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About those "We can get you to page 1 of google emails"!

So I am astounded that those “Get You To Page 1 of Google” emails still work! In today's search engines, there is only one constant, nothing is the same for each user and having a SEO (search engine optimization) company make that claim and get my peeps all worked up makes me crazy!

Getting on page 1 of google for what?

Let's start with the keywords. When you hire a company to “get you to page 1 of google”, they are going to have you pick some keywords that you want to rank for. I can tell you, most business owners do not know what a good thing to rank for is! Consider Realtors, mostly they want to rank for their town and the search term “realtor”. So let's break that one down…

Most people looking for a realtor who are going onto the internet search for the term realtors (with an “S” at the end), just like you wouldn't look up St. Pete Plumber, you would look up St. Pete plumbers. So right off the bat, you could get to page 1, but for a term that doesn't matter much.

Also there is a difference between the term Denver Real Estate and “Denver Real Estate”. In one I put the quotes around the whole phrase, meaning that the words have to be in that exact order. Without the quotes, they can be in any order and don't necessarily have to contain all the words. Search results for Denver Real Estate are 163,000,000 and for “Denver Real Estate” are 5,450,000. If I was a snarky SEO company I could tell my customers that I had gotten them on page 1 for something both obscure (with not so many searches) AND have the quotes to make it easier to accomplish, with my client never the wiser.

Page 1 is a mess!

The Google Experiment - Getting To Page 1 of GoogleOkay, so what I was just talking about was straight ranking. Now let's talk a little bit about other factors that effect what gets shown to YOU by google when you search.

It matters where you are because google knows the IP address that you are searching from! So if you search for hot dog stands, you do not get the ones in New York City, you get the ones closest to where you are, maybe some news about hot dogs stands and possibly some hot dog stand pictures.

It matters who you are because google follows you around the internet, figuring out what you like the most. Do you like videos, you will see more video results. Do you have friends on Google+ who have liked something, maybe you will too! If you are logged into google, you are effecting the search results you get.

The Google Experiment

So today I took a couple of hours to go over what results look like from all different browsers and all different types of people. Here is the breakdown of what I looked at:

  • Tara Jacobsen – I logged into google with my login
  • Realtor – I used another computer and logged in with a Realtor client's google account
  • Proxify – This is a service that allows you to access the google from a generally blank slate
  • Retail Company – This company does sales and marketing but with big box stores, not my little moms and pops
  • iPad – On my iPad I logged out of google and did the searches (this seemed to be a little tainted I think because I got similar results to what I got on my real computer logged is as me)

So we have different people searching on different browsers (nothing I can do about my IP address so I am sure that affected the results too!)

What I found when searching for term Entrepreneur Marketing (no quotes) was there WAS some consistency in the top places, but after that, there were some REALLY big differences in what google returned as results. Here are my big take-aways.

  • None of the searches had any videos for this search term (the video link was to a page with a video, not the cute embedded videos on the search pages).
  • Proxify (who didn't have any relation to anything else) showed indented listings (the ones under the main listing) for both my site and They also did not get nearly as many listings as the other searches did.
  • I was surprised to get news results as I generally do not see those in my searches. I am not a newsy kind of gal!
  • The realtor had really weird results compared to everyone else! She had A LOT of friend connections in her results as she is pretty well connected online. She had links from three different friends on this search.
  • I thought it was REALLY interesting that I logged out of google on my iPad and got VERY similar results to logged in my big computer.
  • If a SEO company told you they could rank you for entrepreneur marketing, they would have a hard climb. Both and (my site) have spent YEARS working on SEO to rank for these terms and would not be easy to knock off!

So, there you have it! A little bit about why those emails about getting you to page 1 of google are, at best, disingenuous and, at worst, total crap!


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Sunday 10th of February 2013

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