There is no such thing as an SEO expert

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There is no such thing as an SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) expert, writes Nick Lewis. There. I have said it. And nothing will convince me that this assertion is incorrect in anyway. This is not to say I don’t believe in SEO – do think that a confluence of skills, techniques and good practice can ensure that a website performs well in a search engine. I just have profound doubts that anyone who pertains to have worked out the magic formula or can guarantee success can realistically deliver or make good on their claims.

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For those of you who may still be unsure what SEO actually is, it is the catch-all term for the process of making sure that your website performs well in internet search engines against search terms that relate to your business, organisation or services. So, for example, if I was a builder based in Cardiff I would like my website to come up on the first page when people use a search engine to look for ‘builders in Cardiff’.

To achieve such a feat, especially in popular professions in a highly populated and commercially active geographical area, is very, very difficult, requiring persistence and ongoing activity from many different facets of your business, in particular your marketing department (or marketing agency), your website designer and your website host.

It is therefore with some scepticism I receive multiple emails every single day from people claiming to be SEO experts or guaranteeing that they can get my website to ‘No 1’ in Google. Admittedly, the poor grammar and spelling that one finds in such emails, along with it actually not being addressed to a specific recipient, immediately casts doubt on the sender’s ability to deliver on their promises, but what they are promising is an impossibility beyond their control, for which they would charge a lot of money.

SEO is too big a concept and process for one person to deliver on. As I’ve already alluded to, to attempt effective Search Engine Optimisation requires a multitude of disciplines and business functions that would be beyond the ability of one individual in terms of skills set and capacity. Any one individual claiming to be a marketer, copywriter, social media expert, website designer and IT technician at the top of their game in every single of those fields is either self-deluded or the Mozart of Marketing.

Let’s assume that such an individual did exist with all these talents and abilities,for when would they actually sleep? Each one of the disciplines I have mentioned are full time roles, for which companies hire a multitude of individuals to fulfil. Either multinational companies have fallen victim to a global conspiracy in which they have been employing people for roles that need not exist, or there is a legitimate reason why each one of the aforementioned roles is considered a full-time job.

So be warned: there is no such thing as an SEO expert!

• Nick Lewis offers social media support via www.nicklewiscommunications.com