Are you a bad SEO apple? You know, the type of person who guarantees rankings in less than a week by targeting awful spam like SEO tactics to increase rankings quickly? I think since the search marketing industry is still relatively new we haven’t gone through a nice swift cleanup of the business model yet. I can definitely smell it coming. I think the black hat people are slowly starting to realize that their tactics do not work like they once used to back in the day. Gaming the system does not benefit anyone and it certainly does not help a business grow a successful brand online. Rankings should never be the only goal for any business with an online marketing approach.
If you are not sure if you are a bad SEO apple or if you just hired one here are some characteristics that might explain things a bit further:
You are always looking for the quickest possible way to achieve rankings for a website. This type of thought process will eventually lead and individual to attempting the wrong type of efforts to build traffic to a website. When you fall into this type of mindset you start to lose focus of what it really means to grow a business online.
When you work with a client or a website your plan of attack or strategy looks a lot like a science project rather than an online marketing plan. If your plan consists of a dash of this and a pinch of that than you are most likely heading down a path of black hat fever. Building a business online requires many different marketing efforts working at the same time.
You almost never use words like marketing, branding or growth to explain your website business goals. You mostly use words like guarantee, rankings, less than a month which are slowly going to disappear in the very near future.
Your personal website has almost nothing in the search results announcing any new PR or any visible social media profiles because that takes time and requires work along with proactive marketing efforts. A business that can successfully grow a website online should have some material in the search results on their own business brand especially if they have been in the industry for some time now.
If nobody in the industry virtually knows who you are and you have been doing this for years that could be a sign. You don’t have to be popular but someone should have some chatter about your business online somewhere. If you naturally market your business online like many people someone should have something to say somewhere.
Taking a non-white hat internet marketing approach could be detrimental to a black hat SEO person’s overall success. The search engines are redefining themselves and slowly websites and web pages that do not have some sort of solid online marketing history that the search engines can read and follow will become invisible over time.