Good Call Commander!
You should absolutely be suspicious of SEO firms these days. The industry is unfortunately saturated with unscrupulous, downright devious companies that prey on unsuspecting business owners attempting to better their rankings. They pump your site full of fluff and post thousands of links around their web of interconnected spam sites. We’re not saying what they do doesn’t work; in most cases you’ll see some results. But there will be reckoning in a very short time and you will undoubtedly be blacklisted by the major search engines.
How to spot the phonies.
- If you hear the work “link farm”. Then run.
- Do a Google search of the company. You can probably find out what they’re all about.
- If they guarantee you this or that or promise you the world, they are probably blowing smoke.
- Ask what they’ll spend their time doing? Is everything Paid-Per-Click or are you doing organic optimization?
- Are you locked into a contract where you are forced to stay with the company for a certain period of time?
- Local = Trusted in most cases. It is difficult for small local firms to run SEO scams.
There have been some big players that have fallen prey to these black-hat SEO companies. JCPenny comes to mind. A few years back they used a company that did things the wrong way, the real wrong way. And JCPenny paid the price. Google set their search engine results to the back of the line and their web traffic went into a freefall. It took them months to recover.
The point is. Caveat Emptor… buyer beware.