Day by day web site owners get in to trouble. We have seen more and more people requesting help after they completely destroy or stain their web sites with poor SEO efforts. There are several reasons why I feel that this is happening. So far I had to turn down several SEO opportunities simply because it is not worth the effort to resurrect a stained site. Seems like people tend to forget the most basic things in normal life. If you get something cheap expect a cheap outcome. Here I will try to describe the negative practices that are carried out by so called “professionals” that will harm the very reputation of good and serious online marketers.
Let’s drill down a bit.
There is a huge menace
I should have stated this a long time ago. There are literally thousands of so called small SEO/web design firms trying to grab our attention with their spammy sales emails and European names (although they are actually coming from locals – 99% from India -Delhi) saying they are ready to take our site to the next level in terms of Google rankings. Plus they offer guarantees, incentives and down the road ranking reports which display the achievements they’ve given their clients. Well, how many people would actually go and check to see if what they are telling is really true? I did follow up one such email/report and found out first hand that was a one big fat lie. It looks good on paper but in real life there aren’t any.
Do they deliver at least?
Who would not like if you can get a qualified team of SEO professionals work for you for a full month for 250 USD or a packaged deal for 500-600 USD? But does that pan out to be real? 99% of the time there are at-most 2 people behind the scenes doing all this. Instead of a team they will have couple of undergraduates with little or no real marketing experience trying to do some link building. In terms of ranking do they deliver? Yes, But…. have you ever hear about a word called a Google “honeymoon”? For a new site with a lot of hype and a large number of incoming links will get a top position within a few weeks. I have experienced this. As the time goes it will automatically starts to shake and fall back to its rightful place among the competitors. Unless you have something really cool and a big big community behind you. So most of the cases end up having a honeymoon and few weeks down the road Google detects that you have tried to manipulate their rankings by going against their Web master guidelines. Thump.. off you go. Down the drain.
All that effort to build up your business, getting the domain secured is gone. Start from scratch. Sometimes if you type in your domain name to google search it wont show up. That’s how bad things can get.
Who are the real culprits here?
I would say greedy web site owners who does not give proper attention to online marketing that it deserves (or the correct investment). Secondly people who has no qualification or experience what so ever in real marketing getting their hands on few automated tools to post backlinks all over the net. For example there are automated tools which are guaranteed to deliver high ranking which are also Panda and Penguin friendly. Well, firstly Google raking cannot be controlled by anyone. Why? because it is a privately owned company and does not disclose it’s algorithms. Also they roll out minor and major iteration of algorithm changes who knows when. So How can someone confidently say that they are penguin and panda proof? The whole concept is wrong.
Instead of trying to evade them why not pay attention to your users. And of the course the well being of the web. Let’s take the Google point of view. It is a search engine. So if I’m Google I would want my searchers to find the best possible information in the shortest possible time. Let’s take for example “hotels in sri lanka” which is the keyword. A person would typically be trying to have a look at the hotels here most probably to plan a vacation. So what if for that keyword a bunch of hotel sites from other countries come up? Little by little my searchers will loose faith in me and I’ll be out of business. So how exactly to filter out which are the best sites that has the most relevant info? Via an algorithm. And what if someone keep trying to push the boundaries of that algorithm and manipulate the search results in their favor?
My search engine will be pretty pissed at that particular domain.
This is exactly what is happening now a days. People spend around 250-500 USD and expect to have first page rankings by spamming the crap out. Spam comments, blog networks, juicer, pumper sites and a shit load of terminology to describe crappy content. The sole purpose is it manipulate rankings. Nothing else. Nobody will ever read any of these. So what the point? Are we doing the things we do for the best interest of the online society?
SEO is real marketing
It is wrong to call it SEO anymore. Because getting thousands backlinks, putting up more and more stuffed pages is not gonna cut it. In-fact they will get you De-indexed.
Real marketing is hard. It takes time. And it is costly. This includes everything from Facebook status update to putting up a guest post. Or simply answering a question on answers.com. It will definitely take a long time build up but once it is there nobody can challenge it and push you away. That’s whole new subject in it’s own right.
For now let’s keep in mind,
- Old SEO is dead – extensive link building does not work. Quality, slow and NATURAL link building does
- Don’t fall for cheap optimization offers – It is not possible to do it correctly with a low budget
- Have patience and some more
- Be continuous, this is not something you can stop once you got your rankings
- Do a background research of the person you are hiring to do SEO
- If they say they can guarantee rankings that a good sign to drop them
- What ever you do DO NOT GET YOUR SITE FLAGGED BY GOOGLE for manipulating their search results.
and finally as a web site owner make sure your optimization guy will receive timely information about your business from you. This is not something they can do alone.
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