5 Common Search Engine Optimization Scams and How to Avoid Them

rubicks-cube-computer.jpg Normally I don’t like to be negative or call out any services for bad practices, and try to give other search engine marketing firms the benefit of the doubt. When companies present misinformation and but I will list some warning signs of unsavory businesses.

Performing Search Engine Submissions
Submitting your website to search engines stopped being necessary in the year 2000. Any firm that promises to submit your site to 10,000 search engines is not only being untruthful – they will also be adding you to hundreds of mailing lists which will spam the life out of your inbox.

Guarantees top 10 placement
It is not possible to guarantee a specific listing, these guarantees are for long tail keywords with low traffic that will not generate sales volume.

Automated Process
Search engine optimization is a time consuming manual process. You must perform constant keyword research to identify new traffic trends and continuously update your website. There is no 100% automated system that will effortlessly bring in targeted visitors.

Multiple Search Engines
The only search engines you should expend energy on are listed in descending order: Google, Bing, Yahoo, Ask

Anonymous Unsolicited Contact
If you receive an email with no contact information promising the world for pennies, just ignore it.

When a company like www.websiteregistrationservices.com sends deceptive unsolicited letters through postal mail that rely on misinformation and fear to sell their services, someone must explain what they are doing and offer consumer protections.

Some ways to know if an offer is legitimate or not:

  • does not send unsolicited mail
  • provides real address, phone number and contact information
  • does not mention ‘search engine submission’
  • does not claim to have a special relationship with any search engine
  • does not use fear to sell services
  • does not pit you against your competitors: “our client is Company X and we know you have are in a price war with them. If you signup with us for extra money we will drop Company X as a client.”


The site in the above link checker has 1 trusted backlink, which is quite low. Why would a trusted SEO agency only have 1 incoming link from other websites?


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22 Responses

  1. Search engine submission – 1995 called and wants you to add your site to Alta Vista.

  2. Super-Duper review of bad search engine optimization techniques. I am loving it, and would add that you should watch out for bad neighborhoods and not link to them. Taking you feeds and bookmarking to show my online marketing colleagues.

  3. I found this blog while searching google for quality SEO firms. Pretty impressive that there are so many scammers who take your money and offer little in return.

  4. We have certainly picked up new SEO tips from right here and have heard of some of these less than ethical marketing techniques before. I did however expertise some technical issues using some SEO web tools for checking back links as they all seem to return different data.

  5. Each and every business needs an online site with interesting style and functionality. Even so, nobody will about to see this web page if SEO is not executed properly. SEO demands time and you’ll find so many areas which should look at. Link building and on-page optimization have to go in conjunction.

  6. Thank you for sharing this material and shining a light on what can be a confusing subject. With so much information out there it’s nice to have the material narrowed down to a simple and concise presentation of the facts. We also provide ethical SEO Services and are happy to have more members in our club.

  7. I always wanted to write in my site something like that. Can I take part of your post to my squidoo page on blackhat search engine optimization?

  8. Can you believe a SEO’s story? I have been doing search engine optimization for nearly 10 years and have never seen so many new companies entering the business.

  9. I would’ve preferred that we didn’t have to defend ourselves against search engine optimization charlatans, I agree with posting as much correct information as possible. It might not be a popular idea, but it will help consumers find competent SEO’s.

  10. SEO firms come and go like politicians. Hopefully the caterpillars grow into butterflies and these marketing firm service levels improve with time.

  11. Since most marketing students spend more time online, blogs help differentiate good content from bad. Without online communities, no one knows who is telling the truth about search engine optimization tactics.

  12. The SEO field needs a fresh perspective to become more transparent. I was not expecting to be in an industry clouded in secrecy. When I started off studying search engine optimization I had a hard time finding people willing to share tips. Your concepts of what does not work were easy to understand that I wondered why I never discovered it before. Glad to know that there’s an SEO firm out there that understands what he’s discussing.

  13. I am truly appreciative to discover others posting more about search listings and SEO campaigns. Too many good companies just don’t know how to survive the serps.

  14. Online marketers know that one of the fastest ways to increase traffic is to devote a responsible portion of your online budget to keyword buys at your major Pay-Per-Click search providers such as Google AdWords. This provides immediate quality traffic for a known cost.

    Buy purchasing targeted keywords and keywords specific to your products, brand, and services; you stand a much greater chance to generate targeted traffic back with no scams.

  15. It can be such a daunting task finding good search engine optimization companies. Last time I switched online marketing firms it took me 4 months to reestablish the working relationship.

  16. This is a fantastic article about search engine optimization gone wrong and, a great solution to help consumers choose a better SEO service. I’m going to post more information about long term online marketing tactics as time allows. Thank you for sharing your work with us.

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