If you are an SEO expert or if you offer SEO services to others, or if you pay for SEO services, take heed to this advice. As you may know, there has been a string of major SEO shakeups that started with some of Google’s latest Panda updates and then were accompanied by some additional algorithm changes instituted by the brain trust at Google.
In the latest list of SEO tremors, links to a number high value private HPBL networks were devalued. Even worse, many of the web properties in these HPBL Networks were deindexed. Meaning, they were totally obliterated and left for dead. Additionally, many subscribers who used those HPBL networks received a “Notice of detected unnatural links” warning from Google.
Google Just Wiped Out My Income!
Generally speaking, those who received those notices eventually experienced some type of drop in the SERPs and then a subsequent loss of income. The big question is, “What do the SEO professionals tell their clients?” I ask this because a good number of SEO professionals that I know who relied HEAVILY on the HPBL networks to get their clients ranked are dead in the water.
When the networks they subscribed went down, so did most of their SEO clients. Some of these SEO professionals watched their monthly income drop from five to seven thousand dollars a month down to zero, almost overnight! But the focus of this post is not about the SEO professionals; it is about their clients.
If you are using “ANY” SEO service or provider, you need to know the brutal truth, so prepare yourself. First off, “NO ONE” can guarantee SERP rankings. Actually, I’ll make a correction; they can guarantee anything but that doesn’t mean they are going to be able to produce.
I Guarantee You Top Rankings In Google
You need to understand that the SERPs are owned and controlled by the search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing. In the case of Google, as many are learning, Google can throw a wrench into anyone’s perfectly planned SEO game plan without warning. So what happens if you spend three thousand and seven hundred dollars with an SEO agency to get ranked for a highly competitive keyword and they get you ranked in ninety days?
However, two weeks after being in the top spot, Google slaps you with a –150 penalty or deindexes your website altogether? Here is my point; it can happen! Does that make the SEO agency bad? Not necessarily. It just means that Google is on a SEO crackdown and we are in turbulent waters. It also means that you should be prepared for anything.
A Professional SEO Disclaimer
Please understand, I’m not attempting to scare anyone, this is merely wake up call for all SEO professionals and those who want to use the services of an SEO professional. The first phrase that needs to stand out in your minds is a, “Professional SEO Disclaimer.”
The disclaimer essentially advises SEO clients of a number of undeniable truths that those in the SEO business know very well. What truths am I speaking about? Take note:
Google manipulates the SERPs to their advantage. Contrary to popular belief, they do not render results to benefit the searchers; they render results to increase their bottom line. Their primary goal is to increase Google revenue. If you believe all of the hype about making the SERPs search friendly, SEO is not for you. When the head honchos at Google sit down to talk about the SERPs, they set out to make sure that ORGANIC SEO traffic IS NOT cutting into their PPC AdWords income. Why do you think they splash PPC ads at the top of the SERPs but penalize you, if you did the same thing on your website?
Google is subject to devalue any type of link at any time. This is something no SEO agency has any control over. That is why you should only choose to work with an SEO agency that understands GOLD Genuine Overall Link Diversity. You also need to accept the fact that when Google engages in any type of link devaluation, in most cases it IS NOT to penalize certain SEO experts. In most cases it goes back to “Truth #1!” Google is making changes to ensure that the greater percentage of searchers are clicking on the Google PPC AdWords advertisements as opposed to sifting through the organic SERPs.
Google is subject to engage in SERP re-architecting without warning. If you follow the official Google Webmaster Central Blog you may get a migraine headache trying to comprehend all of the constant changes Google spits out. Many of these changes are classified as the re-architecting of the SERPs. When they take place, rankings can change dramatically. With the new Google mindset, SEO experts are seeing a lot of constant shifting in the SERPs, so get used to it.
Larry Paige’s desire to overthrow FaceBook has caused Google to wield an almost diabolical power over the SERPs. Currently, Google is aggressively and wantonly pushing Google plus upon us whether we want it or not. The truth is, after the initial sign ups, the majority of people stuck with FaceBook and that has Larry Paige fuming!
Google reacted by letting everyone know that they would be factoring in social media into the SERP rankings. What they are really saying is that they are factoring in Google +1s into the rankings, while slowly pushing all other social networking sites not owned by Google out of the SERPs. Here is my point; in this effort to take down FaceBook, Larry Paige is making SEO supremely more volatile. Consequently, you can expect a gauntlet of unfathomable changes as Google continues to push their never ending quest to be the Alpha and the Omega of the World Wide Web.
Google is easily manipulated by SEO whiners and SERP crybabies. Anyone who has been in SEO for a while will confirm that SEO whiners and SERP crybabies can easily manipulate Google into penalizing certain websites. These people spend their days and nights reverse engineering the websites of their competition and once they find something that “SEEMS” out of place, BAM! They report their findings to Google in a heartbeat!
But they don’t just hit the spam button and move along, they are very thorough in that they include a detailed report as to why they believe a website should be penalized and/or deindexed. They also make unbelievable arguments as to why their websites should outrank everyone else and guess what? The next algorithm change includes some of the points they argued to Google. If you follow Matt Cutts as long as we have, you will notice that Google spends a lot of time listening to these types of folks.
Based upon everything that I have shared, what should a professional SEO Agency disclaimer include?
The Truth Shall Make You Free!
In a nutshell, it should state that there are certain conditions, circumstances and issues that are beyond the control of the SEO agency. In light of that fact, SEO agencies and professionals should be upfront and advise clients that they “COULD POTENTIALLY” experience a drop in rankings due to but not limited to:
- SERP re-architecting
- Backlink devaluation
- Carefully crafted complaints from competitors
- Negative SEO campaigns
- Google algorithm updates
- Subjective manual review of their website
Here is the bottom line SEO wise; things have changed dramatically from the way they were in 2009, 2010 and early 2011. Because this new day has dawned, going forward, you need to adjust the way you do SEO and how you deal with your clients.
Vengeance Is Mine, “Saith The Furious SEO Client!”
Unfortunately, some individuals cannot handle the truth. Theses individuals are most likely going to cause you problems in the event that an action implemented by Google, [in which you have no control over] causes them to experience a drop in the rankings. In this latest round of algorithm changes, numerous clients outed the SEO agencies that got them ranked. Some of these clients committed that despicable deed out of spite.
They were furious because they lost rankings in the SERPs and they decided to strike back at the SEO agencies that got them there before the deindexing fallout. Although a SEO disclaimer cannot stop a person from taking such an action, it can help potential clients to understand the risks involved with SEO. Those risks are inherent even when you stick to all whitehat strategies and tactics; they are simply less pronounced.