Bad SEOs are a common topic. Bad SEOs offer useless services, fail to deliver on internet marketing promises, and pollute search engine results. Bad SEOs’ spiritual counterparts, bad SEO clients, are rarely mentioned.
An SEO can see the other side of things skypbn. Even though I try to be a smarter, ethical, more focused, white-hat SEO, and have received countless inquiries from potential clients who are not qualified, I still get a lot of questions. While no one is entirely responsible for being cheated, some businesses that get cheated are not entirely to blame. Bad SEOs wouldn’t have enough clients to keep them in business.
Shades for Bad SEO Clients
Let me first clarify what I mean when I say “bad” SEOs. Bad SEOs can be either unethical in order to obtain e-marketing results or they fail to deliver results consistently. Good SEOs deliver results without trespassing on the rights of others (e.g., submitting automated comments to websites or trying to de-index good sites).
Bad SEO clients are people who only want to be satisfied with bad SEO, even if it is temporary. They are opening up markets to e-marketing charlatans, black-hats and others by refusing to take into consideration ethical web consultants or better marketing strategies. There are two basic types of bad SEO clients: crooks and fool–oops, I mean, ethically challenged and judgmentally-challenged.
Ethically-Challenged SEO Customers
I haven’t received so many questions asking about unethical services. I have been asked a few times about blogging software, and other questionable internet marketing strategies. I was told this gem by a colleague: “Have your considered scanning a book from the library to use it for web content?” Is that too risky? (Seriously, someone asked this.)
Evidently, this stuff is in high demand, as evident by the number of comments sp@m and the SEO-motivated hacking that can be found on the internet.
Judgmentally-Challenged SEO Clients
Bad SEO clients make up a much greater percentage of the bad SEO clients. Yes, I am blaming my victim. A person who is looking for a $5-gold watch should not be too upset if it turns out to have been faked or stolen. SEO has a few more nuances, but the core idea is the same.
These judgmentally challenged souls make up the majority of those who are not entrepreneurs but have a business in-a-kit. They are sometimes also representatives of successful businesses. Real businesspeople are more likely to forget their misinformation (after all they can afford the best SEO alternatives), but this is not always true. Let’s take a look at some examples of this group straight from my inbox. These are not inquiries from actual clients, but prospects.
- Something-for-(Little More than)-Nothing Clients
I think they should be considered ethically challenged, but that may just be my remnant of work ethics making me mean. There are two types of these clients.
- Client: Ambitious but not very rich: “I would like to be at the top of Google for the keyword’mortgage. So I can make $100,000/month in revenues. I can spend as much as $1,000.”
- The Adsense-is-my-business-plan client: you wouldn’t believe the numbers of inquiries I get from people who only plan to make money off AdSense or other on-site advertising–they don’t even have a plan for getting repeat traffic, nor do they have content to synergize with the SEO effort. They would be purchasing promotional services in order to make advertising money. Can you see how that could cause problems?
Another way to look at it is: Why wouldn’t you just create your own site and make all the profits? Many SEOs have their own projects sites that are often monetized with Adsense. We can get AdSense money, but that is a very low base for pricing our services. Most legitimate SEO clients sell goods and services at a profit rate of ten to more than what AdSense can provide.