Scare Tactics Replace Sales Tactics in the World of SEO

We’ve all gotten the emails. “Hi CEO – I just wanted to let you know I took a look at your website, and you’re not ranking on the top of Google for important keywords. When is a good time for me to call you to give you some pointers for growing your business?”

For a business executive that receives 100s of emails a day, this one may send up a red flag. From business development to budgets, and everything in between, business owners can’t possibly be focused on all of the granular aspects of a business at all times. So these emails create the perfect storm: scare the reader, who may or may not have in-depth understanding of the SEO world, into thinking his or her website is underperforming.

Moving Masters, Inc. receives these emails on a regular basis, yet their blog consistently ranks on the first page of Google for relevant keywords such as “Washington, DC Motorcycle Storage.”
Moving Masters, Inc. receives these emails on a regular basis, yet their blog consistently ranks on the first page of Google for relevant keywords such as “Washington, DC Motorcycle Storage.”

Many times these emails come along with a few “teaser” suggestions that are ultra generic. For example, the other day one of our clients received an SEO-Spam email that read “Over the last 6 months Google has placed so much importance on Content Creation & Social Media Performance that if your business isn’t creating valuable content or even visible across social media platforms you have basically no chance of being seen on any search engine for keywords your customers are using to find businesses like you.” This is truly beneficial consulting. However, since this was a blanket email that was not tailored to the specific website, the spammer didn’t realize the CEO of this website consistently publishes fresh, relevant content to a blog which is now ranking in search engines for many non-branded keywords. It makes you wonder how they found the website/email address at all. Maybe they searched the Yellow Pages!

Other SEO firms using less than ethical tactics often send along a list of keywords in the email and inform the reader that “your website is not in the first page of results for any of these important keywords.” These reports are created and sent in mass quantities, with no customization. Many times, in fact, the attached reports show successful rankings for the website in question.

If these companies take the time to send reports that highlight rankings that are less than ideal, our clients often panic. In most cases, however, this is another scare tactic that gives an illusion of underperformance without truly understanding the client or the client’s industry. For example, when a Baltimore apartment complex isn’t ranking for “apartments in Columbia, Maryland” we as an SEO-agency are not concerned. Rather than casting a wide net and hoping to catch something, legitimate SEO companies take the time to research your company, competitors, and the marketplace. Only then can the most important questions be asked: what are your website’s target keywords, and do these target keywords have relevant search volume?

SEO-firms automatically generate reports such as this that often disprove their own email content and highlight the success of a current website.
SEO-firms automatically generate reports such as this that often disprove their own email content and highlight the success of a current website.

We know the world of Search Engine Optimization can be intimidating and difficult, even for the experts. Since things are always changing with consumer search trends as well as search engine algorithms, it’s impossible for outsiders to send a random email with any long-term worth. Anyone that promises that you will be “on the first page of Google for $10/month” is likely not playing by the rules.

At the end of the day, don’t let these SPAM emails scare you. We receive emails daily telling us, a digital SEO-agency, that they can help us improve our SEO. If that’s not enough for you to discredit these relentless sales-pitch emails, check out Matt Cutt’s blog that shows an email sent to a Google employee promising that they could get Google to the top of Google.

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