Posted by & filed under General PR, tech pr, Technology PR.

SEO for Dummies author Peter Kent has been making some pretty scathing comments about the SEO industry in a new interview:

“Over the last few years as I speak to more clients and hear their stories, it has led me to believe that 80% of the business is scam.” Kent qualifies this remarkable statement by adding: “By that I mean that 80% of people in the business doing SEO consultancy are either running an outright scam, or they thought it was good to get into SEO because it’s a hot area – but they don’t really know what they’re doing.”

Web designers also get it in the neck:

“I have never met a web design company or web design consultant who understands SEO,” he says bluntly. “Don’t trust web designers as far as search engine optimization goes – even if they tell you they understand it, they don’t. I used to say that a few understand it but I’m still waiting for them.”

I suspect he may be exaggerating for effect but you can tell that a number of UK PR consultancies have been seduced into building entirely Flash based sites – which effectively renders most of the content invisible to Google (I know that Google is supposed to be able to index Flash now, but I’ve yet to see the evidence).

However, Just to ensure the article isn’t 100pc tirade, Kent ends with a few tips:

1. Understand your keywords. Do keyword analysis, don’t assume. I always tell people to spend a few bucks and get Wordtracker, spend a few hours, dig around, and do it properly.

2. It’s interesting to hear that people are obsessed with abbreviations. They think it’s important but when they do proper keyword research they often find that the same abbreviation means something different to a different group of people.

Certainly agree on point 1 – never make assumptions about keywords (or anything for that matter. Point 2 has particular relevance to the tech sector which has always been riddled with acronyms and abbreviations.

10 Responses to ““80pc of SEO consultants are scammers”: Peter Kent, author, SEO for Dummies”

  1. SEO Company India

    There are many so called SEO specialists/companies that claim to be experts in the filed. I’ve come across tons of ads that promise permanent first page appearance…

    Reply
  2. tjlight

    Actually the # is closer to 90%, scammers will use any uneducated person and this is why i think the first job of an seo consultant is to educate his clients.

    Reply
  3. Dale Lovell

    The secret for high page rank and SEO these days is all down to quality content. Creating quality online content based around relevant keywords increases your Google ranking and increases the likelihood of other websites linking to your pages, again increasing your search ranking.

    Reply
  4. John

    I completely agree with Kent’s assumption that web designer’s don’t get SEO. I was employed as a firefighter to sort out SEO issues for a company who spent a small fortune on a website by a company who, when you look at their website, also claim that they specialise in SEO and yet made so many basic mistakes it was laughable (the design was pretty crap as well). I like to keep things tight and only work with a few clients so that I get to know them their product and their goals thoroughly before building a strategy.

    Reply
  5. Roland Millaner

    I refuse to agree that 80% of SEO Consultants are scammers. The people who say this definitely don’t know about SEO. I have seen clients that hire SEO consultants … and when they don’t get the results that they want, this is what they will say.

    Most clients would expect results in a month or two. But to be honest, some results will only appear in 3 to 6 months. SEO is such a daunting and painstaking task. Especially nowadays where there’s loads of competition around. Getting to the top of Google is much more harder today than the very start of Search engines.

    IF SEO consultants are scammers … and IF the whole SEO is a big scam … then why would BIG companies hire SEO experts on a regular basis?

    This is because they know that SEO works. Period.

    Google looks at 3 points, your On-Site SEO, your OFF-Site SEO and Social SEO. As you can see, there should be a balance between the three. If you neglect the other then there won’t be a balance and your ranking with not go further. I have seen some SEO who are solely focused on building backlinks. But they are forgetting Social signals.

    The point here is this …

    For clients, you should understand that SEO takes time. It is a worthwhile endeavour as a marketing arsenal compared with other marketing out there. When you are a marketer, you only have 2 options:

    PPC or Google Adwords

    or Search Engine Optimisation

    PPC is very effective if you want to get results fast. If you want to get leads and inquiries fast, then you should use PPC. SEO is good long term. SEO unlike PPC will stay over the Internet for a long period of time.

    I do both.

    If you have a business, you should do both PPC and SEO and understand that both of these approaches have different timescale. That’s just my opinion and wish you good luck with your business venture.

    Reply

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