How to Put Together an SEO Proposal for Your Clients Using SEMrush

by Corey Philip
February 25, 2021

As newbies (or veterans) in the search engine optimization industry, writing an SEO proposal is a daunting task that can take all your time and effort. SEO proposals are basically a sales pitch to convince future clients of your agency's skills in improving their website. Thankfully, there are numerous tools you can use to help you make the perfect SEO proposals. Follow along to learn how to make the best SEO proposal to get clients to sign with your agency.

Getting the Sale

Prove your value to your client

Selling your skill as an SEO professional is demanding, particularly to clients ignorant of the power of SEO. That's why you should prepare your proposal by educating the client in mind. The introduction should highlight the importance of search engine optimization for their website's visibility and brand awareness. 

The next step is to determine the vital details of a prospective SEO project. It would be best if you estimated the length, difficulty, and estimated cost of the project. Quickly check for their site's metadata with SEMrush's Site Audit tool; this includes the title tags, meta descriptions, and broken links.

While you're doing this, do a quick check of what keywords they're already ranking for with SEMrush's Domain Overview. 

Provide your client with all the details in a neat insert in your proposal. Don't forget to negotiate the deadlines and the cost, too!

Scope the complexity of the project

At this point, you should do a deeper dive into keyword analysis by using the various keyword research tools SEMrush has. Determine if the website's current state has a clear focus on keyword optimization and if they're using related keywords. 

Use SEMrush's Keyword Overview to check for the full analysis of keywords they have used before.

While doing so, check the keyword density on the client's site using the On Page SEO Checker.

Repeating keywords that often sound unnatural are frowned upon by search engines. Collect all your keywords and store them in SEMrush's Keyword Manager for later use.

After analyzing the site's keywords:

  1. 1
    Review the site's issues using SEMrush's Site Audit tool.
  2. 2
    Research for the site's health, errors, warnings, internal linking, site performance, and international SEO. And;
  3. 3
    Please take note of all the issues, as you'll need to fix them later.

Manage your client's expectations

When discussing your client's website problems, it's important to say it delicately. Say phrases like:

  • "We are unable to find the appropriate number of keywords in your site" or
  • "Through our audience analysis, we found the perfect keywords we can use to improve your ranking."

By doing so, you can guarantee that the client did nothing wrong and only lacked the expertise needed for SEO. Always frame your analysis positively and with pleasure.

Clients looking to improve their site's SEO usually expect improvements when you publish focus keywords for their content. Remind them that search engine optimization takes time and it doesn't guarantee position rankings. 

Last but not least, tell your client that keyword ranking fluctuates a lot, but early ranking changes indicate your changes are working. Monitor your client's keyword position using SEMrush's Position Tracking Tool. With this, you can quickly report to them the undergoing changes the site's experiencing.

The Deep Dive

Do a complete background check.

This is the bulk of content your proposal needs to win that sale—the real work starts here. First and foremost, ask about your client's SEO history. Determine if they have worked with previous SEO agencies in the past. If so, check if they used black-hat strategies on the website and if the site has existing penalties. Ask what the previous SEO scope has done and elaborate on what you can do to help them. Consider talking in person or in video calls and ask what they liked and disliked about the previous SEO.

Measure the site's performance

Start the research with SEMrush's Site Audit Tool's Thematic Reports. With this tool, you can see a detailed crawlability analysis that explains why the page is ranking low. Furthermore, the tool discusses the HTTPS implementation of the site. From this page, you can see all the security certificates, server health, and website architecture.

Another tool on SEMrush you can use for detailed analysis is SEMrush's Backlink Analytics tool. This tool allows you to see a detailed breakdown of the backlinks the site has. The content includes (but is not limited to) authority score, referring domains, backlinks, monthly visits, and link attributes. Incorporate this in your proposal, and you'll be set. 


Consider using the export PDF option to obtain the graphs of the data quickly.

Remember to ask the client who manages the website and who implements changes. By doing so, you'll gain valuable insight into who will handle your recommendations. During the sales call, let them elaborate on how they measure the site's performance. Amateur SEO tactics mostly use Google Analytics as their sole source of metrics, which doesn't provide enough information for successful SEO. 

The Explanation and Solution

Quick fixes

Quick fixes are a bulleted list of easily fixed issues the website has. If you've correctly followed along, you'll have all the data you need to add notable quick fixes. If you didn't, here's a couple of quick fixes that are sure to make an impact:

  • Lessen overused keywords
  • Shorten title tags and fix the met description
  • Add alt text to images
  • Use relevant backlinks
  • Use anchor texts for backlinks

By adding quick fixes to your proposal, you can show your clients that there are glaring issues with easy solutions that provide noticeable improvements.

Develop SMART goals

Setting Specific Measurable Attainable Relevant Timely (SMART) goals is a strategy that lets you align your efforts with the company's goals. By using SMART goals, you ensure that:

  • Your plans for the website are relevant to their business objectives.
  • The leads you're going to generate are relevant to the content.
  • You'll be achieving goals along with their future timeline.
  • Your generated leads will grow traffic organically. And;
  • You cater your goals to their marketing challenges and needs

Utilizing the SMART ethic will improve how you write down your proposal and guarantee that you have the same goals as your client.


Avoid using the word "more" in your sentences; instead of "generate more traffic for your website," why not "Increase the traffic generated for your website by 20% every month." 

The Irresistible Call-to-Action

Now isn't the time to be shy. Include a call-to-action (CTA) at the end to tell your client what they need to do, how they can do it, and how only you can do it. Add urgency and use active language to let the client know that it's more important now than ever to improve their website's SEO. All irresistible CTAs are:

  • Top priority. Use urgency to spur your client's need for SEO.
  • Interesting. Make sure to write exciting points because they need to hire your services now. And;
  • Risk-free. If your client still sees SEO strategies will jeopardize their brand, it's time to remove their doubts.

All successful proposals end with an excellent CTA that commands the client to take action now.

The End (of the Proposal)

Although you have finished writing the proposal, your job isn't finished yet. At this point, you're going to do more work than before to routinely fix, monitor, and report issues the site has. But don't worry, from all the initial work you've done earlier, things will go smoothly from here.

Remember to review your proposal before you send it to your client. Cut down hard-to-understand terms, correct any typos, and verify if all the data is correct. If your client doesn't know what you have written, your proposal will fall on deaf ears.

Perfecting your SEO proposal takes hard work and lots of time, but with the tools available in your arsenal, you can get close to perfection. Crafting the perfect proposal takes time and hard work, but the effort will be worth it after all of this. 

Now, are you ready to win the biggest client your agency will have?

About the author

Corey Philip

Corey Philip is a small business owner / investor with a focus on home service businesses.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}