While working with clients, we most often hear questions like this: "the other company gave me an offer to be on the first page of Google for $500.00 a month". In this rather elaborated blog post (I intend to have at least a few short stories to it), I will explain what it means and how it DOES NOT WORK.

While working with clients, we most often hear questions like this: "The other company gave me an offer to be on the first page of Google for $500.00 a month". In this rather elaborated blog post (I intend to have at least a few short stories to it), I will explain what it means, how it does NOT work and how it harms both advertisers and advertisement business. In this post, I will just introduce you to a few concepts. 

What it means.

90% of the time it means that the company is simply offering you a pay-per-click campaign. Your website will only show up in paid listings, not in organic search results. The basics are that they take a set fee per month from your business and pay a variable fee to Google based on the number of clicks people make on your ad. In absolutely all cases, such a company will specify keywords and area your advertisement will work for. I will get into more details of this kind of Google advertising contracts in the next part of this post. For now, be wary of these terms. I can guarantee you that in 100% of such cases, these keyword and location terms are extremely limited. Not only you will not get enough clicks but also your cost per click will be extremely high (that's because you pay a set fee for a low number of clicks you receive). I will also explain later why it is hard to realize this catch once you become a "be on the first page of Google" customer. 

In another 10% of "Be on the first page of Google" cases, the search engine marketing company simply refers to Google scam. It is being less and less popular now since Google has evolved. But it is still popular. There are SEO companies that own a very popular website or a whole network of very popular websites. For a set fee they offer to put a link to your website on their website or network of websites. Some more evolved companies, also for a higher fee, offer to put a link with some elaborate text around it. This strategy does not necessarily brings you to the top of the first page. When you like the results, such a company will offer you to increase your monthly payment. In exchange, they would put your link on more websites. True, for a set fee you could be on a dream spot for a very profitable keyword. What all of them fail to mention is that your business is risking to completely destroy their search engine standings sooner or later. Google simply bans sellers and purchasers of such links. For you it is a disaster. For the scam SEO company it is not. I might get into details later on.

Why it does not work.

Simply said, you could run a pay-per-click campaign yourself better in the long run. It will take you some time to learn (up to a year) but the end result is greatly improved efficiency. My own research showed that pay-per-click companies mentioned above usually make a 300% to 400% mark-up on their real costs - payments to Google. Yet their campaigns are not at all optimized. In my own experience, by taking over such campaigns we could decrease costs five-fold (at least) or increase sales on traffic 6-7 times for that same money. In my future posts, I will describe some ways to optimize campaigns.

In the remaining 10% (organic SEO scam), everything is even simpler. You could potentially be on one of the top spots in organic search by acquiring paid links. However, such results usually have very short life span and are extremely damaging to your website, business and reputation. Google simply bans such websites from its search results. How does Google find out about such search engine optimization techniques? In 2 simple ways: a) via their own algorithms and blacklists or b) with the help of your more SEO advanced competitors who send a friendly note to Google about your unfortunate online venture.

Read next: "They Refer to Google AdWords"


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