In this series we will be reviewing the advice and information provided by Google to help better understand SEO.

The first piece of advice Google provide when reviewing SEO is as follows:

SEO is an acronym for “search engine optimization” or “search engine optimizer.” Deciding to hire an SEO is a big decision that can potentially improve your site and save time, but you can also risk damage to your site and reputation. Make sure to research the potential advantages as well as the damage that an irresponsible SEO can do to your site.

What Google are referring to is the fact that some seo companies don’t follow Google’s guidelines, thus damaging a website’s visability on their search engine results pages (sometimes referred to as SERP’s)

So the question is, how do you tell the difference between a genuine seo and a fake? It is very difficult sometimes, but you will generally find an seo will happily explain in practical terms what needs to be done to improve your website seo, alongside estimates for works that need to be completed. They should not use jargon to explain what needs to be done. They should explain everything in a business like fashion. A proposal should be straight forward to follow, listing the keywords and/or phrases you wish to target. A timescale for the works to be completed should also be included.

Finally, if any further works are required, these should be included seperately to the proposal. This is an important area as in many cases you will not need to invest in ongoing seo, unless your website is targeting highly competitive keywords (in the 10,000’s)

The initial process of seo should take days, weeks and months, depending on the size of your website. For most small businesses, one or two days initial work should be adequate, followed by a months management support and regular reviews (whether quarterly, six monthly or annually) A good seo will be able to guide you on when to schedule reviews.