So you have decided that you would like to be #1 on Google for your best keywords. That’s great. Get in line. Google is brilliant. Google is helpful. Google is also difficult to penetrate from a ranking perspective.
But increasing your relevance on Google is possible and is something that you should be working on continuously. When you understand that Google is righteous and their objective is to deliver the best possible search result for their “clients”, then you are in a better position to orchestrate your SEO strategy.
Your plan should be to continuously build your relevance. You should do this by building on site content and creating links to your site through social channels.
For a long time Google relied on back-links to your site, but they have discovered that people are simply purchasing links, and the validity of those links is questionable. So now Google is relying more on content and social media links.
So how should you choose an SEO company? You should look for an organization that can show you your current situation and then show you a plan on how you will get where you need to go.
I think it’s important to include Adwords in your strategy and also be as aware of “off line” activity (direct mail and billboards come to mind). But all in all, when you are looking for an SEO company, they should be able to show you where you are, and have a plan that they can articulate how they will get you where you need to go. Ethically. Because Google is only trying to deliver a great search result. If you can assist them in their search results, you will be a great search result.