The 3 Key Things to Consider When Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency

When searching for a digital marketing agency, it's important to evaluate your options carefully. Here are the 3 most important factors to consider.

December 11, 2023
The 3 Key Things to Consider When Hiring a Digital Marketing Agency

The digital marketing industry has experienced significant growth in recent years. Due to the low barrier to entry, inexperienced operators and those more focused on quick profits than quality work have proliferated. As a result, countless business owners report unsatisfactory experiences with agencies that over-promised on results but under-delivered.

It's become increasingly important for businesses to carefully evaluate potential agency partners. The most successful partnerships are built on a shared vision, clear expectations, and an agency with proven expertise in their specialty. This article provides a framework to help you identify an agency that is appropriately qualified and aligned with your strategic goals, so you can feel confident your project will be in reliable hands.

Beauty Matters

The aesthetic design and visual components of your branding, websites, marketing materials, etc. are the single most important asset for your business. You want these elements to be pleasing to the eye and convey the right message about your company.

When evaluating prospective digital marketing agencies, take a close look at their own website. Do the designs look polished and professional? Is there a consistent style and visual identity across different pages? Pay attention to details like layout, color palette choices, imagery, typography and overall user experience.

A prime example of what NOT to do.

Be Wary of SEO and PPC Experts

While SEO and paid advertising are certainly important components of your digital marketing efforts, agencies with this approach typically lack the design capabilities to create an alluring brand image that will endure the test of time. To these agencies, design and branding are often an afterthought.

This presents a problem for two reasons. Firstly, if your brand isn’t optimized, your conversion rates will suffer as a result — a very costly mistake. It doesn’t matter how much money you throw at paid advertising if your website is ugly and difficult to navigate.

Second, and more importantly, if you don’t have an established brand image and decide to part ways with this type of agency, even the few, low-quality leads you were generating will disappear virtually overnight, and you will once again find yourself at square one.

Examine the Contract

Protect yourself by thoroughly reviewing and negotiating all contract terms before signing. Be particularly wary of digital marketing agencies requesting full payment up front or claiming ownership of deliverables.

Look for clear expectations around scope of work, timeline, estimated fees, payment schedule, intellectual property ownership, revisions and changes. The contract should detail a review process before launching deliverables as well as support after completion. Make sure termination terms are reasonable if needed. Request a sample contract from prospective agencies to compare specifics like payment schedules, use of subcontractors, liability waivers, etc. before committing. Carefully crafted terms set the stage for a fair, transparent and successful partnership.


While it requires more effort than hastily selecting the cheapest option, taking the time to evaluate digital marketing agencies against key criteria like those discussed here will deliver better results in the long run.

Your brand partner should become an extension of your own team, with a depth of expertise to raise your digital presence to the next level. When you've completed your due diligence, don't hesitate to negotiate terms that feel fair and leave you fully confident in your chosen agency's commitment to see the project through.

If you’re looking for a digital marketing agency that takes design seriously, and will help you establish a brand that will flourish for years to come, our team is ready to help. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.