The Big SEO Scam -  A Shell GameI’m in the mood for a rant today so hold tight, here we go…

If you aren’t already aware, there has been a lot of turmoil in the SEO community recently.

This has been come about in reaction to changes made by Google to its ranking algorithm. In particular it is focusing on “overly optimized websites” and has de-indexed a link building service called BuildMyRank.com.

The changes have been so dramatic that BuildMyRank.com has gone out of business and are currently refunding their customers. This means that the thousands of people who have used their services to try and boost their Google ranking are probably feeling a touch of frustration right now.

This is a classic example of why I don’t rely on SEO as a traffic strategy: You can spend an awful lot of time and money trying to get your web pages to page 1 in Google with very uncertain results.

This blog is only one of my websites but it still gets around 4,000-5,000 visitors per month on average:

The Big SEO Scam

However, as you can see about only around 13-14% of my traffic comes from Google.

The other 85%+ is from other sources, referrals from other sites, guest posts I’ve done, contributions of content I’ve put out there on the web, mailings by other marketers and my own email list.

Here’s why I don’t focus on SEO for traffic generation:

  • It’s increasingly slow (read: usually takes MONTHS to get ranked well in Google these days)
  • You’re playing a constant game of cat and mouse with The Big-G who can change the rules on you at any time
  • It’s not really “free” traffic as you really need paid tools to get it working well
  • It’s very time intensive compared with other traffic strategies. Sure you can outsource the work but again this costs money.
  • The success of your business rests entirely in the hands of an arbitrary third party (Google again of course) – is this really sensible?
  • The results of SEO are very uncertain (all of your work can be wasted)

The Great SEO Scam

So why, you may ask is SEO so popular and why do so many people keep talking about “get to Google page 1” strategies all the time? After all, there’s not a day that goes by when I don’t receive several emails about exactly this kind of thing.

My cynical view, is that SEO appeals to internet newbies and people exploit this.

Many marketers who sell make money online products know full well that using phrases like “get to Google page 1 in 7 days” entice people to buy their products.

But I can tell you from firsthand experience that virtually NONE of these marketers use SEO in their own businesses – they know it’s flaky so they rely on other traffic strategies instead.

I was at a conference last week where one marketer showed an example of how he got to page 1 in less than 24 hours. Now, this is technically TRUE but the phrase he ranked for was “The best speaker at XXX conference”.

Well that is a phrase for which no one searches, hence the competition is very nonexistent and therefore he’ll get virtually no traffic from it even though he is technically speaking at #1 in Google.

Nonetheless, he received a solid round of applause from at least half the audience who were clearly in the dark about this.

Don’t blame the audience though: 18  months ago I probably would have clapped too.

If I created a post here on my blog called “Why Rob Cornish Doesn’t Like SEO” it would be ranked as number 1 in Google in probably just a few hours.

So I could claim that, “I’ve got to page 1 in Google”, here’s the proof, buy my course and I’ll teach you how to do it!

What a load of hogwash – this is part of the “The Great SEO Scam”.

How To Avoid The Scam

The best way forward for the vast majority (but not all) websites is to work on non-SEO traffic and marketing strategies which involve less effort and have more certain results.

This is what I do personally, and it’s what we cover in massive detail inside our members area.

Serious businesses starting up online don’t begin by focusing on SEO. They promote their businesses by writing articles for other websites in their niche, posting videos, doing press releases, paid for advertising, offering free content to other product creators and networking both online and offline.

The list goes on and on but SEO is way down the list of priorities when they start out.

Now, here’s an interesting thing: Many of these traffic strategies produce nice SEO side benefits as a by-product! So as you become more popular, build out your site’s content and get more traffic, Google will recognise this and reward you by sending you some traffic.

Excellent!

This is “natural SEO” and is exactly what Google wants you to do. You won’t get penalised for this because it is genuine as oppose to what so many people have been doing which is effectively trying to game the system by finding loopholes and using paid for software which Google disapproves of.

So stop worrying about keywords, article spinning and link building so much. Spend some time learning real and proven ways to get traffic. There’s no magic, it’s just a skill set you can learn. The results will come with more certainty and less effort, I can almost guarantee it…

What do you think of the “Big SEO Scam”? Whether you agree or disagree please click LIKE if you liked this and drop your comments below. Don’t hold back, tell me what you REALLY think…. 🙂