The HOTH Review: PLUS 7 Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Your SEO Services

April 18, 2024


The HOTH (or “hit’em over the head”) is a "done-for-you" SEO company offering an array of services, such as guest posting, niche edits, technical SEO, local SEO, blogging, citation placements, reputation management, and more. They also have a full management service, The HOTHX, where you are partnered with an SEO manager to handle your campaign.

Working in an SEO agency, like The HOTH, can be more cost-effective. On short notice, you will get immediate help from a team of experts and access to advanced tools and technologies. However, you also run the risk of hiring an inexperienced or inefficient agency, on top of having less control over the campaign strategies and execution, among other challenges.

It's important to note that The HOTH has an impressive 4.2 review score from Trustpilot and an even more outstanding score of 4.5 from G2. However, The HOTH is being accused of sponsoring fake reviews, especially on Trustpilot where most 5-star entries come from accounts with only one review in their record.

Read this The HOTH review to learn more about their service offerings, their white-label program, and if they are the right fit for running your business’s SEO campaign. We will also answer the question of whether you need an SEO agency in the first place and the pros and cons of hiring one. Lastly, you will learn how local lead generation promotes businesses that is slightly similar but also very different from SEO agencies.


The Hoth Review Pros and Cons


A wide range of services.

Provides an SEO management service with a dedicated campaign manager.

Has a wealth of experience with more than 20 years in the business.


Seemingly overpriced links for their quality.

Has no clear refund policy.

More expensive than competitors for the same line of products.


The price of The HOTH depends on the products that you’re buying which can be ordered a la carte.

Refund Policy

The HOTH didn’t outline any clear refund policy for their services.


The HOTH started its operations in 2012.


The HOTH has a review score of 4.2 from Trustpilot and a 4.5 score from G2.

7 Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Your SEO Services

Advantages of Outsourcing SEO Services

Access to Expertise and Specialized Knowledge

Cost-Effectiveness Compared to In-House Teams

Staying Up-to-Date with Latest Trends and Algorithm Changes

Focus on Core Business Activities

Diverse Range of Services

Disadvantages of Outsourcing SEO Services

Less Control Over Strategies and Execution

Potential Communication Challenges

Risk of Choosing Inexperienced or Inefficient Agencies

Longer Response Times for Updates and Changes

Less In-Depth Understanding of Your Specific Business

Potential for Hidden Costs or Overlapping Services

The Advantages of Outsourcing SEO Services

Immediate Access to Expertise and Specialized Knowledge

If you outsource to an SEO agency, you’ll get immediate access to expertise and specialized knowledge. Building an in-house team can take more time, even when hiring a single SEO professional to work with you.

The vetting process can also be challenging, especially if you don’t have enough SEO or digital marketing experience yourself. On the other hand, hiring an SEO agency may only take a few calls from the discovery meeting to the closing of a contract (if there is one).

Cost-effectiveness Compared to In-house Teams

According to ZipRecruiter, the average yearly salary of a single SEO specialist is $67,388. That doesn’t include the costs for SEO tools and other necessary expenses for an SEO campaign.

In comparison, The HOTH’s managed SEO service costs a minimum of $1,100 monthly recurring and a maximum of $11,000 for the enterprise plan. Outsourcing to an SEO agency is simply more cost-effective than building an in-house team, or even hiring a single SEO professional.

Staying Up-to-Date with Latest Trends and Algorithm Changes

SEO agencies are usually always in the know of the latest trends and algorithm changes rolled out by Google – they have to. It’s not too much to say that their whole business depends on these changes. 

Of course, an in-house SEO team can stay updated too, but it will bring us back to the cost issue. If you’re doing SEO by yourself, you can also keep track of the latest algorithm changes but at the cost of your own time.

Diverse Range of Services

Most SEO agencies, like The HOTH,  already have a set of diverse range of services and resources to run a campaign. This is in big contrast to hiring an in-house SEO team who will most likely start from scratch.

Focus on Core Business Activities

If you outsource your SEO activities to an agency, you and your team can focus more on your company’s core business activities. This freedom is especially valuable for start-ups with limited personnel.

The Disadvantages of Outsourcing SEO Services

Less Control Over Strategies and Execution

SEO agencies will most likely ask you for some input, but unless you're an expert SEO yourself it will probably not going to make any difference. You will have less control over the strategies and their execution, which isn’t entirely a bad thing since this is what you’re paying them for.

Potential Communication Challenges

Remember that you’re not dealing with your own team member, but an employee of the agency. In HOTHX’s case, the dedicated campaign manager may try their best to quickly respond to your messages but lags in communication are still unavoidable.

Risk of Choosing Inexperienced or Inefficient Agencies

The risk of hiring an inexperienced or inefficient agency is lesser than when you’re hiring an in-house SEO specialist. But the risk is still there. This is more problematic if you’re tied up with a contract.

Longer Response Times for Updates and Changes

On top of possible communication issues, the actual implementation of updates and changes can also be delayed. This is also a question of how much control you are willing to relinquish to an agency for faster implementation (login credentials, admin privileges, company files, etc.).

Less In-Depth Understanding of Your Business

In-house teams have the clear advantage of having an in-depth understanding of your company. After all, they are an organic part of the business. SEO agencies like The HOTH usually start with a situational analysis of your website and its competition – and that’s about it.

You can’t expect SEO agencies to have an immediate in-depth understanding of your company, and it’s also hard to communicate some nuances even with an hour-long discovery call. There’s also the question of how much you’re willing to share.

Potential for Hidden Costs or Overlapping Services

Some agencies may not be upfront about the total costs of the campaign in their initial offer. At the very least, you may only see the agency’s service fee. In HOTHX, the campaign budget is already included in the plan along with the management fee and the one-time setup fee.

But be aware. You may need to spend more depending on your actual goal and the strength of the competition. For instance, you may require more links, more blogs, and so on.

What Are The HOTH’s Most Popular SEO Products?


The HOTHX is The HOTH’s managed SEO service in which you are partnered with a dedicated US-based campaign manager. It is a monthly recurring service, and it also comes with other HOTH products, such as Syndication, Press, Link Outreach, Link Insertions, Blogger, Technical SEO, and Web Copy.


HOTH Link Outreach

HOTH Link Outreach is a guest posting service. It comes with done-for-you content and The HOTH will find suitable link partners from its network of website owners. The price per link placement is $150 for a 500-word article placed on a website with DA 20 strength, up to $550 for a 2000-word article placed on a guaranteed DA 30 site with 15,000 traffic.

HOTH Link Outreach

HOTH Blogger

HOTH Blogger is The HOTH’s blog writing service. It comes with two pricing tiers, Blogger and Blogger Pro – the difference between the two, according to The HOTH, is Blogger Pro articles are written by “niche experts.” For both tiers, The HOTH guarantees that the writers vetted are native English speakers.

Price starts with $50 for a 500-word content ($80 for Pro), up to $375 for a 5000-word article ($600 for Pro). Each article comes with 1 stock image and $8 more for every image added (you can add up to 5). Every order is white labeled, so you can resell them to your own clients.

HOTH Blogger

HOTH Technical SEO

Technical SEO provides you with a complete and comprehensive SEO audit of your website. With this service, you are basically buying an SEO audit report of your own site which includes actionable strategies to address the identified problem areas.

Once you receive the report, you can then choose to implement the recommended changes yourself or get help from The HOTH’s Technical SEO Implementation Solutions. You can also integrate the technical implementation into your existing HOTHX campaign (I wish an SEO audit should already be included in HOTHX, but that’s how it is right now).

A full SEO audit report costs $1000 and it is also white labeled. The costs of the Technical SEO Implementation Solutions depend on the recommended changes.

HOTH technical SEO

HOTH Link Insertions

HOTH Link Insertions is another link outreach service from The HOTH, except the link is placed on an existing content.  This service is also known as “curated links” or “niche edits.” To order, you only need to identify the URL and the anchor text (maximum of 7 words). You can also order in bulk.

The HOTH will handle the “manual” outreach to find the suitable site and content to place your link. A single link costs $200 for a DR 20+ website, and up to $450 for DR 60+. Unfortunately, there is no other metric option aside from Domain Rating (DR).

HOTH Link Insertions

HOTH Business Listings

HOTH Business Listings is a citation outreach and setup package for local businesses. A single order includes a citation audit, a set of citations to local directories such as Yelp and Yahoo Local, geo-tagged photos or videos, and rounds of manual outreach for citations.

HOTH Business Listings’ Starter package costs $149, and BL Mini to Large costs $199 to $549. You need to buy an initial package first to subscribe to BL Monthly which is $79 a month. 

HOTH local Business listings

HOTH Syndication

Hoth Syndication is The HOTH’s content distribution and syndication service that will help your blog posts be published. You just need to provide the URL to your blog post The HOTH will syndicate your content across 300+ publisher sites. When it’s done, you will receive a white-labeled report of all the URLs that your post was re-published. 

The cost of HOTH Syndication is $99 per distribution. If you don’t have content to syndicate, The HOTH can also create a blog post for you through their Blogger service – at a separate cost, of course.

HOTH syndication

What is The HOTH’s Resell SEO?

Resell SEO is The HOTH’s white-label reseller program. Basically, all of The HOTH’s products and their accompanying reports are “resell ready,” so there’s no need for you to pay for a separate white-label package. You can also get up to 25% discount for bulk purchases if you spend enough on their products. How much you need to spend to qualify for the bulk buyer discounts isn’t specified on The HOTH’s website.

Who Is The HOTH For?

The HOTH is for business and website owners who need help in conducting SEO campaigns or anyone who just wants to beef up their search engine rankings with link-building products. It is also for digital marketing agencies and solo marketers who want to increase their service offers without adding employees. Individual resellers can also take advantage of The HOTH’s white-label products.

The HOTH Reviews

What Are the Potential Drawbacks or Criticisms of the Hoth’s Services According to Reddit and Quora Users?

The potential drawbacks and criticisms directed to The HOTH from SEO or marketing-related subreddits are usually about the quality of the links that they sell. They said most of these links are resellers and you can get them cheaper somewhere else.

Here’s an example of a response from the r/bigseo subreddit.

The Hoth reddit post
The HOTH reddit response

A lot of responses go along this line: The HOTH’s manual outreach isn’t authentic and they’re selling links from PBNs or semi-PBNs and link farms.

Some Redditors share they have had a good experience with The HOTH. One Redditor has seen positive results using The HOTH’s products, although they’re expensive. Another Redditor shared that they were satisfied with how simple The HOTH’s SEO management service was.

The HOTH positive reddit response

Do The HOTH Reviews in Trustpilot Say It Is Worth Your Money?

Reviews from Trustpilot do say that The HOTH is worth your money. The HOTH has a total of 232 reviews on Trustpilot with an overall score of 4.2. Needless to say, these reviews were mostly positive, referring to The HOTH’s most popular products such as link outreach, syndication, and SEO management.

The Hoth trustpilot review 1

The following entry shares how effective The HOTH’s syndication service in producing results for their website.

The hoth trustpilot review

Not all entries are positive, though. The following review even pointed out that there are many fake entries on the list. He also complained about how the backlinks are excessively overpriced for their quality.

The hoth negative trustpilot review

The HOTH Review Verdict

The HOTH is a legitimate SEO service company that has been around since 2012. They now have over 20 years of experience and with more than 200,000 businesses served.

If you’re a business owner and you’re aiming to launch an SEO campaign, having a dedicated campaign manager from the HOTHX may just suit your needs, especially if you don’t have an in-house SEO.

If you’re a reseller, you may need to think twice considering the negative reputation of The HOTH’s link placements and guest posts. You’re reselling the links with your own brand so giving bad links to clients may affect your reputation as an agency or as a freelancer.

Whatever the case, The HOTH has a wide of services on offer that give you a lot of flexibility even in just a single platform. And when it comes to buying links, remember that you will usually get what you pay for.

What Do the HOTH's Success Stories and Case Studies Reveal?

You can find a number of success stories on The HOTH’s product listing page and video testimonials on the site’s review page. The site also has a dedicated page for case studies. However, the names of the websites these case studies are made from are not publicly available.

Here are some short reviews on The HOTH product page. All of them talk about how satisfied they are with The HOTH and how amazing the results they’re getting are.

The HOTH short review
The HOTH short review 2
The HOTH short review 3

A video testimonial from Bjorn, another The HOTH user, talks about how great the company is in marketing, blog creation, and link building. Their website’s traffic has tripled since working with The HOTH and they just went through another record-breaking month at the time of recording. Bjorn leads a company that develops cannabis home-growing systems.

The HOTH user Bjorn video testimonial

The HOTH’s case studies are much more in-depth.

One case study describes the journey of an unnamed eCommerce store website. The site received a 10X increase in organic traffic within a 12-month campaign and a $2.5K budget.

The HOTH first conducted an “easy wins” analysis to identify the keywords the site was ranking somewhere but just not in the top spot. Then a content gap analysis to identify the keywords the site hasn’t been targeted yet, but their competitors have.

While working with the client, The HOTH then picked out the high-priority keywords according to the company’s goals. Based on this information, The HOTH went on with the campaign which consisted of a series of guest posts using The HOTH Blogger and Foundations (this product is not available anymore but is similar to Link Outreach and Link Insertion).

What Is the Unique Feature or Selling Point of The HOTH’s Services Compared to Other SEO Companies?

The HOTH’s unique feature or selling point is its SEO management service or The HOTHX. With this service, The HOTH will not only provide the products and tools that you need to conduct an SEO campaign but also a dedicated campaign manager to guide you along the way. The HOTH’s fiercest competitors like Fatjoe, RhinoRank, and SERPNinja don’t have a comprehensive SEO management service at the moment.

Should You Hire an SEO Agency? Insights From Experts

Yes, you should hire an SEO agency or consultant, experts agree. If you’re not an SEO expert yourself or you don’t have an in-house SEO team or professional, you most likely need some help.

According to Neil Patel, you should hire an SEO agency or consultant if you’re experiencing the following:

  • Your site’s traffic is flatlining
  • You’ve been penalized by Google
  • Your in-house team’s efforts aren’t working
  • You’re too busy to do SEO
  • You want to grow your operations

So, unless you’re already satisfied with your success without the need for SEO (which is possible) or you’re already doing great with your current SEO efforts, you need to hire an SEO agency or expert to set things right for you.

On the other hand, according to Rand Fishkin (Moz CEO), if search engine optimization is a core competency of your company, then you should strive build an in-house team. And if it’s still too pricey, consider hiring a single SEO professional while getting consultancy services from an agency. The goal here is to train your in-house person and eventually build a team.

How Local Lead Generation Promotes Businesses

If you’re not yet aware, I promote local lead generation as a business model, which I believe is the best way to earn money online today. It’s a business model that is slightly similar to an SEO agency but also very different. The end goal is the same, and that is to give businesses more customers. However, local lead generation is much closer to the goal. Here’s why.

local lead generation

The same with agencies like The HOTH, l also use SEO techniques to rank niche sites in search engines. The main difference is I own these sites. And when I successfully ranked a site, it would consistently generate leads for a certain niche and locality. These leads are what local businesses ultimately need. So, I rent my sites out to local businesses for a specific amount no matter how many leads they generate. I’m usually charging $500-$3000 monthly for each site.

Now, you get why I said local lead generation is closer to the goal. Increasing domain authority and search engine ranking mean nothing if they don’t translate to actual paying customers. In this regard, local lead generation is more results-driven than an agency. You can even try it out for yourself.

Follow Me
Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2024, is to build your own lead generation business.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

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