SEO for Business: DIY VS Agency VS In-House

Posted by Steeve Thompson | Updated September 23, 2021

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you. These are products I’ve personally used and stand behind. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only. You can read our affiliate disclosure in our privacy policy.

Want to survive in a world full of competition? You have no choice but to devise a foolproof SEO strategy that promises to drive consistent traffic to your website. Other digital marketing practices will help you capture your clients, get them onboard, engage with them, and mature them to be your loyal customers. 

And that’s the rule of thumb for almost every business, whether small or large since competition has become harder and harder with time. However, not all businesses see SEO in the same manner. Some of them wait for a reason; a knock-out punch, that forces them to think about it seriously. 


And when they start, they have three options to choose from:

  • Do-It-Yourself SEO
  • A full-time Agency dedicated to providing SEO services
  • Building an in-house team for this purpose

However, keep in mind that just like the way businesses differ in their approach, their need for SEO also differs. Circumstances and situations matter a lot!

Do you have enough resources to create an in-house team? Are you qualified enough to do it all by yourself? or Will it be a good decision to hire an SEO agency?

As a newcomer, you cannot take a blind guess. The decision has to be based on certain facts, pros, and cons of each option, and benefits, of course.

So, this post will help you how you can evaluate these options and take a wise decision to run your SEO campaign.

Business SEO Option#1: Do-It-Yourself SEO Approach

Do-It-Yourself SEO Approach

Perhaps the most sophisticated, yet tricky, option for businesses, DIY SEO is there for everyone to try. This particular option is viable in the beginning stages of a business when you are ready to consume extra time on marketing strategy. But, give it a deep thought before going for it.

Search Engine Optimization is a process that only works when you have a good understanding of search engines: 

By knowing these factors and evaluating yourself whether you’re capable of creating a strategy, the decision of managing your own SEO strategy can go in your favor. If you have worked on similar projects before as an agency’s employee or have a lot of prior SEO knowledge, you can find a way into the digital world.   

A DIY SEO approach requires commitment. You may be needed to do these things on a weekly or monthly basis:

  • Creating and reviewing your digital marketing strategy
  • Reviewing and revising your content strategy
  • Writing blogpost and optimizing them
  • Managing company’s social media accounts on different networks/channels
  • Blogging as a guest
  • Building a strong link structure of your website
  • Email marketing
  • A/B testing your posts
  • Measuring the results of your SEO strategy

All of the above requirements are time-consuming activities, and they are different from each other. To do all of these tasks, you need to be familiar with digital marketing tools.

For instance, 

  • You can use GetResponse or AWeber to run your email marketing campaigns. 
  • To manage content and make it optimized, you may want to use ClickFunnel or BuilderAll.  
  • With the help of tools like Build Redirect, you can track conversion, and monitor your marketing campaigns with ClickMeter.

In a nutshell, DIY SEO strategy is a good approach that will only succeed if you have experience and knowledge and you’re ready to consume your time and energy on something that’s not related to the core of your business. 

Business SEO Option#2: Hiring an Agency

Hiring an Agency

In case,

  • You have no prior knowledge, or limited knowledge, about digital marketing;
  • Time-constraints don’t let you focus on digital marketing stuff

Then, you can think about working with full-fledged SEO and marketing agency. There may be many benefits, but two clear advantages are worth-mentioning:

  • An Internet marketing agency with an exceptional track record often features seasoned experts. By partnering with a good team, you’ll gain access to their knowledge-base.
  • SEO agencies either charge by hours or per project. It depends upon the responsibilities they’ve been assigned by you. While both methods are different, you’ll get results faster as compared to DIY or in-house SEO.  

The most important advantage for you, as a business owner, is that you can pay attention to your core stuff while they manage your SEO. To enjoy this luxury, you need to do the basics right.

Hiring the right agency, true to its words, is the fundamental of a successful SEO strategy. And you can only hire when you know what to ask and expect from them. Here are some questions to lead you: 

  • Have they managed a business like yours, or have worked with someone in your industry?
  • Do they have a successful track record in the markets/regions you want to rank for?
  • What SEO tactics they follow? and how these tactics will impact your business?
  • Do other businesses recommend them?
  • How much of the digital marketing tasks they can cover? Whole or parts?

Ask for and go through the proof of their work. Agencies that have successful portfolios have data-driven facts to support their claims. So, make sure they provide you a calculated estimate along with ROI.  

Business SEO Option #3: In-house SEO

Learn from the Pros

Some entrepreneurs like to keep SEO strategies in their own hands. 

  • There will always be a seat for an SEO expert in marketing strategy meetings. 
  • Since there’s a dedicated person(s), your SEO strategy will be well-synched with your digital marketing needs.
  • You can make the necessary changes in your marketing strategy, content creation, email marketing, and other tasks based on your SEO performance. 

And that’s perfectly fine if you have finances to run an in-house team, and you are aware of the following:

  • Establishing a system to gauge the performance of the SEO team
  • You’re ready to hire a company’s employee, pay taxes, and other benefits that employees usually earn on top of their salaries. 
  • SEO is not a 9 to 5 job, so make sure you have all the overtime calculations done beforehand.
  • Since SEO is in-house, the responsibility of failures will be on your shoulders.

Managing an in-house team means you’ll have extra employees in your company. Give it a deep thought before hiring a team dedicated to SEO, to save yourself from future disappointment.


To cut short, SEO is inevitable for every business, and you somehow need to choose any of the three options we mentioned above. 

While option#1 requires basic SEO knowledge and implementation experience, it’s a safe and cost-effective practice. At the same time, you need to be prepared for consuming more than usual time on digital marketing tasks. Plus, there’s no one responsible.

Working with professionals always provide results, whether good or bad. And you can hold someone responsible, too. You need to put the researcher cap on and find the best team that meets your requirements. However, don’t consider cost as the determining factor here.

An In-house team is only successful when you’re ready to pay higher salaries than the market rate. SEO professionals prefer to work on their own. So, you should be ready to give them the freedom to implement their methods.  

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you. These are products I’ve personally used and stand behind. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only. You can read our affiliate disclosure in our privacy policy.

Steeve Thompson

I am Steeve, a professional SEO article writer, and web content specialist. I specialize in writing SEO articles, blog posts, marketing articles, and lots more. I spend my time writing, traveling, and meeting new people from all over the world.

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