Watch Out For Bad Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Companies

February 24, 2010 by  Filed under: SEO 

Many times I come across companies that tell me they were contacted by a search engine optimization company and they are confused by what they said. They are excited about it because they fell for a sales pitch but don’t understand one thing that was said. So they want a second opinion and I am happy to enlighten them.

The reason why many people are confused by SEO is because they really don’t understand all the things that go into a good SEO marketing plan. Many unscrupulous SEO’s try to scare companies into buying expensive “tricks” that will “Guarantee your position on the search engines”. If anyone ever says they can guarantee your position on a search engine they are not telling the truth. No one can guarantee your position. Unless they are using a keyword phrase that no one would ever use. Ex.” Grandmother’s apple pie restaurant in Toms River, NJ 08753″ (with the quotes) In addition, they also might lure you in by saying you don’t pay unless you get 100 visits to your website a month. I usually never hear that these visits are quality visits. Just visits. Or a great one is when they use an online tool to show you all the things that are wrong with your website and for a fee they can fix them for you. Bad SEO’s also might be using doorway or cloaked pages, page stuffing, duplicate content and many other tricks that will eventually get you banned from the search engines.

A red flag is when a SEO does not ask about your current traffic. When you have an existing website it is very important to review what is going on. Your website must have statistical analysis capabilities. In other words do you know how many visitors are coming to your website? From what countries? What pages do they land on? How long do they stay? Etc. Etc. Any SEO in their right mind will ask this question. Many don’t so be very careful. The list of bad SEO tricks is endless. The good news is there are many great SEO companies out there as well.

Here are some things you can do yourself.

If you are just tweaking your website’s Meta and title tags thinking that is all you have to do then you are wrong. (Google does not look at the keyword tag anymore). This must be done and done correctly but there are also many other things to do. Including having rich content that relates to what your website is all about. The phrase “content is king” applies strongly to ranking higher on the search engines. After all, content is what your customers are looking for. A site that is void of content is a site that will spend many thousands of dollars on PPC campaigns and never rank high on the organic results.

Do you update your website content often? Search engines like fresh content as the fresher the content the better. A great way to do this is by having a blog on your site and making sure you update your home page with new content as well.

Are you using social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn)? Do you answer industry related questions on online forums? If so, are you making sure that your profiles are complete and you link to your website? Are you submitting articles on your industry to third party sites with links back to you site? This way if someone likes what you have to say they can contact you.

Are you a vendor for a manufacturer? How about a member of the local chamber of commerce? Do both sites have full company profiles with links to your website?

What about online phone directories including Google, Yahoo and Bing local? Is your business listed? If so is the information correct? Do you have multiple offices or stores that have their own listing? Are you using all the free services that search engines provide for your business listing?

As you can imagine there are many other legitimate things you can do to increase traffic to your website and we have been helping clients with SEO before the term was invented. And I will say it again. Just tweaking your website code is important but not enough. Be smart and if it seems too good to be true run.

Your comments are always appreciated.

Tom Forgione
President and Chief of Customer Happiness

Advertising and Marketing Consultant. Owns Web Alliance International, a traditional & Internet advertising & marketing agency. We create award winning designs from ads to web site design for our clients. And we can help you too. In business since 1995. Visit our web site for more information at

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Tom Forgione - EzineArticles Expert Author

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