We get emails from SEO experts daily. So do our clients.

These so-called “experts and guru’s” claim our websites are poorly ranked among almighty Google and other search engines.

And somehow this poor ranking is negatively affecting our ability to generate leads online and we’re going to start losing customers because of it.

These so-called SEO folks claim they can “get me a number one ranking in Google, Yahoo, and Bing!”

Ever get these emails? We can’t be the only ones.

Why we don’t believe in paying for SEO

We’re sure you already figured this out, but we don’t believe in paying someone for SEO services.

Your small business shouldn’t pay for it either.

Here’s the truth: a lot of little details go into ensuring your website and web-assets are valuable to search engines.

Here’s a story about one of our clients and the not-so-uncommon experience they had with an “SEO-ninja” who failed at recognizing these details.

The devil’s in the details

A website design client of ours recently came to us with a quote from a well known SEO company for $399 per month.

He had paid for it, and was considering paying for it again, not knowing the work involved in proper SEO.

There were however, some issues.

Our clients SEO firm had poor results, and was missing other key deliverable’s, as a part of their lack of SEO methodologies. Here are some examples of the hole’s in their SEO process:

  • There was no way for our client to measure the effectiveness, ROI, or benefit of the SEO services.
  • Our clients website traffic had actually dropped over the previous 12 months, was not generating leads, or engaging prospects. We found this after reviewing their website data in Google Analytics.
  • This “SEO guru” was not to be able to prove or measure some sort of return on investment, for our client, which is the largest flaw, in our minds.

These are the kinds of details your small business needs to consider, that most SEO firms do not.

They can’t buy you rankings

Here’s a likely scenario: an SEO expert offers to put your website in over 500 directories, for around $200 a month, and continually updating your businesses “SEO” to create traffic and leads.

By putting your business website on these 500 directories, you will experience increased traffic, leads and sales through your site, according to your SEO-friend.

But…even if you only place your business on 10 directories, statistically it’ll only give you a 2% improvement at being noticed.

Not to mention, getting your business listed on all these so-called directories, it’s just a one-time project.

If it’s a one-time project, then why is your SEO vendor wanting to charge you a monthly fee of $200, to get you listed in 500 places?

Shouldn’t the cost be $200 for one-time placement? (seems logical if you do the math)

(Note: The directories themselves will list your business for free if contacted directly)

It doesn’t make sense to pay a monthly fee for a one time service. Your website will not update drastically month to month, thus impacting your SEO rankings. (assuming you’re not creating dynamic content)

Bottom line: don’t ever pay for someone to get you listed on a directory. It’s a waste of time and cash.

The web of SEO

When web developers or SEO folks treat SEO as a one-time task during the web design process, it could actually be causing you to lose leads and revenue in the long run.

To make matters worse, some of these practices will get your website blacklisted by search engines, if they feel you’re creating spam.

Relying on bad design practices, tactics like “buying ranking” may cause your website to lose all credibility to the search engines.

Proper web design SEO tactics, like correctly labeling page titles, identifying relevant keyword and keyphrase lists, and correctly utilizing SEO plug-ins like SEO Yoast are often times ignored by SEO experts.

The website portion of SEO is critical and cannot be ignored.

Here’s a great tip: instead of paying for SEO services, make your priority on optimizing your content for a positive user experience, through creating content that’s customer-centric, and not just SEO focused.

Content is not just king; it’s the only thing

Ultimately, to get the very best result, when your prospects and customers are searching for you, there’s only one sure-fire tactic to get solid SEO value that gets your website found: create darn good content.

Writing copy and content that’s SEO-friendly is at the heart of engaging your prospects and customers, while getting found.

Most importantly, writing great web page copy that is appealing to humans will also rank your site(s) for specific search terms that your prospects and customers are looking for.

Search engines have now become much more sophisticated, so the fundamentals of solid copywriting/content creation are more important than ever.

Sure fire SEO

But if you’re going to create content effectively, that gets you ranked in the search engines, where do you begin?

We’d suggest to start with blogging.  Blogging regularly means you’ll be developing dynamic content that attracts new visitors to your site.

And no, blogging is not dead. Far from it.

Blogging with solid headlines, much like SEO, is a long-term commitment, that should be a large part of your overall marketing strategy.

Why blogging?

Here are some startling stats from, Lee Odden, author of Optimize and CEO of Minneapolis-based marketing agency TopRank Marketing to help prove our point.

  • 76% of B2B marketing leaders use blogging as a marketing tactic to increase traffic.
  • 62% of B2B marketers rate blogs as effective.
  • B2B marketers that blog receive 67% more leads than those that do not.
  • Companies who blog receive 97% more links to their website.
  • Blogs are rated as the 4th most trusted source for online information.
  • The only thing blogging costs you: your time.

By blogging regularly, and focusing on the science of good copywriting, this will help your sites overall SEO efforts and begin the process of you courting your prospects and potential customers, via the almighty search engines.