What is SEO?
Does SEO work?
Why is SEO so important?
If there is anyone on the planet who knows a lot about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) it’s me – no pun intended, but I wrote the book on the subject back in 1990 and coined the phrase SEO in 1988.
Unfortunately however, no one despises the term SEO more than me. Why? Because the term has come to be known as a dirty word or in this case, an acronym.
Look, the reality is that majority of all “SEO experts” don’t know what they’re talking about. Many are simply dishonest, scammers or are simply regurgitating outdated information which at the end of the day, the only person who pays the price is the poor customer.
So are their any good responsible and effective SEO experts out there who actually know what they’re doing when it comes to SEO? Of course there are, but they are few and far in between.
In my lectures I discuss why I used the phrase in the first place, and more importantly what I meant by optimizing your web site for search engines.
The definition of SEO at it’s core is to make changes to your web site through coding, verbiage, media and meta data and more that would allow search engines to properly index you by the keyword or keyword phrases you wish to be found by. Back in the day Google wasn’t even around. At the time I was referring to directories like Yahoo or indexes like InfoSeek or WebCrawler.
As search engines evolved, so came the need to modify your content in such a way that would allow you get the highest natural ranking possible for that particular search engine. In today’s world, that search engine or index is Google.
One statement I make often is this…
Just like real estate there are 3 words we’ve heard over and over again – Location, Location, Location
When it comes to the Internet, those words are replaced with the words – Google, Google, Google
Simply put it doesn’t matter what you’re trying to promote or sell online, we all have the same problem and that is if you’re not found in Google under the keyword or keyword phrases your target audience is searching for, then you’re simply wasting your time and money. Sure there are companies or individuals that have a web presence simply to provide information to their handful of existing customers, but that makes up just a tiny fraction of hundreds of millions of web sites. The majority of businesses online want and need to be found at the one place we all go to in order to find what we’re looking for – Google.
And yes, you can buy your way to the top of a Google search result using Google Ad Words, but speaking for the majority of companies out there, we would all like to be found number one as a natural listing on Google.
I often get asked at my lectures and by customers, “How do I get found at the top of Google?” – In fact this is one of the most popular questions every web site owner would love the answer to, and an extremely popular search term.
If you’re one of those that would like the answer, then after you’re done reading this article – just go to Google and search for that phrase, better yet – here is the link.
One of the most important pieces of advice I give to my clients is to put Google at the foremost of every single thought process as it relates to their online business. Why? – for the reason I mentioned above. Unfortunately most online business owners are clueless when it comes to web design or most things Internet related. They’re good at what they do best and that is selling homes, manufacturing, or something else and there is nothing wrong with that. Too often these same business owners make the mistake of hiring someone to design a web site. These are generally young adults who simply don’t understand that the Internet, above all – is a marketing tool. Not treating it as one from the gate, spells disaster. They simply don’t have the life experience to understand this thing called Internet Marketing. Please note that I’m not trying to bash young web designers, what I am saying is that the majority don’t know what the they’re doing when it comes to promoting a web site. And why should they, they’re a web designer – not an SEO or marketing expert. Hiring a web designer to perform your SEO work is like hiring your attorney instead of a CPA to do your taxes or vice versa. Just because they know how to design a web site doesn’t automatically qualify them as a marketing or SEO expert. Too often these same web designers are suggesting things that impact your business greatly. Such as the wrong software used to design your web site, who should host your web site, who you should register your domain name with, who should be acting as your email service provider and more.
These are all very crucial decisions that greatly impact online businesses.
Look know one knows your business better than you and no one is ever going to care more about your business than you. It’s for that reason that I always recommend you do your own SEO (search engine optimization) and I also suggest you design your own web site as well. It’s not hard, you just have to know some basics and it all starts with defining your target audience, having the right game plan and using the right tools to make it all happen. I often say that even “rocket science” isn’t “rocket science” if it’s explained well. So, is SEO difficult? No it isn’t but everyone has different SEO needs. The problem is that there are more “alternate facts” than there is “reality”.
Think about this – the Internet is the largest marketing tool on the planet in which your customers seek you out as opposed to you seeking them out. Because that’s true, you need to first define your target audience and ask yourself an extremely important question – “What are my customers searching for in order to find my products and/or services?”
Once you can answer that question, you’ve taken the first step to putting yourself on the road to success and achieving your SEO goals. While there is obviously a lot to know about promoting a business online, it all starts with defining your target audience. While this is extremely important, having a successful online presence is equivalent to making a pizza. If you leave off the cheese, the dough, the sauce – it’s not a pizza. SEO is no different.
There are many factors that go into SEO and just like a pizza, all these things need to work in concert with one another to be successful online.
While I could spend days talking about this subject, I simply don’t have the time nor could I cover all the details on what you specifically should do to meet your SEO goals. Each business is different. It’s for that reason that I offer myself as a consultant to you.
So to recap, please be careful when it comes to anyone approaching you to perform SEO work on your web site. Don’t rely on your web designer to know about SEO unless he or she actually does. The decision a quasi web designer / SEO expert can make, can and generally does – have catastrophic results for your business even if its out of ignorance.
Nothing brings greater joy to a Google engineer than taking down a web site for violating their TOS (Terms of Service). If you really want to feel for someone, just imagine being one of these Google engineers who on a daily basis have to contend with idiots who are trying to constantly find new ways to subvert Google’s Index. It’s an ongoing battle in which Google is fully justified in having a zero tolerance for. It’s also a great concern for you in the event you hire an SEO expert. Too often some of these so called SEO experts will do things that simply are not right and violate Google’s TOS. Creating “back links” just to increase your search engine relevancy score is just one of them.
“Love many, trust few, always paddle your own canoe!” – is one of my favorite sayings. No one is going to care more about your business online or offline than you.
If you’re incapable of performing your own SEO work, then here are some questions to ask a “SEO Expert”:
How many years experience do you have performing SEO work for others?
Can you guarantee a #1 ranking on Google for my web site?
If you hear anything come out of their mouths other than no – RUN
Do you adhere to Google’s Terms of Service?
Most “SEO experts” will say yes, but it’s easy for anyone to say yes. In fact they may be so clueless that they may not even know that they’re breaking Google’s TOS. This is where you need to have them put their money where their mouth is and have them put it in writing. Remember though, a lot of these people will sign anything just to get your money so follow your gut – that’s why you have one. You should also get references. Just imagine if Google removed your domain name from all their indexes for violating their TOS. That would be game over.
Does PromoteOne offer SEO services?
No. I do however encourage you to perform your own search engine optimization since no one knows your business better than you. The way I work is simple. I start with a phone consultation to gauge where you are now and what your goals are. I then offer any changes I deem important. We discuss both short term and long term goals and advise on how you can increase sales, not just by getting found at the top of Google with a specific set of keywords. I show you what changes to make so as you produce new content, you can apply what you’ve been taught.
Can you recommend someone who is a qualified as an SEO Expert?
Yes, but it depends on your needs. That’s discussed during a consultation based on my client’s needs.
These are just some of the questions you should ask before having anyone perform SEO work on your web site. So with that said, do yourself the favor and schedule your free 15 minute consultation with me. If I feel that I can help you, then I promise that by the time we’re done with a consult – you’ll be saying to yourself – “That was the best online business advice I’ve ever received!”
How is it that I can say that with such certainty? Because I hear it all the time. Nothing brings me greater joy that helping those that want to help themselves and see them succeed. So regardless if you already have a web site, thinking of creating one or are just putting together your goals for a new business, do yourself a favor and reach out to me. You have noting to lose and everything to gain.
Remember, what you don’t know can severely impact your online success. Always question who you are getting your SEO or Internet Marketing advice from.
I hope this clears things up and answers a lot of your questions with it comes to SEO.