12 Deadly Sins Or Signs of Cheap SEO
SEO (search engine optimisation) is much more than just naming pages and creating generic keyword phrases. When considering hiring a company or an individual to optimise your website, you have to keep in mind what we here at Mad Scientist Digital have been saying for a long time now: to mechanically create meta data is extremely easy, but to do it well requires practice and experience.
Out of the hundreds if not thousands of people offering SEO services, a very small percentage have the real skills necessary to SEO a website. In this video, we present 12 ‘deadly signs’ of a cheap SEO company and the reasons to avoid them.
Ian: What are we talking about Andrew? Why are we looking at this? What! The True Blood picture why are we looking at that?
Andrew: Quite easy. Quite simple.
Ian: Why did it flash off the screen? Is this a gremlin?
Andrew: No it’s just bad direction.
Ian: Oh wait that’s a different movie, different show.
Andrew: Ok, how’s this for a tie-in, we’re talking about 12 deadly sins, we’re talking about death, tombstones. True Blood, last episode the other night, it’s all over but I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, I’m sorry but the last episode absolutely sucked. It sucked. I sat there thinking that’s it?! This is it?! I was so disappointed, I mean i love True Blood, see look I even made red drinks.
Ian: Do you know what’s really disappointing? That I’ve only seen the first episode, that’s all I’ve seen of True Blood, and I’m so excited about the show and now you’re telling me the last episode sucked, well now I’m not going to watch the rest of the series.
Andrew: Well there’s 7 seasons, watch up to the end of season 3 and that’s probably all you need to see.
Ian: Do you have nightmares after you watch the show?
Andrew: No! Completely the opposite actually…
Ian: Well cheers to that. Cheers to that True Blood.
Andrew: Cheers to that. It was fun.
Ian: It was fun.
Andrew: It was fun but. Oh, good lord, that’s a nasty bit of blood.
Ian: I was just putting it back in. Hopefully it didn’t go into the oxygen.
Andrew: I think that was a druggie’s blood, makes me cry.
Ian: So anyway, True Blood.
Andrew: That’s it. It’s over.
Ian: It’s over.
Andrew: What are we talking about. We’re talking about 12 deadly sins from bad SEO companies. Is that what we’re talking about?
Ian: We are and 12 is probably cutting it down to a nice, neat and tidy number, there a probably several hundred but we’ll cover a few of the ones that we haven’t been banging on about in other hangouts.
Andrew: Yeah, it seems our most popular videos are about bad or cheap SEO’s so why not let’s make some more.
Ian: Why not.
Andrew: Ok, there are 12, obviously there’s a hell of a lot more but these are 12 big ones. Anybody who offers you a free trial service for their SEO, never, ever, ever fall for that one.
Ian: Is this one of the ones who say we’ll give you a free trial and only when you’re on the first page then you start paying.
Andrew: Yes but in the mean time what you’ve done is you’ve handed them over all your passwords and access information to your website and all your other accounts as well. It’s like giving them your car keys or your ATM password it’s stupid, never do it. Number 2, underpriced or overpriced services, now.
Ian: I love it when you take your glasses off that means something’s going down. You mean business.
Andrew: Something is going down. Everybody knows of sites like, oh I guess we can mention them, everybody knows about them, elance, then you’ve got fiverr.com, oDesk and all those other ones. When I first started out, I looked for work on those sites. So what you do is you log in as a member, and then you look for people who have posted various jobs where they want SEO done on their website or social bookmarking, or whatever it is. So then you start bidding on it, and then by the time you start bidding there’s about 50 or 60 people who have bidded $1 per hour or some crap figure like that. Don’t go on those websites! Don’t post on those websites for SEO work being done on your websites through those sort of channels because you’re just going to get scraps, you’re going to get rubbish work.
Ian: They’ve bastardised the industry!
Andrew: They certainly have. That’s nothing to do with elance and the rest of them, good on them for coming up with a business model that’s great but from an SEO point of view… I mean there’s other stuff on there too, you can get your website done, you can do videos and all these sorts of things, that’s great. But we’re talking about something that can potentially damage your website and your ranking history. Plain and simple.
Ian: Well more than likely it will damage your website and your reputation, it’s just a matter of how much.
Andrew: Yes exactly. Number 3, we promise your site will be indexed in 48 hours. No professional SEO guy or company will ever promise you that because you can’t make that promise. It’s like walking up to Google, knocking on the door and saying hey index my site now. It’s never going to happen.
Ian: That’s what these guys do, they just go up to mountain view and knock on the door and they say hey Matt Cutts, what’s the deal man?
Andrew: Or they say I know someone at Google, which is another point but yeah.
Ian: I’ve got an inside man at google and his name is Matt Cutts
Andrew: If they promise you they’ll index your site within 48 hours, run away because that’s not within their control and that’s not for them to promise. Number 4, we can guarantee a pagerank of X. No, pagerank or whatever or top ranking in X amount of time, once again they can’t guarantee that, they can’t promise you that because it’s not in their control. Sometimes it takes a long, long time before you even get a pagerank of 1, much less anything higher than that, and it’s not up to them.
Ian: Yes, although we got a page ranking of 2 pretty quickly but we won’t go into that.
Andrew: We won’t go into that. I wasn’t going to touch on that but seeing you brought it up, there are ways to strengthen…
Ian: I know, I like to just throw in the odd tooting our own horn sort of thing.
Andrew: But the problem is that low ranking pages can still appear high in search and high ranking pages may not appear at all. So pagerank these days, just forget about it, it’s still a metric that Google might use for sure but even according to Google, they don’t place much emphasis on it anymore. Number 5, massive search engine submission, god we’ve talked about this so many times!
Ian: Dozens of search engines!!!
Andrew: How many search engines can you name? How many can you name? How many can you name?
Ian: Bing, Yahoo, ask.com, Ask, Jeeves, Google, The Streisand Effect… it’s got it’s own search engine that we’re creating.
Andrew: Yeah, Mad Scientist Digital. Yeah anyway, thousands, that’s a load of nonsense. So yeah, forget about that and even Google, Yahoo, MSN or even Bing say not to send tons of submissions as it can actually hurt you. Once you’re in there, you’re in there and you don’t need to keep submitting your site.
Ian: Yeah otherwise Matt Cutts will just slam the door in your face!
Andrew: Number 6. Hundreds or thousands of links to your site, well once again such claims will actually hurt your website because its not quantity it’s quality of the links that you get. So saying to you that we’ll build 10,000 a week or 10,000 a month, run away, once again, run away! Number 7, avoid companies that ask for your copyrights to SEO and meta data. This one has always confused me, meta data for your website is unique to your website.
Ian: It doesn’t have to be copywritten!
Andrew: No. And they don’t have to give you rights to it either because it doesn’t number 1 belong to them and number 2, it’s public information! To get the meta data from any website right click > view page source and bang there’s all the meta data, there you go, take it at will!
So for an SEO company to say oh well we own that well so bloody what!
Ian: We should put some subliminal messages in now so when people right click we’ll say I’m glad you’ve visited here because here’s our meta data, hello!!
Andrew: The problem is, that they’re asking for copyrights for your SEO, in other words anything that they write for them. The problem with that is is that if you sign that, you are giving them the rights to republish that content elsewhere for another client, so then you’re going to have duplicate content issues and all this sort of stuff. So if anybody asks for that don’t sign it just once again, walk away or run away if you want to, that’s just nonsense. Number 8, flat rate or low monthly fee to optimise and promote your website, I can understand the flat rate bit but low monthly fee I cannot understand. It’s a time consuming process to do high quality SEO work.
Ian: It is. It’s an everyday activity.
Andrew: Some SEO consultancy companies charge up to $1000 per hour because you are buying their knowledge, their experience and their time. To properly analyse someone’s website to try and figure out what’s going on with it and how to fix it and how to make it rise in the search engines takes a bit of time. If you’ve got a fly by night company saying for $99 a month will do this, this, this and this, 30 or 40 things for you. Well you’ve got to wonder, what’s the quality of that going to be.
Ian: Very poor.
Andrew: Quality over quantity is always the key. Number 9, companies that will not answer your questions. This is something we just heard the other day, somebody rang in and said we’re getting SEO work done by company X but their effectiveness has stopped for the last six months. We’ve asked them what’s going on, they don’t answer us, they don’t reply, they come up with some nonsense saying that Google has de-indexed a lot of your old things, now we’ve got to build some more and all this sort of “bull”.
Ian: Is this the company that the client had paid them upfront for months?
Andrew: No, well there you go that’s another thing.
Ian: That’s another company, that was company Y, they’ve got really original names for the companies.
Andrew: We’ll call this one 8A, don’t pay upfront for 12 months. That is just stupid, that is just bad business, if an SEO company says: “Yes we can do this for you but 12 months up front please”, don’t do it because it’s likely you won’t hear back from them, and if you do, it’ll be things like this, they won’t be answering your questions.
Ian: One day you might call them and nobody picks up the phone or the phone rings out.
Andrew: Yeah, they’re on holiday in the Bahamas or something with your money.
Ian: That’s it.
Andrew: Number 10, we know someone, well good for you I know a lot of people!
Ian: Is that what that says?
Andrew: That’s what it says. But the actual title should be, ‘We know someone in Google.’ You hear that a lot, ‘oh we know somebody in Google and they have the latest information.’
Ian: We do.
Andrew: Not going to happen.
Ian: Yeah we do, we know lots of people in Google.
Andrew: We do?
Ian: Yeah but we’re not going to ask them for help, none of this stuff.
Andrew: Why wasn’t I told.
Ian: Should we go into who we know? No let’s not.
Andrew: Well we know Matt Cutts, no we don’t.
Ian: I feel like I do, I watch his videos everyday.
Andrew: Number 11, oh by the way nobody knows anybody in Google who is going to give them information because Google employees are so tied up in their confidentiality contracts that they’re going to get sued to the max if they divulge anything.
Ian: Of course.
Andrew: It’s not going to happen so don’t believe anybody who says oh I know somebody in Google.
Ian: Yes. There’s no divulging, that’s pretty much all the contract says.
Andrew: Yep, just like ours, 10 pages saying that if you divulge any of our information we’ll sue you, Number 11.
Ian: I didn’t read that part.
Andrew: It takes you with your lawyer background, 10 pages to say something that it takes me 10 seconds to say. That’s what it is.
Ian: Look, it’s lawyer speak. It’s all definitions most of these contracts anyway, defining what these words mean. Anyway, carry on.
Andrew: Number 11, we’ve only got two more to go, unsolicited SEO offers. Simply meaning, we get them here and I’m sure you guys get them too, emails, phone calls, letters offering you SEO. Any self respecting SEO company who is worth it’s weight in gold, I was going to say salt but no, gold is more expensive.
Ian: These days yes.
Andrew: Will not send you an email, will not ring you up over the phone offering you SEO services and will not send you stuff through the mail.
Ian: No, they won’t.
Andrew: It’s not the way it’s done. The way we work is 90% through referral, 10% is through some sort of speaking engagements through seminars or whatever else.
Ian: Yeah that’s it.
Andrew: We don’t sit there and make phone calls, we don’t get anybody who works here to sit there and make telemarketing phone calls, we don’t send you letters, we certainly don’t send you emails offering you our services.
Ian: But we do make annoying videos.
Andrew: But we make annoying videos. Last but not least, threats and extortion campaigns.
Ian: Oh, they’re always good. Create the fear.
Andrew: The way these scammers work is they send you an email saying I want to discuss this with you live, can I call you at and they actually quote your mobile number or your telephone number which they get off your website. They give you the impression of oh these people know where I live so I better talk to them.
Ian: Yep and they tell you how bad your website is and they haven’t even looked at it.
Andrew:Yep, it is all done by software.
Ian: We get the same emails.
Your website is terrible and is not ranking very well. And we are saying:”Hey, look we are ranking next to you. On the first page of cheap SEO!”
Andrew:Exactly! If you do happen to get these type of emails threatening you. Saying that if you don’t go with them they will do something go to the internet Crime Complaints Center.
Ian: We like that idea. Another idea I heard on that you can reply with one of those lottery emails. So you reply back to them, offering them a share, in your billion dollars that you’d just won in a lottery. And if they wouldn’t mind starting the process of by entering their bank account details. That normally shuts them up.
Andrew: Alright, is that what you do! I just ignore them!
Ian: And they go: “Hang on this is an email I sent out a month ago!”
Andrew: Either that or I reply “F off!”
Ian: I don’t know what the F stands for maybe you guys will tell us.
Andrew: Don’t get tempted. We are fine.
Ian: Andrew, I am very excited that the last true blood episode sucked. But that’s alright I’ll get the other 700 episodes a go.
Andrew: No, it is only 11 or twelve in a season. It’s not like the old Buffy days. When there were 24 episodes per season. Those days are gone.
Ian: That’s right. Budget cuts…
Andrew: No, I think is because they are putting a lot more money into the visual effects of TV shows now: Sci-Fi or whatever, than they used to.
Ian:They are kind of like movie budgets. I think 24 and shows like that really upped the ante. But that is another hangout.
Andrew: That’s another hangout.
Ian:Thank you Andrew, illustrious commentary as always…
Andrew: R.I.P true blood!
Ian: Any comments? Get in touch with us! And the video description. I don’t even know what I am saying here. I am confusing myself. I am “cheersing” myself. What is going on?
Andrew: Complaints. Queries. Concerns…
Ian: Probably for our mental health.
See you soon! Cheers!
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