SEO a Scam The truth About the Industry

 

 

I frequent many SEO and Search engine optimization discussion. ibrahim yaseen boards on a daily basis and from time to time there is a debate about the SEO industry and life values. After being involved in a number of these debates, it has become really obvious that the main problems are the facts that no two SEO companies are alike and there is no specific technique. It’s very hard to make statements about the industry in general because it’s controversial what exactly ‘SEO’ is. Mix in the fact that most SEO companies keep their technique and campaign strategies secret and we have an issue where every company is very different with distinctive results.

Fact 1: There is no specific SEO technique. SEO is actually defined by wikipedia as a process of improving traffic from Search engines to a site. Of course, How they do that is the real question and causes the debates.

Fact 2: The effectiveness of an SEO campaign depends on the site structure, site content, keywords, technique used, and how popular the site is. A web site cannot just rank for any random keyword. SEO is also not voodoo. It is judgement, problem resolving, and Search engine optimization mixed together. If your site provides no value to users, it will not rank.

Fact 3: Some ‘SEOs’ do search engine optimization and some do search engine mind games. Of course, it is all marketed as SEO. Underhand optimization provides results whatever it takes and is always short term (usually ends in a banned domain name). Honourable optimization opens in the site to the search engines and long term benefits.

Fact 4: Most SEO companies get paid whether or not your site gets any rankings. Unfortunately, this is the case with the industry. Most SEO companies implement A, B, and C and move about the next client. Hopefully, the site ranks. If it doesn’t, they will have more clients.

Fact 5: Most SEO companies use both honourable and underhand incoming linking strategies. To maximize profits, it is very common for SEO companies to buy bulk links from The indian subcontinent, links on spam/scraper web sites, or sell large directory submission packages. It is also common for SEO companies to place a large amount of the contract into incoming linking to replace with poor people quality of the site optimization.

I don’t think it is fair to characterize the in general without figuring out what is wrong with it and how SEO companies can overcome it. Now how exactly do we determine what is bad and the good about the industry? I have now been involved with the web for over 10 years and, specifically, with the SEO industry for pretty much 4 years and I’ve seen the inner ins and outs of major SEO companies and worked with clients who was simply burned by their previous SEO campaigns. Combined with numerous Web lists and forum debates talking a comparable basic problems, I’ve put together a list of the most common issues.

Problem 1: Responsibility for Results

It’s no secret that the vast majority of SEO companies take no responsibility for results. It is a fact that no SEO company can guarantee results (and if they do, they are lying to you). It is also a well known fact that the client is taking a risk by spending money with an SEO company that basically says ‘We’ll do what we can’. SEO companies simply guarantee they’ll do the work to ‘optimize’ the site, but without full disclosure of their technique, what exactly is the client paying for? No other industry sells a product with no guarantees and no specific list of work which will be completed. Of course, SEO work is actually the sales of information and keeping the particulars of a technique is important, but the combination of secrecy and no responsibility for results really makes SEO campaigns risky. So, how can an SEO company reduce the risk for the client and provide the best grade of service?

Answer 1: Bonus Based Pricing

The sole way to reduce the financial risk of the client is to share the risk. Through incentive-based pricing, the SEO company can charge a certain percentage of the total contract (say 70%) to cover their intelligent property and time while placing all of those other contract price (remaining 30%) in rewards for success. Of course, rewards and their percentage of the contract would be totally relative depending on the campaign. This first step into sharing in the risk provides both confidence to the client that the company believes in its technique and places some of the financial burden of the campaign on the SEO company. At the moment, however, very few SEO companies are willing to share in the risk and charge the same price whether the client gets top rankings or no rankings at all (or possibly even lower rankings).

Problem 2: Underhand Optimization

Unfortunately, underhand (or blackhat) optimization is still very prominent on the web. It’s also unfortunate that ‘SEO’ has been mistakenly confused with ‘Blackhat SEO’. This is still the biggest problem for SEO companies. Saying that all SEO companies deal in blackhat optimization is like saying everyone who emails is a spammer. Blackhat optimization is not optimization at all… it is search engine mind games. Because there is so much money tied to top rankings, there will be a market for underhand SEO and search engine spam. Until companies realize what is honourable and underhand and stop supporting those blackhat SEO companies, they will continue to survive. This makes the in general look bad and does not reflect the life values of good SEO companies. Blackhat provides fast, short term results, but is never a good option in the long run.

Answer 2: Honourable Optimization

There is no quick and easy solution to blackhat optimization’s stain on the SEO industry. I recommend that all marketing sectors research optimization techniques and educate themselves on the techniques are underhand. No SEO company is going to say they do underhand optimization. It’s also not a good idea to immediately trust a company or product based simply on their rankings. Underhand optimization DOES provide rankings… not for the long run.

It would also be helpful if the major search engines would be more open and accessible to SEO companies. Currently, the major search engines and SEO companies do not deal with each other and have formed sort of love-hate relationship. Because of this, many honourable SEOs have slowly moved into dark territory. Honourable optimization tries to make sites quicker accessible to the motors and help to improve the engine’s search results. The problem is that the search engines mainly clump all SEO companies together the same way as ignorant users do: search engine mind games. This is just not the case. Search engines do not want to reveal what they consider underhand because it would basically be providing a list of holes in their algorithms that blackhat SEOs could change further, but a precise list of ‘what not to do’ would provide a definitive list for businesses looking for an SEO company.

Basic Rules of Honourable Optimization

Any campaign it does not abide by the following rules is dealing in underhand optimization techniques and may be avoided.

1. ) What the user sees and what the search engine sees should be exactly the same. Do not hide anything.

2. ) Your keywords (and the resulting optimization) should exactly reflect the content of the page. Keywords should always reflect what your site is about.

3. ) Do not build out pages exclusively for search engines. The site should always cater to both audiences (users and search engines). Catering to only users is why optimization is essential. Catering just to search engines is optimization gone beyond the boundary into blackhat.

4. ) Do not participate in manipulative incoming linking schemes like link farms, bulk links, triangle linking, or any other underhand mind games of your Google Pagerank or link authority. Inbound links should be relevant to the content of your site and you should always know who is linking to you and where your links come from.

Problem 3: Assembly Line or Software SEO

With the growth of the SEO industry in addition has come the automation of SEO. The absolute initial thing any prospective SEO client should be aware of is that all effective SEO campaigns are custom. There is no checklist of things that will work exactly the same on every site. If the SEO company claims there is, chances are they are not doing full optimization and the campaign is minimal. A good optimization campaign optimizes the site buildings, text content, and code of the site. Assembly line SEO does not take into consideration the unique needs/design of the site and may even deal in blackhat optimization. SEO software especially should be looked at closely. There are really only two things SEO software could do that would work for any site: entry pages (showing motors one thing and users a different thing; which is unethical) or a system of pages build exclusively for search engines (often called info or information pages and linked in an out of the way the main page). Entry pages are 100% underhand and info pages are deep in the dreary area. Neither of those two methods address the buildings of the site, proper keyword analysis, or effective text content. The following links are examples of automated SEO software freely available on the web. All links contain ‘nofollow’ to prevent the sites from getting incoming link credit from our site. These sites are not recommended by TreeHouse SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING.

Answer 3: Custom Campaign and Assessment

‘SEO Software’ may be cheap and affordable, but you get what you pay for. Any campaign which will slap on additional pages are only sell you links is not an effective SEO campaign. Any SEO effort that simply has you add a few ‘optimized’ pages to your site is not going to be optimal. If you wanted to convert a street car into a race car, you don’t simply add racing strip to it. Do not think that disposal a few pages on your site specific for some random keywords is equivalent to a real SEO campaign.

If your SEO company will not sit down and talk about the layout, buildings, and purpose of your site, then it is not providing a top-end service. Remember that the vast majority of ‘SEO software’ either is for building doorway/landing pages or simply giving you data about your site (data that is already free to everyone on the Web). Good SEO campaigns take into account the user and the search engines… it’s unlikely that any or the other. An SEO company should have a ordering understanding of user experience and search engine optimization and use these in combination to manufacture a campaign that will give you the best MOTOROLA ROI. The end goal should always be leads/sales. Earning hemorrhoids of non-targeted traffic often leads to extremely high turn over rates and extremely low lead conversion.

Conclusion

Do your research. Find out what you want from an optimization campaign and then ask the right questions. Make sure that the sales representative you talk to knows what they are selling. If they don’t, they are definitely not the person to get information from. A lot of SEO companies use hard sale tactics and the repetitions are less than knowledgeable about what they are selling. Ask the following questions and see what they have to say.

1. ) How do you assess keywords? If an SEO company simply optimizes for whatever keywords are delivered to them by the client, the SEO campaign starts off on very unreliable ground. Keyword analysis should be performed that takes into account the number of searches in all the major search engines and the relative competition for those terms. The site should also be in comparison to the keywords to see if they support each other.

2. ) Do you plan on building out pages specifically to house keywords? Landing pages and entry pages are not effective long term SEO options. SEO companies like them because they do not need to touch all of those other site and it’s really very easy to simply add band aids instead of performing surgery.

3. ) Will my SEO campaign also improve the user experience of the site? Proper buildings and usability goes in conjunction with SEO and helps increase MOTOROLA ROI. You should want to bring in new traffic and convert it.

4. ) Does my revenue model affect my keyword selection and the optimization in general? Any SEO company it does not improve based on the target audience is not providing the most effective campaign. An ecommerce site marketing to comparative consumers will want to improve heavily for product names and model numbers. An online journal wanting to bring in recurring traffic will want to improve for article topics and specific themes. Local companies will want to improve for geo-targeted keywords.

5. ) I want to improve my site, but do not want to change any of the existing content or layout… how would you go about this? Any SEO company that says they will simply add on landing pages or hide text is selling blackhat. This extends back to the earlier analogy. You are really saying that you have a car that you want to modify to be very fast, but do not want to modify the engine and the auto mechanic simply adds racking stripes and charges you top dollar.

About the Author: Charlie comes from a rich Web background where he’s worked tirelessly on the design, development, and marketing facets of hundreds of Web sites. Earlier from Mississippi where he attended Ole Miss, Charlie moved to North park to pursue further challenges in the Search engine optimization arena.

To compete in the rapidly growing marketplace of SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING, Treehouse immediately set itself apart by placing Chief Technology Police officer DeVries at the helm, who is one of the most desired experts in the industry today. DeVries once was a lead technical consultant at a competing local firm, achieving top rankings for major clients such as Entrepreneur, Sin city. com, Viacom, Workopolis, and Ziff Davis Media. DeVries’ experience has taken him much industry attention and placed him in sought after as a speaker at industry events by those looking to pick his brain.

event_note December 2, 2021

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