As we meet with clients, we’re constantly amazed by all of the snake oil SEO that they’ve been sold in the past. So, we’ve decided to start an entire category on this blog where we point out bad real estate SEO and bad SEO in general. We’re calling it Snake Oil.
Yes, we will name names. We will tell you why these companies are not actually going to help you and we’ll give you the reasons why their offering is somewhere between ineffective, at it’s simplest, and thievery, at the worst.
First a word about reality and some guidelines:
- If you think you can get quality real estate SEO services for less than a few hundred or even a few thousand dollars per month, you’re fooling yourself. If it were really that cheap and easy to place on top of the search results for quality real estate terms, then everyone would do it and we’d all be out of business.
- SEO is NOT a 1 time event. You can’t just build a new site and expect it to rank well. You can’t have some SEO work done to your site and expect to rank and stay on top. Good SEO requires ongoing attention and effort.
- Just because a company points to a few successes, that doesn’t mean that they know what they’re doing. You need to interview your provider. Interview a few and go with the one that’s most knowledgeable and makes you feel comfortable.
Signs to watch out for:
- Out of date Blogs. Take a look at when their last few posts were made. If they’re not posting every other week or, at the very least monthly, run away.
- How’s their ranking? If they can’t rank for a few highly relevant and popular terms, then they’re probably not worth their salt.
- If they’re a one man (or woman) show, you should not hire them. Yes, there are very smart search engine optimizers out there who work alone, but you run a business. You need to know that your provider is going to be around next year. Remember what I said above, SEO is a long term commitment.
- Ask about their reporting. Ask to see the monthly report and analysis that the provider is going to give you. If it’s not a comprehensive SEO and traffic report, then they’re not being accountable. Just giving you an analytics login isn’t enough.
- If an SEO firm guarantees placement, they are lying to you. Make sure they’re not selling you PPC. Lots of SEO firms will sell uneducated buyers SEO when they’re really delivering PPC. If you don’t know the difference, well, you can educate yourself on this blog.
- Which leads me to my last point: Be an educated buyer. As a real estate agent, you shouldn’t learn all there is to know about SEO, just get enough education so that the thieves don’t take your money and provide nothing at all.
I’ll continue to add to this Snake Oil category as I find more of these fakers. Stay tuned.