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7 Bone-Chilling Words You Never Want to Hear from Your SEO Guy

by: Kathy DalPra

seo hiring mistakesIn the spirit of Halloween, here's a scary story I hear at least once or twice a month that I hope you never find yourself in: You just hired an SEO company to "do your SEO." Maybe you don't know enough about search engine optimization to do it yourself, so you brought on the first guy you could find (or the cheapest one). Since you're not an SEO expert yourself, you really had no idea how to evaluate the company and you're hoping you made a good choice. You meet for the first time with your new provider and the first words he utters to you are…

"What do you want to rank for?"

(Cue a shrilling shriek!) Uh…what?! How the heck should you know what you want to rank for, you're not the SEO guy. Isn't that his job? After all, he's the SEO expert.

Or is he?

Just because your web developer, neighbor or father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate says they can "do your SEO," doesn't mean they actually know what they're doing. Most of the time these SEO part-timers are simply adding whatever words you instruct them to add to your website's content and code.

Sorry, that's not SEO.

SEO first starts with an exhaustive, comprehensive research campaign that identifies precisely which terms are going to bring you real, measurable traffic for which the competition isn't so insane that you'd never rank for it. How can you possibly know which terms you should go after until you have some data behind it? I mean seriously, do you really want to hedge your SEO strategy on a hunch and a whim?

You see, an SEO who knows what they're doing would never ask you what you want to rank for. Instead, they'd tell you where the opportunities are (based on sound research) and guide you in making an educated decision.

So if your SEO guy has kicked off his service with these 7 words, run for the hills! You're about to drop dough you'll never get back.