Finding the right Web Design or SEO company can be a challenge with all the scams and untruths...
For a business owner in Chattanooga, TN, it can be a challenging task to hire the right Web designer or SEO expert to improve your website traffic or improve search engine rankings. There are many so called "SEO Companies" out there that advertise in the Chattanooga market that offer quick solutions, "submission packages", and other unsavory tactics. To the unknowing business owner, these offers can seem like an affordable or easy way to get top rankings in the search engines. To help you weed through the information overload, here are few tips and things you should know when selecting a Web designer and/or SEO expert.
Avoid the SEO Amateur
It is a common tactic by many Web design companies to offer search engine optimization when they sell you and attempt to convince you that they are SEO experts. Most of these designers are well intended, but that doesn't help your business. Many of the web designers that are optimizing your Web site may have read a few blog posts on the subject and, even worse, read some ancient information on the subject that doesn't help you and could even hurt you. A SEO professional can offer you a specific strategy with specific tactics that can be accomplished over a period of time with measurable results.
The Submission Scam
One of the most common scams is the submission scam. Anyone who has surfed the net for any amount of time will have seen advertising for these services. Most business owners have probably even received a phone call offering such a service. The offer usually goes something like this: "We will submit your Web site to 2000 directories. You'll get higher search engine rankings!" While the idea is on the right path, the tactic is completely wrong.
Most directories and search engines have defense mechanisms in place to disregard submission done by an automated system. 99% of the submissions will fail. Some may even ban you. Paying for a service like this is about as good as throwing your money out your nearest window.
The Keyword Connection
Many business owners are realizing that mass submission to 2000 directories will not help their business, so the not-so-legitimate SEO companies are offering keyword placement. On the surface this seems like a good idea. The devil is in the details. Let's pretend that you are in the pest control business and your business name is Jim's Big Bug Squashing. Someone pulling the keyword scam on you might tell you that they will get you a number one ranking for "Jims Big Bug Squashing." Chances are they will be able to pull that off. Chances are very few of your potential customers would ever find you. A better keyword/term would be "Chattanooga exterminator" or "exterminator in Chattanooga, Tn".
A legitimate SEO company would do the research and determine what keywords real Internet users are using to find a service such as yours. Not only will they do the research, but will share the data with you and include you in the decision making process.
There are some SEO companies out there that practice techniques that are banned by Google and other search engines. Using such techniques can get you sent to "Google Hell." These techniques can include keyword stuffing and other spamming techniques. These techniques can score you short term results, but once you are found out (and you will be found out), your site will be sequestered to "Google Hell" to never return.
It's a good idea to discuss this with any Web designer or SEO company before you agree to do business with them. If these techniques are used on your site, you would have been better off to have never even attempted to optimize your site at all.
Keep an Eye Out
There are a few things that you should watch out for that could save you a lot of money and a lot of heartache:
Web Design & SEO
When you are building or rebuilding your Web site and you want search engine optimization built in, be sure that your Web designer is a true SEO expert. It may come to some surprise, but Web design and SEO are not synonymous or interchangeable. An excellent designer may know nothing about search engines. The best practice is for a Web design firm to have an SEO expert on staff or to outsource. Any good Web design company wouldn't be opposed to you bringing your own.
Make a Good Choice
Simply being aware of these basic concepts, will help you make better decisions when it comes to Web designers and SEO experts.
“ The new Website is a total success. The look and feel, its functionality, its flare...the total package is what we were looking for... ”
- Delos Rugs