A Search Engine Optimization
A Search Engine
Optimization Company can be
an invaluable asset in your
Internet marketing campaign. They specialize in knowing how to raise
your search engine positions monitoring those positions on
basis & adjusting their strategies to account for undesirable
results in any given month.
Since this takes a lot of
time, effort, and
specialized knowledge, it can be in your best interest to go to an
outside source rather than try to maintain high
search engine positions on your own.
However, like every business, there are good companies and there are
lemons. Knowing the right questions to ask and the criteria to look for
will help you in choosing an affordable, effective search engine
When looking at different companies, begin by considering the approach
they employ to raise your search engine positions. Steer clear of
companies that use cloaked doorway, or bridge pages to raise your
positions. These techniques violate most search engine policy and in
the worst case scenario will only get your website severely penalized,
if not removed entirely from a search engine's index.
A cloaked page is a page that is created which is invisible to the
regular visitor to your website. The cloaked page is coded to detect a
search engine spider and divert them to this special page, which is
set-up to artificially boost your search engine position.
bridge pages utilize the same concept, but often reside on an entirely
different server. Google, one of the largest and most important search
engine on the Internet, will remove your website from their index if
they detect you have cloaked pages. Never, never employ any company
that uses this technique!
Another important element is to get a guarantee that the company you
hire will not work with your competitors while they are working for
you. Obviously, this would seriously compromise the effectiveness of
the search engine optimization campaign. Be aware that some companies
will use the success they achieve for your website to sell their
services to your competitors. So get your guarantee in writing, and
make sure it is legally binding.
Of course, one of the most important factors you want to check out is
the company's track record of results. However, don't take the
company's word for it. They will undoubtedly be slanting their results
in order to sell their services to you. To go beyond their simple
statement of success, ask them a few pertinent questions, and verify
Ask them which engines they have achieved the best results on. The ones
that are important are the most popular engines, and these are the ones
you want to see good results on. Since the popularity of search engines
can change with the landscape of the overall Internet, check out the
Nielsen Netratings page at Search Engine Watch. You can access this at http://searchenginewatch.com/article.php/2156451.
Next, find out what keywords and phrases they are claiming great
results with. It's easy to get high rankings with unpopular words. For
instance, the keyword "cat leashes" will get high popularity ranking
because no one else would think of using it. What you are looking for
is good results using popular keywords.
Check out the software
Wordtracker, available at
www.wordtracker.com. You can order a free
trial, or a subscription ranging from 1 day to 1 year. This software
rates the popularity of keywords and phrases based on actual search
Next, look for good results over an entire site that the company claims
to have successfully worked for. You want to see a wide range of
positions over a number of different search engines using different
keywords or phrases for the entire site.
Request a report for any
client the company claims to have done well for. This report should
show good positions on a number of the most popular search engines for
a variety of different, popular keywords and phrases.
When you are checking out search engine optimization companies, make
sure they have actually done the work they are claiming to have done.
Some companies will use other company's results in order to get you to
sign on with them. If you are in doubt, call the company they are
showing you results for, and ask for the name of their search engine
It's important to keep in mind that a successful search engine
optimization campaign will result in maximum exposure across a wide
range of popular search engines using a variety of keywords and
phrases. This is the formula for a successful campaign, and you should
keep it always in the forefront of your marketing strategy.
Ask the search engine optimization company you are considering for a
report that shows you rankings across a number of popular search
engines for a period of at least six months. Remember: search engine
marketing is a process that is continual, and you need a company that
not only understands this, but keeps constant tabs on your search
engine positions. That company must also be able to adjust its strategy
in the event that search engine rankings drop.
Since search engine marketing is an on-going process, your positions
must be constantly monitored. If you want your search engine
optimization company to do this for you, request a sample of a monthly
report. It is essential that this report should show rankings for the
most popular search engines.
Don't be impressed by a
report that only
shows great results for a limited number of small search engines. These
are fairly easy results to acquire. Also confirm that
the popular search engine results they are showing you are indeed the
popular search engines currently.
Be sure the sample report the company shows you is in a format that you
can easily understand. For example, it could be in the form of a chart
that covers a period of at least six months and presents data such as
the top 50 positions broken down on a monthly basis or the top 5 pages
each month. Then, ascertain that the company you are considering
actually monitors these positions or pages every month, and that the
sample report they show you includes findings and recommendations for
the specific site.
This insures that the company will actively monitor and make
adjustments to their strategy on a continual basis rather than simply
gather statistics on your positions. You need a company that is
actively participant in your search engine marketing campaign, not just
an information gatherer.
Obviously, your finances have to figure into your choice of company,
but bear in mind that a search engine optimization company is crucial
the success of your marketing campaign. It is not just a casual
accessory. If you cannot afford a company that will do a thorough and
reliable job for your website, you might consider waiting until you do
have the finances in place.
If you have to find a company and can't wait for your finances to catch
up, you may be able to find an affordable company that will also be
able to supply quality, reliable work, such as a fairly new company.
Just remember that there are risks involved with using a company
without a proven track record - and that risk is your money! Don't take
that leap unless the company can supply you with a least a few
References are the most reliable indicator of a good company. Don't use
a company that won't show your references because of any reason,
confidentiality included. Remember -
even doctors will provide references! The firm you choose should
provide you with a minimum of two references, one that is from the
past & one that is current.
When you contact these references, be prepared to ask precise, specific
questions so that neither of your time is wasted. Ask them what their
experience was like with the company, such as their availability to
answer questions and deal with problems and their ability to meet
deadlines. Ask the reference to rate the overall performance of the
Find out if the company requested that the reference make significant
changes to their web pages that affected the visitors coming to their
site. You are looking for a search engine optimization company that can
balance the needs of both search engines and site visitors without
The most essential question to ask is whether the work of the search
engine optimization company resulted in higher profits for the
reference. Without profits, it doesn't matter whether your positions
are at the top of the list or not.
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