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TRENDING UPWARDS: Agency vs In-house SEO

The age-old question every Marketing Manager in a growing company comes across at some point — should they keep things in-house? Or is it time to outsource marketing services to an agency?

One of the first services that tends to come into the equation is SEO. With it being a common thought and important decision, Avidly UK & CA's SEO specialists, Danielle and Hannah, sit down in the latest episode of the Trending Upwards podcast to dissect which option is right for you.


Ad hoc vs structure

Having worked in both in-house and agency environments, Danielle is in a great place to offer her insights on both options. With nearly 10 years' agency experience under her belt, she believes tools are a big focus, as in-house teams don't always have huge tools like Accelo.

One of the biggest differences is that in-house teams don't always know what to focus on next. They tend to be on their own — but the positive is that they know what they're on with each month.


Better comms

What Danielle loved about working in-house is having people there when you need them. The comms were great; you could walk to 'the client' (the brand managers) and get signoff almost instantly. It's more accessible in general.

With an agency, it's a bit different. You need to go through Consultants and Account Managers without always speaking face to face with clients. The challenge is making sure the person relaying your message also understands the point.



But the guys admit the agency structure is a lot better. You're also more likely to hit your goals because everything is planned, and when it's planned, it gets completed.

When it's in-house, the challenge is trying to find resources when you need them most.


An agency perspective

But what should clients think about when making this decision? Yes, an agency costs more, but you're likely to get the results you need. SEO teams in an agency know what they're talking about and clients benefit from having a team on hand when big things are happening, such as major Google updates.

Agencies also have other specialisms available, as they can speak to Developers, specialist Website Strategists, Copywriters and more. Danielle knows first-hand that when you're in-house, there's a lot more research involved, it's a lot nervier and the expectation is to take it all upon yourself.

The specialisms apply in SEO, too. In-house SEOs need to do everything, whereas agencies have SEO specialists that are experienced in a particular niche, such as technical SEO or outreach, which clients can tap into.


What else?

In this short episode, the guys also go on to discuss:

  • Training time in agencies
  • Not paying someone in-house to train
  • Tools cost a lot when implementing them in-house
  • In-house having less budget to spend on tools
  • Agencies have more to prove
  • Agencies have better support and tools available
  • How clients can get the best of both worlds


What's a good next step? Watch every other episode of Trending Upwards

Intrigued by the world of search? It's a good time to have a binge-fest of the Trending Upwards series so far.