This post is about amusing to us discussion with one of the guys who wrote an email to our client scaring them into getting a mobile version of the website. Typically we don’t pay attention to SEO related spam to our clients – they know better. This guy was persistent though with emails oozing with statistics and pretty much scaring people into into “leasing” website that most likely they don’t need or it costs way lower to implement. That is why I spend a bit of time communicating with a fella. Being an SEO myself I and the whole team really hate people who give SEO’s bad name practically by scamming clients. I highlighted things that just made us go WHAT???
I FOUND A PROBLEM WITH YOUR WEBSITE
Hello, I am his name, president of bogus company name, a company devoted to local internet business support.
Recently, I was searching for Toronto plumbers on my I-phone and noticed that your website was very difficult to navigate for any mobile smart phone user.
If you don’t know, smart phone internet usage is exploding with as many as one out of three people today, surfing the internet for local businesses on their smart phones.
Within the next 2 years over 50% of all internet searches for local businesses will be done so on a hand held mobile device surpassing desk top computers.
Additionally, did you know that Google penalizes all websites that are not mobile phone friendly? This means flat out you are losing business opportunities.
You are severely losing potential customers due to your mobile phone unfriendly website. A majority of mobile phone users will exit a website immediately if it is not mobile phone friendly. All they want is a button to push instantly to get your phone number and information.
My company can solve this problem for you by creating a mobile friendly website on your behalf.
Would you mind stopping to spam our websites? 3rd message we received from you. “Additionally, did you know that Google penalizes all websites that are not mobile phone friendly?” is a lie.
Hello Mr. Zelvensci,
Sorry to hear that my inqury I sent, you consider as span. I assure you it is not. It was a legitimate business inquiry.
All that I stated is true including websites being penalized by Google for not having a mobile friendly website. Someone has given you some
mis-information. Mobile smart phone usage has explded: 20 million users in 2010 and projected 200 Million users in 2012.
You are quite likely losing ranking in Google because you do not have a mobile friendly website, and you are definitely losing potential customers
who do land on your website using a mobile smart phone. As soon as they see how difficult it is to navigate your site, they will leave immediately.
By the way I checked out our clients website for 2 search terms you are trying to rank for:
toronto plumber – your are on the 2nd page ranked 14th in the Google search
toronto plumbing – you are ranked 42nd.
This tells me you are getting very little traffic from your website and here is is why:
The top 3 websites displayed in any given search get 80% of the customer traffic which is about 900 exact searches per month; even
the 10th position on the bottom of the first page gets 1-3% of the traffic about 10-30 visits per month.
Your site being in 14 position probably gets only a few customer visits at all.
As for the search term toronto plumbing, it is unlikely you get any visitors when this search term is used. If you want to get more traffic to your website
my comapny can help.
Here is some very valuable advice for your troubles. If your website is not in the top 5 positions for a specific search term on Google,
it will not bring you much traffic what so ever. Plumbers are relying more and more on internet traffic. You need to invest in support
to gain market share. If not your company will depend on word of mouth and past customers. You will not grow your business using the internet.
I will not intentiaonally send you any more inquiries, but if your company is listed under different website names it may likely happen.
The guy is missing the fact that it is a support website 3 months old that is on a 2nd place for the actual keyword we need. Yeah that keyword is in the domain itself. He was still going with that bogus line that Google penalizes people who don’t have mobile websites so I wrote him another letter. 200 million people? We have 32 million people in Canada! Where did he get 900 exact searches?
Hello Mr. his last name
I was wondering if you can back up anyhow you claim that Google penalizes websites without mobile version or what do you do except installing WordPress Mobile version plugin?
Hello Mr. Zelvensci,
At this moment, I am searching on Google to find an official statement from Google. No luck yet,
but I am now searching forums to get you an answer. I stated what I have learned from 3rd party sources.
I would like you to do something though to help prove my point. You have a competitor competitor name
If you have a smart phone with internet access go to this website using the smart phone. This is a mobile friendly website.
Now using the same smart phone, bring up your website and you tell me, which website is going to get more customer
inquiries. Smart phone users want to dial your phone number with the push of one button, not search all over your website
and then have to manually dial your number. If they have to do that, then they will just exit your website and find the next plumber
that has a mobile phone friendly website.
Mobile phone searches are exploding with activity searching for local businesses. Companies that have mobile phone friendly websites
have a definite competitive advantage. By the way, less than 10% of “toronto plumbers” have mobile phone friendly websites. Prove it to
yourself. Use the same mobile phone and start at the number one position for the search term “toronto plumbers”. Search the first 20 plumber listings.
You will find only a couple have mobile phone friendly websites.
Couple that with the explosion of mobile smart phone users and you can see why it is in your best interest to get a mobile phone friendly website.
Within the next 2 years a majority of the internet searches for local businesses will be by mobile smart phone searches; not the home computer.
Basically I would create a separate mobile friendly website from your present website.
This mobile site will typically have 4 to 6 buttons that the mobile phone user would want.
For instance, a button that automatically dials your company telephone number.
Another button which would be a google map showing your main location.
A third button could be a discount coupon for mobile phone users only.
Fourth button could be testamonials. etc.
My price for the new website and service is:
$500 to create the website and an additional $50/month for maintenance and web hosting fees for the site I create.
I give a $100 discount for customers who pay the maintenance fee and hosting in one lump sum.
Therefore the initial cost to you would be $1,000 with lease costs for follow on years at $500 annually for maintenance and web hosting costs.
I presently have a 2 week backlog of clients. Let me know your preferences.
You pay me $500 up front and $500 when I meet all your expectations and deliver the website.
There will also be a lease agreement that will have to be signed by both parties before the work starts.
I can send a pdf file to you. You can print it out,sign it, scan it, and send it back via pdf attachment to an e-mail.
The original signed document, please mail to me at the address I will give to you later.
Is this guy for real? He can’t understand I am not a client? I was writing from my work email. He thinks that a forum and 3rd party resource is a good source? Wow only for $500 and then $50 each month I can have my own mobile website (that I could have with couple of switches of a button in wordpress). I loved the last sentence about the PDF contract and a mysterious address he would send to me later. Yeah buddy I am that close to buying.
Sounds good, couple of questions though:
-who were those 3rd party resources you heard from that Google penalizes websites? I heard mobile version can create duplicate content issues. Also I am not sure why plumber would need a mobile website as most of the people search for one when they are at home?
-did you make the website he mentioned in previous email?
-I don’t understand what are “lease rates” and what is $50 per month for?
From my understanding duplicate content is only a problem on the same website. Since the mobile website is
a different site duplicate content is not an issue. I would take some information off your site word for word,
but this should not be a problem.
No I did not make the mobile website I informed you about. I just wanted to give you a real example.
As to people using their home computer, if they are home if they need a plumber, I disagree.
People who have smart phones are hooked on them, and in general no matter where they are
the smart phone is close by and they will do a web search on their cell phone even if they are standing in their computer room.
By the way of 25% of smart phone users today, don’t even have a home computer or lap top, and this number is growing.
The main source of my mobile phone information, comes from the company I bought the software from to build mobile phone websites;
WP Mobile Pro. Check them out if you like. Their software package I believe now sells for $400.
I don’t even know where to start. First of all if you do decide to make a mobile version of your website it is typically the same domain. There is no point of creating a separate domain for just the mobile version and try to optimize it. The common practice is to use something like m.domain.com. That is why my new friend is wrong! Creating new pages that the same word for word “shouldn’t be a problem” what does it even mean? Even kids know duplicate content is bad.
On top of that he didn’t even make a website he was trying to sell us on. Wow there is a new statistic 25% with smart phoneS don’t have personal computers. My buddy just has those crazy stats that nobody else has.
Wait, that is not all – now he is telling me he bought a plugin for $400, he is trying to sell us a website for $500 and then charge $50 each month. Say what?
So what the lease rates for? Last question is where did you learn that 25% of people who have smartphone ”don’t have a computer” seems odd
Here is my source below. Although it specifically says US Mobile users, there is no reason that it doesn’t equate to Canada.
There is a large segment of the population that cannot afford a computer, but are willing to invest in a smart phone instead
especially people under the age of 25. My daughter has a home computer and a lap top and a smart phone. She rarely
uses her computers anymore. All communication and web searches she does on here smart phone.
PART B: Mobile Web; users; 3G coverage
1) Half a billion people accessed mobile Internet worldwide in 2009. Usage is expected to double within five years as mobile overtakes the PC as the most popular way to get on the Web.
• Just in China there are 277 million mobile Web users.
2) Many mobile Web users are mobile-only, i.e. they do not, or very rarely use a desktop, laptop or tablet to access the Web. Even in the US 25 percent of mobile Web users are mobile-only.
The website is for a plumber – target group people who own houses not under 25. Read 2009 articles that say that 25% of people prefer to access internet through mobile phone – no mention of them not having a personal computer. The cheeky guy is not responding to my question about $50 per month.
What about the $50 per month what is that for?
My business model is to lease not to sell my mobile websites I build. I am sure if you shop around
you will find that my rates are very reasonable. I am willing to build you a website complete and not receive any money
until you are completely satisfied with your mobile phone friendly website. I just need a commitment from you to pay for the site when completed.
Not only this guy is trying to scam people into making a mobile version of their website, not only this guy will create duplicate content for them without realizing it – he is trying to charge bogus $50 fee EACH month for that.
So you want us to pay you $500 to build the website and then “lease it” for $50 till the rest of our lives?
Yes, except not the rest of your life. One year lease at a time. You can cancel at any time and then I take the site down.
At that point I decided I have enough information for this lengthy post and if I continued communicating with a fella it would just make me aggravated that there are still people in the industry who cheat people like that. I can understand that he is just starting out – but this is not the way to do it.
Truth About Mobile Version for the sake of SEO:
- DUPLICATE CONTENT ON AND OFF SITE IS BAD BAD BAD
- As of moment of this post nowhere Google said it will penalize people for not creating a mobile version of the website. It would mean that billions of websites would be penalized.
- There are certain businesses that MUST have mobile version of their website in order not to loose clients – location based businesses.
- Creating mobile website requires rel=canonical strategy in order for Google not to consider it a duplicate content
- Leasing websites that you paid for building is a scam. You either lease a website – which is a bad strategy or you build one, not two together.