By Emily Shea, Executive Creative Director
August 23, 2016
There’s a disturbing scam surfacing these days. Perhaps you’ve witnessed it. Here’s how it works:
A polite and seemingly well-meaning email comes your way. The writer has been checking out your website. Next comes a compliment followed with an offer. There are a few “tricks” that writer knows about that can boost your search results. They might even give you examples and specific percentages. Then, for a small fee of three, six or maybe 10K, they’ll guarantee dramatic improvement—in record time.
We call these “SEO Poachers,” and it’s the scam du jour. Unfortunately, we’ve seen many fall victim to it. And the result is never positive. Gobs of money gets flushed down the toilet and the improvement metrics are almost never met. What’s worse, what was once carefully constructed and executed SEO strategy is critically damaged. And oftentimes, so is the victim’s brand.
Here’s the deal. If you’re working with a credible web content/design/development provider, you’ve likely already invested in this type of work. You simply cannot build an effective website without considerable weight going into SEO strategy. And once your website goes live, the strategy has only begun. Reputable partners will continually monitor your site’s performance, adding and updating content as needed, and making changes to metadata as search engine algorithms change.
It’s easy to take a peek under the hood of any website and find a few things that can be fixed with the snap of a finger. But if you ever get contacted by one of these poachers, reach out to your web partner first. Chances are, the fixes the poacher are offering are already underway in a manner that works in tandem with your business goals and objectives, not against them.
Another important consideration is that SEO success takes time. If anyone promises to boost you to top three in a search ranking in a short period of time, they are about as credible as a pill company telling you their product can help you can lose 10 lbs. in three days.
Now, if your current web partner isn’t already doing these things, that’s another story completely. But it’s still no reason to fall victim to a scam. If SEO is a priority for you, seek out a well-rounded partner who knows their stuff. One that thinks holistically and strategically. And that is focused on long-term success over a quick and potentially damaging fix.