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June 26, 2008

Guaranteed Search Engine Rankings: Busting The Myth

There are many companies on the Internet, who are promising that if you give them lots of money, they will guarantee you top rankings in the search engines. Buyer Beware!!!

Let Me Cut To The Chase

We all want to be on page one of Google’s search engine results (SERPs). After all, the higher our websites rank in Google, the more money we will make. Every single one of us who have built commercial websites are looking to make money and perhaps even to get rich doing whatever it is we do at our websites.

But just because you and I both want to be on page one of Google’s SERPs, does not mean you or I will be on page one of the results. Think about this objectively: no matter who we are or what we do, we are typically challenging thousands or millions of other web pages in our niche, for the keywords that we hope will make us rich.

Understanding Search Engine Results

There are actually two sets of listings in the search engines.

  • On the left, you will see the “organic listings”, which by definition are free;
  • On the right hand side of the page in the search engine results, you will find the “Pay-Per-Click listings” (PPC). Placement in the PPC listings is an auction environment. The highest bidder on a keyword will be in the top spot in the PPC results. The second highest bid will hold the second spot, etc.
  • Comparing Organic and Pay-Per-Click Listings

    Those who wish to rank in the organic search results will need to employ Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques to improve his or her rankings. There are literally hundreds of SEO companies, who specialize in helping its clients climb in the “organic” search result listings. But, SEO is a time-consuming process that requires the efforts of specialists, who have actual knowledge and skills in manipulating the search engine results. Here is what Google has to say about this practice and its accompanying industry.

    Those who wish to employ paid search listings (PPC), which can frequently be much cheaper than getting to the top of the organic listings, will utilize one of the following services:

  • Google Adwords (http://adwords.google.com)
  • Yahoo Search Marketing (http://searchmarketing.yahoo.com)
  • 7 Search (http://7search.com/advertise/)
  • ISEDN is a bit different than the other search advertising networks. First off, they do not charge a fee for each click. Instead, they charge a quarterly placement fee. Also, instead of representing one large search engine, their ads appear on 225+ smaller search engines. (http://www.isedn.org/)
  • Organic listings are best if you can get them, because they will deliver free traffic to your website, sometimes for years. On the other hand, given the cost of developing organic rankings, it often makes more sense to pay a little bit each month for PPC search traffic, rather than to pay thousands per month, sometimes for years, just to break into the top few pages of the organic search results.

    Some Real-World Perspective

    To get your website into page one of the organic search results, can be a daunting process. To put this into perspective, I ran some popular keywords through Google to see how many search results would be found. Here we go:

  • travel – 1,410,000,000 results
  • HDTV televisions – 2,310,000
  • hybrid cars – 15,700,000
  • homes for sale – 96,000,000
  • real estate agents – 72,100,000
  • divorce attorneys – 1,640,000
  • cancer treatments – 3,610,000
  • credit card applications – 7,520,000
  • credit report – 51,700,000
  • With 1.4 Billion (with a “B”, not a “M”) pages vying for page one results in Google for the word “travel”, and 72 million pages struggling to be seen in Google for the search term “real estate agents”, is it any wonder that the people in many industries are struggling to be seen online?

    If your competitors are struggling to be at the top of the search results, so will you, unless you have extremely deep pockets. With that having been said, there are some industries where getting to page one will take an investment of millions, and then there still are No Guarantees that you will succeed in your endeavor.

    There Is More Than One Way To Skin A Cat

    At the end of each day, only ten websites will ever be on page one of the organic search results. But, pay-per-click lets anyone who has some money to spend, to break into page one of the search results.

    Depending on your bank account and your business model, SEO or PPC may be the answer to getting people to visit your website and to buy what you are selling. Depending on your keywords, the ISEDN advertising opportunity may make more sense. I have used the ISEDN network (http://www.isedb.org), and I still do use them for some of my own advertising.

    But when all is said and done, what matters is for you to get your advertising message in front of the people most likely to buy what you are selling.

    My Advertising Model Of Choice

    In my years online, I have always turned to article marketing to get my sales message in front of the people most likely to buy my products or services.

    Case in point. You are reading an article that I have written, to speak to those people who are looking for ways to advertise their business online. And at the end of this article, you will see what is called a “resource box” or the “about the author information”. The resource box, at the end of this article, is my advertisement for my business.

    If you reach the end of this article and you read my resource box, then I will have succeeded in getting you (someone in my target audience) to read my advertisement. If you click the link in the resource box, then I will have succeeded in getting a potential client to visit my website. And finally, if you buy my products or services, then my website will have accomplished its purpose – to turn its visitors into buyers.

    The interesting truth is – and few people will point this out to you – if you click the link below and visit my website, then you will have reached my website without actually passing through a search engine to get to it. That is the beauty of article marketing – you can use this advertising model to reach your target audience, regardless of how well or how badly you rank in the search engines.

    In Conclusion

    There is only one company who can guarantee you top rankings in Google, and that company is Google. Although Google could guarantee you top rankings in their search results, they won’t do it; not for any amount of money.

    So when you see some other company making pie-in-the-sky promises about how they can “guarantee your search engine rankings”, get a solid grasp on your wallet and run… the other way… fast…

    Bill Platt has written 100+ articles to promote his business online… Why? Because article marketing works miracles, for those people who actually seek to educate their readers. Bill has provided ghost writing and article distribution services to his clients, since 2001, at: http://www.thephantomwriters.com/ In 2007, Bill wrote an ebook to teach people how to duplicate his article writing success, by teaching folks how to write articles that attract publishers and readers, traffic, sales and profits:
    http://thephantomwriters.com/ebooks/article-marketing-traffic.html

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