Choosing a SEO Company, step 1
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the most important things you can do in promoting your website. Nothing can bring in traffic and ROI better then good SEO. Choosing the right SEO company can be difficult, there are as many companies as there are service options to choose from. I have a several suggestions on choosing the right company, which I will layout over the next few weeks. My first suggestion…

Don’t trust any firm that will “Guarantee” top placement on the search engines.
I understand this is a very broad statement, but it applies whether you spend $30/month or $30,000/month for SEO. No one can guarantee placement in the natural search engine results. If someone claims they can, you should probably walk way (or delete their SPAM). A company who practices Ethical SEO or “White Hat” SEO will not promise top rankings (and probably not SPAM you). This doesn’t mean top rankings are unobtainable, it just means that with all the variables that are out there, guarantees are almost impossible to attain. Competitive keywords can take years of hard work to get a first page ranking, and there are never any guarantees.

There are techniques that “Black Hat” SEO companies can use to get you to the top of the rankings, but good luck staying there more then a month. Search engines are smart, REALLY smart. They can figure out quickly if you are trying to trick them into ranking your site high. I have seen these many times. Out of no where a site will jump ahead for a phrase that I have worked on for years. Doing some quick analysis I can easily determine whether they are going to stay or be gone. By the way, if the search engines don’t catch black hat or spamming techniques, you can bet the competition will, and they’ll turn you in too. Black hat techniques WILL get you banned from the search engines, which is essentially a death sentence for your sites traffic.

P.S. How ironic can you get? As I am finishing this post, I just got the email pictured above. Priceless! I covered up the domain name to protect the innocent (YOU!).