It has been estimated (by more than one person) that at least 97% of all individuals and companies doing Search Engine Optimization are incompetent at best, if not downright frauds.
Just imagine if 97% of all new cars didn’t work right. Or 97% of all engineering degrees don’t teach someone to build bridges that won’t fall down.
Well, that’s the scene. And Google has over the years made repeated efforts to deal with this.
LET THE BUYER BEWARE
Of course, the basic protection for any company looking to hire an internet marketing provider is the ancient Roman Saying “Caveat Emptor” – “Let the Buyer Beware.” You need to do your due diligence. Then keep your eye on what’s going on.
There are many reasons why this is a difficult problem. Not the least of these is the amount of out-of-date and false information about SEO that fills the web. Another is the natural tendency to want fast results. And of course, there are many slick salesmen.
The fact is that SEO takes time, and effective SEO isn’t cheap. Many providers survive on the fact that they charge low prices and it can take many months for a client to realize that they are getting nothing for their money – or even damage to their marketing.
GOOGLE TO THE RESCUE?
One of these initiatives on Google’s part is their Partners Program. This is a certification program that has been running for many years but has been in limbo for the last couple of years, while they tried to rework and improve the program. The pandemic was partly responsible for that. In addition, some of the requirements announced for the re-launch led to open revolt on the part of providers. It was widely felt (and we agreed) that one requirement forced providers to do things that were bad for their clients, even if good for Google.
Just in case you think we are all powerless before Google, we won that battle.
Now the new newly revised program has been announced for a February launch, and it looks like it will be okay. We’ve been Google Partners for many years – hey, I’ve even got the T-Shirt – and will be re-qualifying under the new requirements.
SO ARE WE ALL GOOD NOW?
What does this mean for you? First of all, I would avoid a provider who is NOT a Google Partner. Being certified doesn’t guarantee great competence but it at least shows some minimal level of competence in the subject.
It is not a guarantee, certainly not a guarantee of results for you. Someone might be very good at certain industries or types of situations and completely lost in others.
At thirteen05 creative we’ve been doing SEO for 18 years and we’ve got a lot of accumulated experience and know-how across a wide range of industries and situations. We also have a team of four specialists so no one person has to know everything about what is, truly, a vast subject.
But don’t take our word for it. Do your homework!