Biggest Surprise of 2012 for Google’s Spam Team

Today we wanted to share with you an observation made by Google’s Mark Cutts in a latest GoogleWebmasterHelp video.

Answering a question coming from our soil (Surrey, UK, to be precise): “What has been the biggest surprise of 2012 for you and your spam team?” Mark, as vague and diplomatic as he usually is, actually displays what seems to be genuine surprise at the fact that website owners still pay for cheap, shady SEO (Search Engine Optimisation).

We have been asked this year numerous times to quote on helping sites significantly hit by algorithm updates (i.e. dropped in rankings), or even straightforward penalised, with panicked site owners wanting us to “just fix it – fast!”. Thus, we think it is still important to share the important message that the “Face of Google” is giving site owners in this short film: do not trust “spammy”, black-hat (=dubious) SEO shortcuts and unscrupulous people trying to sell them!

We agree with Mark Cutts that optimisation is not a “magic wand”, nor something that you can just pay for without putting any though or effort into. We know, it sounds obvious, right? Yet, time and time again, we are faced with two situations where website owners:

  • Ask us “How much is SEO”?
  • Busy business owners wanting to “pay and forget”..

Which we believe is why the spam emails with too-good-to-be-true offers we all seem to receive every day seem so tempting, at least to some. Consider this though: would you pay an architect (on the other side of the globe) a just few hundred pounds to design your house and expect a great result? Or would you hire someone to be your company’s MD, or even a secretary, without so much as interviewing them?

And yet it seems perfectly OK to trust someone completely with one of the most important and/or efficient marketing (and often sales!) tools your company has without giving it much thought or simply accepting that there is no gain without (at least a little bit of) “pain”.

The year 2012 brought enormous changes to the industry that was thus far mainly associated with “gaming Google”. Much to our delight, as explained in our post from end of October “Evolution of SEO”, all is moving towards excellence and long-term, white hat strategies. To be fair, it is true that some techniques, acceptable and widely used just a year ago, can now be a cause of serious issues. But it is Google’s right and lifeblood to try and keep ahead of the curve in the quest for most useful, unique and not manipulated search results.

We are an experienced and trusted SEO consultancy firm with a track record of delivering results. We can help you make your website optimized, user-friendly and unique so that you can enjoy real, sustainable rankings in SERPs (search engine results pages) and increased organic traffic to your site.

We offer a bespoke solution to each client, so contact us today to discuss your site and desired outcomes.

Written by Karolina Kotwica

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