Why Big Brand SEO Mills Suck. Results? Sure, What is Your Credit Card Number? (Screenshots Inside)
It is no secret SEO is a big business. Just take a look at the Inc 500/5000 results each year and you will see several SEO companies making high seven to eight figures. Does high revenue translate into high rankings for their clients?
They are raking in the cash, so they must be ranking every Viagra site out there in the number one position! Just kidding…most of them suck more than the girl in that porn video that you just watched before landing on this blog of pure awesomeness. Seriously, check out some link profiles for the “big dog” SEO companies. It’s like they aren’t even trying. Why? Because most business owners are stupid. They believe anything they are told.
[inlinetweet prefix=”null” tweeter=”null” suffix=”null”]“Hi sir, how would you like your business to double overnight when we push your website to the #1 spot[/inlinetweet]? Not only that, but we like to go above and beyond here at Circle-Jerk SEO. You see, we are inbound marketing experts, so we have the ability to work magic. When you sign up today and prepay for 6 months of our (overpriced) service we are going to give you a unicorn. Yes, a real freaking unicorn! Sir, this is going to change your life. Are you ready with that credit card number?”
Sadly most business owners would be sitting there with a semi-boner and just when you think any sensible person would hang up, they respond with something like, “Do you take American Express?”
Derp Derp…please just take my money…Derp Derp
Retards. Can you blame these SEO companies? Business owners are just handing over their wallets. They aren’t even putting up a fight!
They might be clueless when it comes to SEO, but they sure have the smoothest talking phone jockeys that minimum wage and unlimited Red Bull can buy! These trained bullshit slingers will tell you anything you want to hear, and they will do it with a straight face. They truly are talented creatures.
Want to make $10,000 a day in the payday loan niche? Doesn’t everybody?
Well, according to an email I received (from a well known USA SEO company) I could rank 15 payday loan keywords for only $1,512 a month. Oh, and this SEO mill was able to provide me that quote in just 3 minutes. Wow, they REALLY must be great at SEO…or really good at bullshitting people. If you were smart you would put your money on the second.
Seriously…3 minutes. I can’t even take a shit in 3 minutes and these SEO monkeys can tell a client that they can rank their keywords without even looking at their site. It would be one thing if I asked them to rank for a local term in a town of 500 people, but we are talking about payday loan keywords.
These companies specialize in selling, and not SEO. I would guess that their turnover is very high, considering that I sent a request that was so extreme, yet it got me a response in 3 minutes. THREE MINUTES is all it took for this “Senior SEO Consultant” to quote me a price for a ridiculous task and then backtrack a bit once I questioned him.
Let’s break down this classic example of why these SEO mills are not the best bet when you want solid results. Actually, they are the absolute worst choice a business can make. If you really want to piss money away go to a strip club and make it rain. At least you will get some joy out of it. Or light a pile of money on fire and heat your house. Again, more value than these SEO mills provide.
I created a quick email address and came up with the name “Hugh Johnson” but left out the middle initial. I was so tempted to Sign everything Hugh G Johnson but I figured that might be too obvious. After receiving a response in three minutes I think I could have signed my name “SEO Troll” and this SEO specialist would have still provided me with a lightning fast quote. (They are THAT good!)
I stated that I was building a payday loan site and wanted to target 10-15 keywords. I mentioned a potential pending war as a reason for making the site (even more nonsense just to prove they will respond to anything!) and stressed that I wanted to get this rolling ASAP. Here is the initial email (this was sent at 4:29pm):
After sending that email I went to go grab a bottle of water and by the time I got back to the computer I already had a response. It took a whole 3 minutes for a “Senior SEO Specialist” to respond stating that, “Ideally you will want to be at a $1,512/mo.“
So, not only was he able to respond in 3 MINUTES, but he was able to pull this magic number of $1,512 a month when A) I don’t even have a site done yet and he has no idea what the content will be like and even more confusing B) What keywords I want to target. 10 – 15 payday loan keywords for $1,512 a month? I almost pissed myself laughing. Here is the response received at 4:32, a whole 180 seconds after my initial email:
Well, I believe this SEO expert had a bad case of commission breath, because he forgot to send any information like stated in his lightning fast email response. When you try to respond to an email before it even comes in you tend to forget to include the attachments. Hopefully they see this and they can bring it up at their next sales meeting. Do you even attach, bro?
He replied as if he had no idea how they vanished into cyber space but attached them this time and thanked me for letting him know. No problem, champ!
I took a look at what he sent over, and it was more laughs. I will break down the amazing SEO that would be performed down below, don’t worry.
I shot him back questioning the generic SEO he is offering me that rivals crap you can get on fiverr for $25 (I am not even kidding! Continue reading down and you will see exactly how this SEO they are proposing for $1,512 can be duplicated for five fiverr gigs ($25!)
I think my mention of fiverr in my last respond woke him up. Now he says it was just a recommended budget (on what basis? lol) and that “everything is customized” and then goes on to deliver more fluff and run around responses. Typical “sales man” reply.
Ok, now that we know this guy is full of crap and they will offer the same quick response to anyone with a pulse that makes an inquiry let’s break down this $1,512 monthly package and I will show you how you can get the same crap for $25 on fiverr.
Here is what was sent over:
Ok, time to break down this “recommended” $1,512 pile of steamy crap…
Google, Yahoo, and Blng Submission: Wow, ground breaking. Also, if they can’t even spell “Bing” correctly on a piece of marketing material designed to represent their brand do you think they will pay attention to the details of your SEO campaigns? No, of course not! True Value: $0
Account Management: So they will have some minimum wage phone jockey available to answer your calls. Sweet! True Value: $0
Ranking and Reporting Access: They will give you a link or access to their fancy ranking tool. Groundbreaking guys, really. True Value: $0
Keyword Selection: They gave me a quote without even knowing what keywords I wanted to target so how in-depth do you think their keyword selection is? Maybe they just put a bunch in a hat and pick. True Value: $0
Account Setup and Review: They are going to set up my account and review it and try to pass it off as a value to me? They need to do that in order to manage this – but are trying to sell it as a benefit? lol True Value: $0
Internal Blog Creation: Well, if a site is built on WordPress then a blog can be set up in 3 seconds. If it isn’t a blog can be set up in 3 minutes. It is safe to say that 98% of sites already have an “internal blog” created. Nice try, but more fluff. True Value: $0
Directory Submissions: Ahh, good old directory submissions. It would be a safe bet that these are not going to be done by and with a focus on quality. Just like they spelled “Bing” incorrectly on their marketing materials they will probably spell your business name wrong on the submissions. Total Value: $5 on Fiverr
Social Bookmarking: See the trend, low quality SEO that is easily automated. Again this is probably not going to be the best social bookmarks. Total Value: $5 on Fiverr
Keyword Link Building: No mention how or on what, just “link building” so we will assume it is going to be pure crap. Low quality for sure. Total Value: $5 on Fiverr
Onsite Recommendations – Robots.txt: Pure filler to make their “package” look bigger. This is kind of like putting a sock in your Speedo at the beach. Total Value: $0
Onsite Recommendations – XML Sitemap: Suggesting adding an xml sitemap is like suggesting you wipe your bum after a big dump. This is common sense, right? Total Value: $0
Onsite Recommendations – Meta Tags: Wow, more groundbreaking recommendations from these professionals. Wait, what are meta tags? Did they forget to change their marketing material from 2004? Total Value: $0
Blog Link Building: So, are these blogs that actually receive traffic or are these just crappy blog networks that have links from every Tom and Harry? Total Value: $5 on Fiverr
Monthly Reporting: What is the difference between this and the “ranking and reporting access” above? New fancy name and a new “benefit” – well played SEO experts. Total Value: $0
Article Link Building: So, article directories that are considered spam now? Awesome! Total Value: $5 on Fiverr
CMS Testing: Extensive testing I bet… Total Value: $0
Advanced Audit: What is this an audit for? An advanced bullsh#t audit that will probably tell you that the site needs exactly what they are proposing. Slick. Total Value: $0
Link Audit: Something that anyone can do by simply inputting their URL. Yet more groundbreaking benefits. Total Value: $0
Onsite Content Implementation: So they are going to put the content on the site into action? Maybe they will even make some changes. Total Value: $0
Google Analytics: What, set it up? Monitor it? Or just list it in the package details? Total Value: $0
Google Webmaster Tools: Again, monitoring to let the client know when their work triggers a penalty? That is nice of them! Total Value: $0
Standard Internal Blog Posts: Let me guess, but I have to write them? I thought so. Total Value: $0
Current Success Audit: Will you let me know how great the success is since signing up? That would make the client feel all warm and fuzzy inside and may even stretch out another month of billing. Smart move. Total Value: $0
Content Audit: I would bet money that “content is king” is mentioned at least 3 times. Total Value: $0
Keyword Grouping: Speechless at the innovation here… Total Value: $0
Page Outline and Recommendations: “content is king” Total Value: $0
Page Content Brief: “like we said before, content is king” Total Value: $0
Onsite Recommendations – Regular Content: “have we told you how content is king these days?” Total Value: $0
Well, there you have it. You can get the same amazing SEO for $25 on fiverr. These SEO mills are built to collect money, not provide custom SEO. They are constantly trying to bring in new customers to balance out the huge drop off numbers. Imagine if I was some clueless person that really believed they could rank payday loan keywords and signed a contract? I would have wasted thousands of dollars with a return of $0.
Seriously, the results would look something like this…
These people are professional bullshitters. Imagine the excuses they dish out daily to the business owners that are actually smart enough to realize they aren’t receiving any benefit from the magical SEO. They are also wondering when the unicorn will arrive.
Some probably conversation snippets…
“Hi, I have been a client of yours for 3 months and I haven’t noticed any increase in business. What is going on? I feel like I just swallowed $6,000 then took a dump and flushed it down the toilet!”
“This is how SEO works. It isn’t an overnight process. We are doing everything the safe way. Don’t worry, we wouldn’t be Hubspot certified if we didn’t know what we were going. Did you see that fancy orange badge on our site? No need to worry!”
“My website isn’t showing up now! Where did my site go!?”
“Unfortunately we don’t have control over what Google does. This happens sometimes and all we can do is adjust our focus. We have a very successful penalty removal program. For only $5,000 we can work to remove the shitty links we built to your site. After we charge you for removing our piss poor work we can continue to charge you to build more shitty links. Actually, we don’t build links – we just order them on Fiverr – but keep that to yourself. We appreciate your business, and don’t worry…you are in good hands.”
“It has now been 6 months and I have spent over $12,000 with your company and there is zero benefit. No new phone calls and our website traffic is actually lower than when we started with your company. What is going on?”
“We have seen a couple Google updates that really shook things up, but luckily we were able to stay above water. You see, SEO is a constant battle and we are constantly working to maintain your position online. We know it is taking longer than you would like, but it could be a lot worse. Would you like to hear about our PPC management? We think combining both will help you a lot.”
“You suck. Cancel my service!”
“Well sir, while we understand you are frustrated, but we do have a service contract. We can let you out of your contract but the early termination fee will apply. It is only $2,000. Would you like to use the same American Express card for this sir?”
Ahhh, SEO mills. They don’t know SEO, but they sure as hell know how to squeeze every dime out of a business owner. They truly are magical.
Ok kids, class is over. In the next installment of SEO 101 we will show you how simple it is to get any link you want. (hint – it involves opening up your wallet)
We may even five into the lucrative world of “PPC management” AKA – do nothing and collect money every month. Seriously, it is like stealing candy from a baby. The key is to use real fancy terms. Brush up on your vocabulary and you can double your fees!