Why Reputable SEO Agencies Will Not Promise Guaranteed Search Engine Rankings

seoagencyrankingsI cannot tell emphasise this enough. You must beware of SEO scams and know that there are far too many SEO companies out there online trying to scam you. They prey on your ignorance of SEO and are quick to address any decent or fair questions you have with out right exaggerated lies. They have extremely slick sales people and know the spin to con and scam you out of your money. They make you feel as though you are making the right decision for your business, when in fact, you are making a seriously grave mistake. Be very warned – IT’S SO EASY TO FALL VICTIM!  Following are some great SEO scams circulation out there that you should be aware of before you sign up and commit to an agency. The decision you make today will have drastic ramifications on your business moving forward; and they will NOT BE GOOD. Knowing what scams to look out for is gold. So read and always refer back to this article. It will save your business from aligning yourself with a bunch of SEO criminals.

 

SEO GUARANTEES

This is by far the very BIGGEST SCAM going around when it comes to search engine optimisation. It’s a real beauty and is the most common SEO scam. So what ever you do if an SEO company guarantees any type, any sort or any deal regarding guaranteed rankings – GET RID OF THEM. These guys are absolute criminals, shonks, scammers and will say almost anything to get your business.

 

SEO SCAM JARGON that we see all the time

Around 75% of businesses that contact us with SEO questions have been burnt and scammed by some type of SEO guarantee. They believe the bullshit, hype and freebies that go with these guarantees and of course they end up getting completely ripped off with seriously bad Google rankings. Here are some of the incredibly bad promotions out there:

a) Our SEO software comes with the latest link popularity and web site optimization tools for helping you achieve guaranteed ranking.

b) $499 annual – Guaranteed fast listing on Google, MSN, AltaVista, and 100+ other engines and portals! Trace your traffic and guarantee a higher position!

c) We guarantee to keep you on 1st-page results each month, or you don’t pay for that month.

d) We guarantee to optimize your website for up to 100 different keyword phrases.

e) We guarantee to provide monthly reports that document all of your 1st-page positions.

 

Let me address each promise so you can dissect and understand the scam better.

a) no SEO software can guarantee a ranking – they are just trying to bamboozle you into thinking they have some kind of ‘space age’ software that can somehow revolutionise rankings. What a load of garbage!

b) They mention the words FAST Listings…this contravenes everything SEO stands for as you need to have a slow and very gradual approach. Plus $499 for the year – you should go out and buy a Lotto ticket instead – you will have a better chance of something positive happening. These guys will take your money and do nothing.

c) Sure…what keywords are they keeping you on page 1 for? Have you asked them that – this is a really big con and it sounds so appealing that many businesses fall for this utter crap. No one and I repeat no one can guarantee you page 1 position for eternity. This phrase is commonly used to lull you into thinking that you have absolutely no risk and nothing to worry about with your SEO.

d) 100 keywords optimised…big deal. Why don’t they go for 1000. These scammers will say anything to get your business. DO NOT BELIEVE IT!

e) monthly reports are fine….but to add the word guarantee in there is a cause for real concern.

The premise behind most of these scams is this: most of the SEO agencies that are still gutsy enough to guarantee rankings have taken the smart tack of guaranteeing a number of keywords that they end up choosing.

 

YOU WILL HAVE NO INVOLVEMENT IN THIS PART OF THE PROCESS – NOW HERE’S THE CLEVER PART!

THEY WILL select those keywords that are SUPER EASY TO RANK and are highly non-competitive. Whether those keyword rankings provide any serious traffic is another matter altogether. PLUS these keywords ( being non competitive) are going to have zero benefit to your business.

The issue is that people like to hear words like: free and guarantee. Unfortunately when it comes to Google these simply do not apply.
I think that I have made my point here. Just as insurance & used cars have high pressure salespeople, with hefty sales targets they must achieve to keep their jobs, SEO has its own dangerous, crooked, cunning and dishonest marketing claims that legitimate providers like us at SEO SYDNEY EXPERTS avoid like the plague. Why? Because we are ranking on page 1 of Google organically and we do not have to make these claims to snare your trust – we are there – this is proof enough!

 

GOOGLE WARNS AGAINST GUARANTEES!

If you do not believe what I am writing here and think that you still want to give these SEO scammers a try I want you to click on this like and in the article you will clearly see that GOOGLE THEMSELVES SAY THAT No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google:

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35291?hl=en

If this is not proof enough, then I do not know what else to tell you – this link is from Google itself telling you that guarantees are a figment of your imagination. It’s a daydream a hopeful event that will never occur. It’s complete fantasy and the more you believe it and succumb to it’s charms and allure the more danger you put your business in.

 

RANKINGS FLUCTUATE WHICH MAKES GUARANTEES IMPOSSIBLE.

Even with our own SEO rankings we find that sometimes the ranking will fluctuate. Sure, they don’t leave page 1 of Google but there is a tendency for them to move. If this is the case how on earth can you be guaranteed a stable, solid, perpetual page 1 position – it’s simply impossible. Rankings on Google are inherently volatile and very unstable. Be aware of this, digest this information, make sure you can get your head around this fact and you will be the better for it.

 

IT SHOULD NOT BE ALL ABOUT RANKINGS.

There is so much more to online success than page 1 of Google. Sure, it’s great to be there but there are other metrics you need to take into account such as traffic number sand conversion rates. Any decent SEO agency will bring this up with you and not be focused singularly on trying to labour the point that you are on page 1 so therefore business must be booming.

Let me be very clear about something. Just because your website is ranking well, this does not equate to better sales or higher profits. Rankings should not be the only goal here. You need to be looking at what happens when people land on your site and if they are converting into actual sales.

Nearly all of the shonky scamsters will put all their eggs in 1 basket and focus on rankings. This is because they have a machine like process to sell you the scam, sign you up and then do absolutely nothing.

Choose wisely and partner with an agency that can deliver on all fronts: SEO, Customer conversion rates and the user experience. Anything less is simply a waste of your time.

 

MAKING GUARANTEES ABOUT SOMETHING WHICH IS OUT OF YOUR CONTROL IS DECEITFUL & UNETHICAL!

Politicians do it to get your vote and SEO companies do it to win your confidence and business. It’s highly unethical and unfortunately due to the lack of controls online, this continues to go on day after day. The entry level for any SEO company is really very low. Any one can claim to be an SEO company and if they have any type of sales skills and are comfortable lying to you over the phone then they will end up ripping people off.

Unfortunately, the lure of money is far too strong for these people and they have no conscious when it comes to ruining the livelihood of many people.

In conclusion, all I can say is stay well clear of anything that sounds too good to be true. It’s a front, a cover up for something sinister and what may seem like a great deal now will only end up costing you dearly in the future.

I am writing this because well-intentioned folks still succumb to these fabulous, unrealistic promises. They call me up and the first question they ask me is: ‘can I guarantee a page 1 ranking”. The reason they do this is because they have Googled SEO or SEO Sydney and have contacted some of those agencies with Adwords who are the main culprits of these SEO scams. Their sales pitch is so good and so refined that when they call me up they sound disappointed when I cannot offer the same.

What I do say is that I will guarantee the best advice possible to help your site earn more traffic and implement an SEO campaign that will deliver long term realistic results. This is why we are #1 organically for our keywords and why we do not have to pay Google to be ranking. We understand the very essence of SEO not the cunning art or deceit.

There are may times when I speak with prospective clients that I would love to be able to offer a guarantee because I am SO confident in my ability to rank certain keywords. I am literally about to say it BUT I cannot. Why? Because a guarantee is a contract a promise for something that I have to put my good name behind and I have to deliver on this. I wish I could but I can’t. My moral compass is too straight and I run an ethical, upstanding business. For those people that need to hear the word; ‘ guarantee’ – good luck – we are the wrong agency.

If there is 1 thing you should take away from this article: SEO companies cannot control the ranking results the way Qantas can control flights or Dairy Farmers can guarantee the taste of their ice cream. Google alone is responsible for rankings and their methodologies.

Common questions regarding SEO

seoquestionsBeing in the SEO industry for over a decade we are lucky to speak with businesses from all over Sydney. We get so many questions regarding SEO and digital marketing daily.

Following are a few questions we get that just might help you understand SEO a little bit more. The video on here is particularly helpful.

Can I get to the top of page 1 today if I hire your SEO services?

This is a great question and I do love being asked this. Many people have no understanding of how the search engines work and they often expect immediate results. The truth is that ranking on Google can take a significant amount of time and for those people expecting to be up there within a day or two, expectations must be managed. Especially if you have a new website. Google rankings take time & panning and reaching page one quickly will never happen.

Why do other SEO agencies offer a money back guarantee?

Well, this one would have to take the prize for the most frequently asked question. I would get at least 2 to 3 of these per day. I have full empathy for businesses that want guarantees. After all, there are many SEO companies who will offer this and they are prepared to put it in writing. All I can say is good luck!

If you are prepared to believe this then you are being tricked in to the biggest SEO scam that exists today. These guarantees are not worth the paper they are written on. Companies out there offering this are just slick sales people trying to get your business. They are experts at deception and playing the guarantee card.

They come across as a completely legitimate company who after all are ranking on page 1 of Google for the term SEO. WRONG!! These deceitful, misleading statements like: ‘money back’ and guarantees’ are all part of the scam. I guess there is an element of luck, but my advice to anyone thinking about hiring an SEO team is to avoid these scams and walk away.

Have a close look at what one of Google’s top employees says about SEO Guarantees:

Google will even tell us on their website that there are no such things as a ranking guarantee. See the link below:

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35291

SEO companies all say the same thing, I don’t trust any one you.

This unfortunately is a common question. It is not a case of a few rotten apples have ruined the cart. But, a lot of bad fish are stinking up the place. The SEO landscape and players within it have systematically ripped off so many businesses that we all have a bad name. That’s right. The honourable and truthful agencies like our team at SEO Sydney Experts have to get tarnished with the same brush as those who are simply out to squeeze as many dollars as they can out of you.

 

What has happened is that they have been burnt by the last 2 or 3 SEO companies and are completely distrusting of other agencies.

I try to explain to them why they have been ripped off (paying next to nothing for their SEO, using cheap providors, ignoring the basic fundamentals of SEO), yet they still are quite closed off when I speak with them. People (and I get this) want the best deal that they can get for their business. And in the SEO world there are many agencies that are prepared to take even a few hundred dollars for competitive SEO terms and promise the world.

They don’t care about the size of your company, they will simply take your money and do nothing. Remember they love corporate SEO, becuase you have more money to throw at them. The temptation for most people is too great to refuse and this perpetuates the vicious cycle.

This is not how SEO works and is the reason people continually get smashed online. The logic behind taking a few hundred dollars, is that over a year this adds up to $2400 and this is not bad money for 1 phone call & locking you into a contract.

Can I start & stop my SEO?

Unfortunately not. SEO is a continuous strategy that must be worked on the whole time without a break. Stopping your link building and copywriting will just let the competition get ahead of you. Your website has to send ranking signals to the Google spiders to continuously index your website and this can only be achieved through SEO on a continual basis.

Why does my website have to have so much content when all I want is to have pretty graphics?

Thi sis a very common question we get from industries that rely on images to tell their story. Content simply clutters the site up. Unfortunately for these businesses content is necessary and they have to tell their story through words and not graphics alone. The reason for this is that Google needs information to rank a site.

Yes you can have it looking nice but there must be content alongside the images. People often wonder why their website hasn’t moved up the rankings, or worse has not been indexed when they follow the philosophy of no copy. The golden rule here is a mix of unique content and great imagery. This will give the user the best experience and Google will in turn start trusting and pushing the site higher up the rankings. It’s amazing what an additional couple of paragraphs can do.

These are just a few of the questions I get asked but in truth they are not that bad and they reflect the fact that many business owners are still unclear about SEO and how it works.

If you have any questions no matter how silly you may think they may be, I am more than happy to answer these for you.

How to Avoid Getting Completely Ripped Off by SEO companies

Are you still scratching your head and wondering what’s been going on for the last couple of months with your SEO agency. You paid them you trusted them, they said all the right things, but nothing happened, except you now have a lighter wallet.

seonegativeThere are many SEO agencies in Sydney and you can easily find them on Google, who are going to quote you unrealistic and ‘too good to be true’ prices when it comes to handling your search engine optimisation. They will gladly take your money and do absolutely nothing when it comes to ranking your website on Google. Basically, they are out to rip you off with no moral conscience or business ethics. These are the types of players that bring the SEO industry into disrepute and give all us good guys ( who practice white hat SEO) a very bad reputation. This is unfair for people like us who play by the rules and offer a genuinely good service that can really help your business become more successful.

There are hundreds of scam artist out there looking for their next victim. These people can be based in Sydney or overseas and you will never ever know unless you are prepared to meet with them and know what the danger signs are. Knowing these will help you prevent getting ripped off.

Following are some things to keep front of mind and be very aware of when speaking to your next prospective SEO agency:

1) There are so many SEO companies that say they have a Sydney presence when in fact they are based in Thailand or India, be aware of this. I actually got cold called from one of these companies the other day who said they were in Sydney and when I asked to meet with them they said they can’t and when pressed further they eventually admitted they were overseas. These guys are real scammers so keep your eyes open. It’s preferable to deal with a local company. At least one you can visit in person.

2)  Don’t do everything via email. Get them to come in for a chat which will give you a better idea of their work ethic. Meetings are a great way to judge character and to tell if your going to get ripped off. If they want to do everything via email and are not even prepared to Skype you avoid them. These people are killers for small business.

The basic rule here, if you are going to avoid getting ripped off is to not align yourself with any SEO companies that offer:

  •    SEO guarantees and page 1 rankings within 60-90 days or pay on performance SEO
  •     Monthly SEO fees for around the $500 mark if your in a highly competitive niche.
  •     Instant SEO quotes over the phone without doing any kind of keyword research or industry analysis.
  •     Yearly or half yearly MUST sign contracts with no exit clause.
  •     Ex Google employees working in the company –  this is a huge trick and as I’m sure you can imagine why would a Google employee go an work for a SEO agency. The chances of this are very remote and highly unlikely
  •     If they do not offer any type of content marketing, website audit, social media marketing and are just focused on link building. This is very dangerous and know that this type of strategy is considered very old school.

Lets examine each point individually so you have a better understanding of what to look out for:

SEO Guarantees

In the perfect world, businesses can offer warranties and guarantees on their products or services. Unfortunately, Google is the third wheel here and is in charge of the ranking process. All an SEO company can realistically provide is the vehicle that helps your website rank. This is because Google makes all the rules and can easily and without any prior warning change them at any time. Guarantees of page 1 positioning is really a scam and sold to you to lull you into a false sense of unrealistic security. Again, unfortunately, if you believe in it hard enough, and are told it time and time again, it still won’t make a difference.

Google has their hand on the controls and no amount of positive thinking or over promising of guarantees will change this fact. Also, if companies say they will work till they get you on page 1 for free if they can’t rank you within 6 months, again stay well away!

These are all scams and designed to fleece you of your money.

Cheap Monthly SEO Fees

These guys are out for the fast buck. Their aim is to quote low, get you in and do little or no work. Its simple math, if they are going to be charging you such a low SEO price, how many hours are they going to spend on your website and optimisation?

SEO, if done correctly takes many man hours. The simple fact of the matter is that $500 is just far too cheap. Might as well throw the money down the toilet. Whilst $500 per month may not be a lot of money, if this is done in large volumes, then it becomes quite profitable for some SEO agencies who prey on the naivety of small businesses.

Instant Ball Park Quotes

Over the phone are done to surprise you with ‘so called’ great value packages and then they sign you up and lock you into a contract. $500 x 12 months = $6000, which is a lot of money, if you are getting no results. Be very careful if your SEO company tells you that they are offering special packaged deals at these silly prices.

Lock In Contracts

This has been addressed but I will go over it again. If you are in a contract paying your hard earned dollars every month for nothing, this is going to be financially draining with no return on investment. Not only are they difficult to exit, but think about all those lost opportunities and clients you could be bringing into the business – if only you had made the right choice from the beginning!!

Non of these SEO companies have ex Google employees – why on Earth would they leave a high paying, powerful role in Google to work in a SEO company. Yes, there may be a 1 off occurrence but the chances are very slim – these kind of statements are an outright lie – be careful if you read this or they tell you this!

Focusing purely on link building

This was a popular method many years ago but Google is looking for a more holistic approach to your internet marketing. Link building is fine if they are from relevant, trustworthy sites but this is now becoming less important. Agencies must be looking at all your digital assets such as copy, user experience, social media and your site structure. This is not so simple and only s select few will be able to have a thorough understanding of all these essential components. If the people your speaking to go on about link building and nothing else this is a really bad sign. Content and link building are the way to go so make sure they offer this service.

So What Should You Take Out Of This?

Pay peanuts and you get monkeys, simple as that. Paying a fair and respectable price for your SEO service is the best marketing move you can make for your business. If you prefer to take the low road and go for the cheaper option where guarantees are dangled in front of you like candy to a child; all we can say is you have been warned.