Thursday, 11 October 2012

Search Engine Easy Review 2012 Hotfrog

Search Engine Easy Review

10th October 2012:

Matt from Search Engine Easy called my number today as I had done a new Hotfrog listing for a client without a telephone number at present, so I added my personal mobile on there.

Matt would not confirm or deny that he used Hotfrog, but because it's the only thing I did today for the client it's not rocket science.

Had Matt googled my mobile number he would have come up with my website but I guess he was too interested in trying to sell me a £99 Adwords package for this.

Personally I found his attitude very pushy, I listened to the entire 21 minute sales talk as previously I have not had the time or inclination to listen to an agency, and pretended I knew nothing, but today I had time, as it was gone 4pm and I was getting the kettle on anyway.
There was a lot of repetition of the words "Do you get me?" and telling me free directories were useless to getting sales in and Google was the only way forward to get traffic and make money and no one uses free directories or buys from them.

I didn't tell him I have proven sales for a wide range of clients [that would have given the game away] as a direct result of free directories, for the right business they are more than a quickie free backlink, a good profile completed gives a great impression.

Matt said to me - and I quote - "The only calls you will get from free directories are from companies hammering you with cold calls"

The £129.99 deal (that reduced to £99 within 5 minutes) is this:

Search Engine Easy told me they are 'selecting clients in certain areas so this offer is not available for everyone' and that for £99 'there would be unlimited traffic for 5 search phrases for 30 days with no contract with ads showing 24 hours a day'.

What he didn't/couldn't tell me was the 5 search phrases - the Google Certified Consultant would talk through everything with me. So, just to get my facts straight, at the end I recapped and said "So is this Google Adwords all over the UK?" and Matt told me no, if I wanted that and I had the budget I could have that, but for £99 this would be local to my area.

The client in question is an internet-only store selling globally. No bricks and mortar. No one is going to search for 'blue metal widgets basingstoke' and to me the whole spiel was a massive eye opener to the sales tactics of large SEO agencies targeting businesses online as soon as they add their business to a directory - as perhaps this would show the company newly listed is desperate for more traffic, more sales, and these are prime selling leads?

When I would not agree there and then and asked for the details in writing he refused to email me - shame as I was going to give him my 1weekseo email address - and when I said I was in partnership and could not sign up there and then without speaking to my business partner more questions were asked

What's his name?

Can I speak to him now?

Surely he would agree that being at the top of Google 24/7 is a good thing?

Is there another number I can take to speak with him?

I'll call at 9.30am in the morning is that OK?

- I even read out a 2 word keyphrase - 33k global searches - and was told that was rubbish and not good enough - to me this means that his 'blue metal widget basingstoke' was better?
- This 2 word keyphrase hit Google page 1 UK recently for my client who is very pleased with the resulting orders. I am pretty sure my client would not be pleased if I was targeting a local area.
[Taken from the Hotfrog website]

Does Hotfrog provide my information to telemarketers? Hotfrog does not use telemarketing with our customers nor do we sell your contact details without your explicit permission to any third parties for telemarketing or any other purpose. We are actively trying to block (technically) and discourage (through direct communication) telemarketing companies from this intrusive practice and we will be putting in place more overt tools to help our customers discourage telemarketers in the near future.

I clearly ticked the box that states: "No telemarketing calls" and this is exactly what happened.


Search Engine Easy ignored this on 10th October 2012

Today 11th October 2012 I found this information about an Online Directory owned by Manchester-based Search Engine Easy and recommended by another Manchester-based company First Found:

The Carbon Directory (URL removed) is owned and operated by S.E.Easy Limited, a limited company registered in Ireland (registered number 473196).

Funny enough, on the Carbon Directory website the terms also state:
The Carbon Directory allows you to search for goods and services and to contact any of the organisations as listed.

You may not use the website to create, check, confirm, update or amend your own or someone else's database, records, directories, customer lists, mailing or prospecting lists; provide any kind of commercial information service or for any other commercial reasons.   To me this means Search Engine Easy state terms on their own directories but ignore terms on directories not owned by themselves.


  1. Thanks Nina, they just rang me and even thought I said "but my site is already on the first page" they insisted on offering a trial! finally the man put the phone down and ten Min's later another call, this time from a so called technician that did explain the pricing (not anything like sale's man 1) I asked for some sort of conformation via email and they did send me out some info. Firstly "Search Engine Easy" have no organic listing!!! ( any one with deep pockets can buy there way to the top) when I said this tech 2 said "well we have to as it's what we do" then I asked why they did not appear in normal listings? he didn't answer. At the end of the day guys DO IT YOURSELF or find a local organic SEO company. Graham Redditch Computer services

  2. Graham I had no idea how much traffic this blog post was attracting until I Googled "Search Engine Easy Review" and it's Page 1, position 1 in the UK.

    I am so pleased that I can dispel some of the myths surrounded with this kind of tactic.

    I have setup Adwords accounts for clients in their local area and they spend between £25-£30 per month for 3 keyphrases, that's a huge saving.

  3. Searchengineeasy Reviews - BE WARNED - DONT WASTE YOUR TIME OR MONEY! We have just trialled them for a month, running 2 campaigns for 2 different websites. The service they offer is an utter waste of money. They will put you on the first page of google but you will often be half way down the page and wont get the clicks they promise. If you want key search phrases, you will have to pay 3 or 4 times the fee they originally quote (the opening line is £89 per month 1st page of google). And even then the traffic is low and poor quality. In my opinion its a scam.
    And especially be aware, if you run your own adword campaigns, the search phrases they offer are extremely specific (ie: used cars London), as opposed to the keywords in your own adwords campaigns that are automatically set to broad (ad for used cars London would also display for used cars Surrey, second hand cars London etc).
    FACT: In the 1st week out adwords traffic for both our sites fell by between 60-80%. And even when we matched the campaigns using broad keywords terms at 4 times the price (and equal to the amount we were spending ourselves), we still got between 20-25% less traffic for both sites and page views were down 25-60%.
    Run the campaign yourself.

  4. Getting some increasingly disappointing results from Search Engine Easy, based on a pretty high spend level. I have just complained, so let's see whether they rectify this or elect to "profiteer."

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  6. Wow do they have no idea what customer service is either: I humoured the aggressive manager who had taken over the call until eventually he hung up on me.

  7. Received an unsolicited call from Search Engine Easy today telling me my webpage was not on page one of google. We get a LOT of these SEO cold calls so I told him that he was not only mistaken but that I was not interested. I told him we were listed with the TPS and to remove our details and not pass to any third party. Amazingly he started to argue at which point I told him again that he must remove our contact details and I hung up. Even more amazingly he rang back to continue the argument. I am 'certified google professional' and have amazing results from our marketing and whilst not telling him this and risk starting a foolish debate I simply told him just what he could do with his cold call and hung up. Astonishingly he rang back AGAIN to tell me that I was 'ignorant'. I found out from him that his company was called Search Engine Easy, his MD's name was Robert ??? but that I should look up his MD's contact number myself when I asked for it. I then told him to remove our details and F off. Again he rang back to tell me I was a nasty little man! As the MD of the business he cold-called (against TPS rules) I was by now so unimpressed I event took time to write this review (rare!) - do not use this company they stink to high heaven in every respect.

  8. Very pushy cold call types. I wouldn't bother wasting your cash. Do some SEO research, fairly easy to tweak an existing site, alternatively get in an expert, rather than these sales people.

  9. David you are right - however most small businesses are too involved in running their day to day responsibilities to learn a new subject, so a low monthly maintenance SEO campaign can work in a few months, rather than paying a huge amount of money in one lump sum.

    Here's my latest Local Business Case Study: