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Although hiring a marketing agency or online marketing specialist to promote our website , is the best thing we can do for our company, unfortunately there are scammers in this industry as well. How can you tell if the promotion of your site on the Internet is not going as well as it should?
How to recognize a fair offer?
Before we move on to dishonest agency tricks, let’s remind ourselves what an honest offer should contain. A professional marketing agency should offer us:
- possibility to select specific ads
- advertising the site on social media
- Key phrases matched to our website and target audience
- a number of other activities selected to suit our industry
Website promotion should include diverse activities on many fronts that are tailored to the needs of our site and industry.
Website promotion on the Internet – you don’t get login access to your site
Getting a marketing agency to promote your website is the best way to attract potential customers. Of course, to promote a website, an agency will need some time. If you do not have full access to the site’s backend during this period, this is perfectly normal.
However, if the agency still refuses to give you the data for the website after you have finished making changes to it, this should be a warning signal to any client. Once you make the final payment for the agency’s services, you should receive full administrative access to the backend from them. This way you can make further changes in the future or even hand over the promotion of the site to another agency.
You do not have access to your advertising campaigns
The same goes, of course, for access to Google Ads or social media accounts. It is on Google and Facebook that you can create advertising campaigns that will attract traffic to your site. A specific budget is specified for such campaigns. If you don’t have access to these accounts or don’t get an accurate report, you have no insight into how the budget is being used or even whether some of it is going straight to the agency’s account.
Website promotion – an unfair contract
The agency’s dishonest intentions can often be spotted as soon as you read the contract. The hooks can be many.
Find out what activities the agency plans to do to promote the website
First of all, read carefully the section that describes the actions to be taken by the agency to promote the website. Is he going to use all the ways to promote the website like social media campaigns, sponsored links, advertising the website in Google maps, etc.? The more activities planned, the greater the chance that website promotion will increase our position in search results.
Check the deadline for carrying out activities to promote the website
Then carefully read the section that specifies the deadline for the services in question. Although promoting a website is a longer process, there should still be a clear date in the contract when the transfer of data to the site or Google Ads account and billing occurs. If this deadline is not met, a rogue agency can drag out the order indefinitely.
Make sure the company does not offer you contrived services
Still returning to the services described in the contract – it is worth checking whether the services offered actually exist. Of course, this will be the case with Google Ads campaigns or social media promotion, but already, for example, a service like updating your business card on Google is non-existent – it’s free.
If we suspect that a marketing agency wants to deceive us in any way, it is worthwhile to consult with another agency and ask them for a quote. It may turn out that a lot of the services offered by the first agency are not intended to promote the website, but only to deceive us.
Site promotion – hindered contact is also a form of fraud
While we may not lose money this way, and promotional activities may continue to be effective, not answering our questions is also unethical behavior. Every customer has the right to know how the promotion of their website is going, what activities are currently being implemented and what results are being achieved. He should also know in advance what costs await him.
If the agency doesn’t answer the phone, doesn’t respond to emails, and is constantly disposing of us, alarm bells should go off in our heads. This may indicate problems in the future, so it is worth ending cooperation with such an agency right away.
Website promotion must be visible – not just on reports
Chances are, your marketing agency is eager to show you reports showing graphs with the number of new users who visit your site, likes on social media and impressions of your ad on Googles. But consider whether you notice any change in the actual number of customers or sales. Remember that increased visibility does not necessarily translate into increased profits or new customers.
The agency should focus primarily on conversion – turning a user visiting the site into an actual customer. This is exactly how a website should be promoted.
Website promotion should be tailored to your industry
To effectively promote your website, your marketing strategy must be tailored to your site’s needs as well:
- our industry
- current marketing activities, including traditional ones
- activities of our competitors
- our budget.
If a marketing agency uses the same plan to promote your site as it does for other clients, especially those in different industries, you probably won’t see results soon, if at all. That’s why we need to require a personalized strategy that takes into account, for example, keywords tailored to our industry.
What should you do if you suspect that a marketing agency is dishonest?
Website promotion is a matter that can bring your company a lot of benefits and new customers, and thus more sales. That’s why you shouldn’t settle for marketing efforts that don’t have an effect and don’t increase your site’s position in search results.
Therefore, if you suspect that the agency is cheating you, you should end the cooperation. With this, you need to make sure that the contract does not include contractual penalties in such a case. However, if there is a possibility, quickly end the cooperation and find an agency that will promote the website with integrity and clear results.