The trouble with SEO, unlike most other services, is you don’t actually require any form of accreditation or schooling in order to offer it. You can’t legally offer to rewire someone’s electrics, or fit a gas fire unless you have the necessary qualifications – but you can offer to SEO someone’s website even if you have no prior experience in the field of SEO.
The question then is, are there people out there offering SEO who really haven’t got a clue how to do it?
Yes – most definitely. Here at StuckOn we have encountered clients before who have been offered SEO advice along the lines of ‘fill your website with a thousand keywords in the meta tags and you’ll rank’, as well as other ‘web design’ firms who think they can offer SEO as a service because everyone else is doing it.
It can be difficult to determine who is the real deal, and who are the cowboys. Perhaps the best way to tell is by looking at their own website. Do they rank for competitive search terms? Do they offer solid advice about SEO? Do they appear to know what they’re talking about?
Their services are another giveaway sign. Anyone who offers a flat-rate fee for SEO can’t possibly know what they’re doing, because every website needs a different level of service depending on how competitive their industry, and where they’re currently placed within it.
SEO isn’t a word to be thrown around in order for web design firms to charge more for their initial services. It’s a specialist industry that requires expert knowledge.
Perhaps there should be an accreditation for it!