Just as with any field, there are plenty of supposed SEO experts who are more than happy to offer your services and guarantees they can’t back up in order to get you to sign a contract. There are a few different ways these scammers operate, but when it boils down to it they all promise online success while stealing your money.

Any time you are hiring a company for online marketing, it is best to do your homework and ensure you’re getting what you’re paying for. You can find great success online, but if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Jaydeep Dosi from Search Engine Journal shares the most common claims you should be wary of.

We Offer Free Services

Proper SEO is time consuming to manage, the economy is unforgiving, and search engine optimization is a highly competitive field. How could any business with a long-term hope of survival offer free of cost services? The answer is they can’t. Yes, real SEO professionals are able to offer special rebates or low pricing occasionally. You will even see offers for one odd service offered for free within a larger transaction, but nothing comes entirely for free. SEO “experts” claiming not to charge you are likely more interested in your information and other details you don’t want them getting ahold of.

We Guarantee First Page Ranking

Watch the wording on these types of offer closely. Many SEO professionals emphasize their goal to get your site to the first page on search engine results pages (SERPs), but they can’t honestly guarantee it. They also can’t guarantee any level of traffic, though that is also certainly a goal. The reality is search engines guard their information closely, and they change their algorithms all the time. We work to stay on top of these changes and learn as much as we possibly can to gain exposure and visibility, but nothing is guaranteed.

We Submit Your Site to Hundreds of Search Engines

This isn’t a lie so much as a misrepresentation. Think for a second. How many people do you know using any search engine besides one of the main few. Google, Bing, and Yahoo are all still relevant in their own ways, but there aren’t hundreds of useful search engines. There aren’t even tens of relevant search engines. You really don’t need your site submitted to more than two or three of the most popular engines, so don’t get caught paying for wasteful services.

We Have Connections Within Google!

Any company advertising this way is a downright fraud. The majority have absolutely no connection with actual Google employees. But, more importantly, do you really think a Google employee is going to risk their job to help a friend rank their client’s sites higher? Nope.

We Know Everything About Google’s Algorithms

A company may claim to be an expert on Google’s algorithms, but you should press them to share exactly what they mean. While one might be an “expert” in that they keep up constantly with all the latest news and information about how Google’s search engines operate, it might be hard to consider them a real expert compared to an actual Google engineer. However, an SEO professional claiming to know every detail of Google’s algorithms is blatantly lying. These algorithms are dynamic and ever-evolving, not to mention they are so complex it would be impossible to know and understand the entire system. Search engines aren’t telling us their secrets.

We Have a Secret Formula for Success

The worst snake oil peddlers don’t even try to tell you what they will actually do. Successful SEO practices are no secret, and anyone who will help you achieve your goals will tell you so. To be truly successful in SEO, you just need to work hard and with focus from the very beginning and be responsible for keeping up to date with the current best practices and guidelines.

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