We do actually do this currently on an as needed basis. As previously mentioned, the reason we don’t roll it out with all new websites is because it has actually shown to only slightly increase keyword rankings in the situations where the additional pages result in positive trending, but there are also quite a few cases where these pages have show to decrease results. Using this as a standard method for all dealers is not recommended based on our studies, but should be tried as a supplemental approach for those clients that may benefit.
This practice is already being done on a large number of websites that we do SEO on. We performed a study in early 2019 and again in early 2020 of the impact of geo-specific landing pages. The results showed that some dealers experienced a small, positive increase in keyword rankings in the geo that the landing page was built for. Other dealers showed no improvement. Some dealers actually showed a negative impact on rankings in the geo that the landing pages were built for. Based on our studies, we concluded (both times) that geo landing pages should be used on an as needed basis and should be at the discretion of the SEO Analyst. Once geo-landing pages are built out, if SEO Analyst feels they are necessary, the results are monitored to make sure the impact was positive.
I wouldn’t (just kidding). As far as I know, Boost and Backlinks are the same thing, so we only need to explain one. Here is an analogy you can use where Google is the host of a party and websites are the guests: Pretend the internet is one big party that Google is hosting. The “people” attending this party are websites and there are different reasons why Google will invite them and also reasons why Google will tell the other guests about them or not. One of the biggest metrics that Google is going to use, is what everyone at the party is talking about and who they are talking about. This helps Google learn more about everyone’s interests and areas of expertise. Even if “Bob’s HVAC” is invited to the party, without any friends there, Google doesn’t really know who Bob is or what Bob does. Bob is at the party, but he’s standing alone in the corner and no one else at the party, including Google really wants to talk with Bob. Now, if Bob comes to the party with 25 friends that are all talking about HVAC services and mentioning Bob’s name, Google now hears this and is made aware that Bob knows his stuff when it comes to HVAC. After talking with Bob’s friends, Google learns more about him and if someone asks Google about HVAC, Google is going to say, ‘go talk to Bob’! This is the process of Boost; we’re creating content to make Google aware of the existence of websites and to inform Google what type of search terms are relevant to that site.
For website traffic “lead volume” estimates, we tend to us 15% of Organic Traffic and 10% of Direct Traffic (this is only if the dealer doesn’t have call tracking, because we can’t double count these estimates and call tracking numbers). As for the form fills, we’re currently tightening up our spam filtering on these, so right now, we’re assuming 20% of form fills as legitimate leads, but that number will increase as we continue to hone in our spam filtering. We do have a distributor that is receiving about a 22% conversion rate on the combined Organic & Direct Traffic coming to their dealers’ websites.
We do have spam filtering in place for website traffic and form fills, but it’s not going to 100% filter out all spam traffic. If we tried to filter our all spam traffic, we would absolutely end up filtering out legitimate website traffic, which we may already be doing to a small degree. Call filtering is dependent upon the call tracking number provider filtering out spam calls. That should be a question for the provider of the call tracking numbers.
When answering this question, we have to understand that Google today is very different from Google in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and even 2019. So when we’re comparing keyword rankings over a long period of time, it can be understood that some dealers are experiencing slight drops in keyword rankings. The reason this is occurring has less to do with SEO and more to do with the increased dominance of Google Maps and Google’s preference for Proximate companies. Google will naturally favor a dealer who is closer to the perceived location of a searcher than a dealer that is farther away. This issue is amplified in major metros where there are potentially dozens of HVAC dealers within a small radius. Google wants to connect searchers with those who are closest to them. Google Maps is dominating, but GMB optimization, on-site optimization, and off-site optimization are still just as important as ever for our dealers. I would argue that if we’re maintaining rankings, then we’re growing, seeing as other businesses are losing rankings left and right. This is mostly due to Google’s proximity factor. Dealers can, however, help us out by getting Google Reviews in the markets they do business in and want to rank in. Any geos that require an emphasis on a campaign should be shared with the IT Team so that the IT Team may put an emphasis on those geos.
Gear SEO more towards conversational search. So if someone decides they want to look up “how to diagnose issues with my air conditioner?” Before BERT, we would expect this to return a wide variety of results, including product manuals, how to’s, maybe some videos of a tech diagnosing AC issues. With BERT, we expect Google to understand that the searcher is looking for some sort of DIY result that’s going to help the searcher with diagnosing the issue, so it should filter the noise and give more precise results. This is not perfect by any means, but will get better in time.
At this time, we haven’t seen a significant impact on our dealers’ results due to BERT. It’s believed that BERT had a minimal impact on our dealers’ campaigns and that BERT had a much larger impact on conversational search being done by those using voice search in other industries. We believe there is little variance between how people search on a desktop or tablet using keystrokes for HVAC Dealers versus how people search for a HVAC Dealer using voice search, so the “conversational” component of BERT has less of an impact on the HVAC industry as a whole.
This isn’t currently a process, but could easily be implemented. We need to always know who the salesperson is on every sale as that’s not always conveyed to the IT Team.
This isn’t currently a process, but could easily be implemented. It might help to overcome some situations where we have to go back to the dealer to ask them to sign on for higher level products. Sending New Opportunities to the IT Team for review prior to presenting to the dealer seems like a really good idea to me.
Unfortunately, this has not been a standard practice of the IT Team to date. The reason we don’t ask SEO Analysts to get on calls with clients is because they’re highly specialized in their field, which involves analyzing data and performing SEO. If we have the SEO Analysts getting on calls with all of their clients, then they’re not going to have time to analyze data and do the SEO that clients are paying for, which will ultimately result in poorly performing campaigns.
One week is our recommend timeline for turnaround on Campaign Recaps and Executive Summaries. This way, our team has the time to provide you with a quality Campaign Recap Report or Executive Summary Report. We understand that there might be times where we need to turn one of these around quicker than 1 week, but we would ask that we limit these situations to “extreme cases” only. Requesting quick turnarounds can negatively impact the scheduled work being done for that client and other clients, seeing as that work will need to be put aside to accommodate for the rush on the Campaign Recap or Executive Summary.
There are hundreds of long tail keywords that we see success/conversion with. Pinpointing one or two would be a mistake. It’s more about approaching an SEO campaign with a holistic keyword approach. There are literally hundreds of keywords we see success with. The campaigns that do the best are those that have been on with us for 3+ years and have gone through our recommended processes to dominating their markets.
Short tail keywords are typically the most difficult and most competitive (i.e. AC Repair, AC Installation, AC Service). It’s important to remember that while our goal is to dominate a market for these types of keywords, it’s also important to come at SEO with a hybrid approach of targeting short tail and long tail keywords including geo-modified, non geo-modified, etc. This ensures that mta360 is casting a wide net to capture low hanging fruit at the onset of a campaign while working on gaining traction with the most competitive keywords. Five years ago, SEO was a very different environment. Google didn’t understand that “ac repair” and “ac repairs” were the same user intent, using semantically similar wording. Every keyword was just that, a single keyword. Back then, SEOs looked at the exact volume of every keyword and only went after the phrases with the highest amount of volume. However, the Google of today understands that “ac repair,” “ac repairs,” “a/c repair,” and “air conditioner repair” are synonymous. We choose to report on the more common and more competitive phrases, but frankly, the amount of terms for which our dealers are ranked would not fit on a report. If we showed all of them and added up each of the unique phrases, the volume would be there. The long and short of it is that we now go after a category, not specific keywords. Old school SEO targeted specific phrases, today we’re capturing an industry that includes 100s and even 1000s of unique phrases. At no time do we say “we’re trying to rank for keyword A and not keyword B.” Our strategy is all-encompassing and it has to be: Searchers are becoming more and more comfortable with Google’s ability to show relevant search results, regardless of how sloppy their input is. Here’s how this change has occurred: A few years ago, a hungry searcher would type in “pizzeria in Port Allen, LA” and not even try typing in just “pizza” because they knew Google would get confused and show them wikipedia or the definition of the word… today, Google is smarter and knows to show the local restaurants that serve pizza for all related terms. They do this through a highly complex algorithm combined with GPS data that locates where someone is searching from. HVAC is no different. What once was a few specific keywords has turned into tons of phrases that collectively present a huge opportunity for traffic to the site and driving the bottom line. Our job is to make you show up when someone types in anything from “A/C Repair Port Allen” to “air conditioning repair company serving Port Allen Louisiana.” Even phrases with very low search volume can be highly valuable if they bring in a high quality searcher who knows they need a new system; add that to service and repair keywords that drive more volume and we have a powerful position.
IT is always checking trends of keywords, website traffic, traffic quality, and most importantly lead volume. At the end of the day, we encourage the growth of organization by generating quality leads! We recently developed an internal scoring system that we refer to as a “value score” and is used to monitor campaign performance on a monthly basis for each dealer. Each month, we identify campaigns that are underperforming, performing well and over performing. With the underperforming campaigns, we take remediation steps that include a full on-site and off-site SEO audit and campaign analysis. From this audit/analysis, we put together a list of items that might help to improve the campaign performance. We then document and implement the changes made to the campaign for future reference. Each month, we review these campaigns to ensure that they’re trending in the right direction. If the remediation steps haven’t improved the campaign, we go back to the drawing board to try different methods. If dealers show up on the underperformers list for multiple months, we escalate the campaign to Management and Senior staff to do a more thorough review of the campaign to suggest more drastic measures for improving the campaign.
While title tags are seasonally adjusted, we never completely remove heating keywords during cooling season or cooling keywords during heating season. The reason that is is because Google needs to see a level of consistency on your website throughout the entire year. If you’re completely removing heating or cooling keywords depending on the season, you’re not going to be reinforcing with Google the fact that the dealer does both heating and cooling and keyword rankings will suffer. This methodology is applied to other elements on the website as well.
Social Media under SEO includes 5 postings per month across up to 3 social platforms. These postings are intended to show Google that our dealers are Active on their social platforms, not intended to drive customer engagement, impressions, conversions, etc. We don’t post on LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Foursquare, Pinterest, etc. The 3 platforms we recommend are Facebook, Twitter and Google Posts (GMB).
SEO Analysts are highly skilled individuals that focus on delivering results for our dealers. The social media that is delivered until Gold, Platinum and Diamond is handled by other individuals. The only SEO benefit to the social media posting that we do is the fact that we’re keeping the social profiled “active.” The social posting done under the SEO packages is not intended to drive customer engagement, impressions, conversions, etc. It’s simply to show Google that our dealers are active on their profiles, which is a ranking signal. We have dedicated staff members on the IT Team who are responsible for posting Social Media provided under Gold, Platinum and Diamond.
We don’t quantify the total number of hours that are spent on an SEO campaign. This varies on a campaign by campaign basis. We try to provide an equal allocation for each client on similar products, but we also “do what it takes” to get a dealer’s campaign where it needs to be. We don’t limit dealers on the amount of SEO we do at each level because our goal is to provide quality leads for our clients. The SEO Automation alone does provide hundreds of hours worth of work as a baseline each month. The SEO Analysts provide additional work on top of that. We allocate more time and resources to higher level products, but we don’t neglect the lower level products.
As we all know, SEO is an ongoing process of making on-site and off-site changes in an attempt to increase the online visibility of our clients with the end goal of generating quality leads. The day-to-day tasks are different for each client, depending on their unique needs, seeing as there is no “one size fits all” process. The SEO Team has many tools in our bag that we can utilize to improve a dealer’s campaign. There are literally hundreds of on-site elements that can be tended to (titles, meta descriptions, heading tags, body content, additional pages, schema markup, json-LD, etc). The list goes on and on. We also strive to deliver a high level of service to meet the needs of our clients with quick turnaround times on questions, requests and website changes. This is part what is included in SEO. Off-site elements are also a part of what we include in SEO. This includes items like: Checking for duplicate content Checking for duplicate websites Checking 1st tier directory listings for NAP Consistency Working to rectify any issues found on 1st tier directories Google My Business Optimization Proactively changing tactics according to Google rumors, news and guidelines This is a wide category because there are literally hundreds of changes weekly Campaign performance analysis and adjustments This is also a wide category because it differs for each client Other things that aren’t really SEO, but are included in the price: Server management ß This is a BIG plus for our clients Hosting management 24/7 uptime monitoring Security management and updating WordPress updates SEO Plugin reconfiguration Research, Development and Demonstration (both SEO & Web) Updating / maintaining other website standards Regarding automation, the most simple and mundane tasks are automated to increase SEO Analyst efficiencies. The automation allows our SEO Analysts to focus on more advanced tactics to drive results for our dealers. There is no real way to measure “how much” SEO is automated, but if we wanted to put an hour amount of automation on it, we could easily say that there are hundreds man hours per month being automated on each campaign. Those saved man hours are being reinvested in individual campaign analysis, research and development on emerging tactics, and implementation of said tactics on dealer campaigns. In summary, Automation is supplemental to what we do for each SEO Campaign and the day-to-day differs for every campaign, as there is no one size fits all. SEO also changes from year to year as Google guidelines and best practices shift.
We tend to prefer the term “cloak” over “ghost.” The best “proof” is the results we drive. Additional proof is not something that we can’t really provide outside of a screenshot of the total number of links from Google Search Console. The reason we can’t pull back the curtain is because we’ve spent hundreds of thousands of dollars developing proprietary practices that aren’t being widely used by our competitors. If we start pulling back the curtain, our competitors will be able to reverse engineer our proprietary practices, software and infrastructure and will make it so that our dealers’ competitors are also using these practices, ultimately resulting in more fierce online competition. Again, the best “proof” is the results we drive.
Since the early days of digital marketing, back when Google was still competing against other search engines such as Yahoo and Alta Vista, SEO companies have been using keyword ranking reports to assess the performance of their campaigns. Back then, the ultimate sign of a successful SEO campaign was achieving a number one ranking for a competitive keyword in Google’s search engine results page (SERP). As a result of the heavy focus on keyword rankings, SEO firms would often do whatever it takes to get their websites to rank as high as possible, sometimes even turning to questionable strategies such as keyword stuffing. In response to these grey hat tactics, over time Google has implemented a variety of algorithmic changes to prioritize search relevance and content quality over keyword density. Although the SEO industry has changed a lot since then, the fixation on keyword rankings continues to dominate the conversation for both businesses and SEO companies. All of that said, it’s important to note that keyword rankings are far from irrelevant to SEO in 2020. Keyword rankings still provide valuable insight into Google’s search algorithms (ie. what keywords are they associating with your website?) and how customers are finding your website. However, keyword ranking reports are not the only way, and definitely not the best way to measure campaign success, as they provide an incomplete picture of your overall campaign performance. Keyword ranking reports are also not the most accurate, as rankings vary widely between users and fluctuate constantly due to three main factors: algorithmic changes, browser history, and proximity. Algorithmic Changes Google is constantly keeping SEO companies and business owners on their toes. Along with periodic major updates such as Panda, Penguin, and RankBrain, Google is regularly fine-tuning their search algorithms, making subtle changes every day. For example, if your website is organically ranking in the #8 spot for a specific search term, Google may decide to move it up in the SERP to evaluate its performance in a higher position. If the click through rate (CTR) for the website improves in a higher position, Google may choose to leave it there or move it up even higher. If not, it could get bumped back down to a lower position. Google’s main goal is to give users the information they need as quick as possible, so if your website isn’t supporting this goal, they won’t show it. Minor adjustments such as these allow Google to tailor its SERP to the user’s needs, based on their behavior. As a result of these constant keyword fluctuations, keyword ranking reports become somewhat inaccurate. Your report is likely to show some keywords in positions different from live results, as the keywords may have already shifted by the time you receive the report. Browser History As part of their mission to provide users with what they’re looking for, Google analyzes past searches and browser activity to determine which websites will most benefit the user. If you’re signed into a Google account while browsing the web or use an Android device, Google has access to nearly all of your historical data. Google will use this data to create personalized SERPs for each user. With this high level of customization, it’s probable that your search for a keyword will look much different from another user’s search of the same keyword. While this has many benefits from a user experience standpoint, it creates a challenge for SEO companies to provide accurate keyword ranking reports to their clients. In the past, has used keyword ranking reports from third party platforms, which are not influenced by historical data. This means the rankings you see on the report could differ greatly from what you see in your actual SERP. As a result, we’ve moved to a more comprehensive overview of our clients’ SEO campaigns, looking closely at traffic, leads, and more. Proximity One of the biggest changes we’ve seen in local SEO in the last few years has been an increased emphasis on proximity. With location services available on nearly every device, Google can now deliver customized search results based on a user’s precise location. This creates another level of complexity for keyword ranking reports, as every user will have a different output based on their local results, and ranking reports aren’t able to accurately reflect this. Searching for something like “HVAC service near me” presents a completely different SERP than what someone a few miles away might see. Some SEO tools try to overcome the proximity issue by showing keyword rankings for users in different areas, but these tools typically only show rankings for one keyword at a time. Business owners need to be able to accurately track rankings for hundreds of different keywords at once to find any real value in a keyword ranking report. Which brings us to our main takeaway: Keyword rankings, while still relevant and important to SEO, are nearly impossible to track in a way that factors in all the intricacies of Google’s search algorithms. Due to this, keyword ranking reports should always be taken lightly, and it’s important to also evaluate other KPIs that are more accurate and consistent such as organic traffic, conversion rates, and backlink volume. Google’s SERPs are constantly changing. Just a few years ago, organic search results were dominating the top of the results, but now this area is filled with knowledge cards, paid advertisements, and a variety of other features designed to keep users on Google’s landing pages. Even #1 organic rankings have to compete for visibility among Google’s sponsored results. This has forced SEO companies to reconsider the value of individual keyword rankings and implement new reporting tools and strategies to help their clients achieve success. If you’d like to learn more about how overcomes these hurdles to help keep your business running smoothly, feel free to give us a call or contact us today.
As a business owner, it’s likely you’ve received an email (or several) from self-proclaimed marketing experts claiming you have serious problems with your website and SEO. Although some of the issues might be worth looking into, more often than not, these emails are just spammy sales pitches from unreliable, deceitful companies. When you receive spammy sales pitches, it’s best to arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible so you don’t fall into any traps. To help you keep your business safe from spammers, we’ve gathered five of the most common and misleading SEO issues we see presented on free website audits. Missing h1 Header Tags “Missing h1 header tag” is one of the most common issues we see in unsolicited sales pitches. We always recommend remaining skeptical about these claims, as many automated audit tools falsely report missing header tags on websites. Luckily, it’s quite easy for you to verify the presence of header tags on your own, right from your internet browser. To check for header tags, start by navigating to any optimized page on your website (ie. the home page, service pages, and product pages are usually optimized.) Press CTRL + U to view the page’s source code on Windows, or Command + Option + U on Mac. Next, press CTRL + F (or Command + F on Mac) to open the “Find” prompt in your browser. In the search box, type in “h1” and press Enter. There’s a good chance you’ll find the page does have an h1 tag, even if the website audit is claiming otherwise. At this point, you might be wondering what is a header tag, and why is it important for SEO? Header tags are used to tell search engines what the content of a webpage is about. As you can imagine, it’s very important to have optimized header tags on all pages that are relevant to the SEO campaign, so search engines can easily tell what the page is about. However, it’s also worth noting, header tags are not always necessary on every single page of a website. For example, if a page isn’t being optimized for SEO, such as a “Contact” or “Financing” page, header tags are usually not necessary. John Mueller, Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst, spoke about the relative importance of h1 header tags and had this to say: “Some SEO tools flag this as an issue and say like, ‘Oh you don’t have any h1 tag or you have two h1 tags.’ From our point of view that’s not a critical issue … Your site is going to rank perfectly fine with no h1 tags or with five h1 tags.” Long Meta Descriptions Meta descriptions are small snippets of text, directly below the link in the search engine results page (SERP,) that gives users a quick preview of what they will find on that page. Some SEO analysts believe the optimal length for meta descriptions is around 160 characters, but through our own independent research, we have found strong evidence that longer meta descriptions can actually be beneficial, especially for companies targeting several different services or locations. All of that said, while meta descriptions are still important, any knowledgeable SEO analyst should know that meta descriptions have little to no actual value in Google rankings. Back in 2009, Google announced they would no longer use meta tags as ranking factors, as they began pushing back on search engine manipulation from the abuse of meta tags. Long Title Tags Many automated website audit tools will pull title tags, see they’re longer than 50-60 characters, and flag it as a major issue. While it’s true that Google only displays around 50-60 characters in the SERP, it’s also true that Google’s bots still crawl the entire title tag. We have extensively researched this topic, and have proven that longer title tags are definitely not bad for SEO, and can actually be beneficial if used properly. It’s important to make sure title tags make sense to users and potential clients, but you should also include longer, keyword-rich title tags on your site to get the most out of your SEO campaign. Site Speed We won’t deny that a fast website is extremely important from a user experience and SEO standpoint. However, the relationship between site speed and SEO performance is complex and can be largely misunderstood, making it the perfect bait for spammy SEO companies to use. It’s a known fact that Google takes site speed into account in its ranking algorithms, but sometimes changes intended to improve load times can actually have a negative impact on SEO performance. For example, a common recommendation is to implement server caching, which can improve load times for repeat visitors by storing pre-assembled files locally on a server. This ensures users won’t have to re-load these files every time they visit a website, as they will instead receive a cached version of the website. However, Google’s crawler bots will take much longer to notice changes on a heavily-cached website, which can have a detrimental effect on SEO in the long run. There are several SEO-friendly changes that can be done on your website to improve load times, such as image and video compression, but it’s always important to consider your overall SEO campaign before making any major changes to improve site speed. (Some) NAP Audit Issues Many SEO companies perform regular NAP (Name, Address, Phone) audits to ensure your local listing and business information is consistent across the web. Having conflicting information on local platforms, such as Google My Business, Yelp, or Angie’s List, can make it more difficult for search engines to effectively index your business in local search, not to mention cause confusion for prospective customers. All reputable SEO companies recommend periodic NAP audits for local businesses. That said, it’s important to remember that not all NAP audits are created equal. Automated NAP audits can flag errors in listing information, even if the information is correct and up to date, because the … Continued
As a business owner, you likely face constant solicitations from both legitimate and illegitimate companies trying to sell you products or services to improve your business. So how do you figure out what’s right or wrong? How do you distinguish between well-meaning sales pitches from real SEO firms and the spam we get almost daily? The SEO spam emails we’re referring to tend to address you directly using your company or personal name and typically include statistics about all the things missing from your website, which were conveniently found during the free website audit they’re offering you. They might even make shocking claims of having insider knowledge of Google’s search algorithms to get you to the top of Google almost immediately. This can be alarming as a business owner, and you don’t want to ignore any legitimate claims, so how do you protect yourself and your company from the illegitimate ones? One thing is for sure: spammers are getting better and better at crafting fake sales pitches, so you always have to be careful about who you trust. Sometimes, spam emails can be easy to spot, with horrible grammar and questionable email addresses, but other times, spammers are more adept at masking their fraudulent behavior. We have a lot of experience with these types of spammers, so we gathered our best tips to help keep you and your company safe from scams. Common features of SEO spam emails to look out for: Scare Tactics One of the most common indicators of a spam email is when the email starts out with an “urgent” warning about critical issues with your website. Spammers use these predatory tactics to get you to pay up for a fix right away, when in reality, none of what they mention is actually urgent, and many times, it’s also false. You may see some technical jargon throughout the email, but typically these spammers are using automated tools to spit out the same information to tons of businesses. For example, we commonly see spam emails mentioning missing keyword meta tags, which on the surface definitely seems like it would be an issue. However, as any reputable SEO company knows, Google hasn’t used keyword meta tags since at least 2009. So although the claim may be technically true, we know it’s not harmful or beneficial to your website and is only being used as a scare tactic to get your hard-earned money or take away the trust of your current SEO company. Even more surprising, many times these spammers don’t even bother telling the truth. We’ve seen plenty of emails claiming that heading tags are missing from our clients websites, only to find that heading tags are actually present on every single page, right where they should be. Offering Quick Fix Solutions No matter what anyone tries to tell you, SEO is never an overnight process. If you’re receiving a sales pitch and they tell you they can get your website to #1 on Google overnight, or in just a few easy steps, they’re lying. No one can do that. Any trustworthy SEO company should be honest with you, and that begins with what you can realistically expect out of your SEO campaign. It’s impossible for any company to guarantee #1 rankings across all of Google, as Google is unpredictable and rankings are constantly fluctuating every day. Real, trustworthy SEO companies will be honest with what you can expect, so if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Spelling and Grammatical Errors One of the most obvious indicators of a spam email is incorrect punctuation, typos, and spelling or other grammatical errors. While you might not always see these issues in spam emails, when you do, it should be a huge red flag. You want to work with someone who can write clearly and cares about how they present themselves to you, especially in a sales pitch. Suspicious Contact Info Does the signature at the bottom of the email include the person’s first and last name, full company name, and a link to their company website? If not, be wary of trusting anything they say. Scammers purposely avoid providing clear, complete contact information to make it harder for you to verify their identity. Even if you do find the name of the company or a link to their website, do your due diligence. Do a quick Google search to confirm that the company is real and legitimate. You may find the company doesn’t seem to exist or is even on a list of known scammers. Reputable professional sites such as LinkedIn can also be a good source for finding information on real companies. Finally, take a look at the sender’s email address. Is it a personal email from gmail, hotmail, or another standard email service? If so, be hesitant about trusting their credibility. Spammers tend to create free emails like these so they can easily get rid of them once they’re flagged as spam. Explicit Claims They’re Not Spam Does the email include a disclaimer that says it’s “not another one of those spam emails you’re used to getting?” If so, it’s most likely spam. Who is sending all these spammy SEO emails anyway? Occasionally, you might receive these sketchy solicitations from real SEO firms with questionable sales practices, but most often, they are actually mass mailings coming from companies focused on lead generation. The sole mission of these companies is to get a response from you so they can pass the lead over to real, but usually untrustworthy, SEO companies in exchange for a commission. In more extreme cases, these spam emails may be part of a bigger phishing scheme. Scammers may be attempting to trick you into giving them your sensitive financial information or access to your website. Even though many SEO spam emails are not quite this criminal in nature, it’s still in your best interest to be cautious when dealing with these sales pitches. No matter what anyone might tell you, … Continued