: Your Web Partner Towards Online Success
Egochi is a bright and forward-thinking Miami SEO agency that can help with your search engine optimization needs. It’s evident that search engine optimization professionals know what they’re talking about and go into great focus when discussing SEO ranking traffic factors and marketing strategy techniques. There’s a full range of digital marketing services available, and this Miami SEO company states that it can make your website content visible in search engines to your target audience through its Miami SEO expert service. Every aspect of your websites’ SEO is considered, including web design, social media signals, current search engines rankings ability to correct any existing errors that have been holding you back.
Egochi ranked really highly in the ‘ranks in top 10’ and average Google Reviews rating in marketing agencies categories. However, their average rating of five-stars should be taken with a pinch of salt as they only had ten online customer reviews. Regardless, there’s a lot to like about this Miami search engine optimization company, and we noticed how they let you set your online marketing budget and build a marketing campaign around it. Their Miami SEO services will increase your search engine rankings, improve your web content to generate more traffic, and pick the best conversion rate keywords. This internet marketing has been working with search engine optimization for years, they know Google algorithms, users’ intents, and their clients’ needs.
Wegacha: Creates Your Dreamed Web Or Ecommerce
Another Miami search engine optimization company with a somewhat whacky name. Wegacha is a relatively young digital agency that offers a selection of different search engine optimization packages to help you reach your goals. They’ve only been up and running for 4 years, since 2016, but have already taken three different internet marketing awards in the last two years alone! Impressive stuff made all the more impressive by the host of strong reviews across multiple platforms. They passed all of our SEO best practice scores with an SSL Certificate, a mobile-friendly website, and an under three seconds loading speed.
What can really help, Wegacha gives you a choice. You can choose pre-packaged SEO services at a fixed price, or you can focus on their a-la-carte menu. This choice is great as it provides more options for big and small businesses in the area. Customers get premier search engine optimization service, web site design improvement, high-speed page loading, and enhanced user engagement. High-quality link building that is included in SEO campaigns increases website authority so you get more traffic. If you are looking for an SEO expert in Miami, FL, you should definitely click the “contact us” button ” on their site, or reach out on social media.
OptFirst Internet Marketing: Strategies that Maximize Campaign Efforts on all Digital Platforms
You will find internet marketing company OptFirst in the Miami Shores region, and it’s been in Miami SEO since 2001. LinkedIn seems to indicate a small team of around fifteen employees, but this doesn’t mean you get a small-time search engine optimization service.
We were impressed with how well this small business stacked up against some of the bigger ones. The company is full of Miami FL SEO experts that have been in the search engine optimization industry for decades. The OptFirst methodology follows an eight-step plan to improve your website SEO. They outline a marketing strategy on their website, which gives you some transparency into how they and search engines will work for you. Again, they also let you build your own package service based on what you think is most important to use for your website. They can create one-off search engine optimization campaigns or provide an ongoing service for your business – the choice is yours!
Pacific54: a Diverse Team of Experts, Providing Premium Digital Marketing Services
Coming in at number seven, we have the crisp and modern Pacific54 search engine optimization team. Founded by Avi Cohen, the company has been navigating the digital SEO field for over ten years. They’ve become Google Partners, have an average review rating of 4.9, and boast a small business team that includes two dogs and a cat.
Based in the heart of Wynwood, Miami FL, they are working with a friendly approach to search engine optimization. The smallness of the team means that each client gets dedicated attention all the time. The customer service is great as well, you can use their handy web chat to get answers for any burning marketing questions you want. All customers need to do is find the “contact us” link on the page of their website.
The website SEO services work based around a simple concept of evaluating content and links and increase its quality. They create an effective keywords database and follow Google algorithms to help win more traffic for every web page. The Miami SEO team promises to study your website and continuously make improvements to help you stand out from the crowd. They improve your web design, the online presence, deliver effective search engine optimization strategies to increase your internet traffic. If you want you can find other business services they focus on. For example, combine SEO service with the web design process and email marketing. Customers love the strategy when they can win over Google traffic with the target keywords, improve user experience, and increase the number of new prospects at the same time.
Alphametic: Your Next Search Marketing Agency
Next on the list of the best Miami SEO marketing companies is Alphametic, who claim to optimize your website digital conversions using SEO focus and a variety of other search marketing exploits. They’ve been featured in some pretty big publications over the press and internet, including Entrepreneur and Inc.
The USP of Alphametic is probably their 90-day SEO makeover service. It sounds like a moderately interesting reality TV show. But it’s actually working well for you to see vital changes in just a few months. While they don’t explicitly name any clients on social, they do include stats that claim they were able to increase Google search traffic and website visibility by 246% and helped business break 100k website online visits per month. So, the stats seem a great way to suggest they know what they’re talking about.
Alphametic was founded by Matthew Capala and has worked with a series of major brands like L’Oreal, Novartis, and Shopkeep. They must have enjoyed a lot of recent success as they’re just moved to a new address in Downtown Miami in the central business district. Their search engine optimization (SEO) strategy has great social proof on the internet. Customers often emphasize their marketing service with long Google reviews.
Link2City: Trusted Digital Agency with Proven Track Record
The penultimate Miami SEO company on our list is Link2City. They scored 19 points, tying them with the company in tenth place. It’s a marketing agency with a lot of web experience, and this is reflected in the long number of case studies you can see on the website. They have over 2,000 clients across multiple industries, so they must know what they’re doing.
Danny Sibai started Link2City in 1999, which is a very early time to have an SEO business. As the years have progressed, the company has grown and developed new skills and strengths to match the changing times and demands of the marketing industry.
Like most industries, the marketing industry is always changing to match the technological advancement of the current day. Since Link2city has been able to remain at the top all of these years, it adds great credibility to the company. You’ll notice they have won multiple awards in the last decade, including one for Top SEO Services Company in Miami 2018.
They offer an SEO service with a focus on Google marketing. The team handles all the on and off-page SEO specifics, including building links and content optimization for websites. Their website states that clients have seen a 42% bounce rate decrease, an 83% organic traffic increase, and a 38% average visit duration increase through this service. If you have a great project that requires the help of marketing gurus, and you need to be confident in the results take your chances and click the link above. It will take you to the right web page.
Web-users recommend them on social. If you need to read about this company’s marketing achievements, go to their website. You can also look through search engines results, and find links to the websites they work with. It’s a great way to evaluate their web page content, marketing results to decide if this firm can help with your online project.
Vortex Communications: Make Sure Your Brand Messaging Reaches The Target.
Rounding off the top 10 SEO companies in Miami is Vortex Communications. Now, their primary focus is website design, but they also specialize in SEO services, including efficient keyword research. By combining the two marketing efforts: web design and content optimization clients can get better marketing long term results they need. This agency can help users to find your websites online with your target keyword. They also focus on building a personalized user experience that will take your business to the next level. It will especially help if you need results with your new online retail campaign. This includes users’ recommendations, web remarketing, and discovering new prospects.
They won the Best Branding Agencies in Miami 2019 award, and we found an average rating of five-stars from their 25 Google reviews. Thomas Weinkle is the founder, and this company actually dates all the way back to 1984. It didn’t offer SEO or digital marketing services back then, but it was a full-scale design firm. From there, it evolved into the agency you see today. It boasts a small yet creative team, and they claim to have provided help and amazing results for over 13,000 happy clients across the web.
Scoring Criteria: In-depth Metrics You Can Trust
The easy way to create a list of the top SEO companies in Miami is to run a Google search and focus on the top 10 results! However, we don’t believe the ranking spots of a company tell the full story.
As such, we take lots of different things into account to help see the real picture. SEO performance is still very important, but there are deeper website issues and data that need to be considered as well. We spent a lot of time coming up with the ranking criteria, and we settled on the following:
- Does the website have an SSL certificate?
- Is the site mobile-friendly?
- Does the site load within 3 seconds?
- Does the site rank in the top 10?
- What is the Domain Rating?
- How many referring domains are present?
- What is the total traffic to the site?
- How many Google Reviews does each company have?
- What is the average review score of each?
We scored every company out of five for all the different categories. We added them up, ranking them based on the total score. WEBRIS Agency came out on top with 34 points, followed by On the Map Inc. with a very respectable 30 points.
The remaining eight companies all scored between 23 and 19 points. So, there was just as big of a gap between all of them as there was between the top two. If you’re interested in seeing the entire rankings breakdown, then click here.
Hire an SEO company in Miami, FL today
If you want help from an SEO agency in Miami, then use this guide to start your search. We’ve done a lot of the groundwork for you, ranking the top ten sites in the area. The complete list of the top SEO companies in Miami was created to help your business increase organic rankings in the United States or worldwide. We have evaluated multiple SEO firms and narrowed it down to the top 10 agencies. You can trust our scoring system as we take the responsibility of providing in-depth research as we would do for our own. The effectiveness of your business is your priority, and we want to share our industry knowledge to make things a little easier.
Our findings are based on actual data, not just someone’s opinion. We take a lot of things into account and provide full transparency by offering a breakdown of the results. The truth is that every business on this list can provide excellent SEO services in Miami. Each business is different, and one company we have mentioned would probably fit your vision and goals better than the other. In reality, the decision is yours to make!
Use our guide to help, but be sure to focus on further research and call upon your own judgment to hire the best SEO company for your Miami-based business.
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