🚀Founder & Head of Growth @Hedley Digital, a global digital marketing agency specializing in SEO and various digital marketing services.
Many digital marketing agencies get through the early days by providing a single specialized service such as pay per click (PPC), search engine marketing (SEM), social media marketing (SMM) or any other services that they have expertise in.
But what if your agency grows and gets to a point where you want to provide additional SEO services to your clients (a.k.a. horizontal expansion)?
This guide will be handy if you are running a digital marketing agency and looking for ways to provide SEO services to your clients without hiring a new staff member and without the hefty payroll expenses. Or if you are an SEO agency and are looking for ways to diversify your B2B client portfolio, read on.
As a director of a digital marketing agency myself, I wish I had understood these concepts and benefits when I first stepped into the world of SEO. Right now, my agency, Hedley Digital, partners with various digital marketing agencies from four different continents as a white-label SEO partner.
What Is SEO Reselling (White-Label SEO)?
SEO reselling is a type of SEO outsourcing that provides marketing agencies with the option to provide SEO services without hiring an in-house SEO team. It is an arrangement between an SEO reseller that provides an SEO service and another digital marketing agency that provides digital marketing services other than SEO. They complement each other, and the reseller functions similarly to an in-house department.
SEO resellers usually provide monthly reports without any label or logos on the report, which is the reason this type of outsourcing is called “white label.”
Hiring an experienced in-house expert is a traditional way of expanding your agency’s capacity and is always a solid and valid growth strategy for all agencies; however, if you are tight on money for hiring new staff members, you might want to minimize your risk and expenses while maximizing the growth opportunities.
Benefits Of SEO Reselling For An SEO Agency
Additional Source Of Revenue
If you are a small SEO agency, partnering up with a reputable digital marketing agency as an SEO reseller might completely change the game and take your agency to the next level.
Top digital marketing agencies receive a plethora of inbound and outbound clients, and you are basically absorbing a portion of their traffic into your revenue. A positive long-term relationship can be a great source of additional revenue. Two agencies sometimes end up merging to become a bigger agency and provide all services in-house.
The opportunities are endless.
Becoming The Niche King
The competition in the SEO agency industry is intense, which makes it very difficult for new startups to survive. Whether you provide local, national or international SEO, there are always industry-leading big agencies in whichever region your agency operates in.
Despite the competitiveness, I’ve found that the SEO reselling market is a comparatively easier market to target. If you do some keyword research around terms like “SEO reseller,” “white-label SEO” and related terms using SEMRush, Ahrefs or even Google Keyword Planner, you will likely find that the competition and keyword difficulty (KD) for these keywords is much lower than keywords like “SEO agency.”
Becoming the go-to agency as a white-label SEO provider might still be a strategy that allows relatively smaller agencies to compete with the big ones.
Benefits Of SEO Reselling For Non-SEO Digital Marketing Agencies
Low-Risk Business Expansion Opportunity
For small to medium-sized agencies, maintaining and increasing a steady cash flow while reducing unnecessary expenses is a top priority.
Providing additional professional services to your clients without increasing expenses is one of the top reasons I’ve seen many non-SEO agencies partner with SEO reseller agencies.
Non-SEO agencies simply pay a certain percentage of their income as commission to SEO reseller agencies while remaining the main point of contact for customers. They typically forward all technical inquiries to the SEO reseller to address.
Upselling Opportunity For Existing Clients
You might already be aware that acquiring a new customer typically costs more than retaining an existing customer.
That means up-selling to your existing clients can be a more cost-effective way to increase your recurring revenue, as most SEO services are provided on a monthly retainer basis.
How To Get Started
If you are a non-SEO digital marketing agency looking to provide additional services to clients, start contacting specialized SEO agencies in your local area and initiate meetings with the people in charge. You can usually look up keywords like “white-label SEO,” “partnership” and “SEO reseller in [location].” As you are practically a customer to the white-label agencies, you’ll be able to get detailed guidance on how to start outsourcing to the partner agency.
If you are an SEO agency, start by talking to other SEO agencies that provide white-label services, and see how they are operating. This will be a good start to understanding how the competitors position themselves differently to normal clients than to white-label clients. Then, create templates for documents you’ll need to operate as a white-label agency, such as monthly reports, proposals and any other documents that are necessary, and make sure they don’t have your agency’s logo on them. With the documents and partnership ready, you’ll be set to go.
Whether you are an SEO agency looking for ways to grow or a non-SEO digital marketing agency looking for ways to provide additional SEO services, partnering up and utilizing the concept of white-label SEO service could be a great idea for boosting your agency’s cash flow.