If you have a good understanding of SEO and it’s practices, you know there is a big difference between bad SEO and good SEO. But if you are a company that hires someone to do your SEO work for you, you may not be able to tell the signs of whether you are with the right company or not. Here are the first four differences that you should look for when you want to know the differences between the good, the bad, and the ugly.
- Black Hat vs White Hat. This is the ugly. Black hat tactics are unethical. The people and companies who us these tactics focus their energy on tricking search engines by stuffing keywords and hiding content. This could get your company kicked out by search engines and cause irrevocable damage. White hat tactics are used by companies that focus on what actual people While they still have their fingers on the pulse of search engines, they aren’t going to compromise anyone’s business for higher rankings, and they always comply with Google’s guidelines.
- Old Knowledge vs Current Knowledge. Even if an SEO company did a great job in the past, that doesn’t quite mean they are doing a good job for you today. If they haven’t been keeping with all of the changes that have occurred with Google algorithms, Penguin updates, and social media starting to play a role in rankings, they could be doing a disservice to your company. Good SEO not only keeps up with the changes, but they work hard in order to be at the forefront of those changes so they can be proactive when they do occur.
- Weak Content vs Strong Content. Yes, we’ve heard it over and over now. Bad SEO focuses on spammy content that is of no interest to anyone visiting the site, if it even makes sense with all of the keyword stuffing. Half the time it’s hidden anyway. Good SEO will have content that is engaging and serves a purpose for the companies website. They know that content will keep people on the page, plus it gives the visitor an idea of the quality level the site offers.
- Grey areas vs gray areas. As with any business, there are always special circumstances and times when the line in the sand is not so clear. Even good SEO performances can get hit with penalties, but the smarter the SEO company is, the better they handle it, and they have just become all the more knowledgeable. Good SEO will be able to rebuild a penalty and get passed it. Bad SEO will not.
SEO is ever changing and it’s important to keep that in mind. It evolves as search engines get smarter and change the way they think. What looks like content today, could look like spam tomorrow. So be sure when you are working with SEO, you are thinking about more than just a search engine, you are thinking about actual people, because these days it seems we are little easier to figure out.