I don’t know about you, but I find everyday when searching the web, websites high ranked in Google search which are pretty much bad – irrelevant, spammy, bad products. This means someone is promoting this junk in there. SEO Consultants like you and me are doing a bad job making possible for these awful websites to reach to the top. For me this is bad practice…
While money are important with no doubt I still believe that promoting a bad website at the top of SERPs will be no good for the users first and, in the long run, bad for these websites since people will come and go without buying anything.
Do You Want to Promote Junk or Stick to Quality Businesses Only?
A lot can be said about answering this question. The bottom line is these are very different business models with different goals and metrics for success.
For the SEO consultant willing to promote anything, there are tons of websites out there and potential customers. However, something you should consider (and to be honest, this is what makes me not want to do this model) that a lot of these sites selling junk will be awful customers. They won’t appreciate your services and will try to negotiate your fee down to a crappy level. No thanks…
For the SEO consultant who sticks to high quality stuff exclusively, there are definitely a lot less possible clients since most businesses suck (let’s be real here ok?). However, usually businesses which are good are involved with other businesses who are good as well. Like attracts like so there’s a good chance you’ll get referral clients who are easy to work with, pay you well, appreciate what you do, and make your life easy.
Bottom line, what do you want? Lots of clients who are pains in the ass or people who want your services desperately and are willing to pay you top dollar?
What are the Risks Of Both These Models?
Well to start, the risks of being an “SEO mercenary” for anyone is that you can have your reputation as a consultant damaged and have your name tied to an infamously bad, or even criminal, client.
Although unlikely, it’s possible that you could get roped into a lawsuit or criminal probe if it’s shown that you knowingly were involved in a bad operation. Sorry but that risk isn’t worth it at any cost in my opinion.
On the other hand, the only “risk” that you face sticking to quality sites is that you’ll have too much money and too much happiness helping businesses that deserve to have lots of clients.
It’s starting to seem obvious to me what the best choice is…
The intangible benefits of having high quality clients
I’ve touched on a few of these but let’s be clear. Having great clients who are honest business people providing good service at a fair price is the best option. These clients aren’t going to disappear because your service will have made them a lot more money. This means that they’ll still be paying your fee for the foreseeable future.
There’s also a sense of pride that develops by doing good work. I don’t know about you but I want nothing to do with shady businesses that would just as soon rip me off and not pay me than sell me some junky product. Who wants that?
Another benefit, and this is a big one, is that good clients that are great businesses have a tendency to follow the “Pay It Forward” principle by telling their business colleagues at the Chamber of Commerce or online networking groups about you. There’s nothing like a “Once I hired him, he increased my website traffic by 75% in the last month alone which has made my phone ring and shopping cart sing way more than it used to”-type testimonial to bring business in.
Bottom line, stick to high quality clients, businesses which are having excellent products to sale. They pay better, there’s no risk to your reputation, and they’ll refer you a lot more often to other good clients.
About author. Vic is conducting Web Usability tests and is doing Search Engine Optimization for a Toronto Internet Marketing company. He is also a seasoned front end web developer building websites for Toronto clients.