Everyone is an expert on SEO – or so it would seem from all the ads you can find littering the web offering the “best strategy ever”, “Update-proof” strategies, or the next big thing. SEO advice is offered for sale these days from every corner – from other webmasters, freelance writers and search engine reps as well as from firms, website developers and so called ‘gurus’. Yup, it’s all over the place, but just because it’s available doesn’t mean you should take it.
It can be difficult to decide who is giving good advice that will actually help and who is giving a summation or hodgepodge of different techniques that have bee tried over the past decade. While you always need to be wary of the advice you are seeing from anyone that can’t produce actual evidence they know what they’re talking about, you have to watch out for anyone that refers to them self as guru. Anyone that would call them self a guru is a bit too pompous and self important to be taken seriously – even if they were offering advice on something simple like how to lace a pair of shoes properly.
This creates a bit of a problem especially when the SEO advice is accompanied with a hefty fee. Gurus love charging big money. Look at Steve Jobs – he was a guru that conned millions of people into paying double and triple the going rate for a product that was two to three generations of technology behind the competition. How did he do it? He wore a black turtleneck, talked about zen and then charged outrageous prices for crappy products. That’s about what an SEO guru does as well. Who do we listen to when seeking SEO advice?
Sooner or later, unless you can afford to learn by trial and error or you’re just very lucky, you will need SEO advice. SEO is an important skill for any writer that uses the web as an avenue to publicize their work or promote a product or service for a client. There are several for pay agencies that offer good SEO advice, but don’t give you the whole picture and aren’t quite designed to deliver perfect results. You need to weigh the cost versus the credibility of the agency and how applicable what they are offering is to your needs.
Unless you are willing to pay for an individual review of your site, have specific keyword research done and extensive testing to determine your key demographic, paying an SEO may not be able to help you! SEO is not a one size fits all type of process. Different sites have different needs and they must each be looked at individually, or you have to do the groundwork and present it for analysis, hoping for the best.