Have you recently been called by someone claiming they are from Google?
Recently, we’ve seen a spike in cold calls to businesses from someone claiming they’re from Google.
During the call they may say things like,
“we’ve noticed your business doesn’t rank for certain keywords that it should and this is a big problem”.
Essentially using scare tactics to get you to act quickly and irrationally. They may also offer you a ‘Quick fix’, where for a small fee they can get you to the first page or even number 1 on Google search results for these particular keywords.
For people in the know, it’s an obvious scam, but smaller business owners can fall for this trap.
I just want to point out that there are digital media companies who rely on a cold call to make business. Even though this method has a very low success rate and even lower client retention rate, they are definitely not scammers.
The information i’ll be sharing with you today is only aimed at spotting these scammers.
Whilst ranking highly for relevant keywords is important, the very top tier keywords are usually dominated by the big brands. This is because they have the resources (and sometimes entire departments) to spend lots of time and money ensuring they beat everyone else to that top spot. This makes it very hard for smaller businesses to compete, and instead should look for “low hanging fruit” where they can.
With this being said, keywords this scammer is referring to are probably very low ranking and don’t get many searches. So even if they do get you to number 1 for these keywords, it won’t improve your sales. It’s also important to note that ranking for the wrong keywords can hurt your websites ranking in the long run.
This information goes for any cold call you receive about your digital marketing strategy and in particular, keyword ranking.
Google will never call you out of the blue.
If you are using Google Ads, an account manager will contact you first via email. They will introduce themselves and arrange a time that suits you to conduct an account review. If you ever get these emails I highly suggest you accept as they are very professional and can improve your Ads campaigns in just a few minutes.
If you’re trying to claim a business location on Google Maps using Google My Business, they may call, but only if you have ticked the box stating they can.
Google will never do the following;
- Use scare tactics to get you to make a decision.
- Offer to improve your website ranking on Google.
- Ask you for passwords or verification code for Google My Business.
- Call you via a recorded message or robocall.
- Offer to manage your online profile.
If you aren’t expecting a call from Google, then it’s a good chance it’s a scam.
Scammers are out there with a focus on winning your business, rather than helping it.
Even if the caller is from here in Australia, would you want to place your digital assets and business’ reputation in the hands of someone you have never met?
If you’ve received any requests or information from Google and you’re unsure about what your next action should be, feel free to contact Matt, our Google and SEO specialist.
Google created a support document about this specific topic. If you’d like to learn more about how to identify fraudulent calls just follow click here.