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Everyone tells lies at some point, whether it is a white lie to get you out of trouble, or a big whopper like “I am not a crook”. SEO companies have got a bad reputation for telling some untruths, or for stretching the truth. So we thought we would give you the top 10 lies of SEO companies.

10. Links are SEO.

This is the plainest of white lies from SEO Companies. It usually comes from being mis-informed. Links are a part of a small area in SEO, and really they are something that should happen naturally with a well structured and designed website.

9. All websites are equal

Firstly not all technology is equal. Some old methods of web development, using Flash or tables for instance, have been shown to slow the development of the SEO side of a website. Second, a website that has not used the correct tags, or is light on content, is going to struggle with rank.

8. Article Spinning is a worthwhile strategy

Article marketing is a questionable practice at the best of times, especially in the light of the Google Panda update. Article spinning is the practice of taking an existing article, and rewording that article to try to create new(ish) content. Google has some pretty strict rules on this, and most good article submission sites don’t allow it. Now with the Google Panda update, any content that is slightly duplicated carries a penalty.

7. We can give you a rank without looking at your site

Every industry is different. To rank for insurance keywords, you are going to have to work hard, and be very clever. You can’t give a blanket statement about working with any website in any industry.

6. We don’t need to build content for your website

The core of good SEO is good content. If you want to rank for long tail keywords, you need to build lots of interesting quality content.

5. We can guarantee a rank

Google changes its algorithm, and methods for serving ads constantly. No one can guarantee a rank because one week they may place Google places at the top, the next they may change the algorithm to favour one-page websites.

4. We know everything there is to know about SEO

SEO is constantly changing, as is the methods for marketing. There is no way anyone can know it all. There are website out there that trawl through Google patents just to see what they are up to, and to try to guess their next move. If anyone things they know it all, they are deluded.

3. You will need to link to our site.

This is a cracker! If you ever have to put a link to an SEO company on your site be very careful. They could be using your site to sell links to other sites, or they could be setting up some bizarre link triangle. If they do ask you to link to their site, there should be some clear reasoning.

2. Pagerank matters

The truth is that the content of the website matters more now. Pagerank is not a bad indicator of Google’s trust in a website, but it is not the beginning and the end.

1. You have to pay for the number of links we build.

This one makes my blood boil. The typical line is “we will build 10000 links for .01c per link”. If that mattered, everyone would have 10,000 links to their site. The number of links you have is almost irrelevant. The quality of those links, and Google’s interpretation of that is what counts. You also want links that are hard to copy. You want to have an seo consultant that will build assets that you can maintain.


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Comments (3)

Indeed, good white lies. But I think that links i.e. link building is an important part of SEO. A combination of a good codec and well designed site and a link building strategy, you will reach higher rankings. I think is 70/30. 70 for the site and 30 for the link building activities.

Nice article Robert,

My advice is;

Don’t sign long term SEO contracts. Sure it will take a few months to gain traction, but if you don’t like what you’re getting then look for someone else to do your SEO.

Call the SEO company’s clients and ask them what they think about the service and their results. Ask them how long they have been a client, less than six months is too short.

Ask the SEO company if they will be adjusting your website copy or design. In some cases this is all that is needed to reduce the bounce rate and increase conversions. It’s not uncommon to sign up for long term contracts and find out after 12 months you still have what you started out with… zip and a worn out credit card!

Ask about link building and where your website will be linked from. Personally I would tell them not to build my links for me, there are ways you can do this yourself – ethically.

Make sure you have access to your Google Analytics account so you can log in and monitor the results.

Don’t believe everything you are sold.


Great advice! Thanks Paul.

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