Beware of SEO Experts SCAMS!
Are the so called search engine optimization experts legit or just out there to get your money? There are thousands of so called SEO experts offering their services at exorbitant prices. Can you fall for the scam? Yes! Especially if you are not familiar with SEO and not aware of the warnings of a scammer!
First and foremost, we want you to understand that not all search engine optimization experts are scammers! In the contrary, many of them are ethical and very professional! We just want you to keep both eyes open on the some SEO scammers with a promise of getting you top 10 placement on Google (or any other major search engines) search result page, in a couple of weeks!
SEO Expert with a 'to good to be true' promise
If you get a promise that sounds too good to be true, it certainly is. In fact, there are no guarantees in search engine optimization (SEO) - Unless Matt Cuts calls you himself and makes that promise (but we don't believe he will ever personally call you and offer his assistance - So don't hold your breath!).
We are not saying that ethical SEO experts don't exist! They do, but just be careful of someone claiming to be one and promise you the impossible - #1 on top of the search engines in a week, or two. Unless it's Google!
Does your business need search engine optimization?
Having a great looking website, with great bells and whistles, is just not enough to put your business on the first page of Google (or any other search engines for that matter), bring targeted traffic and increase your sales if the most critical component is missing - Search engine optimization, which happens to be one of the most important part of a well designed and successful website!
Does your business need SEO? - Yes it does but beware of the first alleged search engine optimization expert that come knocking at your door (or contact you via phone or email) and guarantees to put your business website on the 1st page of Google by next day!
A true experience we had with an alleged expert (Click me to read the story!)
We had our share of the so called experts (we don't need to mention the country but we can tell you that the last one that contacted us, introduced himself as John and had a Gmail account - very professional right!). The alleged SEO expert contacted us via email first. We replied to his email with a request for his phone number so we can talk to him instead.
So instead of responding with a phone number, Mr. John, the SEO expert, contacted us via phone (which he either got from our website, or from one of our social media business pages).
He proceeded to introduce himself as a search engines expert with over 15 years of combined experience (he mentioned that the company is overseas and has about 120 employees). The phone conversation went like this:
Mr. John: Did you know that simplerwebs was not listed on Google and Bing?
me: Can you gives us an idea as to why simplerwebs was not listed on Google?
Mr. John: Because you are not targeting the right keywords! We offer keyword research services at $25 per keyword!
me: Hmmm, that seems pretty steep especially when the living cost in your country is much less than here in the U.S.
Mr. John: We can give you a discount if you go with one of our higher keyword research plan!
me: And how much does your highest plan cost?
Mr. John: $20/per keyword researched
me: Do you offer a guarantee?
Mr. John: Possibly 2 weeks or 1 month
me: Wow! You guys must be good at what you do!!!
Mr. John: We know how Google and other search engines work and we have our own techniques that will put your site above your competition
me: Can you give me your website URL so I can have an idea of who I will be working with?
Mr. John: Yes, it is seobulls.co.in
Us: Hmmm - Did you email me recently?
Mr. John: Yes I did
me: Is this Ethan?
Mr. John: Yes!
Me: I thought you said your name was John?
Mr. Ethan: We have a John here but it was me that emailed you!
Me: Maybe I missheard your name. Sorry about that!
Me: Can you tell me what my website is and what kind of business I am in? - Mr. Ethan got silence for about 30 seconds
Mr. Ethan: The website is simplerwebs and you offer web design services
Me: Can you tell me what other services we provide?
After approximately 1 minutes, Mr. Ethan hung up
We believe that Mr. Ethan (or John) realized he was dealing with a web design and SEO company! The mistake he made was to contact us first, before even taking a look at our website to see what services we offer! We also strongly believe that we were picked at random!
Below is a part of what was in the email talking about their SEO services and some trade secrets
"We can place your website on top of the Natural Listings on Google, Yahoo and MSN. Our Search Engine Optimization team delivers more top rankings then anyone else and we can prove it. We do not use "link farms" or "black hat" methods that Google and the other search engines frown upon and can use to de-list or ban your site. The techniques are proprietary, involving some valuable closely held trade secrets."
And by the way, check out their website and let us know what you think please!
We receive many emails, and phone calls from people claiming to be search engine optimization experts and we know how to spot the legit ones from the scammers! Not sure whether the person promising you first page on Google is a bona fide SEO expert? We can help! Just call 484-220-1888 and we will be more than happy to check for you (at no cost)!
Remember, if you believe your site could benefit from a helping hand with some search engine optimization expertise, you will be the one who will be picking up the phone and make that first contact, not the other way around!
Search engine optimization expertise requirements
Search engine optimization expertise requires that the SEO expert understands what search engines are and how they work (not just Google). They should also be able to keep up with the major search engines' algorithms changes and updates, plus, have years of SEO testing and experience!
One more thing! SEO requires that you have patience and the understanding that it is an ongoing process that is necessary if you want to achieve and maintain your position in the organic search result on the popular search engines result pages (SERPs).
The traits of a true search engine optimization expert
A true search engine expert would carry the following important traits:
- He will not initiate the first call - Usually, it is you!
- He will not sell his services cheap - If you paid cheap for SEO, you will probably get a cheap service (or black hat SEO)
- He should not, and will not promise you high ranking within a very short amount of time (a month or so) - This is a good way to extinguish SEO scammers from genuine SEO professionals
- He will stay up to date with Google's (and other search engines) algorithm changes and share them with you in order to make changes, if needed
- He will show you how he/she will improve your search ranking - Give you some steps but not his/her secrets
- He will keep you informed of the outcome after the changes
The majority of SEO experts are professionals, and Ethical
Do not waste your money based on hollow pitches from unethical SEO experts! The majority of search engine optimization professionals are ethical! For a price (again, not cheap), they will counsel you on how to improve your placement on search engines!
The ones that you should be very cautious in hiring are the so called experts that have no SEO skills and experience, but employ spammy techniques (black hat SEO) to manipulate search engine results and get you high ranking within a week!
Please understand (and take note) that the faster you get to the top, the faster you'll get back down! And when you do, it will really hurt and it might be for a very long run! We highly recommend that you read our 'Black hat SEO - What is it?' article!
How to tell a ligit SEO expert from a scammer
Signs of an SEO scammer are all over the place but if you don't keep your eyes open, you won't see them! To help you see whether the person offering his/her search engine optimization services are legit, or just looking to separate you from your wallet, check out the following red flags
- Email address - If you are contacted through email, usually their email address will be from @gmail.com, @yahoo.com and so on
- Give us a try - Some will offer you a trial period and ask for sensitive information such as access to your website's back end, and so forth! DON'T
- Pricing - SEO services (at least for the standard SEO) should not be expensive, nor too cheap. How much should you pay? Well, their pricing should be inline with other reputable SEO companies.
- SEO packages - In SEO world, you can't have price packages because different companies require different SEO service
- First page guarantee - If the so called SEO expert promises you a spot on first page of Google, or on any other search engines withing a week or so, be very careful for you are being scammed
- Large list of features in their cheapest package - If you are presented with a large list of features on any specific package, someone is trying to scam you
- Search engine submission - They will offer you to submit your site to hundreds, even thousands of search engines - Again, Watch Out for he/she is trying to take your money! You don't need to submit your site to every search engine that exist! Just submit your xml sitemap to Google, Bing/Yahoo and be patient
- Back links - Promise of getting you 1,000 of external links to your site! Avoid at all cost because 999 of those external links might be bad and hurt your site
- SEO jargon - A legit SEO expert will talk about search engine optimization using layman word instead of using terms that only they understand, or acronyms came up with
- A lot of talk, less question - Scammers will keep on talking about their skills and what they can do for you till the cows come home and not even ask a question about your company, products or services, and what your goals are
- Offers you did not ask for - We continue receiving emails, and phone calls (all of them from overseas) from so called SEO companies offering their SEO services to us and stating that our website, SimplerWebs.com is not on page one of Google for keywords like 'affordable SEO companies in Reading, PA', or 'we design companies Reading PA'
We can't mention this enough! Know that if you do business with an overseas SEO company and the job was not done as expected, or as contracted, chances that there is nothing you can do about it are high because, in some countries, U.S. business laws don't apply. So before you jump into the SEO waters, learn how to swim!
True SEO experts have great skills, and a lot of patience - Those are not obtained overnight! So if you are approached by a so called expert with a too good to be true offer (a guaranteed placement in Google's organic search result page), professionally turn down their offer!
Have you been contacted by alleged search engine optimization experts recently? If yes, please share with us the experience you had with them and what promises they've made!
What did you think of our 'search engine optimization expert' article? Did we cover everything? Please let us know by leaving a comment below- It would be very much appreciated - Thank you!
Not all search engine optimization experts are created equal!