1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Biggest Problem in Selling SEO to industry "Outsiders"!?

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by SEO Sage, Aug 5, 2013.

?

What is your most commonly met customer archetype?

  1. The Middleman

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. The Unfaithful Price Dropper

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. The Eternak Skeptic (Hater!)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Barterers (ol' skinflint ye-haw)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Internet Newbies (What's a Search Engine?)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Hardheaded people

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. Clueless Website Owners

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. Music "Artists" ("Yeah just colaboratin wit Pepsi on this new Video")

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  9. Other (Please post!)

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    The word "outsiders" meaning the people who are not already connected into IM in some way or another.

    While it may be common to buy and sell links when you are a part of a community like BHW, it is unheard of by most traditional businesses. Providing a good service on a forum like this one, can make someone a lot of money, if they deliver quality. Selling to one another here and in other forums is great, but selling to the fresh open market has a lot more potential.

    However, the open market is full of pitfalls that are unique to selling SEO as a service. One big problem for me has always been trying to articulate the dire need for search rankings to my customers. I am easily frustrated with clients and many seem like simpletons at first. Although, I am always courteous to them no matter what. (unless they are unreasonable or try to take advantage)

    Some other problems I have faced in my day have been:
    • Outsourcers and Middlemen (I NEVER deal with these anymore, learned that is the best way to deal with them!)
    • Price droppers.. (some of the worst trash alive, they try to half or quarter funding at around 3 months, just when the link building should be at it's peak!)
    • Eternal Skeptics and people who question your ability. (again pure scum, best dealt with by not dealing with them)
    • Favor for Favor people. (NO! I will not F'n work for BARTERS!) (The people who do these things usually offer peanuts work for a "page 1 ranking"... uff!)
    • Explaining the importance of keyword research to people. (Nobody ever reads the damn customer Guide I created! Doh!)
    • Adamant hard-heads. (You can't tell them anything, without it going in one ear and out the other...)
    • Dealing with a client's on-page SEO. (some act as a middleman between me and their "developers", then there are the DIY crowd who need constant repetition and coddling, the worst are the ones who flat out want you to do that work when they only paid for the suggestions!)
    • Music "Artists"... (blah, no comment! Share your own horror stories about this one please, I know we all have quite a few!)

    Anyway I can go on for hours with the different archetypes I have had the displeasure of contending with while selling SEO. I hope everyone has some fun or funny stories to share. I want to poll the different archetypes, so please vote and also post if you can! The data will be very interesting to all involved, I promise! ;)
     
  2. BENNY8877

    BENNY8877 Supreme Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    1,278
    Likes Received:
    1,087
    Occupation:
    Wallet Inspector
    Location:
    In my mom's basement
    You need to add "People who have been left disappointed/screwed by guys selling them SEO who had no idea what they were doing"
     
  3. BadyBoySEO

    BadyBoySEO Regular Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2013
    Messages:
    320
    Likes Received:
    94
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Biggest problem in my experience is that the majority of uninitiated clients do not understand that SEO can take time and you can't guarantee results. They just see their competitor ranking first and think if pay enough I can be there.
     
  4. craigygee

    craigygee Regular Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    209
    Occupation:
    Chef
    Location:
    313
    Home Page:
    Op everything you stated is absolutely correct. We're going back and forth right now with a new client trying to strike a deal and although he completely get's it, He was burned by his last seo guy who he paid thousands to for 6 long tail keywords that got 0 monthly searches.

    I did a nice analysis and 10 page report starting with me following the paper trail his old seo left and the 6 keywords he used. I printed out keyword tool data of the keywords and showing that he did not get any increase in sales, hits or customers because the keyword phrases the guy ranked them for received 0 monthly searches and that's where he got scammed.

    It took his old seo guy 3 months to get them first page and he built maybe 30 backlinks total, he did no onpage seo, didn't write any articles or anything.

    I then printed out pages of his website both onpage and the source code showing that no onpage optimization was done and that the guy even placed a hidden link back to his site in their source.

    Then I did a keyword research and analysis of potential keywords receiving anywhere from 800 monthly searches to 40,000 monthly searches, showing low to medium competition and outlining the difference between building on targeted keywords that people are searching to reach businesses like his and the old seo keywords receiving no monthly searches.

    Then we wrote up a plan and offered a few packages starting at 1600$ a month and ending at 3200$ a month for our service. They have seen our present and past websites, work and samples, we've showed him the metrics of our recent client and how our seo tripled his local business with in 3 months , so the guy knows that we're the best in our area and that we know our stuff.

    The problem is still that he got burned by his old seo guru last time and is having a hard time putting up the down payment that we need to get started. We've been playing hardball right back though, showing them we aren't desperate what so ever and although we are hungry, we are not starving. They have been blowing us up like crazy trying to come to an agreement but through the years I learned to NEVER sell yourself short no matter what. Doesn't matter if we are sinking and about to crash and burn, desperation never ends well. Hopefully we settle an agreement tomorrow but we'll see.

    The best way is to suck them in to you instead of approaching or soliciting them, also being able to provide solid references, samples and metrics along with a nice analysis report broken down so even a someone who isn't computer literate can understand the need for seo and our services.



    Exactly.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. mugdug

    mugdug Newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    11
    Occupation:
    google spanker
    Location:
    UK
    agreed, never sell yourself short, I have met every type of client listed in the survey at least once, the best one is the client that drops you (to save money) as soon as you get him into first position. or the numnut that cant understand why you can't get his site above the paid listings without paying.

    Allot of it is our own fault for being so am ammature, we should be like doctors, I.E we look at the site, we ask them how many leads they need. we tell them a price, they cut us a check, we do the job - end of.

    Asking a client what he wants other than volume of leads, type of leads, and qualifications of buyers - is stupid, clients need telling, not asking
     
  6. theseodude

    theseodude Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2012
    Messages:
    303
    Likes Received:
    88
    The guy that wants to pay only after becoming number 1
    The guy whose budget for seo is $100
    the guy that asks too many technical questions (if you dont know what the hell a backlink is, I am not going to waste my time explaining it.)
    the guy that wants some free services thrown in (if you pay for seo, I am not going to design your website for free)
    the guy that pretends to be a legit customer just to get free information
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  7. Reyone

    Reyone Elite Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Messages:
    1,577
    Likes Received:
    1,277
    Occupation:
    Hunter
    Dealing with the US while not having the company based there is a major problem for me. Even I got a team of sales in the US, clients dont feel good by sending the work overseas; even though all of the agreements, the strategy, the proposal, the SEO team and other elements are great, I still feel this is the major problem for me.
     
  8. VinceC

    VinceC Elite Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,616
    Likes Received:
    728
    Others - I not into seo, but in mobile app biz. It the prospects' frds that are creating problem. Kept on bombarding questions as if they are really an expert in this field.
     
  9. jinsandy

    jinsandy Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2008
    Messages:
    374
    Likes Received:
    81
    Im always interested in people calling themselves SEO gurus.

    out of all the marketing things to pitch, I hate SEO. The mere fact of keeping up with Google is just too much for me. Ill stick with media buys and content marketing (it is and it isnt seo)
     
  10. usnraver

    usnraver Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2009
    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    17
    Occupation:
    Web Design & Online Marketing
    Location:
    Arizona
    Barters are the worst - I have only done it a few times - and always my services far out weight what I receive in return - more like donate
     
  11. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    This is actually for sellers and not buyers. A thread like that may be in the works some time soon; As I have bought many many services over the years, along with many problems! hah :D

    Those lazy entitled ones indeed piss me off too! They are easily dispatched when asked to submit their requests in writing!

    That is indeed a great way to get someone hooked. I believe in quality service as well. I usually always offer free keyword research and ranking analysis reports, but rarely do people ever take them. So many lazy asses in business today! Anyway, I guess I'll just start sending them without even asking and see if that helps with the fence sitters. Good tip man!



    Indeed, although the art of telling customers things is not something everyone can easily develop. ;)


    The low budget ones are usually the "musicians", they don't amuse me.
    I usually tell people to read my customer guide before asking me things that can easily be found on google, if they are pests. However, if not, I try to give a fast 3 min crash course... It's brutal!
    Indeed! Or the other way around: "Does this website come with a first page ranking?" ... WhAt?!
    The fake customer, yes indeed I can usually spot those quite quickly and dispatch them with a lot of complete twaddle.


    You need to hook up with a US company and share the leads, then they can handle sales and you can handle the workers. ;)


    Ugh! Probably middlemen trying to lowball you!


    I like SEO, it really isn't all that bad when you enjoy writing. Creating content is fun in any medium.


    When asked to bater my reply is usually: "This isn't a charity", so that correlates with what you said for sure! :D
     
  12. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    I'm always looking for more feedback on the issue of customer relations. It is a very good thing to look at in this wide market. The data that we can all bring to this table will help anyone interested in improving their customer relations and sales potential. ;)
     
  13. chuladi

    chuladi Newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2013
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    3
    I dont think specialized services should be sold to "outsiders", even though they have more potential. Sell them something worth less work like social media, which everyone believes they need and keep your high value services for those who "get it". JMO.
     
  14. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    I actually do like that ideology! Personally, I have thought about it before; "just send spun crap to the customers who don't know a thing about SEO". However, I haven't been able to bring myself to do it! There really are a lot of pests that deserve nothing more though... It's such a hard choice for me, lol! I guess I'll just save that for the customers who rub me the wrong way :p
     
  15. GreyKnight

    GreyKnight Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2013
    Messages:
    399
    Likes Received:
    200
    Home Page:
    Biggest problem is the one who wants big results but refuse to pay big money.
    Other problem are other SEO competitors who guarantee a ranking on page one or even top #5, although the keyword is super-though and saturated with authority websites that have >10 years of being authority sites, not to mention that most "top-gurus" SEO only use dated technique like link-wheel, use spam comments directly to money site, and don't know anything about link diversity.
     
  16. chuladi

    chuladi Newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2013
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    3
    I dont think you need to send them spun crap, but no need to really go through all the drama. Sometimes you want to do the best in all circumstances and you realize there is a reason some people eat mc donalds and others eat at five star restaurant. Give them a big mac. Save the filet mignon.
     
  17. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    How about those customers who want to 'meet' with you? Face to face... I don't know why exactly, but it really urks me for a few reasons. The main one being that, how can I meet someone a thousand miles away? And if they can't meet me, I now somehow don't qualify to help them succeed online? LOL! Had a moron use this crap on me yesterday for a web design. I told the idiot we have a portfolio from all over the world, then he was okay until I said 500 dollar minimum investment on a design... what a lame cheap person that one had to be!
     
  18. GreyKnight

    GreyKnight Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2013
    Messages:
    399
    Likes Received:
    200
    Home Page:
    If the customer is located in the same city as yours, I don't see any harm in coming over. But if it is located in other cities, I usually defers for a Skype conversation. For some serious client, they agree to pay me my airfare, which is fine by me. 500 dollar for a design is pretty low, I usually put 1500 dollar minimum on any projects.
     
  19. SEO Sage

    SEO Sage Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    36
    Occupation:
    Search Engine Marketing
    Location:
    The Big Apple
    Home Page:
    I meet locally too, unless under 1000 bucks. Travel expenses paid will get me outta the house too, lol. As for 500, I figure it fair because it is less than 3 days of work. I will raise the bar once the business presence is greater in the right places ;)
     
  20. therage

    therage Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    Messages:
    968
    Likes Received:
    448
    Occupation:
    Strategist / Psychologist
    Location:
    Stupidity Makes Me Puke!
    I am not a seo company by any means but this relates to other industries as well. You get clueless people all the time asking for top quality work a big studio pays for. The price they offer is literally $0.03 per hour on a budget. In my various investments I have been asked to 2D Animate a hentai series for less than $20. I have been asked several times by indie studios or even top end investors to create games for them for under $1k, and it has to rival Gears of War 3. They want me to viral, market, create, and do the impossible for less than chinese sweat shop wages. The real irony is that they call me a crook, villain, a asshole obsessed with money when THEY are the crook, villain, asshole cheapskate obsessed with money.

    I love the ones that come to me and ask me to BEAT Fiverr prices for video animation, even some referring me to a freelancer profile saying "I can get this guy to do my 100 episodes of work for $15 and he will get it done in 1 hour." I have also been told that people "Hire" artists, coders and designers for the game industry that are talented for under $5 per hour. These people also claim that they work hard and don't care about the money. I laugh and simply just stop responding to such idiots as most of their "projects" will die in the marketing stages before they even see a few bucks.