1 Great Way to Combat Negative Google reviews

We’ve all seen these types of reviews especially when the are posted on Google. For some businesses this  can be a huge problem to only for their brand but for potential new business. Not everyone is going to find these reviews but some may and if that’s the case and your concerned about the impact that they will have on your business then there is something you can actually do about this.

Now, I have written about the benefits of online reputation management and how SEO companies like us can help eliminate bad reviews from page 1 of Google but we have just found this great new website called Trust Pilot which we are trialling on a clients website as a test case.

Let me start by saying that  this client is in the travel arena where online reviews can get quite malicious and nasty. It’s so easy for some traveller to have a bad hotel, villa or late plane flight that negative reviews seem to flow endlessly when it comes to anything to do with travel. Luckily, for this company they are blemish free because of the quality of customer service they provide but just to be on the safe side we have installed Trust Pilot logo on their website and have turned on the review button.

The way it works is really simple and quite easy.

 

All a customer has to do is hit the review button and they will be instantly taken to the companies personal page on the Trust Pilot website. Once there they are then prompted to give a 1 to 5 star rating and a brief review of the service. Once submitted this will then be instantly rendered not he customers website. Obviously, not all reviews are going to be 5 star but the advantage here is that you have a massive alternative to Google reviews.

Another benefit is that these star ratings on your website will get indexed by Google and they will then appear as rich text snippets when people search for your website. So you have 2 nifty benefits here all rolled into  1 neat package. Firstly, there is a trusted website that is known world wide that is branded on your website and you also get stars on your Google listing which will really help you stand out from the crowd. That is until everyone else catches on about this and starts doing the same thing.

What I really like about Trust Pilot is that you are in control. Yes, Google offers the same functionality where you can reply to a positive or negative review but the difference with here is that you can actually control and filter which reviews are published. Plus and thesis a huge plus, you can speak to a person at the other end off the phone. Unlike Google, where everything is done via email, Trust Pilot can and will help you there are issues.

I just think that there are too many ways that people can go about hurting your business through publishing negative content and reviews. It’s a simple click of a button and it’s in my humble opinion getting way out of control. We get at least 2 to 3 calls per week from people ( from all walks of like and different types of businesses)  that are to a certain degree really upset about what has been said about them online.

Add, the Google reviews component in here and the whole internet is wide open for slanderous attacks.  I really don’t think this is ever going to stop, not in the immediate future anyway  but with he advent and creation of sites like Trust Pilot there is now some artillery you can use to combat these reviews and protect and promote your reputation in a much better frame of light. I for one am more than happy to endorse this product ( and I am in most cases very reluctant to give free plugs here) but in this case I must say that it’s well worth looking into this as a way or form of online rep management.

There are also other online platforms and website you can use but for a quick and effective solution this is a winner. It is not cheap but protecting your self online is worth the cost especially if your business relies on online traffic and Google to generate income and this would have to be about 90% of the market.  A point to note here and the team at Trust Plot did explain this clearly but this is really a no brainer. make sure that all the reviews you get are actual and not fake from friends or family. You want to keep this environment as pristine and real as possible which in the medium to long term will have tremendous benefits for your business. You are going to know when a review has been published as they will send you an email alert. Make sure you always reply to these especially if someone has an issue. Be prompt and very courteous in your answers as the public will read these.

If you would like any further information about protecting your brand online speak to us here at SEO Sydney Experts.

3 Tell Tale Signs that it’s time to change your SEO company

SEO like any other service has KPI’s and has to have a certain level of accountability. Unfortunately, most SEO agencies tend to have a set and forget approach to SEO. What happens is they are essentially on a mission to sign up as many clients as they can and in the process end up forgetting about their current customer base. So I thought I would clearly detail here 3 signs that you should be aware of to tell if your agency is slackening off. In most cases the evidence is clear but in others it may be a bit hard to tell.

#1: You are not getting monthly reports. As a minimum your SEO agency should be giving your monthly reports showing the progress of your rankings. You should be given a report when you commenced the campaign and a end of month report clearly highlighting the progress of your main core keywords. This is the real bare minimum and if you are not receiving this in a consistent, uniform manner then something is going horribly wrong. My guess here is that the rankings are not performing as well as they could be ( or were promised when you signed up with them) and for this reason they are afraid to show you the results. This is a gutless approach and is a clear sign that your SEO team are not doing their job properly. If you see this happen then get rid of them quickly.

If you are not getting clear lines of communication on a monthly basis then this is a sure tell tale sign that they are just after your money without producing any tangible or significant results. A lot of SEO companies are purely out there to generate money and sign you up to a lengthy 12-month contract without actually doing anything. Hard to believe, I know but this does happen in many cases. So be warned and stay alert for this type of behaviour and lack or accountability.

# 2: You rankings have shot up and are now on the decline. These sugar coated ranking rises are common among agencies that use spammy, dodgy SEO techniques to get you a quick gain on Google only to see these gains lost within a couple of weeks. These drops are then blamed on Google’s algorithmic changes and you are left with no where to go as you are locked into a contract. What they tell you is they have shoed you what they can do and they say they will try to get you back to page 1. In the interim, your paying month after month with no results in the hope of false promises and expectations. It’s a real pity that this has to happen as it brings the rest of us down.

You might ask how they are able to get these great rankings and why they can’t seem to maintain them. Well, the answer is easy. All they do is put your website on 100’s if not 1000’s of directory websites or websites with little or no value. What happens is that Google registers these and you get a bit of a bump but once they see that this pattern is consistent with spammy activity they will devalue these links and hence you drop. Simple as that. Google have algorithms that are highly sophisticated that can detect this activity and there is really no way to avoid the repercussions.

# 3: Lastly and this is probably the biggest reason to ditch your current SEO company is if nothing has been touched on your website. In most cases your website will need some type of remodelling or fine tuning to make it more Google compliant and if your site has not been touched then I would be starting to worry about the ethical nature of your SEO team. Even small fine tuning is fine but as least they should be getting into your site and making sure that all the titles and descriptions are spot on. Plus they should be checking your site for ‘on page’ elements like site speed, content as well as bounce rates and addressing these as part of their overall strategy.

These are just 3 points to consider when dealing with your digital marketing agency. As business owners looking to generate more customers and eye balls on your website you should be vigilant and very aware of what’s happening when it comes to all your internet marketing especially the mob charged with looking after your rankings. There are far too many cowboys out there preying on peoples naivety and are happy to cash in on the gravy train as long as punters out there are willing to part with their cash without being aware that they are slowly being ripped off.

Why Most People Leave their SEO Agencies

One of the most common complaints I hear from people are that their current SEO company is really bad with heir level of customer service and communication. They tell me how frustrating it is and how they wish they could get out of their contract and switch SEO agencies. If you are on the look out for an SEO company to help with your Google rankings then I thought I would give you an idea of what is really annoying people when it comes to their relationship with their SEO providor. Be on the look out for these signals as the last thing you want to happen is to work with a sub standard agency.

leavingseoagencyProbably this biggest complaint I hear is the level of customer service. People tell me how aweful the experience has been from the moment they signed up. They tell me that the sales person was great over the phone to begin with but as soon as the contract was done, then they were a ghost.  There was no contact and you were passed from one account manager to another. No one really cared about your business, they were not interested in what you had to say, they couldn’t give a stuff if you called or emailed them. As far as they were concerned you were locked into a contract, committed to pay your monthly fee for the year and that was that.

If you tried to complain you were told that things would improve and that they would take responsibility for your account. Again, the same issues arise. All front but no substance. This is the issue confronting so many small to medium sized businesses nowadays that choose to use a larger SEO agency that they find on Google – ( these are the SEO companies that pay big bucks to have ads on page 1 – you know those ads..the top 3 positions).

The issues only get worse when these blatant rip off SEO companies ( who have a huge staff turn over because they are under so much pressure to make the sale) when you find that over the past 6 months you are on your 4th account person. It ends up like you are dealing with a large telco or internet company, where no one takes responsibility because no one cares.

Lack of customer service combined with a massive staff turnover compounds business owners frustration when it comes to their SEO company.

The other massive compliant I hear is the lack of results and passing the buck onto Google. This is basically the worst complaint as these SEO companies are simply out there to take your money and do nothing with it. Because they pay an absolute fortune to be on paid ads with Google, they need to somehow fund this. Guess what? this is all funded by your monthly fee. No wonder your rankings are going no where. When you try to complain and ask the legitimate question of why their rankings have not moved in the last 6 months, they simply blame it on Google’s algorithm changes.

This is a common excuse and used all the time to put your off the scent and shut you up. I mean, how are you going to argue with them. They are seasoned veterans at these kind of palm off tactics. basically, you haven’t got a leg to stand on. Why? Because you signed a contract with these guys and in the small print ( if you bothered to read it) it will say that they do not have to rank your website – THIS IS SO COMMON AND HAPPENS TO SO MANY BUSINESS OWNERS.

You may ask, how do I know this? Because at SEO Sydney Experts I speak to at least 2 to 3 people who are in this situation. They have made the wrong choice to begin with ( this was probably made because they were offered a super cheap SEO package or they were promised unrealistic rankings) and they are now paying the price.

So if you find that you are:

> given the cold shoulder over the phone
> no one gets back to you OR if they do it’s a week later
> spoken too abruptly with a bad attitude
> constantly blaming Google for their poor rankings
> find that you are on your 2nd, 3rd or even 4th account manager
> not getting reports on a monthly basis
> when you call the office it diverts to a call centre
> always communicating via phone or email and are discouraged from a face to face visit
> not getting answers to your questions
> being lied to

then it’s time to make a switch from your current SEO company that is actually harming your business. Get rid of them. Move on. Do anything you can to get out of the contract because these guys are not doing you any favours. Trust me when I tell you this because I see this happening daily!

The longer you stay with them and the more you procrastinate, the worse off you will be. It’s time to leave your current SEO agency.

If you want to see why so many businesses stick around with us year after year why not get in touch with a team that cares – 02 9360 8514.

You will see a different level of customer service and Google rankings – just check our current organic page 1 position as an example. We are not paying to be there. We are there because Google thinks we are the BEST – THAT”S WHY THEY PUT US on page # 1 for SEO and SEO SYDNEY.

1 Important Question to Ask Your SEO Company

If you are thinking about engaging the services of a SEO company in Sydney then you need to be asking them 1 question before you do anything. This is probably one of the most important questions you should be asking so make sure you keep it front and centre of mind when your interviewing them

seo-newsThe question is: Is your own website ranking on Google and where is it? That is, has that particular SEO company been able to rank their own website for their main keywords. The only reason for this is if they cannot rank their own website, how are they ever going to rank your site. Simple as that. Essentially, they have to have the skills and ability to rank their own site before they can claim to be able to do anything positive for your site. A really simple way to check their ranking is search for SEO Sydney and see where they come up. If they are not on page 1 then this is a bad sign and indication that something is not right here.

Many SEO providers are going to promise you almost anything to get your business. They will swear blindly that they will be able to get you on page 1 of Google, but the simple truth behind this facade is that if their web site is not ranking then you will have little hope of achieving anything positive with your digital online campaign if they are left in charge,

Also, don’t be fooled if their site is on page. Anyone can get their site on Google through an Adwords campaign. This has absolutely nothing to do with SEO. Make sure you are able to differentiate between the two marketing mediums. Check what  Google has to say about Adwords here.

Being lulled into a false sense of security that the SEO company has managed to get to page 1 via Adwords can be dangerous as they obviously do not know what they are doing when it comes to SEO. Make sure your aware of this.

Never be shy to ask this question. Obviously you have contacted these people because you have found them online. But, make sure they are able to articulate their exact placement on Google and how many of their main keywords they have ranked.

I want to be 100% clear on this so there is absolutely no misunderstanding. Ranking a website on Google nowadays is a complicated and a very technical process. Because the barriers to entry are so low, there are many agencies out there claiming to be proficient in this field, when in fact they are little more than back yard operators disguising themselves as SEO experts.

Filtering the rubbish from the decent SEO companies is not as easy as it looks. Gullible, naive business owners have been duped and ripped of in the past by slick fast talking sales people who will bluff their way past even the most savvy business owners. So, the only way you are going to get  a true measure of the ability of any SEO service provider is the ability to rank their web page.

This is the most simple litmus test you can perform and it never fails. Try it out and see how you go. If they are lying to you or have been truing to pull the ‘wool over your eyes’, this will get them sweating. There in no surer a solution to get to the bottom of this and work out the truth from the fiction when is comes to your choosing a worthwhile providor.

If your thinking about starting an SEO campaign and don’t know what to do or who to turn to – please call the experts here on  02 9360 8514. Just do a quick Google search and you will clearly see where we are ranking on page 1. This  result wasn’t achieved purely by luck, its through hard work and a thorough understanding of how Google works and the basic fundamentals of what works and what doesn’t. There are so many factors and things to consider but I know form the results that we have been able to achieve for our clients as well as ourselves that we have a firm understanding of the digital space; probably better than any other agency. I know this is a big statement to make but as the saying goes, the proof is in the pudding and the results are there for everyone to see.