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SEO Clients Shouldn’t be PotatoHeads!

December 17, 2009 by · 6 Comments
Filed under: SEO 

clientsOkay, this posting is a rant for the “quality” of prospective clients that seem to come for a quote and in doing so, get our usual SEO tip for their site for free — and then DO NOT EVEN BOTHER to fix what’s obviously an issue/problem!!!! PotatoHeads, eh!!!

An example for us to show you what we mean. I received this email (paraphrased here for space) –

“I am based in (a country) and I have just started a small local business selling Heating and Plumbing Services. I would like to try Seo marketing online as my main source of advertising. I don’t require a huge flood of work as I am only a one man band business and I am at the point of being busy so it would be the right time to invest some time and money in getting this online marketing going so I can see the results and have a better choice of work to choose from rather then me taking anything I can get now. I have had a look in to Seo and various campaigns. What it is I’m after (I think!) is to focus on one of my services (like boiler installations, central heating Installations) build and use a keyword rich domain name and build that so I have revenue coming in, then move on to another one of my services like (commercial gas installations and servicing). I would want to target this marketing locally rather then nationally…”

From what was said, including an URL, I went to take a look/see…and was appalled at the home page! Here’s what I saw….


Good gosh! Right off the bat the dang home page is misaligned, there are text blocks that do not line up with their “spots” and theres’ more…but that’s what struck me first…POOR POOR layout!

So, what’d I write back? Here’s what I said to the prospective client —

“First, yes I’ve just taken a look/see at your site and you have some serious on-page issues, the first of which is of course, it’s not using best practices design wise so your text blocks and images are all over the place….here’s a quick screenshot of that issue as I see it. For openers you’d be getting ZERO or very teensy number of conversions, ie people find your site in say Google, go there and see this? Why would they buy something as dear as a HVAC system from someone who can’t even get their website lined up properly?

Trust is a big issue and from that single first item I see (I use a large 27″ monitor so it’s my opinion whoever did this layout/design NEVER tested on various size monitors nor did he script the pages to lock in content either!!!) will never buy from you. Sorry to begin this with that kind of negative comment, but surely you can see my point here? A furnace that sits in my house MUST be safe, must be installed properly and must run with my family, my loved ones, being dang close to same….so there is NO room for any kind of ‘un-trust’ issue ever! There are may others too, but that’s for later discussion.”

This was about 15% of my whole email and I ended as I usually do with a Postscript comment here

“PS even if you do decide NOT to go ahead with us, as a tip, have your web dev FIX that dang layout….because as I said, no one is going to even call you or buy from you if you can’t get the dang website to look professional, eh!”

This email was sent to this prospective client on November 17th, which is ONE MONTH AGO….and I’ve never ever heard back from them. Not a peep, which is fine as I’d have expected that they found someone else to do their SEO campaign, happens all the time. No biggie, really, but just normal for an SEO practice….you get lots of “tire kickers” and you need to not only understand that, but move on…just like life, eh!

But as of today, one full month after that email, I thought, hey maybe I’d go to check on that site…and see how they’d done, re-jigging the layouts etc….

Went today. Looked, and yup, you guessed it…here’s what I STILL SEE….sigh..


So my point? When you are told that you’ve a website problem, even if the commenter is NOT on your staff or payroll, pay bloody attention. Test their comments…ie get a few friends to look on their computers to validate the criticism….and if it’s true? THEN GET IT FIXED!!!

<rant off> sigh…PotatoHeads, eh!

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6 Responses to “SEO Clients Shouldn’t be PotatoHeads!”
  1. What I am finding out about so called seo experts is that eveeryone claims to be an expert. I have asked at least 20 to 30 so called seo experts for there advise on certain sites and each & everyone had a negative response . I had even sent a site that was ranked #1 on google, Bing, & Yahoo for there advise and they even found fault with that site. What I am starting to see is that as a fellow linkedin member had bloged about is that all this SEO & SEM specialists is really full of CRAP.

  2. Jim says:

    I am sorry that as yet, you’ve not found an SEO expert that you feel comfortable with — but I DO AGREE big time, that our industry does seem to have a lot of “snake oil” type experts.

    They know little but what they’ve read (usually out of date) and what they’ve practiced (not a bit of testing either) and what they’ve accomplished (ever notice that they have NO clients who can attest to their progrms?) so yes, I’m not surprised. They give the rest of us as well as our industry, a bad name!

    But, I can assure you Ellen, that there are hundreds of qualified SEO experts but I’d also admit that most of us are NOT inexpensive nor can we post any kind of a guarantee as to your rankings. That’s true, but at the same time, it’s how it often can appear to someone who doesn’t know SEO, that we’re all selling that snake oil!

    But, here’s about the best I can offer. Email me privately here and I’ll again send thru a short list for you to look over. In your real estate channel the competition is intense and you’d need healthy sized budgets to have a successful SEO campaign….but it can be done. Has been done by thousands of firms here in NA….and that’s for sure!



  3. Reg says:

    I hate clients that cannot take advice.
    I have been dealing in site design and marketing for 15 years and SEO and user tracking studies has been a great part of the process.

    If I tell you something won’t work, it probably wont.
    If i tell you something WILL work, I am not going by supposition or industry metrics, I am telling you because I am doing it or have done it successfully.

    With well over a decade of intense study of the results of my numerous campaigns I have reduced the SEO process to the benefit of visitors and robot alike.

    People do not understand the value of SEO.
    Most think that “pretty” is better than presenting information in “boring ol’ text”.

    SEO – Over 6,919,246,960 pages beaten this year and still counting

  4. I hate tire kickers, but I suppose that is just how it goes.


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