Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is one of the many vital tasks that you must do to ensure that your website earns it worth.

You want to make sure that as well as advertising your website and promoting it at every possible opportunity (yes you must do this you know), if people use search engines to try to find you, there is some chance that your website will be ranked well for the phrases that people are typing into the major search engines.

Search engine specialists exist to help you get your website ranked better, but with so many supposed specialists out there, how can you know before you employ them, which ones might be worth giving a go and which ones you should slam the phone down on.

Here are a few hints and tips to help spot the fraudsters in the SEO world.

They contacted you, you didn’t contact them

If the SEO expert contacted you via a cold call or spam email, it might just raise a few alarm bells.

They might be OK, but if they are spamming you, then just tread very, very carefully. Check them out using the rest of our tips and only proceed if you are 100% certain of them.

They claim to work for Google

They don’t – Believe us, Google do not make cold calls and send spam emails saying that they can improve your website ranking.

They may claim that they used to work for Google and that their vast experience with them will be unrivalled as they have knowledge that other experts can only dream of.

They did not work for Google and are just using their name to tempt you in. Get your running shoes on now….

Check their website for the basics

You can check out the basics of SEO by having a look at their website to see how it looks.

Our article “How to check up on your SEO team” explains a few basic things that you can do to make sure your website SEO experts are doing the right things. Just use these tips to check their website to see how good it is. It should be superb, if it isn’t, alarms bells should be ringing.

One of the biggest influencers on page ranking is the page title. Have a look at a few page titles (the bit in the window bar at the top of every page) on their website and if they are missing, meaningless or are all the same, they do not have a well optimised website. Ding. Ding, Ding.

Think about it. If they are experts at SEO, why is their own website not optimised?

If their site fails at any step, run away now…

Inbound Links

Links into a website from other sites count for nearly half of the ranking position of a website.

Websites need links and you need to check how many links your prospective SEO company has to their website.

Just goto your favourite search engine and search for www.theirwebsitedomainname.co.uk and see how many links are found. It should be thousands. If it isn’t, again why does their website not have any links to it when this is one of the biggest influences of site ranking.

Site Level Rankings

You can dig in a little deeper here by typing in “site:www.theirwebsitedomainname.co.uk” into a search engine to see how many links come back that are on their site. This shows you what that search engine has ranked and indexed on their site and how the pages look to that search engine.

Look at how these links appear and if they don’t have nice page titles and descriptions, it’s another alarm bell that will help you walk away to someone else.

Consider the Basics as Well

Just a you would with any new business venture, make sure that you also ask the very basics when engaging with a new supplier:

  • Ask if you can talk to some of their existing clients – make sure that you choose them.
  • Search the Internet to see if anyone else has mentioned their brand in any scams or hoaxes.
  • Make sure that you talk to the actual people who will be working with you to optimise your website and not just to a sales person. That way you can make sure that and promises can actually be delivered.

SEO will help your website get ranked higher, but just make sure that you choose the right person to partner with you.