Liars and Cheaters and Bums! Oh My!
I own a company devoted to building great websites with the very best search engine optimization available. We do a great job. My customers are consistently on page one of Google. So why do I get calls, emails and text messages from “professionals” every day that are trying to sell me SEO services? Worse than my cell phone blowing up, is my clients get these unwanted solicitations! These fly-by-night companies use fear tactics and ignorance to sell their services, so I am feeling the need to vent raise awareness about some of the more widespread false messaging. Here’s a list of my top 4 sales pitch offenders:
1. “We get special rates because we have a special relationship with Google.”
No, you don’t. That’s just not true! Think about it. If Google granted special rates, their algorithm would not work. That’s why they call it pay per click advertising. Everyone pays a weighted amount based on the quality of their website, the accuracy of their ads, and their competitor’s bids. If your competitor were getting special rates because of a particular vendor relationship, the algorithm wouldn’t work correctly. Here’s the official policy from Google.
2. “I can tell you who visited your website through Reverse IP Research.”
Nope. No, they can’t. First, technically it’s just not possible. Google, or any other search engine, will only give you the IP addresses of your website visitors. IP Addresses will provide you with company names (see Google Analytics Screen Shot Below) and the location of those IP Addresses. With the right piece of software, you can find out who works for that company in that location. Now that data might be useful and may be used to enhance marketing efforts, but it will not give you the exact name, address, phone number, or email address of the human that visited your website.
Second, use your common sense! If you could find out exactly who had been looking at your website, that means anyone could see every website that everyone (including you) visited every day! OMG! That is so creepy!
3. “Your business isn’t registered correctly with Google so your website won’t be indexed correctly.”
Hmmm? Your business may or may not be registered correctly with Google My Business but I can assure you that if you have a website on the internet Google has most certainly found it and scanned it. Moreover, GOOGLE BUSINESS REGISTRATIONS ARE FREE! It’s easy and it’s free to register with Google. You don’t need to pay a monthly fee to have your Google Business Page updated. Here’s the link to Google My Business.
4. “We ran a free report that grades your listings, reviews, social media and/or website. Your company did very poorly. We can fix it for you for only $Fill-In-The-Blank Monthly Fee.”
Don’t believe the hype! Yes, SEO Professionals do use 3rd party programs to access different performance factors, but these automated website graders are only as good as the data submitted. They are rarely accurate and should be weighted very lightly in the larger scheme of a marketing audit. Additionally, a one-size-fits-all SEO plan with a low monthly fee is never a good strategy. If you are an entrepreneur, or a business owner, that has some talented marketing people in your organization, there are some internet marketing projects, like social media, that you can bring in-house to save funds. There are also ways to stretch your marketing budget with sound strategic planning, but the cookie-cutter solutions are not the smartest use of your marketing dollars.