Five Huge Warning Signs Of A Bad SEO Or Digital Marketing Agency

by WarriorForum.com Administrator
11 replies
  • SEO
  • |
A new article on Search Engine Journal asks are you afraid an SEO agency or consultant may not have your best interests in mind? Watch for these tell-tale warning signs.



With so many agencies out there, it's easy to be fooled by fake promises and bad SEO techniques wrapped in a pretty bow of dishonesty. There are also less-than-honest folks out there who are looking to take your money by falsifying their SEO and marketing abilities. Here are some tips to help you identify and avoid them while ensuring you are working with SEO professionals who practice solid techniques and truly believe in honest practices.
  1. They Ask To Own Your Data/Logins: One of the hallmark signs of an agency/consultant trying to trap you is by starting off the engagement by asking you for full control over your logins, data, and reporting. Many companies fall for this under the guise of, "I just want them to handle it, that's what I'm paying for, for them to handle everything", but don't realize how truly dangerous this can be if things don't work out between the two companies. What many shady agencies/consultants will do in this situation is to hold your data and logins hostage to keep the contract going. This can balloon into legal disputes that stretch on for months or years, and in the worst-case scenario, can end with you needing to create new logins and adding new tracking code to your sites.
  2. They Guarantee #1 Rankings/Top Results: It still boggles my mind that there are SEO professionals out there winning business with the pitch, "We guarantee #1 rankings." Not only are they out there but people are hiring them. Any SEO worth their anxiety can get something to rank on Page 1, regardless of whether that is driving quality traffic, revenue, or leads to your site. This is a common ruse used by unscrupulous agencies and consultants to get you in the door.
  3. They Tell Their Story, Not Yours: Speaking of reporting on metrics, another telltale sign of a less than stellar agency/consultant is if their reporting is always telling their story and not yours. What I mean by that is that they are always highlighting what went right, what they did awesome at, and why you should pay them more at the upcoming renewal. They never talk about what went wrong, what didn't work, or the lessons learned to make the current campaign so successful, which sometimes is more important than the wins themselves. Only knowing half of the story is detrimental to your business and your own education.
  4. The Partnership Is Positioned As Transactional: Always be mindful of how an agency/consultant pitches you, as it is telling about how the relationship will operate. People who want to help you will tell you how they will help you. People who don't will tell you how much their service costs and how monthly meetings will be structured.
  5. Their Case Studies Are Outdated: Speaking of brag slides, you should always ask what year the projects/results are from. One of the greatest injustices of organic search is how long people use case studies. SEO changes every single day and while it's awesome you really knocked it out of the park for Pets.com back in 2000, that story doesn't really help me gauge your talent today.
#agency #bad #digital #huge #marketing #seo #signs #warning
  • Profile picture of the author digivibes
    1. Providing outdated examples of previous work -
    Instead of giving the present work analysis report, many SEO companies provide
    outdated work reports.
    2. Focusing only on what went right
    As they are result-oriented they will just think about the things which are doing
    good but fails to understand those things or strategies which are not working well. But this will ultimately help the business to grow more once we find the do's and don'ts.
    3. No reporting of work-
    The person who is looking over SEO should do the analysis, he should give up-to-date reports while using tactics like OFF page SEO. He should maintain weekly, monthly reports
    4. They are priced too low
    People who promise to improve your rankings for too low a price may be subcontracting to another country. Or they are up to no good.
    5. Always Focusing on Keywords and Rankings than Leads and Sales-
    Most of the SEO partners are always focusing on keyword stuffing and running behind getting ranks only but they are not keeping in mind the end goal of the business that is LEADS and SALES.
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      If they are doing only SEO, they have no control over conversions, they do not have to talk about leads and sales.

      An SEO agency can rank you #1 for all the keywords in the industry and, if your site conversion rate is 0, you make no sales.

      Originally Posted by digivibes View Post

      5. Always Focusing on Keywords and Rankings than Leads and Sales-
      Most of the SEO partners are always focusing on keyword stuffing and running behind getting ranks only but they are not keeping in mind the end goal of the business that is LEADS and SALES.
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  • Profile picture of the author incomenow
    Originally Posted by WarriorForum.com View Post

    A new article on Search Engine Journal asks are you afraid an SEO agency or consultant may not have your best interests in mind? Watch for these tell-tale warning signs.



    With so many agencies out there, it's easy to be fooled by fake promises and bad SEO techniques wrapped in a pretty bow of dishonesty. There are also less-than-honest folks out there who are looking to take your money by falsifying their SEO and marketing abilities. Here are some tips to help you identify and avoid them while ensuring you are working with SEO professionals who practice solid techniques and truly believe in honest practices.
    1. They Ask To Own Your Data/Logins: One of the hallmark signs of an agency/consultant trying to trap you is by starting off the engagement by asking you for full control over your logins, data, and reporting. Many companies fall for this under the guise of, "I just want them to handle it, that's what I'm paying for, for them to handle everything", but don't realize how truly dangerous this can be if things don't work out between the two companies. What many shady agencies/consultants will do in this situation is to hold your data and logins hostage to keep the contract going. This can balloon into legal disputes that stretch on for months or years, and in the worst-case scenario, can end with you needing to create new logins and adding new tracking code to your sites.
    2. They Guarantee #1 Rankings/Top Results: It still boggles my mind that there are SEO professionals out there winning business with the pitch, "We guarantee #1 rankings." Not only are they out there but people are hiring them. Any SEO worth their anxiety can get something to rank on Page 1, regardless of whether that is driving quality traffic, revenue, or leads to your site. This is a common ruse used by unscrupulous agencies and consultants to get you in the door.
    3. They Tell Their Story, Not Yours: Speaking of reporting on metrics, another telltale sign of a less than stellar agency/consultant is if their reporting is always telling their story and not yours. What I mean by that is that they are always highlighting what went right, what they did awesome at, and why you should pay them more at the upcoming renewal. They never talk about what went wrong, what didn't work, or the lessons learned to make the current campaign so successful, which sometimes is more important than the wins themselves. Only knowing half of the story is detrimental to your business and your own education.
    4. The Partnership Is Positioned As Transactional: Always be mindful of how an agency/consultant pitches you, as it is telling about how the relationship will operate. People who want to help you will tell you how they will help you. People who don't will tell you how much their service costs and how monthly meetings will be structured.
    5. Their Case Studies Are Outdated: Speaking of brag slides, you should always ask what year the projects/results are from. One of the greatest injustices of organic search is how long people use case studies. SEO changes every single day and while it's awesome you really knocked it out of the park for Pets.com back in 2000, that story doesn't really help me gauge your talent today.
    Thanks for this helpful thread! I think it's difficult to find an SEO consultant or agency that'll truly provide white hat SEO services without hurting your rankings in Google. Most agencies that even claim to provide quality backlinks make use of spun content that will do your search engine marketing more harm than good. So I've decided to build my SEO myself.
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  • Profile picture of the author sandralaurieng
    thanks for info
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
    6. They say they learned SEO by reading posts at Warrior Forum.
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  • Profile picture of the author stanleyl
    the reason why these "bad agencies" lure the clients because clients does not want to compromise or listen to what is legit. So before hiring some agency for your business one should know the basics of seo..this is what i think..correct me if i am wrong
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  • Profile picture of the author Awais_Afzal1
    Yes, it's true and therefore I always offer 10 days free trial to my customers to evaluate my services... If they satisfy we do business if they don't we just close the contract. It is because not every niche is profitable for everyone... We do need to dig and make it profitable with some dedication and hard work.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by Awais_Afzal1 View Post

      Yes, it's true and therefore I always offer 10 days free trial to my customers to evaluate my services... If they satisfy we do business if they don't we just close the contract. It is because not every niche is profitable for everyone... We do need to dig and make it profitable with some dedication and hard work.
      That is a dumb way to do things. It completely devalues what you are offering as a service and your expertise, if you have any.
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      Get the TIPS and STRATEGIES I use to HELP businesses GROW through SEO.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mukund Khanna
    In my opinion, I agree there are a few agencies that don't perform SEO properly, but still there are some good SEO or digital marketing agencies that work on ethics and don't fool their clients by performing bad SEO techniques. These SEO consultants or agencies make sure that they perform good white-hat SEO techniques that help in improving the ranking and visibility of their business across the web.

    There is a well-established digital marketing agency in Delhi, India which I came across that works ethically for their clients across the globe and has been connecting and growing just by building trust with others.
    • They don't exaggerate or guarantee #1st ranking/top-ranking but make sure to consult you with better ways to improve the website and ranking over the search engines while they work on off-page activities for them.
    • They work on rankings for the targeted keywords with momentum and also make sure to guide you with better ways to improve the website's overall organic traffic, and engagement over the search engines while guaranteeing qualitative SEO activities with the time-to-time check and removing spammy links if any gets detected.
    • They even try to present you with their updated set of case studies to make you understand how they work and improvise with the daily changes in SEO.
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  • Profile picture of the author ryanbiddulph
    That #1 guarantee is such a tough one to deliver on.

    RB
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    Ryan Biddulph helps you to be a successful blogger with his courses, manuals and blog at Blogging From Paradise
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  • Profile picture of the author ryanbiddulph
    First page guarantees are a big time warning sign. Eventually, good agencies will get you there.

    Blind email pitches are the biggest red flag from my personal experience. Reputable agencies grow through referral business not by pitching strangers. Sending unsolicited pitches tends to be a sure sign that agencies struggle to land clients. Struggling to land clients usually means the SEO agency simply does not know how to drive Google traffic.

    Ryan
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    Ryan Biddulph helps you to be a successful blogger with his courses, manuals and blog at Blogging From Paradise
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