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Should you believe your SEO stats.

Apr9

Written by:
2009/04/09 09:14 AM RssIcon

You are a SEO professional. On your site you boast some successful SEO jobs. You have clients testimony proving your results. But are they truthful?

SEO is a cut throat business. I have received many SEO promises. Guarantee to 10 on Google. First page on Google or your money back. These and many more promises. But can I believe them?

So I browse to the sites of these SEO professionals and am amazed at what they can achieve. There are stats, testimonies and all sorts of other advertising, gimmick things on the site.

Example, one site quotes that they boosted their clients site from round about 4000 page views per month to over 150 000 page views per month. Now is this true? how can we check this out?

So I browsed my way to Alexa and compete.com. The Alexa ranking for this particular site sits well over 1 000 000 rank mark. Compete.com does show a spike in the web traffic, but in the last two months it has dropped down at a rate of about 90%.

While these stats are not a science in themselves. There are many problematic areas in them, they can give you an estimation as to the forecast and average of a sites traffic details. When there is such a vast difference, as in the case of Alexa, do we take it that the majority of the visitors to this particular site do not have the Alexa tool bar? That could well be. But checking out other stats for extra confirmation is always a good thing.

Clearly this type of SEO is not what people are looking for. What you want is sustainability. You want your site views and visitors to be at a constant rate. Your increase should be steady upward. This peak for one month and then return to normal the next few is not, in my opinion a proper result for SEO.

I compare it to an ultra marathon. In such a race, any one can sprint to the front. But how long can you keep up at that pace. Your stamina will soon be completed, you will run out of steam, and in no time the other runners will catch up, over take, and you will be left breathless, a few hundred meters from the start. Where as the actual race is well over 70km. The winner is not who is first at the start, but who is first at the Finish, who can last the distance. Who can outpace the competition, who can overcome the trials, tests, and endure to the end.

Is your SEO effort a one hit wonder or are they lasting impressions?

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2 comment(s) so far...


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Re: Should you believe your SEO stats.

No I can't claim such results, I'm the slow and steady type, my best effort to date, is taking a website from 6816 Uniques Back In July 08 to 15224 Uniques in March 09. Whoa is me, I'm such a failure, thats not even 3 times as many visitors, i'm off to the corner to suck my thumb...LOL...

Being an SEO, I get these emails several times a day, and my clients are always forwarding them to me, and often smile at the so-called results.

I've stopped in at a meat market, a place were you can hire people for pennies, usually Indian that will work for nothing, I find it entertaining looking at what people are advertising for.
One "SEO" company were looking for people to click on links, the company would give the successful applicant an IP masking or changing program, and all you had to do was go down a list of links, and click on each and every link, when the list of 100 or so links was done, you click the IP changer, and click through the list again.

Now I don't know what this was supposed to prove, because the links would have all be bounces, but perhaps they weren't telling the clients about the bounces, my point though is with "SEO's Cowboys" that use that sort of tactic, you have to wonder how we get clients.

However people do tend to find my website or blog, and do contact me daily about doing SEO for them, now it's just educating them about the price of SEO and that for $350 a month, no I won't work on their website full time.

Regards Lynn


By Lynny SEObyCANZ on  2009/04/10 08:13 AM
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Re: Should you believe your SEO stats.

Lynn,

You make a good point. There are various ways to inflate stats. I did some research, and tests and wrote a blog post about this very thing.

You don't even need to change the ip spoofing address manually. There are programs available that will work through various proxy servers, refresh the page, and move on to the next. You can even set the refresh rate, making it look like the user at least stayed a while.

I could even write such a program, and even randomly spider the menu structure and refresh 2-3 pages. This way we can fool the bounce rate.

The point is that stats are good, but can be manipulated. It's all about honesty isn't it. About trust and track records. About sustainability. IMO, any good SEO project will last longer, as well as take time to achieve ones goals. That's the natural form of things.

BTW, cool site, nice information and good articles.
You got a blog I can link to in my blog roll?

By Robert Bravery on  2009/04/10 08:14 AM
 
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