Are you looking for cheap SEO? If you answered yes, then we’re going to take a flyer that you believe you’ll find a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow too. All sarcasm aside, we completely understand the lure of promises of cheap SEO that will help you win the Internet, TODAY (no less). The only problem is, such a thing doesn’t exist. Good SEO, the kind that really helps you for the long term, doesn’t come cheap. Or fast. What’s more, there is no such thing as cheap SEO: what you save now you’ll only pay for later, both literally and figuratively speaking, in lacklustre results, Google penalties, and the need to pay someone a second time to do a better job. As the French proverb goes, “You buy cheaply, you pay dearly.”
Or, even more eloquently put by Benjamin Franklin;
“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”
If you need more convincing to invest a little more in your SEO efforts for a lot more return on your investment, we are here to outline the true cost of cheap SEO. Read on for our top five reasons on why you should avoid ‘cheap’ SEO offerings and packages.
5 Reasons to Avoid “Cheap” SEO
1. Lackluster Results
You get what you pay for. This is especially true of low-cost-SEO. While the tweaks a low-cost SEO provider implements may show some initial gains, those won’t last. Why? Because it will be a one-and-done situation. Instead of closely monitoring, adapting, evolving your SEO, they’ll make one set of SEO changes on your website – and often bad ones at that, but more on those in a bit – then sit back and do nothing, aside from sending bogus or worthless reports every month.
Now, those bad SEO changes we were talking about? The quick and dirty ones cheap SEO providers fall back on? These can include things like keyword stuffing, bad link-building (or, the horror, link-buying) strategies, plagiarized and/or poorly written content, and a copy-and-paste, one size fits all SEO strategy designed to fake good results upfront quickly, which absolutely won’t go the distance.
Such a lacklustrer approach will, at best, produce lacklustre rankings results on SERPs and, at worst, harm your online image, earning you Google penalties and a loss of trustworthiness with your users, your potential customers, and search engines. Either way, you’ve just thrown good money, no matter how little it was, after bad SEO.
2. Basic SEO Fail
Perhaps the biggest failing of cheap SEO is that it won’t deliver basic SEO. Why? Because the basic pillar of SEO that will work both now and long into the future, no matter what algorithm changes may come, is good content. Content that has been thoughtfully created and curated specifically to your brand and offering. Content that is high-quality, relevant, and both user- and search-engine-centric.
Creating such content takes time. Time equals money.
More than time, excellent content creation, the kind that Google wants and rewards, requires effort, expertise, and genuine passion for high-quality writing that delivers excellent SEO. If an SEO practitioner and package is promising “cheap” and/or “fast” SEO results, you can rest assured they are not spending any time, effort or energy on creating any content worth reading. Indeed, any content coming out of such false promises is likely to be plagiarized or stolen, with cheap SEO practitioners making use of software packages to scrape content from similar sites to yours, and just altering it slightly. The result being content that is both stolen and poorly written, which in turn results in a bad user-experience, and demonstrates to search engines and your customers that you don’t care about either of them enough to spend the time or money on creating content that is worthy of their time.
The same theory applies to the other key aspect of basic SEO: link building and backlinks. White hat link building, the kind that is genuine and earned, and which will have a positive influence on your search engine results, too takes time and effort. Cheap SEO outfits still rely on black hat tricks: link buying, and putting quantity above quality in the hopes that Google won’t cotton on. Trust us; Google will. And they’ll penalise you for it. (See Google Penalties.)
If your SEO package can’t deliver on these two basics – excellent, relevant content, and authoritative, trust-inducing backlinks – then any money you’ve spent may as well have been thrown into the abyss.
3. Google Penalties
Cheap SEO results in worse than just poor results and a cheapened image. Increasingly, Google will penalize any dodgy SEO your site may showcase. And cheap SEO is all but guaranteed to be dodgy.
And by dodgy, we mean they will more than likely use black hat SEO tactics (sneaky techniques) to try trick search engines into ranking your website better. The problem is, search engines are onto them. More than knowing about them, they’ll actually punish you for using them. Google’s algorithms continue to update and evolve to recognize and punish any black hat SEO efforts, with the end result being penalties that are significantly more than just a cyber-slap on the wrist. Google can remove your site from its search results altogether which, obviously, can result in a drop in site traffic, online sales and leads, and so on and so forth.
It’s clear that such tactics will harm your website’s rankings, and your reputation, both now and long into the future.
Cheap, dodgy SEO hacks to look out for, and how they might impact your online reputation include:
- Keyword stuffing: this may yield high rankings initially, but no reader wants to read copy stuffed over and over again with the same word or phrase. It’s lazy and ugly, and cheapens both your content and your integrity. Plus, Google will catch up quickly enough and punish you for it. Google’s Panda algorithm recognizes and punishes poorly written content.
- Bought or non-relevant links: Google’s Penguin algorithm aggressively punishes sites with spammy links. Taking the time to build relationships that lead to high-value links and relevant sources will pay off in the long run.
- Poor site structure and design: a poor user experience (all but guaranteed when little money, and thus time, is spent on a site) is not only death to repeat users and potential customers, but can lead to worse. Security issues, SEO that continuously fails the Google test, cheapened brand…
4. Cheapened Brand
Bad, cheap SEO can be fixed. The problem is, even if the search engines forgive you – eventually – will your customers?
By employing cheap SEO tactics, you will have compromised your brand’s integrity and overall quality.
- Poor quality content, that is unengaging, uninteresting, useless and irrelevant, will have driven your site’s users elsewhere, along with their trust and their dollars.
- Poor user-experience will have sealed the deal.
- And the cookie-cutter SEO templates, the one-size-fits-all plans that most cheap SEO providers utilize, will have further alienated your site visitors: if your site looks and feels the same as all those other cheap-as-chips sites out there, it implies that you don’t care. That you too will employ a one-size-fits-all approach to your customers’ needs and wants.
You are unique, your customers are unique, and both of you deserve to be treated to thoughtful, customized solutions that are tailored to suit your own specific needs. By going cheap you are cheapening your own brand, your users’ experience of your brand, your relationship with them, and ultimately, your bottom line.
5. No Longevity
Cheap shoes equal sore feet. Cheap car parts equal roadside strandings. Cheap SEO equals poor rankings, poor reputation and no repeat business!
By investing in good SEO, which will cost a bit more in the short term, you are investing in long-term quality. Good SEO that is customized to your business, your budget, and your long-term goals will pay off in terms of longevity in rankings, reputation, repeat customers, real assets (aka quality content that is relevant for the long term and excellent backlinks), and ultimately real money in the pocket.
Good SEO strategies are designed to be a natural fit in terms of content, backlinks, design, security and budget, with an eye to building long-term, safe, sustainable results for your website and company. And while good SEO may take months to show results – experts say results can take six months to a year to take effect – the benefits will last for years and years to come.
Finally, a solid, reputable SEO company, which doesn’t promise cheap, quick, results, will know what to do with the money you do have to invest. Even if your budget is mind-blowing, your SEO can be.
There are no overnight, magic, miracle, cheap SEO fixes. But the hard work that professional, reliable, genuinely caring SEOs will put into your site and SEO, will reap rewards long after your financial investment ends.
Are you ready to invest in SEO that really works for you?
Good SEO is implemented in a way that focuses on proven, penalty-safe results; longevity; the ability to respond to and evolve with algorithm updates; and keeping your business, brand and online presence in searchers’ line of sight. What’s more, we know that our reputation is on the line as much as yours, and are willing to invest our own time and money in you! Are you ready to invest in superior SEO that will last long after you’ve stopped paying the bill? Contact our SEO Experts for a custom SEO plan that really works for you by calling toll-free 1-888-262-6687 or contact us online.