Content Discovery Smackdown: Hootsuite vs. Buffer vs. KloutContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the Platform7 Website Tips to Attract More Shoppers to Your PagesHow eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
Questions for SEO Service Providers That Pitch For Your Business
Posted on June 22nd 2013
I am contacted daily by cheap SEO companies (almost always based in India) who are still using damaging, old style black hat techniques, that simply do not work.
My inbox is bombarded so frequently that I’ve started to play a little game. I have no doubt that some companies offering SEO services know what they are doing and are capable, but what about the plethora of incapable service providers flooding inboxes all over the world?
How can you tell if the services you are being offered are based on effective and ethical techniques that have long term benefit?
To answer this question, I decided that every single time I get one of these emails promising a monthly schedule of 150 directory submissions, 20 blog articles, 10 new landing pages etc. I’d call their bluff.
I have 2 versions of a standard response email I send out. One where I am polite and simply act interested, the other in which I am equally polite and interested, but I also pose a few simple questions.
Part of the latter email goes like this:
"Please can you give me some examples of the articles you’ve written?
Also, that seems like a really high number of directories, what kind of directories are you submitting to and what quality control do you use, for example, do you have a minimum Domain Authority criteria that you use and do you ensure they are all theme/industry relevant?
Finally, could you show me a few examples of any landing pages you've created please?
Many thanks and I look forward to hearing back from you.”
Version 1 of my email elicits a response 100% of the time. Would you be surprised to learn that email 2 never gets a response? Any SEO provider who knows their stuff would easily be able to answer those few questions.
What can you learn about choosing an SEO company?
Many SEO companies (largely based outside of the UK) will dazzle you by promising massive volumes of work at a very low price. Dig a little deeper however and you’ll see a woeful lack of substance.
From what I’ve seen, (and I’ve seen a lot!) the quality of this work, without exception is terrible. Content is very badly written with bad spelling and grammar as standard. Link building is based on antiquated methods of submitting to endless low quality directories – many of which are exactly the same site and just re-branded.
I frequently come across unsuspecting clients who’ve used these services in the past, who now find they are ranking badly and have unintelligible, downright embarrassing copy on their websites and blogs.
Don’t let this happen to you!
Some Questions to Ask SEO Service Providers
- Can you provide me with some examples of your published blog articles?
- What quality control do you have in place when it comes to selecting directories and other websites for back-links? For example, do you take into account theme and Domain Authority?
- Can you show me a selection of the directories you use?
- Can you give me an example of a landing page you’ve created?
If an SEO provider is unable to provide you with answers to very basic questions like these, this is an indication that they don’t take these important things into consideration.
Please make sure you ask questions similar to those above before you sign up to an SEO package, as the consequences of poor SEO can be catastrophic.