Last month we ran an article entitled “Beware of the SEO Sharks”. We likened the SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) industry to the used car industry of the 1970s. However, I can’t help feeling that this is an unfair comparison – unfair to the used car industry, that is. At least when you purchased a used car from a dodgy salesman you got some kind of wheels at the end of the deal.
With the Search Engine Optimisation industry, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that punters are often being sold little more than snake oil.
Let me give you an example: Recently, we met with the owner of a local business who lamented that they had signed up for an $800 per month SEO package with a so-called SEO company. What did they get for their $800 per month? A report showing that Google, Bing and Google Places did not rank their website at all for any of the top 14 most important keywords for this particular business.
In fact, back in March, when this company got sold their SEO package, they were, at least, getting some rankings. Poor rankings they may have been but within 5 months of getting signed up, they went backwards so that Google and Bing showed “not found” for all keywords that they were paying for.
The same report showed the website ranking on some very bizarre directories – for example, buttkiss.co.uk – certainly an essential directory for anyone looking for your products in Western Australia (sarcasm intended). There are a myriad directories like this one on the Internet and many of them exist solely for the purpose of creating “back links” to your website. Something that SEO companies will tell you is essential in getting your website ranked in the search engines. However, this is not entirely true. Links to your website from other quality websites that are relevant to your business are useful, yes. However, masses of links from unknown, poor quality, spammy directories will, if anything, hurt your ranking. Google will see through this massively overused technique to manipulate your ranking and may end up blacklisting your website.
The fact of the matter is that search engine listings are FREE and there is very little, if anything, you can do to manipulate the likes of Google so that they will rank your website any higher so STOP PAYING FOR SNAKE OIL!
What CAN I do?
First of all, steer clear of SEO companies that try to blind you with SEO “science” or techno-jargon that you don’t understand. If in doubt, call us – our advice is free and so are many of the tools available to you to get your website performing better.
Secondly, start writing some meaningful and useful content to draw visitors. Engage yourself in telling people about your business. Write articles on your website telling people what you did today, this week or what you plan to do tomorrow. Write about your new products. Give people tips and tricks on how they can get the most out of your products and services. The point is – write meaningful content and stick it on your website. It’s by far the most effective method of letting the likes of Google know that your website is current, up-to-date and relevant to its users because guess what? Google is only interested in ranking websites that are current, up-to-date and relevant to its users.
What if I want more visitors?
Bang for buck you will always get more from a carefully targeted, Google ads campaign than a snake oil sales person. Google ads are one of the most cost effective ways of promoting your business online and we’d be more than happy to show you how this works – but only after we’ve shown you how to take full advantage of all the free options that are open to you.
Call us for help
Give Andrew, Simon or Chris a call on 08 9721 1558 and let us show you how to get your website performing as it should.