“We do SEO. Our services consist of creating a title tag and an alt image tag for each page.” That is just what an SEO company recently told a web developer partner of mine. Really, that’s it? I shudder to think how many unknowing people they have ripped off. So much more goes into SEO: description tags, heading tags, geo location tags, interlinking, keyword rich links, creation of backlinks, local SEO services. The list goes on and on. There is a wrong way and and right way to do SEO. Make sure you don’t enter into something you will regret.
I admit it. I like to watch The Good Wife (must be the former attorney in me). But both this season and last, they have bashed SEO. It gets me frustrated. SEO is not bad and most SEO professionals are not the devil. If you have a website, you need us to help you get found online. That can be done ethically. There does not have to be anything spammy about it. But unfortunately, some so called SEO professionals (the bad SEO companies) are giving the rest of us an unjust rap – not only in the business community but also on television shows!
SEO is a comprehensive process. It is not just a title tag and a keyword reference on a page. It is so much more. It is not just knowing what the right keywords are and where to place them, but also where not to place them and how not to be spammy. Effective SEO professionals live and breathe SEO. They keep abreast of the latest algorithm changes, search engine platforms and more. They are involved in networks that share what is and is not working, what stumbling blocks are popping up and how you can get around them. In a sum, these professionals are professionals. So then why are these horrible SEO companies getting the work? Simple – price point and lack of consumer knowledge.
Bad SEO Companies Are Usually Cheap
And there is a reason they are so cheap. SEO It is a time consuming, strategizing, constantly evolving process. You probably get spam email from these companies all of the time promising great rankings and tons of backlinks for a crazy, affordable fee. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for. One of my clients had another SEO company before coming to me. They were cheap, they did the work. They even got the rankings. BUT those rankings tanked when their black hat SEO practices were caught. That bad SEO company created irrelevant, spammy, horribly backlinks. Google found them and the client went from the first page to the abyss. I had warned them this would happen, they didn’t listen and coasted along. In the end, they retained me to remove the backlinks and the rankings shot back up.
How to Avoid Bad SEO Companies? Be Knowledgeable.
Get the SEO company to spell out exactly what their services will entail – line by line. Make sure it includes, at a minimum: keyword research and analysis, copy and navigation strategy, title and meta tags, keyword rich links and interlinking. Ask about their backlink process. Find out if they do local SEO, including local business listings. Ask for references. Call the references. Do your research. And if it seems too good of a deal, it is!