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What designers don’t get about SEO

Careful! This post is looking a little old and could be inaccurate in many, many ways

I’m a designer working for what is predominantly an SEO company, so I pretty much sit on the fence between the two. So it frustrates me when I read so much bad press about SEO within the design community, mainly by people that are ill informed about the industry, even though it so closely relates to their own.

The problem is that most designers have limited exposure to the good side of the SEO industry and too much of the bad. Seemingly some designers forget how the bad eggs in our industry affect people’s perception of us, and thus don’t get that the same happens in the SEO industry too.

But there are good SEO’s that are trying hard to work within the rules and provide their clients with an excellent service and achievable results. They, like designers, attend conferences and read blogs to ensure they keep learning in what is an even more changeable environment than a designer or developer must face.

So how do you spot a bad SEO

They approach you for business

A reputable SEO will always get business by word of mouth; they would never email you out of the blue. These sorts of emails are simply spam and should be treated as such.

They guarantee results

The people that fall for these kinds of promises are idiots; if they simply took a minute to consider things they would realise the only way to guarantee results in Google is if you work at Google. No external company would ever have the ability to influence Google like this (especially long term).

They promise you traffic

On the face of it SEO is all about traffic, and some SEO’s will simply deliver this, yet traffic is easily obtained and faked. Instead a good SEO will always work towards the figure that matters and this is ROI. If the SEO isn’t increasing a company’s revenue then what’s the point.

They promise quick results

Nothing in the world of SEO is quick, stuff takes time and trends have to be established before things can be done. When starting with an SEO company you will always get a slow start as the company reviews the different aspects of your site. It’s only over a few months that you will start seeing the results you want.

The reports they provide are too short or too long

This is something you’d only find out when working with someone but a long report means the company is spending too much of your money on reporting they have made no improvements rather than getting them. Whilst too short a report means they’re simply being lazy. You have to find the happy medium of getting the information you require quickly and concisely while leaving enough time for your SEO to get the job done.

So next time you see a spam email from a ‘reputable’ SEO firm simply treat it like what it is; junk. The companies that use these tactics to sell their services aren’t an indication of what the whole industry is up to, simply a case of those who can’t do the job properly having to shout the loudest to get the work.