I’m writing this important article because I’m noticing a big scam happening in the SEO and marketing industry. SEO companies are now trying to take ownership of your website. In this article, I’m going to go over what the scam looks like and why you should be wary of it.
I’ve been transparent in that I believe most SEO companies are flat out scams! Watch the video below for my honest opinions on the SEO industry.
For some reason, not a lot of people are talking about this. I’m speaking up because I’m tired of business owners getting taken advantage of by shady SEO and marketing companies.
The scam is simple; An SEO company will offer you a free website if you sign up for their SEO services. Some of them will even offer to completely redesign your site on their platform to make it more “SEO friendly”.
A free website? Sounds awesome! Here is why this isn’t a great deal.
When these companies offer a free website, it’s to get you locked into their platform. Almost always, they have full control over your site and the backend and make it so you don’t have access to it. You won’t be able to make updates, won’t have control over content or images, and will have no idea what they are installing or doing to your site.
You’re essentially giving your house key to a stranger.
You wouldn’t give your house keys to a stranger, right? Your website is your online home and the most powerful marketing tool you have for your business. No company should ever have full control over your website.
What would happen if:
- That company goes under?
- You accidentally miss a payment?
- Your business expands and you need to make significant website updates?
If you didn’t have access to your website, you wouldn’t be able to handle these problems.
How to Spot This Scam
The goal of this post isn’t to bash legitimate marketing or SEO companies. I don’t think that every company is bad, but it’s important to be informed so you can spot when something is a scam.
If you are looking to hire somebody to help with your marketing or SEO, here are some helpful tips to make sure you don’t get into a bad situation.
Make sure you read the fine print before signing any contracts. Some questions to consider:
- Can you cancel at any time?
- What happens if you decide to cancel?
- How is billing handled?
If you are hiring a company, it’s likely that someone will need access to your site at some point. It may be to install plugins, write blog posts, or update your pages. Generally, that is fine, as long as you still have full access as well. But before you give people keys to your castle, consider the following:
- Who is getting access to the site? If you are on WordPress, it’s best practice to create separate users. Don’t give people your username and password.
- What level of access do they need? A writer doesn’t need administrator rights to your website. If they are asking for that, question it.
- Do you have backups of your site? This seems obvious, but it’s shocking how many people don’t, or don’t know where those backups are located. Whenever you allow someone access to your website, there is potential for things to break. Make sure you can restore to a previous version if something goes wrong.
Avoid A Bad Situation
Don’t get taken advantage of by shady SEO and marketing companies. We hope this article helped inform you of what to watch out for.
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