Google AD Words Scammers
Do you ever wish someone just ASKED you first? A good friend just bought “SEO” from a company and was telling me about it. He knows that I concentrate my web design business on designing for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). He just didn’t want to bug me for free info… arrrggghhhh!!!!!!!!!!
It is difficult to be a SEO specialist. I would say SEO expert, but because I don’t have a direct line on what the powers that run Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others are planing for the next search update I hesitate to claim my all encompassing knowledge. I prefer to put my power of knowing the future to purchasing useless lottery tickets. Note to self: Don’t invest savings in lottery tickets!
My useless lottery tickets can be reused as book marks to remind me to never spend more than $1 on a 1 in a gazillion chance while I am reading about other things that I most likely never experience.
I am sad to say that you need to please note that the search engine developers seem to delight in the art of “giving just enough info to tantalize you, but not enough to be useful unless you have a special decoder ring”.
BTW – they are not giving out the decoder ring. Rats!
I have visited the Google office here in Chicago for a presentation and unfortunately even then they weren’t giving out any special treats other that a bit of Google Plus training. Though I might say the spread had great coffee.
So SEO specialist I am, not a self proclaimed SEO expert because I along with everyone else can only guess at Google’s search algorithm. For all I know they have a group of monkeys working to produce the next great Shakespeare sonnet and on breaks they let the monkeys choose which sites get good rankings.
How the Ad Words Scam Goes Down
My friend receives all the same baloney emails and phone calls that the rest of us do. He is a smart guy, not dumb, not gullible or prone to belive late night TV ad proclamations and certainly knows how to spot a scam. His business is cyclical, and there are definitely times of the year that are known to be better for getting clients than others. I am imagining that he was targeted because of the timing of when he got contacted. He gave me the name of the company and on their “About Us” page there are 19 sales people! 19 sales people to zero SEO specialists. I will be calling them Scammer X.
I have blacked out the Ad Word company’s name because technically:
1. They did not violate Google’s Ad Word’s Third Party Reseller policy.
2. They promised the 1st page of Google, technically it happened.
3. Caveat Emptor – They are not selling illegally, just fast talking.
Scammer X has their team of “monkeys aka telemarketers” calling companies in major markets targeting key times of the year (I could be giving the monkeys keepers too much credit). Example: Call pool supplies in June, tutors in September, toy stores in November, etc. I have to say it is clever to contact companies when you know they will be thinking about their upcoming busy time of the year and chance to make the best profits.
So the Scammer X team calls and through their fast talking they get the person to believe that they will get them on the first page of Google for the person’s business key phrases.
In my friends case it was just 1 keyword phrase.
Today’s total will be $199.95 which includes $49.95 one-time setup fee and your first month of $150.00 Then it will be just $150.00 a month after that!!
Please click or copy & paste the link below to finish up your transaction. Just so you know, we only take your credit information to secure your spot in Google’s system and make sure all the information is correct. Setting this up through PayPal only takes a minute and also allows you to set it up securely!
Thank You for choosing Scammer X
In order to complete your transaction and place your business on the 1st page of Google please Reply to this email with your name and “I Agree” .
Your business will show up on the 1st page of Google under the following terms:
1 search term in the Chicago, Illinois region
We have also attached a screen shot of where you are showing up on the first page of Google
Your total today is $199.95 that includes $49.95 setup and your first month of $150.00.
Terms and Conditions:
Set-up Fees. You agree to pay a nonrefundable account set-up fee for each Service you purchase if applicable.
You agree to pay $150.00 each month on a month to month basis. Your bill date is the 29th of the month. Your first month of service is non-refundable. The Monthly Service Fee is due in advance of the delivery of Services. For example, if you opened your account on March 15, your Monthly Service Fee will be due on the 15th of each month thereafter until your account is terminated; the Monthly Service Fee for Services delivered from April 15 to May 14 would be due on April 15. Your monthly fees are not refundable if your account is terminated, regardless of the reason. If you do not finish the transaction through our PayPal link within 48 hours after we have sent you the link we will automatically charge your account the agreed upon price. To see our complete Terms and Conditions please go to Scammer X and click on “Terms and Conditions” at the bottom of the page.
By Notice. You may cancel your account at ANY TIME by simply providing an email to T[email protected] and you will receive a follow-up confirmation email confirming your cancellation. Notice must be received by Scammer X at least 48 HOURS prior to your monthly bill date. If notice is not given by 48 hours prior to billing date, the monthly fee charge is non-refundable; your account will stay online through the end of your billing cycle and will be cancelled the last day of your billing cycle.Billing- Scammer X
Scam town USA
However, this is why I have a ethical problem with These Folks.
They are essentially lying to their potential customers by not revealing how they are they are going to open an Ad Word’s account. So “yes” technically you get on the front page, but it through an advertisement. And Google Ad Words advertising is easily created and administrated by anyone, even the most technology challenged.
I know some folks might take the attitude that I am angry for no reason. There was no harm, no foul… the target got on the front page.
There was no disclosure of how this was going to happen. They NEVER said “Hey, we can open up a Ad Words account for you and manage it for $x a month. If they did, I would have zero beef. Craveat Emptor.
So for $199.95 and $150.00 a month my friend can have them purchase and administer an account that would cost him maybe $20 a month if that much for 1 keyword phrase. That is what angers me, 1 keyword phrase. They don’t even make an attempt at value for his money with doing several phrases. Disclosing what they are doing and giving good value would cost them maybe $50 (maybe less, maybe more depending on the competition for the keyword phrase).
Their cost is in the initial setup and monthly Ad Word spend. Other than that I have no idea what they are busy maintaining in Google Ad Words. ELC sets up Ad Word accounts all the time. We take the time to review clients website statistics to determine when their optimal demographic is most likely to be surfing the Internet looking for their service. We then make the appropriate changes. Quite frankly, once we do that it is pretty rare to move the Ad Words parameters.
We also either teach our clients how to administer their Ad Words account and control spending or we take care of it through a monthly maintenance package. Our clients get quite a bit more attention with our maintenance packages than my friend received from this scammer company.
Just a friendly warning for everyone considering responding to email solicitations for SEO, Internet marketing & web design work.
- Always check the Internet for reviews of the company. No reviews is not necessarily bad, it just means most clients didn’t have strong feelings.
- Always ask questions, and more questions. Reputable companies can answer questions directly, not with “sales speak”.
- Ask for a current website owner reference. Every reputable SEO company has really happy clients willing to tell others how their business is reaping the benefits.
When in Doubt!
Just contact us! If you are wondering if an offer is legit… contact us. We are more than happy to check it out for you… for FREE. No strings attached or sales pitches. As part of our ethical stance Electronic Logic Concepts would prefer to help a business avoid a scammer even if the business never contracts Electronic Logic Concepts for any type of website work. Basically it is the right thing to do. All we ask is that companies we help recommend us to family, friends and business associates as a “Thank You”