Watch out for companies who say they can get you on the first page of Google

Recently some of my clients have been contacted on the telephone from people who claim to be representatives from Google. They are claiming that they can get your website on the first page of Google for a monthly fee. I was concern so i contact our friends at Catalyst Design Solutions to find out if these companies were legit.

After speaking with them it was apparent that If you get one of these calls, I would be very wary, as after questioning one of the “representatives” it was apparent that they were not from Google and what they were actually offering was different from what they first said.

Some of my clients thought this was a good offer as their website was new and not on the first page of Google. The person on the phone claimed they could instantly get their website on the first page and offered them a choice of 5 keywords, i.e. The client picks 5 keywords such as, dog walking in Manchester, pet sitting in Manchester etc…The Company then promises to get the website on the first page when a visitor types in these search terms into Google.

The only problem with this offer was that the person on the end of the phone did not mention that the listing would appear on the right hand side of google and not the left.

When you do a search on google, say for, martial arts classes in Liverpool, Google will display websites it deems most relevant to that search term. It then displays the results down the left hand side of the page and the sponsored results (ones which people have paid for) down the right hand side, and it’s these results the company is trying to sell you.

These listings in the right hand side of google are known as Pay Per Click or PPC advertising. The way it works is that a person who owns a website bids for a keyword, say, “café in Birmingham”. For this example we will say that you bid 10p for the keyword “café in Birmingham”. Google will look at the other bids and if you have bid the most, you will have the top position on the left hand side of Google.

If you have the second highest bid, then you will be second from the top on the right hand side and so on.

If a visitor goes on the internet and types “café in Birmingham” into google, your listing should appear at the top of the right hand side. If the visitor decides to click on the listing, you will be charged 10p, if nobody clicks it you will not be charged.

This is how the company makes their money. You give them 5 keyword terms, pay them x per month, they set up the PPC account and bid for the keywords and you will appear on the right hand side of google.

In reality, for a small business to get on the first page of Google (on the right hand side) the company will only have to bid between 2p – 10p per click. Even if you get 100 clicks per month (which is very unlikely) you will only be charged £2-£10 by google. If the company does this for you then they will charge you betwwen £50 – £100 per month, then it might be worth setting up an account yourself and save your self £40 – £90 per month. Plus if it’s not working for you then you won’t be tied into a contract the company will get you to sign.

Some of these companies are very good at convincing you that they will get you to the top of google and you will get loads of business from there services. I say, if you want to embark on a PPC advertising campaign, type “Google adwords” into Google or go to adwords.google.co.uk . Funnily enough, Google makes it very easy to set up an Adword account. If you feel PPC advertising is for you, I would have a go at setting up an account, you could save yourself a packet.

Thanks to Paul Watson Solicitor in Middlesbrough for supporting us

One Response to “Watch out for companies who say they can get you on the first page of Google”

  • Craig B.:

    Another great post Jon.

    There are many companies out there who are very savvy and will do anything to use a prospects unknowing mind against them to earn a good few quid (or hundred quid in many cases).

    Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a tough method of marketing. PPC can be expensive and unnecessary for a start-up or small business.
    SEO or better put, organic SEO is where you optimise your site to naturally rank in results, a combination of link building, great keyword relevant and quality content and quantity combined will get you up the top – but to promise a number 1 spot is a terrible ploy.

    SEO should be used for long-term optimisation and PPC should be used for short-term campaigns, such as sales and other special events.

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