MSP Search Engine Optimization by Seota Digital Marketing
Strategic & Affordable
SEO Packages for MSPs and Cybersecurity Experts
The SEO-only package for Manage Service Providers and Cybersecurity Experts is designed to have the greatest impact and the highest Return On Investment. This package will help you get more traffic and exposure. This package does not include a new web design or website update. A website update can be added to this package.
This SEO plan includes:
- Local SEO
- Very Basic Content
- Service page content
- On-Page SEO
- Technical SEO (Google Core Vitals Focused)
- Schema and Structured Data
- Page Titles and Page Structure
- User Intent-Focused Content
- Citations (Off-Page)
- Establish a single source of truth about your business
- Use the single source to create and edit citations everywhere that is relevant (100s of citations)
- Google Business Profile Optimization
- Reputation Management
- Meeting and KPI reviews
Not ready for professional SEO help? We built a free course to teach you SEO.
Great digital marketing can change the trajectory of your business, and if you're an entrepreneur, that change in your business will change your life.
Seota Digital Marketing
Who Needs the MSP SEO Package?
This package is for technology companies that are looking to drive more leads through SEO. Your company is growing, yet you know you need more leads to get to the next level and hire more staff. Our goal for this plan is to create an SEO-dominant position for your brand so that competitors say, “how the hell do they have so many top spots on Google.”
As a growing MSP or CyberSecurity expert, you already know that SEO is constantly changing, hiring good talent is expensive and you know outsourcing part of your marketing budget will get you more for your money.
Jump to What’s New in MSP SEO for 2023?
A lot of MSP and Cybersecurity companies rely on networking and referrals as a way to drive business. Nothing is wrong with that approach, but it is typically limited by the owner's and key stakeholders' network and the time available to make it rain.
The networking and referral approach to business development is typically not scalable.
To take your MSP or Cyber Security company to the next level, you must also invest in SEO! You need to focus on showing at the top of the search engine for your most important service offering. This is not an all things to all people approach. We start with services you are really good at, you like doing, and that makes you money. This a very tactical approach and not as robust as our full marketing packages, but the ROI can be incredible if you close deals.
There is no need to hire and train more staff and worry about turnover. We will work with your current staff to determine where to focus, then we will hit the ground running.
If needed, our web design team will start on an updated version of your website that is focused on SEO and lead generation.
This marketing package can include a website design but it is additional. Sometimes, our new MSP clients have a great-looking website, and they only need to build landing pages and do on site content and image edits. If your website is in WordPress we will evaluate it and make a recommendation. If you are on WIX or another DIY web builder tool, we will have to move you to WordPress and another more robust Content Management System. We take a "never stop getting better approach" to website design and maintenance. The goal is to constantly make improvements and upgrades so that we rarely have to do a full re-design.
Basic Content Marketing:
- We will guide you and create content for our SEO efforts. This plan allows for up to four (2) pieces of content per month, but we may take all of our efforts and make one stunning piece of content like a case study or white paper. Content not behind a permission wall will be optimized for SEO and published on your MSP website.
- Every piece of content we produce will be designed to fit somewhere into our SEO strategy and will be crafted specifically for your brand.
Google My Business Management and Citation Cleanup
- Full Citation audit, correction, and creating 100s of new citations
- Google Business Profile Optimization. Seota will audit your listing and optimize your Google Profile to include correct information, correct primary category, hours of business, website, description, geo-tagged photos (we have a tool for this)
- If appropriate, you will have access to our proprietary Google Business Places Photo App
- Weekly Google Profile posts promoting your offers and digital content.
Google Business Profile Optimization Benefits:
Google actively works to keep searches on their site and not send them to your web page. The Google Business Profile helps them accomplish this goal. The longer a user is on Google, the more likely they are to click an advertisement. We try to use this to your advantage. Your profile page needs to be optimized and presented to the users in such a way to encourage click-to-call actions as well as clicks for more information.
An optimized Google Profile will:
- Increases the number of phone calls you get from your profile page
- Increases web traffic from your profile page
- Build local trust - People trust Google so they trust the Google map listing to be the best for their search
- Showcase your ever-growing five-star reviews obtained from using Review Fire
Citation / Directory Management Benefits:
Google uses many methods to gather and verify the data its spiders crawl on the web. Google needs to determine which companies are legitimate companies and which are not. Creating citations helps us train Google that your business is what it says it is, where it is located, and can do what you say it can do. In addition to buying data, Google crawls the major and minor directories and social networks to verify your business.
Our citation service will:
- Increase the number of high-profile citations your business has
- Increase the number of legitimate backlinks to your website
- Improve your relevancy and authority scores with Google
- Focus on driving top-of-the-funnel leads directly from the citation sites
- Prevent competitors and overseas pretenders from claiming your listing with links to their websites and phone numbers.
- Add additional information about your company to citations such as links to your website, links to social media, photos, descriptions, hours, and forms of payment accepted.
Reputation and Review Management
Your good reputation does several things to help your business; one of the most important is improved conversions. A great reputation with a lot of 5-star reviews tells people that it is safe to do business with you. It tells Google it's safe to send clients to you, and it improves your overall trust. Seota built its tool to help you manage your reputation. It's called Review Fire, and it has gathered 100s of thousands of customer feedback responses and tens of thousands of Google reviews.
Our Reputation Services will:
- Give you access to Review Fire to gather customer feedback
- Train your team on how to get more reviews
- Automate, if possible, the review request process through API integration
- Provide real-time reports and review monitoring
- Help to convert prospects to customers.
Evergreen Local SEO
We are well known for our process-driven local SEO process. Everything listed above will work to improve your national and local SEO, but we have a few other tricks up our sleeve.
Included are activities such as:
- Setup and optimization of Structured Data on each page of the site
- Optimizing page titles
- Creating specific landing pages to help with local search results
- Auditing and fixing internal broken links
- Optimizing internal linking (this is often over-optimized by our competition and can have a negative impact if done wrong)
- Optimizing existing blog posts
- Monitoring Google Search Console for issues. (Indexing and de-indexing issues are the biggest problems)
Benefits of Local SEO:
- Boost Revenue - the top 3 spots on Google maps in search results are an instant boost to revenue.
- Drive Volume - improve phone calls and emails to your business from new prospects
- Expand Market - when done properly SEO allows you to expand your reach beyond your current city
SEO Reporting, Key Metrics, and Tracking the Competition
We track various data and KPIs while we help you grow your business. We will provide your MSP with reports where you can see the most important metrics in once a month. We will also take time to explain what we are tracking and why we are tracking it. As Peter Drucker said, "What gets measured, gets improved".
Client Meetings & Quarterly Business Reports
- We tailor our meeting schedules to our client's needs
- Early in the process, we may meet once a week, and as your campaign matures, SEO meetings will be monthly
- We do status calls, KPI reporting, and SEO strategy calls as needed
The SEO Only Package starts at $1,500 per month
This package is tailored to your needs so that the price can vary based on the size of your market, the marketing maturity of the competition, your business objectives, and your budget.
How To Pick The Best SEO Agency for your MSP
It is difficult to determine the best SEO company for your MSPs, as the needs and goals of different managed service providers (MSPs) can vary widely. The best SEO company for one MSP may not be the best fit for another. Some factors to consider when choosing an SEO company for an MSP might include the company's experience working with MSPs and IS Support companies, its track record of success, the SEO services it offers, and its pricing. At Seota, we believe it is a good idea to do some research and compare a few different SEO companies to find the one that best meets the needs of your MSP. Some things you may want to consider when evaluating SEO companies include the following:
- Experience: Look for an SEO company that has experience working with MSPs or other businesses in the tech industry. (Seota has that experience)
- Track record: Research the company's past performance and see if it has a proven track record of success. (Since 2009, Seota has been helping clients dominate their local market)
- Services offered: Determine what services the company offers and whether they align with your MSP's needs.
- Pricing: Compare the pricing of different SEO companies to find the one that offers the best value for your MSP. (We price our services fairly, we think they are a bargain based on the ROI your MSP will get)
- Customer reviews: Read customer reviews and testimonials to get a sense of the company's reputation and the quality of its services. (Please, read our reviews)
Ultimately, the best SEO company for your MSP will depend on your specific needs and goals. It is essential to do your research and carefully evaluate different options before making a decision.
What’s New in MSP SEO for 2023?
Google has done a ton of updates in 2022 that will impact how your marketing agency will attack SEO going forward in 2023 and beyond. Some of the most notable things impacting MSP Seo will be:
- The Useful Content Update. Google indexes and stores a lot of data; the Useful Content Update allows Google to prune data from its index that it does not think users will find useful or it is duplicate or poorly written content, covered better elsewhere. Pruning the Index save Google money on servers, energy cost, space needs, and engineering talent, and it makes SEO sense.
- The “Vicinity” update from December 2021 is still critical to understand, and it is impacting all local businesses, including IT Support, Cybersecurity, and MSPs. Google is trying to localize more search traffic – so if you are close to the searcher and you offer the service the user is looking for, you have a better chance of showing on the map in the organic results (3-Pack).
- As a subset of the map results, to improve conversions, we are encouraging our MSP clients to focus on getting more REAL Customer Reviews on Google. (don’t pay for fake reviews) – Better reviews lead to more click-throughs. More Clicks = more leads.
- Fake Business Locations: We are seeing a proliferation of fake business locations using keyword-stuffed business names. If we see these in our client’s market, we are using the Google redress form to report these fake locations.
- Google Spam Update – this just happened (ongoing as we write this, on December 18, 2022). The Spam update is trying to catch link buying. Google has always frowned upon link buying as a way to manipulate search results; now, they think they have an AI solution to catch websites selling links and demote the amount of juice these links pass. If your MSP marketing is based on buying links to manipulate the SERPS, you may be in for a rude awakening. At Seota, we only source earned links. We don’t pay, it is a little slower, but you don’t have to worry about losing rank and traffic during a Google Algorithm Update.
- Double EE AT: Google is updating the Expertise, Authority, Trust model to include Experience. They want your website running in such a way that when they send your search traffic, the user has a good experience. Update your MSP Website.
Biggest Mistakes We See on MSP, IT Support, and CyberSecurity SEO
Like any other local service provider, your business faces tough competition for the top 3 spots on Google for the search terms that make you money. If you hire a cheap SEO company, you will get Cheap Results, but spending a ton of money does not guarantee results either.
We see a lot of terrible SEO on MSP websites. When we take over a site, we often spend the first two weeks “unspamming” the site. A recent client had a page with 78 instances of “IT Support Dallas” on it. Apparently, the SEO firm thought they could fool Google with this strategy – it does not work. The target site was nowhere to be found on Google for “IT Support Dallas”.
Another trick that SEO companies use when they focus on a niche is to write one blog, then publish the exact same blow, with the exact same images on all of their client websites. This technique is good for the SEO company's bottom line and bad for your business. If your MSP Seo company is doing this, fire them. This violates Google guidelines and you’re afoul of the recent Helpful Content update.
Poorly Written Content
If you wrote your own content on your MSP website, and you don’t have a feel for writing, your clients, or marketing, then we suggest you have the content rewritten. Marketing content should focus on the end user, what issues do they want to solve, how you can solve their problems, and what makes your solutions unique. You may be the best Tech Support team in your local market, but if you have tech-speak content on your website, nobody will ever know how good you are.
What is Good MSP SEO?
Good SEO for your MSP should focus on key services and your local market. Like any good business, you need to have a focus. What are you best at? What do you have good margins on? What do you enjoy doing? It is that easy. Pick a few key services that meet two or three criteria and then focus all your effort on dominating those services. Do you specialize in IT Support for Attorneys? Cybersecurity? The more precise you make your service offering, the more you can focus your content and digital asset toward that service. That focus will allow you to dominate that space. Then you move on to another focus area.
For instance, let's say your focus is Cybersecurity for Law Firms in Dallas. We have three things to focus on;
- The Service: Cybersecurity
- The Niche or client: Law Firms
- The Geography: Dallas, TX
A good SEO strategy will merge these three subjects into a content hub. You can focus all of your digital assets to building trust and authority around Cybersecurity for Law Firms in Dallas.
Once you dominate that search, you may even narrow this down more. Maybe you only want to work with law firms in Dallas with more than 25 endpoints. You can now focus content on this sub-niche in your geographical market.
To attach this sub-niche, a good MSP SEO strategy will ask:
- Who is the person/role at these firms that are in charge of sourcing IT Support? (it is different than the person at a 2-person firm)
- What cybersecurity concerns does a firm this size have? How do you solve them?
- Where can I place content on 3rd party site that will reach this audience?
- Who (persona) opinion does the buyer at this firm trust?
There are a lot more ways to attack this, but if you start with those four questions and get the right answers, you will be able to build a strong SEO strategy aimed at attracting leads. IT Support SEO is not about having the most #1 positions on Google. It about having the right ones, for searchers, that you can convert to customers.
How MSP SEO has changed Since 2011?
- Building private blog networks (PBN) to link to your site or buying links on PBNs was once an easy way to rank; now, only the very best PBNs fool Google.
- Buying Links on Authority sites was a personal favorite of mine; we once ranked #1 for Silver Jewelry (for 5 years) by buying links on Forbes.com and a dozen local news sites. We have not used this strategy in years and we don’t recommend it if you want your rankings to last. (the Penguin update in April 2012 was focused on rank manipulation through linking)
- There were seven confirmed Penguin updates between 2012 and 2016.
- Shocking impacts from Penalties due to updates or manual action since 2011 – “During fiscal year 2011, Overstock.com attributed a decrease from $1.08 billion to $1.05 billion in revenue to Google penalties” (Wiki)
Yes, you can still cheat and get short-term gains on Google. We never take that approach and turn down clients that want to go in that direction. In the old days, pre-Penquin update, you could buy a few high-powered links on the web, stuff the anchor text with keywords, and quickly dominate the SEO landscape.
This does not work anymore (the version of the technique still works, but we don’t recommend them). Google has whole teams dedicated to stopping you from manipulating their results. One of the updates this month is aimed at devaluing purchased links.
Google is getting better at rewarding honest local businesses is a good thing for you. Google still has a long way to go, and it is a game of whack-a-mole; for every change they make, the SEO community finds another way to manipulate the results. We always recommend doing the work to rank without cheats – your long-term success depends on it.
SEO and PPC for MSPs
Many small business owners, even the very tech-savvy IT Support and MSP business owners, still confuse search results with Pay-Per-Click listings. We talk to a prospect once a week who shares his screen and ask, “how did this company get to be #1” – they’re not a good company. Almost always, the #1 spot they show is a paid advertisement.
SEO results appear between paid ads on the page. The top 3-4 spots are typically paid ads, and the bottom 3-4 spots are typically paid—per—click advertisements. We can help you buy those spots, but that is not part of our SEO service; that is part of our PPC service offering.
PPC (SEM) is part of a comprehensive MSP Marketing Strategy. The more tightly you can target your PPC campaign.
A normal marketing campaign at Seota will have PPC focus during the beginning and then we try restrict the PPC reach as our SEO results improve. Sometimes we stop PPC altogether and sometimes we use PPC to fill in gaps in coverage.
On-site SEO & Off-site SEO for MSPs
At its core, all SEO, including MSP SEO is divided into two main categories, on-site and off-site SEO. Both types of SEO has numerous sub-topics and task for a successful SEO campaign to be executed.
On-site SEO (also called on-page) refers to all the ranking signals on your website, signals that your SEO company can control or influence. At Seota we have an 80-item checklist for On-Site SEO and that is done before our content get started improving the individual pages.
Off-site SEO refers to everything that is outside of your SEO agency's control but that they can influence. Earning links, earned media, citations, PR, and mentions of your business and website are examples of Off-Site SEO.
At Seota, we like to say that good On-Site SEO is the price of admission for the potential to rank. Get that right and you are halfway home. Off-site SEO is the fuel that lights the marketing fire that drives leads.
The Best SEO Strategies for MSPs
1) MSP Keyword Selection
We covered this a little earlier when we talked about picking the things you like to do, the things that make money and the things you are good at. Picking keywords is not as complicated as most SEO companies like to make it out to be.
- What Keywords do you want to rank for?
- Is there traffic for those keywords?
- Does your target market use those keywords when searching?
- What is the user intent of the person doing the search? (this is confusing for some people, there are three types of user search intent: Informational, transactional, and navigational )
We also recommend that you keep your users vernacular in mind; it is doubtful your customer will call your business an MSP. They may search for IT Support, Outsourced IT Support, IT Support Company, or Company to Help with Cybersecurity – but unless they have been taught to think of you as an MSP, they likely don’t have that term at their fingertips when doing a search.
2) What is Good On-site SEO for MSPs?
As we said earlier, Good On-site MSP SEO is the cost of admission if you want to rank, but what are the elements of good on-site SEO?
Google just coined a new term Double E A.T. It is a modification to EAT – Expertise, Authority, and Trust. The new E stands for Experience, and that experience has to do with what happens when a user lands on your website.
Google started down this road when it introduced Web Core Vitals. This is the evolution of On-Site SEO and will continue to become more critical to your SEO strategy.
In our experience, the first things to address on-site are:
- Robots.txt: The robots.txt file tells Google what pages it can crawl and index. We have seen clients with directives in the Robots.txt file that tell Google not to index the site (yep, the web Developer often forgets to enable crawling when they push the site live.)
- SiteMap: A XML sitemap can be submitted to Google to make your site easier to crawl. We don’t put a lot of weight in the sitemap in helping your rank, but anything we can do to teach Google about your website is something we do.
- Mobile Friendliness: The site needs to be functional for people on smaller devices, links need to be easy to click, and the layout should make sense.
- Page speed: (mobile and desktop have their own scores.) Page Speed is measured from Zero to 100. A great website should score more than 90. There are business reasons for a lower score, but If you score below a 90 make sure you have a good business reason to do so. (3rd party scripts, Live Chat, and Google Scripts can all slow your site down). To see how your page does, you can paste the URL in here: Google’s page speed test.
- Schema: There are two types of data that Google uses, structured data and unstructured data. Schema allows you to send Google structured data on each webpage. The structured data is part of code and it allows Google to know what each element is, vs. Guessing with its software.
- Broken links: We all delete pages, move pages and change the names of pages. It is important this process is managed so that Google does not get a 404 error when crawling your site. “404 not found” errors should be fixed and redirects managed to avoid them.
- Orphaned pages: An orphaned page is a page on your website with no link to it from your other pages. It is a page on an island. As a rule, Orphaned should be fixed by adding a few contextual links from content on your website.
Content-related SEO is done on a per-page basis but with a holistic approach. Each page serves to purposes, to rank for the target phrase and to teach the search engines what the theme of a group of pages or the whole website is about.
On each page, you should put great thought into the following:
- Title tag: We have always thought this is the most important thing on any page you want to rank. It should describe the content of the page in a concise and accurate manner. It should contain the page keywords but not be spammy.
- Meta Description: This has ZERO impact on SEO, but sometimes Google shows your description in the results with the page title – sometimes, they write their own description for your page. We use this to increase click-through.
- Headings: Like writing the High School English paper, you use headings and subheadings to organize and structure your content. Headings One (h1) tags are the main themes of the page, Headings Two (h2) are topics under that theme, and Headings 3 (H3) are subtopics to Heading 2, and on on. There is no need to spam the H tags – just make them relevant to what is discussed on the paragraphs below them.
- Image alt tags: Alt tags for images allow people who can’t see the images to know what they are. For instance, a web page reader for the visually impaired with read the alt text, to give the image meaning to the user. Don’t spam your alt text – use it for its intent, and be rewarded.
3) Off-site SEO for MSPs
Off-site SEO is the hardest part of the SEO battle. Off-site SEO, as mentioned previously in the article, are things that happen that are not on your website. This would include items posted on other websites, news sites, press releases, citations, and brand mentions. Off-Site SEO typically involves a link back to a page on your website.
At Seota, when we talk about Off-Site SEO we are typically talking about Brand Signals – Real companies and real brands have things that occur naturally on the web. People talk about real brands, post about them on social media, link back to their website,s and write news articles about them. Our Off-Site SEO strategy revolves around improving the brand signals of your company website and name.
The more trusted the brand talking about you, or the more relevant the content mentioning you, the stronger the signal to Google that your company is legitimate and it is safe to send business your way.
4) Google Business Profiles for MSPs
Your Google Business Profile page on Google (formerly GMB) is one of your most important off-site digital assets. The GBP listing needs to be updated, accurate, and worked on a regular basis. Your GBP profile can be your #1 source of new leads.
To optimize your MSP website for the Google Business Profile, we make sure your categories are properly set, your business description is not spammy, and your address and business is correct and match other Google data sources.
5) Blogging Strategy for MSPs
Blogging should be the easiest thing we do for you. With just a little research and attention to the news, we can provide 2-4 topics a month that will make great blogs, be interesting to your customers and have some search demand. Great blogs will get you backlinks, backlinks build authority, and authority should lead to better rankings in the SERPs.
At Seota, we blog with your target audience in mind. If we are going after law firms with more than 25 endpoints, we research the buyer, figure out their pain points and write articles to address them.
How Long Will it Take MY MSP to Rank with SEO?
As we say in the SEO Industry, It Depends. Your ranking on the SEPS may come really quickly or it may take 90 days to start seeing some progress. Here are some of the things that will impact your speed to rank.
- What SEO was been done previously? Has your previous agency done anything that got you penalized? Is there a bunch of spammy content? Or did they do a decent job, and you need next-level expertise?
- What does the technical and user experience footprint of your website look like? Does it need to be rebuilt?
- How much content do you have? Do you have good content that can be modified to be SEO-friendly?
- How competitive is the market? Is there a competitor that has been spending with another good SEO company dominating the marketplace.?
At Setoa, we start with a gap analysis; what is your current state and your desired state, and what is the gap between the two? We also never rely on SEO as the only arrow in the quiver. A well-rounded Digital Marketing Strategy is key to the long-term success of your MSP.