Insanely Good SEO Tips for Start Up Businesses

If you are thinking about starting up a business or you have a small business already then these SEO tips are absolute gold. If you follow these and do exactly what I say I can promise you 1 thing. That is, you will succeed online. These SEO tips come from over 15 years in the industry as well as being a small business ourselves. Yes, that’s right. We are a small business as well and know the pitfalls, ups and downs when it comes to ranking on Google, SEO and what you need to do to get a sustainable ranking.

seotipsWe have made all the bad mistakes over the years and are therefore in a position to clearly explain to you small business start ups out there (looking to make a go of it) what needs to be done in order to have the right SEO strategy in place and also what dangers are lurking out there and how to avoid them. Follow these tips and your business will be much better off for it.

The most important thing I can tell you about when it comes to SEO is to avoid statements like the following. They are dangerous and are out there online purely to scam you out of money. What ever you do, what ever happens, you have to trust me on this AVOID THESE at all costs:

> No Rank No Pay – this is a massive scam and designed to get small businesses and business start ups to feel as though they are in safe hands. After all, you have nothing to loos and they are going to get you to page 1 of Google and if they don’t you pay nothing. The issue here is that the keywords that they will rank you for are useless and will bring in no web traffic. You are probably going to be blown away by how good they are and once they have your trust your contract begins.

> Pay a minimal $5 fee till you get onto page 1 of Google. This is a brilliant scam and who ever thought of this is a genius. Most start ups want to get their business on to Google with a small budget and to get there for $5 is a dream come true. Here in lies the trap. They put you on a direct debit for $5 per month and once they rank 1 keyword ( and this keyword could be absolutely useless) they then automatically put you on the real true SEO rate. So the $5 within a month or 2 blows out quickly. There is nothing you can do – you are stuck with these guys as you signed the 12 month contract based on their $5 into scam fee. Please don’t fall for this as so many small businesses I speak to waste to much time and money and worst of all it puts the rest of us in a bad light. It tarnishes the SEO industry cause a bunch of cowboys have decided that this scam works and they want to rip as many small business owners as they can off.

The rule of thumb here is to stay well away from these sweet smelling deals. If it sounds too good to be true it is! I feel really sorry for these well intentioned start ups that are trying their hardest and are ripped off before they start. The issue here is that these SEO companies pay an absolute fortune to be on Adwords on Google so they are always on the top 3 when you type in words like:’ SEO’ or ‘SEO Sydney’. Most naïve people cannot tell the difference between organic and paid SEO and they click on the first ad they see. Like the venue fly trap they are caught? Why? Because the sales people they speak to on the phone are so slick at offering these cheap / crazy deals that it’s just too hard to resist. If only business people knew that paid ads on Google are the EXACT OPPOSITE OF SEO. I know this can be a little confusing, so if you are reading this and simply don’t get what I’m saying please give me a call and I am happy to run through this with you in detail.

Rushing SEO based on trying to hit targets.

Because these SEO companies have promised you page 1 rankings in unrealistic time frames in order to make you feel as though you are getting a great deal, they are going to do anything and everything to hit their targets ( even if the keywords are pointless). What they will do is over optimise your back links to a level that is not Google compliant. Sure you will rank but as soon (and as night follows day this will happen) as Google detects this, your site is going to be penalised.

Google likes to see a slow progression in your rankings and if your website rises too quickly, this is a danger sign. Common place as I hear this all the time from people that come in and say: ‘ this new business has been around for only 6 months and they are dominating page 1’. My reply is simple. Easy to rise, quick to fall. What has happened is that their SEO company has over optimised their SEO and this is the reason why they have had such a meteoric rise. BUT, they will fall – this is 100% certain. They might be there for a couple of months, perhaps even 6 months, but,, they will drop. No one and I repeat no one can spam their way to the top of Google and expect to have these rankings sustained.

Forgetting about your On Page SEO.

The common theme among so many SEO agencies is to get you to sign up, commit and then brush you off to some obscure account manager who you never met and who is really not invested in your business. What they always do is promise you the world without actually delivering on the basic principle foundations of SEO. Their goal is to simply appease any issues you have with your SEO campaign and fob off lies that they are doing everything they can, when in reality they are just trying to keep you hooked on their line month after month so you don’t complain. They will bamboozle you with technical jargon and wear your down so that after a while you simply give up. After all there’s not much you can do as you are locked into a contract, unless you take them legal.

The point I am trying to make here is that they really don’t look at your website to make it compliant, they don’t look at conversion rates and will certainly not look at how your website presents itself. They are only concerned with getting you to pay your next months SEO.

In conclusion, all I can say is to choose wisely when it comes to your SEO agency. Go and meet with them, suss them out and make sure you never fall for these outrageous scams and lies. It’s your new business, you want to succeed and the choices you make at these early stages will impact heavily on your future success.

6 SEO Myths that WILL Ruin your Business

seomythsA big part of my day is helping my clients websites rank on Google. But another part of my day is spent on the phone answering questions from people who have heard rumours and myths about SEO and want me to clarify things up for them. They have heard from friends or colleagues that doing a certain thing to their website will help with their rankings on Google. It’s all gossip, hear say and myth ridden.

Well, rather than keep on fielding these type of questions, I thought that I would highlight some great SEO questions I get asked and debunk some of those myths. I am absolutely amazed by some of these myths circulating out there and how these actually got into the public domain. Perhaps they were started by some SEO companies, who try to scare potential clients into using them. Theory being that they will be able to easily solve these problems. All lies…and they are about to end now. If I let them continue, then these people will think these myths are true and expect them to be part of the SEO process. They are not and here’s why.

1) Posting and being active on Social media will help my rankings.

Social media has it’s purpose and that is to promote your business and engage with your customer base. It is one of the most common questions I get asked and all I can say is that social media activity has absolutely no effect on your search engine rankings. Thinks about it for a moment. It’s so easy to pay people to post articles, get followers, likes and retweets. all you need to do is pay someone on a website like Fiver and you could get all the social media activity you ever wanted. This is why Google does not count social media as a ranking factor. If it was then everyone would be doing this and the system would collapse. Google wants to see natural, organic behaviour and social media allows you the opportunity to spam your way to page 1 – therefore it’s a complete myth. Use social media as another marketing platform, but in so far as rankings are concerned…forget about it. It will have zero impact. If any SEO company says that posting on Facebook or twitter is great for your ranking, then they do not know hat they are talking about.

2. Blogging is going to really help with my rankings.

Blogging is great if you want to appear as an authority in your field. Posting great quality, useful, informative content that keeps readers on your website is great for promotion. But, these blog articles will have no impact on your rankings. The only way you are ever going to rank is through top quality back links. You can publish as many blog articles as you like, but it will have no effect on your main core keyword rankings.

For example if you are a lawyer in Sydney and want to rank for the keywords ‘lawyers Sydney’, then the only way you will ever be found online when a search is done for these keywords is through back linking. Writing articles related to specific areas of law that you service are a great way to help keep your customers informed – but they will NEVER help with your rankings. I always tell my clients that they should continue to publish blog content as a way of showing your customers that you are active in the online space. In fact it’s a good thing to do. But if anyone ever tells you that it will help boost your rankings….they are just probably saying this to get you to sign up to their copy writing service.

Again, think about it for a while. If ranking on page 1 meant publishing heaps of blogs, then everyone would be spewing out content ( no matter the quality) and again, this would destroy the integrity of what Google displays. It’s good to publish quality, content, but if you do it at ridiculous levels then this may do you more harm than good.

I write blogs all the time on this website about SEO and the do’s and don’ts associated with rankings….but this these articles have never affected my main core keyword ‘SEO Sydney’…which as of today we were at # 1 position.

3. Doing Adwords will help me get to page 1.

This s the most common question and all I can say is categorically NO! There is absolutely no relationship between organic SEO rankings and Adwords. Like night and day, they are the exact opposite. I hear people say that they started and Adwords campaign and then all of a sudden their rankings started to rise. This is a total coincidence. If they were related then you could simply buy your way to the top. This would by Googles very nature of ranking eliminate any credibility they ever had. Google is all about natural rankings and if there is the slightest hint of buying your way up the rankings, then this would destroy the very fabric of Google. There are businesses in Australia that spend an absolute fortune on Adwords (up to $50 per click and up to $100 000 per month) – imagine the money they would be saving and the results they would be getting if they just did SEO.

Getting to page 1 is a hard slog and takes a lot of time, energy, strategy and expertise. Essentially, there are no short cuts. This I hope eliminates this myth.

4. I’m scared Google is going to penalise me.

Penalties happen very rarely and only in extreme cases if you do something completely against Googles guidelines. If you have noticed your rankings slide a few pages in a short period of time, this is a good indication by Google that there is either something non compliant with your website or there is some spammy / inorganic activity going on externally. In any case, Google will give you the opportunity to fix the problem and sideline you for only a few months. Once your issues have been fixed, they will naturally climb back.

The issue many business owners have is that they are scared to death of Google and what might happen. They have heard all these kid of myths of what Google can and will do to your website if you are even remotely non compliant. This is a myth and people should treat Google as a friend and not some god like figure that they need to be petrified of. Remember, Google needs good businesses like yours to index and rank. If your business is ethical and offers a great service / product then it’s in Googles interest to keep promote it.

The issue here is that many businesses tend to choose really dodgy SEO companies and they land up in trouble because of what they do. If only they would have used a proper SEO company in the first place, then the words ‘penalty or rank suppression would not be in their mind set.

5. Content is king.

Come on, think about this. If all I had to do was write thousands and thousands of words about a topic and expect this to rank on Google, then the copy writing industry would be mammoth. Copy en masse only irritates readers. I have seen some websites that have so many words on their home page that it just looks ridiculous. Be aware of what your consumer wants and cater for them. Write short, snappy precise content and this will help with your sales and conversion rates. It will ave nothing to do with your rankings. Google cottoned on to this years ago. If it were that easy I would be employing a copywriter to pump out thousands of articles every year for my clients so they all get to # 1. If only it were that easy!

So the golden rule here is that content is NOT king. The only way you are ever going to rank on Google is through using a SEO company that knows what they are doing.

If any SEO company that you are talking to strategy is purely based on publishing content – then this copy better be world class. Every articles MUST be shared and liked by hundreds if not thousands of people. This simply does not happen. Imagine publishing quality riveting copy about car cleaning every week. Impossible! Copy that makes readers so glued to your site that it goes viral does not exist in 99.99% of industries – therefore forget copy as a way to get you ranked – it’s a massive myth.

I hear many Sydney SEO companies telling people that SEO is dead and content marketing is the only avenue left, as Google has outlawed link building. what a load of garbage. It’s these SEO myth makers that are going to end up hurting your rankings. Don’t believe a word they say. They are only using this copywriting angle as a disguise to hide the fact that they are absolute crap at organic link building, which is the cornerstone of SEO.

This is a real concern and I need you readers out there to really understand this point.

6. Backlinking is dead and buried.

Where do I begin? This is a seriously dangerous myth. If any SEO company tells you that they do not do backlinking, you need to hang up on them immediately. What happens is they they do not know how to do it properly. They have tried to do it a few ways and experimented with a few websites but at they end of the day, nothing happened. This is why they tell you that linking is dead and of no use. These guys make me laugh. They are only telling you this because they keep on stuffing up. This is why so many SEO companies now preach the easy path to take as a form of SEO; content writing and social media marketing.

All great BUT a waste of time. All businesses have their sales pitch, and they have every right to tell you what their thoughts are in relation to SEO rankings. What they don’t have the right to do is to out right lie to your face. It brings the entire industry into disrepute and makes our job just that much harder when we have to debunk the myths and explain how it really works on a daily basis.

It’s really a no brainer. These SEO cowboys will say and do anything to get your business and if they can show you they have written 20 articles and posted 100 times on Facebook then they must be doing their job and doing it well. After all look at all the output they have done. WRONG! They are in fact hindering your businesses ability to grow online and get new business. They are holding you back and hampering your efforts to succeed online.

The only companies that ever succeed in their quest to get to page 1 are those that use agencies like ours to acquire quality backlinks and apply this to our strategy. Anything else is just fluff, waffle and wasting your time!

If you are serious about getting to page 1 of Google and don’t want to be stuffed around please get in touch with us here at SEO Sydney Experts. Call 02 9360 8514