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Marketing is one of the most important, fundamental aspects of any business. Today, digital marketing is a complex system with many components that require skill, finesse and a deep understanding of the current marketplace.
For many businesses, the best way to gain an effective marketing strategy is to hire experts. However, finding the right internet marketing or pay-per-click (PPC) management service can be difficult. There’s a host of options with a variety of features. With complex online marketing language, it can also be tough to differentiate the top players from the partners you should avoid.
An effective digital marketing strategy helps get your business in front of potential customers. Working with the right company should allow you to not just hit all of your marketing goals but also move further into other areas involving your branding, marketing strategy and online presence.
You may also be able to expand your plan to include email marketing, social media marketing and search engine optimization. After all, your product or service could be the best in the world, but if your customers can’t find your business online, you will never see a high level of success. Moreover, choosing the wrong digital marketing or PPC management service could result in lost sales, missed connections with potentially valuable customers and money wasted on unsuccessful campaigns.
WebiMax is a comprehensive internet marketing service that offers search engine optimization (SEO), web design, search engine marketing, lead generation, reputation management, social media marketing and email marketing services. It also has a robust PPC and internet marketing offering and excellent customer service with one-on-one attention. While many companies we reviewed embody some of these elements, WebiMax is one of the few that include all of the best features.
WebiMax has a standout PPC management offering, and it can help you define your needs, set goals and review the digital marketing practices necessary to grow your business. As a full-fledged service, WebiMax can work with you to create customized, comprehensive campaigns for your small business. Finally, WebiMax is a Google-certified PPC management company, and it’s also an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with an A+ rating.
WebiMax tailors its services to small businesses’ needs on a case-by-case basis and doesn’t provide a full breakdown of its pricing and plans on its website as some internet marketing companies do.
However, in the past, WebiMax stated on its website that pricing for its services ranged from $500 to $200,000, which demonstrated its intention to serve businesses of all sizes. It’s not clear if this has changed, but it’s an indication that the company wants to work with you on pricing.
Once you have agreed on a price, WebiMax operates on month-to-month service deals, so the company won’t lock you into a long-term contract. You’ll also have an account manager to coordinate with you and help you build your plan.
We were impressed with WebiMax’s sales team. We posed as a small business owner interested in the company, to get a better idea of what it offers and test its customer service. The representative at WebiMax assessed our needs and gave us some great background information on the SEO services it could provide. Instead of trying to set us up with a starter or entry-level package, WebiMax matched its services to our hypothetical business’s goals. This level of attention demonstrates that the service is a good fit for small businesses.
WebiMax is a full-service agency that offers a wide range of services, including the following:
WebiMax provides full-fledged digital marketing services for all businesses, so you can turn to this company whether you need to quickly design a landing page or create an email marketing campaign. WebiMax works with businesses of all sizes; it won’t turn you away just because you’re a small business.
Additionally, WebiMax’s PPC management offering is one of the best of any company we reviewed. It pairs you with a specialist so you can work together to establish the goals of your PPC campaign. Throughout the campaign, both of you will monitor the progress of the campaign to ensure that it is on track and that you’re meeting your goals. Another thing we like about WebiMax is that it offers a free PPC analysis. With this information, you get a clear picture of what the service would do to improve your PPC campaigns.
Overall, WebiMax has the best and most comprehensive services of any internet marketing company we reviewed. It combines breadth of services with personalized attention so you can build out an offering that makes the most sense for your business. Instead of signing up for software and building internet marketing campaigns on your own, you work with a group of experts. WebiMax is one of the few companies we reviewed that have an A+ rating and earned accreditation with the BBB. WebiMax also scored four stars among customer reviews on the BBB site.
The biggest downside of WebiMax that we uncovered is that it doesn’t list detailed information about its pricing on its website. That’s likely because of the custom nature of the services, but it would be nice to get a ballpark idea. You’ll need to contact the company to learn how much its services cost.
Like many internet marketing services, WebiMax provides email, phone and live-chat support for its customers, so you can get in touch with a WebiMax representative at any time. WebiMax had one of the best customer service experiences of all the companies we contacted. The representative we spoke with was knowledgeable but not pushy. He made it clear that WebiMax focuses on transparency. WebiMax also has a variety of resources available on its website, including FAQs, a digital marketing guide and a blog.
Silverback Strategies is a top PPC management tool because analysts provide personalized services every step of the way. They work with you to ensure you receive the right service for your company’s goals. The account managers know the ins and outs of search engine and social media marketing, and they can adjust campaigns to fit your needs. When building a PPC strategy, you need reliable access to experts to help you plan, and Silverback Strategies provides exemplary attention and customer service. Silverback Strategies’ proven track record makes the company an ideal choice for small businesses.
Silverback’s strategy is proactive and personalized to each company. Your account manager can help you choose the best keywords, optimize bid management for ad placement and maximize your return on investment. Silverback also offers a range of other internet marketing services to support your PPC efforts.
Silverback Strategies does not list pricing on its website, so you’ll have to contact the company to get an idea of how much it will cost your business. Silverback provides personalized services, so pricing and contract terms will vary based on your business’s needs. 
The company provides purposeful, highly individualized service, so if you’re looking for a month-to-month, plug-and-play solution, it may be better to look elsewhere. The biggest highlight of Silverback’s services is the dedicated account managers who can help you build your PPC campaign, which is ideal for business owners who have limited experience in this area.
Silverback Strategies offers a wide range of internet marketing services, including the following:
Silverback’s personalized nature makes it an ideal partner for companies of all sizes looking to build out a marketing and PPC campaign as a major part of their business. As opposed to more hands-off, software-based initiatives, Silverback Strategies helps you develop your PPC management plan every step of the way. In addition, Silverback is a full-service agency with some of the best features of any internet marketing company we reviewed.
One potential negative of Silverback Strategies is that it doesn’t list pricing online. This is true of most custom services in the internet marketing space, but it would be nice to get an idea without having to speak to a representative. 
Another downside is that Silverback Strategies’ customer service isn’t open 24/7 and doesn’t offer live chat. When contacting the sales department, we had no problem reaching a knowledgeable person. However, because the rep was the only one answering calls, they were busy and unable to answer our questions at that time. This is challenging when you first try to get information and sign up, but once you sign on with Silverback Strategies, you’ll receive an account manager to contact at any time.
You can reach Silverback Strategies by phone and email, but the company doesn’t provide live chat. You will, however, have a dedicated account manager once you sign up, so you’ll get personalized support and attention to your business.
With helpful search engine marketing tools, marketing emails, web design, reports and social listening, Act-On is a strong choice for your internet marketing service needs. The company’s email and search engine marketing tools and analytics can help any business excel online. The email marketing tool allows you to personalize emails with a customer’s name and information. You can also put contacts into different lists based on their interests and other categories, ensuring your customers only receive relevant emails.
One major advantage of Act-On is its ability to scale services to meet your needs. If you start with SEO services, for instance, you can easily build in social media marketing or email marketing services later, making this company a versatile digital marketing partner.
While many internet marketing services don’t list their pricing online, Act-On shares this information openly. By providing clear rates on its website, Act-On demonstrates that it’s a transparent company willing to work with small business owners.
Act-On’s pricing is broken down into two plans: professional and enterprise. The professional plan starts at $900 per month for a complete marketing automation program. The enterprise plan, which starts at $2,000 per month, includes extra features, like customer relationship management (CRM) software integrations, account-based marketing, advanced reporting and business intelligence integration.
Both plans require a yearly contract. While this is a longer-term commitment than other companies require, it’s still on a par with industry standards. The scalability of the plans also means that, as your business grows, you can adjust your offering to match your changing needs.
Unlike some other services, Act-On does not provide account managers for its plans. However, because Act-On offers marketing software rather than services, that limitation is not unusual.
Act-On provides a wide range of internet marketing services, including the following:
Act-On is one of the most comprehensive services we reviewed. Whether you need SEO help, email marketing tools, social media consulting, design tools or other digital marketing services, Act-On has you covered. Many services in the internet marketing and digital marketing industry specialize in one aspect of service. Act-On is one of the few companies that have strong offerings in all areas of their services. Other positives include extensive reporting features and pricing transparency.
One downside is that there are limited customer reviews on Act-On’s BBB profile. Additionally, Act-On’s required yearly contract may be a dealbreaker for businesses that aren’t looking for a long-term commitment.
Act-On offers tiered customer support plans. You can access the company’s community support, phone support and web-based chat support for free. The representatives we chatted with were informative and helpful. They didn’t push for a sale at any point and answered all of our questions.
If you’re looking for advanced support features, including 24/7 support and access to customer success teams, you’ll have to pay for a premium support package.
HubSpot is a great internet marketing service for very small businesses, providing every feature we expect in a digital marketing service at an affordable price. While HubSpot offers five packages, the free version and starter package are great options for very small businesses, because you can use many tools to increase your online visibility and grow your business without hiring a marketing team.
The DIY approach to digital marketing makes HubSpot a natural partner for microbusinesses and startups. The company is transparent about its pricing, and you can easily add or remove services to ensure you’re getting what you want out of your digital marketing strategy.
HubSpot lists all of its services, plans and prices on its website. This level of transparency is ideal for small business owners looking to get a quick view of what partnering with HubSpot would cost. HubSpot breaks its services into four main groups: Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, Service Hub and CMS Hub. We focused on the Marketing Hub for our review.
Within each of these groups are four plans that range from free to enterprise level: a free plan, a starter plan ($50 per month), a professional plan ($800 per month) and an enterprise plan ($3,200 per month). As of November 2020, the starter and professional plans offer 10% discounts if you pay the yearly rate upfront. The length of the contract varies based on your business’s needs.
HubSpot doesn’t provide account managers for its free or starter packages, but users have access to the company’s support system. Higher-tiered plans include more access to HubSpot resources and account managers to help build out services. Overall, HubSpot’s transparency means that business owners can get an idea of the company’s services without having to go through the sales process.
HubSpot provides small businesses with several valuable internet marketing services, including the following:
We were impressed by the range of plans HubSpot offers; this variety makes the company’s services accessible to all types of business. Additionally, HubSpot is one of the few companies we reviewed that provide designated experts to help you with your software or services. There are extensive manuals and troubleshooting options for figuring out how to build campaigns and see the best results. The DIY nature of this company’s software makes it a great option for very small businesses looking for a useful tool that won’t break the bank.
One negative was the poor customer reviews on the BBB website. Before you sign up, we recommend that you read the reviews to determine whether HubSpot’s services are the right fit for your business’s needs.
HubSpot provides customer support by phone, email and live chat. The representatives we spoke with were informative and helpful. For plans that don’t offer a dedicated account manager, business owners can still work with HubSpot’s support team through these routes. Additionally, HubSpot offers several free DIY resources, including blogs and free courses.
Based on our research, pricing and service plans can vary widely from one company to the next. Some companies charge clients on a campaign-based model that can last as little as a month or as long as a year. Other companies follow a retainer model in which they charge a monthly rate for their ongoing services.
Many PPC marketing companies tier their plans, offering a low-cost option with limited features and more expensive options that are best for large, high-revenue businesses.?PPC marketing services are typically cheaper than internet marketing services, but plans are usually based on how much you plan to pay for advertising. Therefore, most providers don’t post their pricing online. These are also service-based solutions, as opposed to software- or product-based solutions. That means you’ll work with an experienced PPC management team to build out your strategy. This partnership-based, hands-on guidance will affect the price. Here are some common PPC management services:
Some internet marketing companies will tailor a service to your business and its needs. Because internet marketing encompasses many different services, this is ideal if you’re looking for help with social media and email marketing but not SEO, for example.?
Unlike other small business services, digital marketing companies often provide service on a three- or six-month basis, or they offer month-to-month contracts. You can try out a service and see if it works for your business without being locked into long-term deals, though some companies do require you to sign up for a year. Companies that provide internet marketing services are much broader than PPC management services and may offer support in the following areas:
“Internet marketing” is a broad term for a wide range of features and services. Many companies we reviewed specialize in certain areas. A few have excellent offerings in all areas of internet marketing. If you need to focus on one particular facet of digital marketing, it’s important to partner with an organization that specializes in the services you’re looking for. If you want to start with one type of service and add others as you grow, it’s better to find a more comprehensive company. In general, internet marketing encompasses the following services:
Because of the breadth of services internet marketing encompasses, it can be easy for companies to hide behind flowery language or complicated service plans. As an emerging company, you should do your best to partner with an organization that has a proven track record and can support your small business’s interests.
There are a few important factors to consider when researching and choosing an internet marketing company. Look at the features the service offers, followed by its level of experience, the metrics it reports on, and its willingness and ability to provide exceptional customer service.?
Before you start searching for an internet marketing company to manage your business’s online presence, it’s important to carefully consider your budget, gaps and goals. Ask yourself the following questions before you speak with a marketing management salesperson:
When interviewing services, don’t just ask how many years the company has been in business; also ask what industries the company is most familiar with.?Consider companies that are Bing-accredited and Google-certified partners in PPC management. While these certifications are widely available, they are not just handed out. The same recommendation applies to the company’s other internet marketing services – look for accreditations and examples of past work to see if the company’s offerings are ideal for your business.
For example, to receive a Google certification for ads, consultants must prove their aptitude in PPC campaign management. This extends to SEO marketing. Demonstrating their skill entails taking exams that cover things such as best practices in online advertising, optimization and campaign management. About half of the services we reviewed have acquired a Google certification or Bing accreditation.
Finally, do your research on each company by reading reviews and customer testimonials. Pay particularly close attention to negative reviews, but remember that even the best PPC management and internet marketing services will have some bad reviews. The key is to find critical but fair reviews and to see how the company responded.
Reputable internet marketing companies, regardless of their specialty, should provide large amounts of data. This data can help you drive your marketing efforts and build an informed strategy for your business. Your marketing service should carefully track information so that you know if you’re directing your efforts to the right areas. PPC advertising provides real-time results, so you can quickly see what is not working and adjust.
An internet marketing company should provide you with as many reports as you want. When interviewing services, ask about the data and reports they provide, including the types of reports, how often data is updated, and how often the marketing service itself analyzes the data and uses it to guide your online marketing strategy.?
Collaboration in growing your business is an important part of working with an internet marketing company. You need to know that whoever is working on your marketing campaign is just as dedicated to your success as you are. Before signing a contract, contact different vendors’ customer support lines to see how responsive and helpful they are for both basic and complex situations.
There are many reasons to hire a third-party vendor to handle your marketing needs rather than invest in an in-house team, including the following:
The time it takes to see results from internet marketing varies greatly depending on the type of services you require. For some efforts, you could see results in just a few days, while for others, it might take months to see a return on your investment. Here are some common time frames you can expect, though your results will vary based on your industry and current market penetration:
To find the best online marketing services for small businesses, we started by conducting background research to determine the top performers in the industry. We then investigated reputable online sources to find more vendors to add to our list of contenders. We also considered companies that reached out to us directly.?
Our initial list included 32 companies. We examined each company’s offerings and narrowed down the list to 16 companies that underwent a more in-depth review process. We analyzed each company’s internet marketing services, reporting features and PPC management offerings.?
In the final round of our decision process, we evaluated the 16 services more rigorously. We scrutinized each company’s services, online reputation, design services, pricing information, agreement structure, personalized services, customer support and any features that differentiated it from other internet marketing services.?
We posed as small business owners, contacting each of the 16 companies by live chat and phone to test their customer service and learn more about the services each company offers. Of these 16 companies, four stood out as best picks. These four companies not only excel in their service offerings but also stand out as companies with excellent customer service and impressive features.?
Here’s a complete list of the factors we considered to evaluate each service:
PPC advertising specialists help you get the most out of your ad spend by researching and selecting the best keywords for your business and industry. The best keywords drive traffic to your site for the lowest cost. PPC management companies can assist you with keyword planning, ad spend strategy and conversion rate.
This field is collaborative; you should be working directly with the company to build your campaigns.?You shouldn’t be going it alone with a software program; that’s something you can do for free with Google Ads. Instead, the best PPC management companies provide expert teams for you to get the most out of your ad campaigns. You can run PPC advertisements on popular search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo, and even on social networks like Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn.

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