It’s really easy to be tempted by offers of first page SEO rankings for as little as a few hundred bucks per month, but, as the old saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, you can bet your life that it is.
The problem that many business owners don’t get is just how much hard work and detail goes into developing a comprehensive SEO strategy.
And, truth be told, why should they – after all, isn’t that the reason why they hire an SEO agency in the first place so that they don’t have to spend time understanding the technical details of it, focusing instead on their day-to-day business operations, while the agency does the SEO work for them.
When an SEO company promises super fast results at an incredible price, far to often the business owner is tempted to believe that SEO is an automated process, after all, isn’t it just a case of putting some keyword-stuffed content on a website and using software to build some low-value backlinks – easy to do, those ‘big, greedy SEO companies’ are just trying to scam him by charging thousands for a similar service?
And, to some extent, that might have been the case a decade ago, but today after the recent Google updates, all websites that relied on these kinds of second-tier SEO approaches have suffered a huge blow to their rankings.
Today, there simply aren’t many tricks left to exploit when trying to ‘cheat’ Google and rank higher for relevant keywords. The only viable long-term strategy for achieving and maintaining the rankings on search engines is to actually dig in and do the legwork, and do it consistently.
This means doing long and in-depth keyword research – finding out what the competitors are ranking for, what keywords have the most potential, what keywords might be easiest to rank for and many other pieces of data.
It also means producing top-quality content, that will not only be relevant in terms of topics and keywords but will also provide engagement and real-time value to the readers, that will lead to backlinks occurring naturally, in all the correct places.
Finally, ensuring that the website is properly optimised, mobile-friendly, fast-loading and convenient to use, also takes a considerable amount of tweaking and fine-tuning.
So when you consider just how much time it takes to do all of these tasks properly and consistently, it soon becomes apparent that it’s not something that can be done for just a few hundred dollars per month.
In fact, because of the huge amount of competition in this market you could argue that even at a higher price range, any SEO company that’s truly worth its value must be established and proven to be considered trustworthy as good resource management is required to achieve tangible results, even on a higher budget.
Hopefully, now you can see just how much work goes into quality SEO, and why cheap search engine optimisation prices almost always mean disappointing results.
But, if you still need persuading, here are three reasons why cheap SEO can not only do little to help your business, they can also have devastating long-term effects on your business:
It’s human nature to look for bargains – there’s a certain thrill of knowing you were able to get something for less than it should or could be worth.
However, there are some areas where even the most shrewd folks don’t budge to spend whatever’s necessary.
For instance, imagine that you had a medical emergency and needed help from a surgeon. Would you trust your life in the hands of an inexperienced medical intern if he would offer to do the operation for a fraction of the cost? Surely you’d rather pay for a top professional to perform the surgery, even if the price is daunting.
Would you risk years of building a reputation, both offline and online, just so that you could save a few bucks? It just doesn’t make sense, but sure enough, many people still choose to put their online marketing efforts at risk by trying to cut costs in the short-term.
It might seem like a contradiction, but paying for cheap SEO is costing you money. You might think that you’re saving money hand over fist when you’re paying just a few hundred dollars for SEO services, but in reality, you would probably be better off setting fire to your money – at least you would be warm for a minute or two.
Remember the whole purpose of investing in SEO is so that you see returns in the form of Google rankings and, in turn, a steady stream of new clients. Well, with cheap SEO, it’s pretty unlikely that these results will ever come.
So while expensive SEO packages might appear to be costing you more in the short term, they are an actual investment because you are paying to grow your business for the long term.
When cheap SEO providers don’t have the means and/or the recourses to run comprehensive SEO campaigns, they try to compensate by engaging in risky and even back door SEO techniques to try and get short-term results for their clients.
And, while they do some time short term success, inevitably, as the search engines catch on, your rankings quickly disappear, and worst still, Google can penalise or even blacklist your website for the shady activities, making it very difficult to ever climb back up in the rankings.
So, while there will always appear to be quick-fix schemes for tricking Google and other search engines, they are not a viable strategy for a serious long term business growth strategy.
Successful SEO tactics have remained more or less the same throughout the years – clearly define your target audience, produce quality content and get it shared in relevant places is still the key to any long-term SEO strategy.
The most successful SEO campaigns stand out from others, not by some hidden knowledge, but by good old-fashioned effort, hard work, as well as thoroughness.
More often than not, the company that spends the most time doing research, implementing the data and then tweaking for best results is the one that can gain a significant edge over the competition