View Full Version : SEO, is it worth it?

01-02-2006, 09:34 PM
I have little or no knowledge of SEO. I was just wondering what everyone else's take on it is? Is it really worth it to pay one of these SEO firms to get your name out there if you'rs just starting out with a new web based business? Does it make that big of a difference?

01-03-2006, 02:46 AM
I don't have any first-hand experience with it, but I know there are people who swear by using SEO on your website. There is a lot you can do on your own though without having to pay someone to do it. This site (http://www.seoresearchlabs.com/) has a lot of good pointers on the subject, including a free downloadable book titled Search Engine Optimization Fast Start (http://www.seoresearchlabs.com/seo-book.php). It's definitely worth the time to read.

01-03-2006, 02:57 AM
i personally dont think paying a company to do advertisements helps websites just starting out. the biggest thing that helps is correct meta tags and one link from another site that is indexed(if you are talking about tenacious resolve you are indexed). but mayby after 2-3 months maybe google ads but thats as much as i would advertise since the only ads i go to is google ads since they sometimes have information on what im looking for.

01-03-2006, 04:54 AM
Yeah those pay sites aren't a good idea imo. Now days with SEO what matters is things like what sites you link to and what sites link to yours and the signal to noise ratio on your pages, e.g. cleaner (X)HTML is better.

01-03-2006, 01:03 PM
It isn't out of your reach to do a good deal of SEO work yourself. Here are some good links:


It's important to note that SEO is not a magic solution. But by gaining an understanding of how search engines work and through good marketing over time you will improve your search engine ranking.

Hope this helps!

01-03-2006, 01:11 PM
Well, i've been working in an SEO company for almost a year.. And so far, I can tell that there's progress. You just need to learn the right marketing strategy.:)

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01-04-2006, 02:46 AM
personally I think SEO companies are bottom feeders.

I know so many people who despite advice have thrown literally thousands of dollars at these companies and have nothing to show for it except some nice laminated statistics.

I am sure there are good SEO companies out there but I have yet to meet one, I have met several of thier representatives in clients offices and to date have yet to meet one who had even the slightest understanding of what the internet is about, some of them were hilarious in thier lack of basic knowledge (and yes the clients still used them because they used terms like `vertical markets` and `horizontally scaled`)

If your site is relevant , interesting, dynamic well hosted and accessible then you are going to get indexed, if your site is interesting enough to get linked to from other sites (preferably important/useful ones) then you are going to rank higher.

01-04-2006, 04:48 AM
personally I think SEO companies are bottom feeders.
Problem is, the bottom feeders give the good ones a bad name. I used to hang around in a forum whose primary focus is SEO, and believe me, you can learn a lot about the subject by hanging around in a place like that.

One of the biggest things I came away from there with is this: If anyone who purports to be a SEO specialist claims to guarantee that your site will get indexed by [insert search engine name here], that they can get you a certain page rank or anything of that nature, run just as fast as you can the other way.

Unscrupulous SEO specialists will also advocate changes to your site that the search engines view as spam. The result of which is far from the increase in page rank, etc. It's stuff that will get you banned from the search engines!

Knowledge is power, and the more you know yourself about SEO, the more you can do on your own - or know what to watch out for when hiring someone to do it for you.

01-04-2006, 11:47 AM
One of the biggest things I came away from there with is this: If anyone who purports to be a SEO specialist claims to guarantee that your site will get indexed .... run just as fast as you can the other way.

That's not true, any SEO worth their salt can get a site indexed. It's only rankings for valuable search terms which cannot be guaranteed.

Like VJ though I have to agree, there are many SEO's who are either incompetent or 'black hat' (a term used to describe an unscrupulous individual who games the search engines by going against their guidelines) who will nevertheless take your money. The minority of SEO's (including myself) suffer as a result of the perception of the SEO 'industry' this generates.

To address the original question, SEO may be worth it. This really depends on the site in question though; the level of competition, type of site, target demographic and many other factors. Unfortunately this is the sort of site specific advice you will find difficult to gain from SEO forums (as good as they are).

SEO isn't magic, or difficult, but it is one of those areas (very much like web design, in fact) in which a huge amount of people wrongly think 'I can do this'
and then read some bad advice or don't read enough and either fail to get anywhere or end up getting their site penalised or banned. There are SEO professionals for a reason; that being that it's a full time job that requires immense amounts of research and testing.

So how do you judge a good from a bad SEO firm or individual? *shrug* :) In the same way you would with any other business proposition, I suppose...

- Adam

01-04-2006, 06:32 PM
Thanks for all the advice.

For the record, this is for a new site that I am still in the process of working out. This will be more a business venture that I am hoping to get off the ground this year. That is why I am even considering SEO at this point.

01-05-2006, 01:13 AM
Take my advice and get some decent SEO input in the build stage. Often, an SEO fix after the site has been built is not enough...