Avoid Shady SEO Tactics


Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a business that’s growing in demand every year. SEO companies offer services that can greatly improve the performance of your business’s website and ecommerce. However, since SEO is relatively new and in such high demand, some companies are taking advantage of the fact that their customers aren’t familiar with what exactly SEO entails and what they should expect from their SEO provider. At Virtual Market Advantage such tactics appall us, and we want to spread the knowledge that will help you identify and avoid shady SEO promises you might encounter from other companies. Here are some things to listen for that dishonest SEO companies are saying:

“We Guarantee First Page Rankings”

Guaranteed first page ranking is a compelling and impressive promise that draws in customers. Unfortunately, no one can guarantee first page rankings for Google or any other search engine, no matter how good they are at SEO. There are so many factors that determine where your website falls in a search, and these factors change constantly as people search for new keywords, Google tweaks their system, and competitors alter their tactics.

“Get As Many Links As Possible”

Having quality links to and from other sites are important for increasing your website’s rank, but getting more links isn’t as important as getting good links. Be selective when choosing which sites to link, and look for quality over quantity. A dozen high quality links will do more for rank building than having thousands of links from easily-obtained and spammy domains.

“We Can Connect Your Site to Lots of Web Directories”

The policy for web directories is similar to links: quality beats quantity. Although submitting your site to high quality and pertinent web directories can help your ranking, thoughtlessly making connections to as many web directories as possible won’t help (and can even be detrimental to) your ranking. Submitting your site to low quality directories can result in unnatural link penalties, malware, and lowered ranking.

“SEO is the Same for all Businesses”

If an SEO company uses the exact same strategy for every client, those clients won’t be getting the most out of the deal. Like any type of marketing, SEO should focus on the needs of your particular business and understanding the audience you are trying to attract. How your site is presented makes a big difference in the user experience and how well the searches guide new clients to you.

“Don’t Worry About Google Algorithm Updates”

Google is constantly updating how their search engine works in order to give the best possible experience for searchers. Some SEO companies suggest not worrying about updates, but it’s important to keep up-to-date on the latest changes. Tactics that work well on one version might become less effective or even useless on later versions. If you don’t want to spend the time to stay informed on Google updates, let VMA do it for you. We always keep track of the recent changes, and will let you know if and why we need to alter our strategies to keep your SEO current.

“We Will Fix Your SEO Within a Month for this Flat Rate”

You should be skeptical when you hear this kind of bold assertion from any kind of company, as it’s an empty statement meant to bring in new clients quickly, not keep them happy over time. Good SEO results appear after months of effort, not days or weeks. Good SEO companies will explain to you why you won’t see immediate results. It requires lots of hard work and constant research as the methods change over time. Watch out for empty promises.

“SEO is the Only Online Marketing Your Business Needs”

SEO is only part of the online marketing required to improve your business’s website results. Your online marketing strategy should incorporate all kinds of methods such as social media campaigns, paid advertising, and traditional marketing alongside SEO.

If you see any of these red flags from a company, you should think twice about using their services to avoid shady SEO tactics. If you’re concerned that this blog is just trying to manipulate you too, check out Google’s official advice about choosing your SEO company, which includes several of the points given here. Make sure that the company you choose to handle your website is up-front, realistic, and able to fully explain everything they will do to improve your ranking. Virtual Market Advantage is such a company. We will continue to stay up-to-date on the most recent developments, research the particular methods that different types of businesses need for their SEO, and give you the best SEO experience possible. And along the way, we will give you as much information as you want about what we are doing for you and explain the reasoning behind each method.