What is SEO?
SEO: Serrated Elephant Oars
SEO: Sometimes Elvis Occurs
SEO: Silly Elf Opera
SEO: Search Engine Optimization
SEO is essentially how you’re found more on the Internet. A website with good SEO attracts search engine robots and provides instructions, descriptions, and content the robots can understand so your website can be found in a search. There is no substitute for unique and interesting content and SEO will assist in promoting your content. A site with no, or poor SEO will generally not be very successful in ranking for search terms that people looking for your business may use.
If you’re a small business owner who spends most of your time doing all of the things a small business owner does worrying about Search Engine Optimization is probably behind Clean The Bathroom on your endless to-do list. So where do you get help?
SEO may also mean Search Engine Optimizers, professional service companies that can help you with your Search Engine Optimization. Would it have killed these people to stop confusing us and pick different letters?
But as with any other professional service there are good ones and there are, frankly, bad ones. Like the companies that can help you work from home or make certain parts of you bigger (or smaller), there are firms or consultants who claim to be able to influence your place in a search query in ways that are either impossible or unethical.
So be on the lookout just as you would with any other “service” that may be offered to you. This means asking the right questions.
- Can you show me examples of your previous work and share some success stories?
- Do you follow the Google Webmaster Guidelines?
- Do you offer any online marketing services or advice to complement your organic search business?
- What kind of results do you expect to see, and in what timeframe? How do you measure your success?
- What’s your experience in my industry?
- What’s your experience in my country/city?
- How long have you been in business?
- Will you share with me all the changes you make to my site, and provide detailed information about your recommendations and the reasoning behind them?
Run away from:
An email from nowhere that has kindly noticed that you just aren’t showing up in searches and offers to “partner” with you to fix this. In this case “partner” means take your money.
A SEO that says they can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google. Because they can’t. Some will claim some sort of “priority submit” to Google as if Google was their uncle and they can get you a good price on a stereo. There is no priority submit. Their priority is taking your money.
Do not let an SEO have FTP (file transfer protocol) access to your site unless you know exactly what their intentions are. This basically means granting them access to your site to do whatever they want. Which means linking to completely unrelated sites and then taking your money.
A service that promises results in 48 hours! A good SEO will take the time to understand what you do, your industry and your goals and this takes more than 48 hours! Taking your money will take 48 seconds.
Just like starting your own business you need to educate yourself, be wary of glib guarantees, promises of influence or just plain oily salespeople. They’re the same as they ever were only now they roam the Interwebs looking for a quick buck.
If you just read this blog and still don’t get the whole SEO thing or simply don’t have the time or staff to devote to your web marketing just call us at Turn The Page Online Marketing. We understand what goes into successful SEO without empty promises or shady practices and we specialize in small and medium size businesses. That means we’ll work within your budget, teach you what we know and develop a lasting relationship so you can count on us to be there and not vanish in dead of night. With your money.
For more info our pals at Google have some great resources: