I know it’s already getting towards the end of February but I thought I would dig out some nuggets of information on how you can fail your clients in 2013 by under-delivering and risking their long term business strategy by taking short cuts.
These are actual points of discussion I’ve had over the past 12 months with SEOs, Webmasters and Digital Marketers online and in person at our monthly SEO Meetups, they sound dumb but are actually what people are still doing and selling into clients…
Be Active in Blog Comments
It’s important that you maintain an active database of pre-written comments that you can quickly cycle through ready to cut ‘n’ paste so when a new post goes live on your target blog you can ensure you will be the first poster and get the most referral clicks.
It doesn’t matter if your message is non-relevant to the actual post as the blog will appreciate the attention anyway and should be grateful for the extra content you add. If you are linking back to your client in the comments don’t worry about disclosure it’s over-rated and most blog owners don’t read comments anyway.
Another key element is because it works on one project it’s important that you continue using it as Google algorithms have never targeted a single link buildings strategy in any of their updates….
Forum Spam only matters if you get caught
Forum owners track their success based on member numbers so they don’t object if you are creating more than one profile for each of your client’s websites. It’s also important that you make full use of your forum signature and get as many links as possible in there.
It’s a numbers game and forum owners have nothing better to do so take advantage of their trust while you can and don’t worry there is nothing they can do to stop spammers Also using remote workers from Asia and Eastern Europe will ensure they can never ban your real IP address and if they ban one of your clients from the forum you can always utilise the strategy with another sucker…
Use Software for Pingback Spam
Pingback or Trackback spam is one of the most scalable link building activities and because it can be automated, you can handle more projects at the same time and it’s not as if there’s a platform designed to stop spam. The benefit of this type of link building activity is that it’s very hard to stop as it’s not something that has several safe guards webmasters can employ on WordPress such as validation, turning off Trackbacks or setting admin to approve all comments.
It’s important that you focus on picking a platform that auto-approves pingbacks automatically and since they are often unmonitored, so let’s hope they don’t ever move to another SEO agency and notice their house of cards you’ve built them. Also unlike many other links it’s almost impossible to remove trackback comments so your links you built are safe for a long time unlike all those links you are still renting off Text-Link-Ads…
Quantity over Quality for Links
Quality is for lazy SEOs, your client should be judging your activities on number on links you build each month.
Anyone who is focusing on quality is just not willing to get their hands dirty and there are plenty of gigs available on Fiverr to assist you so you can send your client the monthly reports on how many thousands of links you have built. Other more ethical agencies will never be able to match the numbers you are building so the client will stick with you out of sheer admiration of how awesome you are!
Free Digital PR is Free PR
It’s important that take advantage of any free PR syndication websites to ensure your content gets as much exposure as possible and build as many links as you can.
If the free PR sites ever get indexed in Google that’s really an added bonus, remember that you are selling in the benefits of building a certain number of links each month so this will help you smash through those targets.
Only use Exact Match Links
If you aren’t focusing on your core terms you are not going to get the traction you need to rank #1, don’t chicken out because of Penguin algorithms it was only a small percentage of websites that actually ever get caught. There is always two sides to any discussion and can’t you find that at least one of the competitors ranking well has exact match anchor text, so if it works for them your argument is invalid.
If you don’t use exact match anchor text how else does Google know what you want to rank for?
Use Spun Content
Spin Content it’s cheaper than creating new content, if you use the “best spinners” you don’t have to worry about copyright issues as the original owner won’t be able to recognise it anyway… Some people say Google appreciates unique content so this should be good enough for them… if you are ever hit with panda updates just take the same content and re-spin it again, there is no magic bullet Google has to deal with this.
Do Pre-Sell Pages
The advantage of pre-sell pages is they allow you to get what ever exact match links you want from a real business and you don’t have to worry about costs of hosting as you are using their resources. If you find a decent hacker you can often find they can upload your pages without the actual website owner knowing which means you don’t have to pay any ongoing fees to rent the links.
Most small businesses are also open to offers to host random folders on their website in exchange for free SEO, so Pre-Sell pages are really just like printing money. Also remember you don’t want them using Webmaster tools otherwise they might discover the time bomb you have built within their website.
One often under utilised method for ensuring you hit your traffic targets is to join a traffic exchange this will allow you to both profit from building out your referral networks as you invest more money in buying more traffic to cover any fall in your clients rankings due to bad SEO practices you might have been following.
Most traffic exchanges have safe guards to ensure the visitors will be at your clients website for a minimum of 20 seconds so you can be sure they will be deeply engaged and it hopefully won’t impact your bounce rates. This is also another reason why you don’t want your clients using a decent web analytics package as they might start asking questions about why they are so popular in countries they don’t do business in….
Buy Fake Likes/Followers
Everyone has some fake followers and it’s important to make sure that you buy enough that it won’t matter if some of their accounts are shut down, in social it’s a numbers game and you want to be #1. Most of the social sites that see fans/likes/shares offer money back guarantee and will often get results in a matter of minutes or hours so you get a very quick ROI on this type of activity.
Remember, it’s important to go big or go home, no point getting a gradual and constant growth you should be aiming for aggressive growth before their competitors know what hit them!
Social Bookmarks: Go Big or Go Home
What says authority more than having a single page with 10,000 likes which can be bought fairly cheaply by any of the companies that rank in Google for “get Facebook likes” or from one of the many gigs on Fiverr. No-one has got banned that you know of so it’s no risk that you, worse case YouTube might remove some views but you have to live life on the edge right? It’s not your business anyway you can always get a new client if they get caught out…
Don’t Track Results with Web Analytics
Downplay the value of web analytics if clients ask and highlight the issues of consumer privacy, it slows the load time on your website and Google is able to read all your data and will use it against you in the future.
If you are bending some of the rules you want to ensure there are as little record as possible and remember transparency is for losers, if the client is asking questions just ask them if they are really serious about getting rich online as you have other clients willing to take their spot as this video shows!
Don’t Register with Webmaster Tools
You don’t want Google/Bing knowing what link building tactics you are employing so registering with their Webmaster tools platforms means they don’t know who you are and can’t track your online activities. Also don’t worry about the notifications sent via Google Webmaster Tools are mostly focused on black hat tactics anyway, and if Google can’t contact you they can’t take any action right?
Always promote Guaranteed Page 1 Results
Anyone who is not able to guarantee their clients #1 results is not really committed to their client, make sure you pick the keywords you are measured on just in case they pick something hard. Typically you want to ensure the target terms are 3-4 words and if possible include their brand or product otherwise you will have to actually do some work.
Offer getting clients ranked in MSN, Live, AOL or Ask…
People have heard of these search engines so it’s important to sell in the idea of variety of traffic source is important and not to put all your eggs in one basket (Google/Bing), most clients won’t even bother to check that MSN/Live has been re-launched as Bing back in June 2009.
It’s important that you continue to show these logos on their website and sales material as it’s too expensive and time consuming to have to update everything anytime something changes..
Make doorway pages
Doorway SEO pages are another scalable method of increasing the number of pages of content within your website without the cost of developing new content, you just need to use search and replace to update the target keywords.
Also consider ensuring the URL is also optimised for your target term to get an increased benefit and give the search engines a signal the page is unique. So you can keep a track of the doorway pages consider tagging them so you can monitor their ranking improvements often example-page.seo can make it easier for you notice the difference between your example-page.ppc you use for AdWords.
For additional traffic why not get your AdWords landing pages indexed as well, after all the more pages within your site the more likely you are to rank for every possible term you are targeting.
Ignore Rich Snippets/Schema
These are really a waste of time as Google can read and understand you page anyway, they just add extra code to the page which will slow the load time and even with WordPress it’s not like there is a free plugin to do all the hard work. Remember that Schema tags are just too time consuming to setup so best you don’t recommend them unless you want more work.
Ignore claiming local listings
Local SEO if a given, if you listed in one or two of the main directories most local directories have a feed or scrape their database anyway so let them do the hard work for you. If you have old listings that are incomplete that’s even better don’t worry about updating them just create a whole new batch of listings that use a slightly different business name, as most old listings don’t have all your contact details it will be nearly impossible for the local directories to find the duplicates.
If there are issues about incorrect details on the old listings just explain to your client that’s a strategy to confirm the customer really wants to buy/contact you if they go the extra step to try and find alternative contact details, if prunes out all the tyre kickers that are just after quotes and may never buy!
Cross linking between clients websites
You are actually adding value to their website by including your links in their footer as their customers will recognise your agency name and trust them immediately. If you are smart and used a dynamic widget in their footer which you can control remotely along with fully control over the number of links and anchor text you will find you can actually link to your other clients who are paying you for SEO.
It’s always best if you can automate the footer link script so you can even adjust the colours so it’s the same colour as the background and Google search quality teams can’t see it if they visit your clients website to check for anything out of place…
Sell in article submission on eZine
There are lots of other free article directories and it’s important that you get your content onto as many as possible to increase the chance your content will get picked-up and posted on another site. Also don’t limited yourself to ezine, as they have been cracking down of late on what they term as “quality” you can just move onto another of the hundreds of article directories that will accept your spun content.
Infographics should be done
It’s important that you enforce the rule that unless people are willing to use your pre-written “insert infographic” code that you have pre-optimised they should not be able to use your infographic. Branding objectives and good will are over-rated since you are not going to get any SEO benefit if they just insert it and link back to you just remind them it’s the embed code or nothing!
Consider reporting them to Google unless they link back using your exact anchor text you defined after all you are being measured on number of links not reach and distribution success of the infographic, stand your ground and threaten the offending blog into submission!
Start selling LSI grouping packages
You have to ensure you are at least including some buzz words in your client discussions and charging additional money to optimise their website according to LSI will increase the chances they will rank higher as Google can see the correct associations between the target keyword and the content.
It’s possible to just use a random % markup for any pages that undergo LSi and your client just needs to accept that most businesses mark up their prices for additional features they need to be thinking about the long term benefits of LSi on their SEO!
Optimal Keyword Density
It’s important that you stay within the average keyword density for your industry but refinements and careful content planning can allow you to reach between 15-30% keyword density for your target keyword. It’s also important that you bold the keywords you are trying to rank for in Google as both the user and Google will immediately understand the importance of these terms and increase your ranking due to the bold type font styling.
Monthly XML Sitemap creation & Robots.txt monitoring
Even if your client has CMS like WordPress you can charge them each month to regenerate their XML sitemap as it’s a manual and time consuming process, it’s not like there are any free plugins that allow you to automatically rebuild their sitemap each and every time their content changes. It’s important that your don’t try and automate too many mundane tasks as your clients will appreciate the hands-on attention and many hours your and your staff are spending on tasks such as rebuilding XML sitemaps by hand in excel or notepad, 2013 is not focused around efficiencies or anything like that…
Sell Google Maps as a monthly package
It’s important that you constantly change and update everything possible within your Google Local+ listings, you can “optimise” it on a monthly or quarterly basis depending on how much your client has to spend. It’s also important that you verify their listing within your account so if they ever want to leave you can de-activate their listing, this should be communicated to clients when they discuss the option of leaving.
So there you have it! My recommendations on how you can screw your clients in 2013 and yes there are plenty more I could have included but I ran out of time and my head is sore from bashing it against my desk.
So please include the hateful and offensive comments below if you disagree with the above post as I appreciate your feedback on how you are still doing this and it’s still mostly working for well most of your clients that are still with you….