Over the past couple of weeks I have had a number of SEO related questions, some from readers and others from potential clients. I have decided to set up “SEO issues” to answer some of these questions in one place as I think they will be useful to the whole SEO Wizz community.
It doesn’t matter how long you have been in the search engine optimisation industry, there will always remain to be grey areas. No one is ever going to know an ABC guide to ranking high on Google and co, therefore as search optimisation experts we have to adapt, keep up with the latest news and constantly research.
Anyway let’s dive straight into the meat of this post, as I said some are from clients others are from readers so there is some wide variety.
“Why can’t you simply charge me once you have got my site to the first page of Google, a pay on results system like other firms do?”
This is quite a common question, clients only wanting to pay once their site is reaping the benefits of the service. I guess when you think about it why shouldn’t they?? Well actually there are a number of reasons most SEO firms/consultants will not charge this way.
1) SEO campaigns can be on going over a 12 month period, surely no one can work for 12 months free of charge.
2) A lot of consultants do the work for a few months and then are sacked before their results show significant fruits, leaving the businesses to benefit from the link building and optimisation that has taken place. (3 months work may take 6 months to show results and some clients are aware of this)
3) NO SEO can guarantee results. We don’t have control of the search engines and therefore cannot guarantee our services 100%, there are so many aspects search engines take into account and no search engine optimisation consultant knows them all.
People pay for SEO services primarily because they neither have the time to train or implement, it is time consuming work and many business owners simply don’t have it. They also pay for expertise; anyone could learn SEO in a 6 month period but expertise comes with experience, recognising out of the ‘norm’ situations and being able to diagnose.
It is for all these reasons and more that most SEO consultants and firms will not use a pay for performance payment system and those that do normally consist of
a) those firms that are desperate for business
b) those that are going to use adwords to get to the top of the serps
I did see one company using a pay half now and half on results system but their prices were so high that getting the second payment would not have been an issue for them (around £3500 per month for SEO work or for my US readers around $5000)
WOW I could have made a post out of this one
“Does it matter if I have more than one h1 on my page?”
Technically no, you can have more than one if it is appropriate for the layout of your content.
Heading tags are designed to separate important areas of your content and sometimes some areas are equal in importance, for example a services list and description. In this type of circumstance it may be acceptable to do this, however I would not have more than 3 on a page as it can easily be identified as spamming and your site may be penalised.
To be honest I question the overall weight of heading tags, a lot of research I have conducted has shown that sites dominating keywords don’t fully implement heading tags. I would however continue to use them as they still do give an edge to your pages and may help rank for longtail keywords.
“How many keywords should I include in my META keywords tag?”
Google no longer uses META keywords to assess relevance and it gives no credit to a site. This was due to spammers taking over the index by filling their META tags with thousands of keywords.
Put a tag on with 6 – 8 of your main keywords for reassurance if you like but don’t worry too much about it.
“Should I have keywords in my URL”?
Ok the URL does hold some weight however not enough for you to spend loads of time stuffing in relevant keywords. I really wouldn’t overly worry about this too much, try to make sure you have 3 – 4 keywords in the URL that relate to the page, this is adequate and you shouldn’t spend too much time worrying about it.
It is true your top level domain will benefit from including relevant keywords however it is not a must to ranking high on Google.
“How do you build a brand?”
This question came off the back of my brand up date post and the rest of the opinions that have been flying around the net. To be honest there is not a simple answer to this, building a brand requires a lot of hard work and brain storming. Some things to think about are;
1- Your company mission statement
2- Your Point of difference (POD) what makes you different from your competitors
3- Define your audience (you only need to market to those interested in your niche)
4- Your service (every action will have to be carried out with as much quality possible)
I find a good way to get your brand in front of as many eyes as possible is to;
- use SEO and target niche keywords
- use adwords in the early days with your company name as the title.
There really is no straight forward answer you simply have to provide quality and let as many people as possible know about it. Get involved in forums, blogs and provide something a little different from the norm.
I decided I was going to provide SEO services but also give people a chance to learn for themselves by offering Free SEO tutorials online and SEO sessions in person.
These were my main questions from over the last week, keep them coming I really don’t mind and I will try to publish them once a week on SEO Issues.
Author: Tim (294 Articles)
Tim Grice is the owner and editor of SEO wizz and has been involved in the search engine marketing industry for over 7 years. He has worked with multiple businesses across many verticals, creating and implementing search marketing strategies for companies in the UK, US and across Europe. Tim is also the Head of Search at Branded3, an SEO agency in Leeds.