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Search Engine Optimization Secrets Their Marketers Don't Want You to Know

by Mary Caldwell

Search Engine Optimization or (SEO) is the biggest trend in marketing these days. Yes optimization is important and if you ignore it you might as well not have a website on the internet. The ugly truth is there are hundreds probably thousands of one man shops or companies that claim to be SEO Pros. These unscrupulous practitioners are using the newness of the SEO trends to capitalize on the uninformed small and midsized business owner who does not understand the business of internet marketing. They rely on misconceptions, fads and myths that create confusion for people to sell their services.

One example these unscrupulous SEO Pros use is that they can guarantee a number 1 spot on Google in less than 2 weeks, since no one knows how the search engines rank websites there is no surefire guarantee that your domain name will show up in this manner. The companies that claim this charge you several thousand dollars a year to put a link to your website on one of their many domains that they have built up to have a high ranking. If you quit paying then they sell your spot to your competitor. If you are paying for SEO make sure it is for your domain name and site content and not that of a link exchange site. This is the only way to guarantee a return on investment and make sure your money is not spent fruitlessly. SEO does not need monthly maintenance to be successful. SEO practitioners that say you need monthly maintenance do so to make money from you.

Dont confuse website maintenance and updates with SEO maintenance. Why pay leasing charges for optimization when you can own your own optimized website and be done with the fees? Besides if you are on a page with 20 other links selling the same thing are you really getting the most for your money? I would rather have my business site ranking well on it own.

Over 80% of businesses are small and midsize businesses. Small business owners are the greatest clientele for dishonest people to take advantage of because so many consumers are uneducated buyers of these services. They rely on small business owners who do not have time to research how web design, email campaigns, SEO, etc are done because they are understandably too busy running their business operations. These business owners rely on specialists to take care of these things and are at their mercy.

The single greatest tip I can give small business owners is to make time to understand what you are buying. Become familiar with the service you are buying, research the jargon used, if it is SEO then understand how it works. Arming yourself with information makes you in control. Your business will have the power to make decisions that will reflect positively by the revenue the decision makes.

There are techniques that can be done to optimize your website for search engines. Your SEO specialist should be able to answer how this will be done without watered down sales speak. Dont let the promises of great rankings or profits gloss over the truth, get the details and then research their practices before handing over the credit card.

Ask how they measure your return on investment (ROI). Websites are not meant to be money pits or pretty online brochures, they are meant to be sales generating tools that when properly done they give you a high ROI. There are tools that can track sales conversions, how many visitors came to your site, what keyword they used to get there and more. Tracking and measuring should be in the mix of SEO.

Do a search for SEO on the internet. Everyone claims to know the magic key to number one rankings. This is just not true. For instance, if Google published how they ranked sites or how they chose who gets at the top of the page they would be giving away their trade secrets that keep them the #1 search engine. Imagine if Microsoft opened up to the world how their operating systems work? They would not have a hold on the market.

A true SEO specialist knows how to get your website optimized through the design using code, by marketing, measurements, research, analysis and by relevant content. And if your professional is truly a Pro, they will make sure you have the tools to convert your visitors to sales once they get to your site. If someone promises you 1000 hits per day will they be relevant hits to what you are promoting on your particular site? If I own a bed and breakfast, I want customers who are looking for a place to stay, not beds for sale or breakfast trays. A lot of traffic doesnt mean a thing if it is not relevant traffic.

Understanding is the key to really appreciate the complexities involved. Formulate a partnership with the provider you choose. Make sure they have time to give your small business the attention you deserve, the attention you give your customers. Chose a reputable company for your internet marketing that has positive referrals and non-canned proposed solutions for your website.

Mary Caldwell is marketing specialist for Innovative FX, LLC. http://www.innovativefx.com Mary brings a wide range of project development skills to the marketing team from disciplines as diverse as graphic/print design, sales presentations, direct mail, website optimization, lead generation and project planning. Mary has been in the small business owner role and recognizes the difficulty of preparing quality marketing and business development tools that result in a high return on investment. She prides herself on giving small to mid size business the tools and resources to make their business grow while not going broke in the process. Her education in Marketing and Business Administration has strengthened her ability to blend creativity with project management giving her the ability to produce fresh, creative materials in a prolific and cost effective manner. Contact Mary Caldwell from the Innovative FX website http://www.innovativefx.com

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