This is one in a series of posts reviewing and looking at how some of the SEO companies which use bulk emails/spam with ‘we can help your terrible site’ type emails really can (and actually mostly can’t!) help your site.
Previously, WebOptimizes/Qtonix had offered to ‘help’ with my big Christmas site (whychristmas.com) as well as its smaller sister site about Easter (whyeaster.com); now they also want to help my site which explains what the Bible says about Angels (whyangels.com), because it too seems to have lots wrong with it! Let’s see what they say this time…
This email came from a Stacy who was using an @weboptimizes.com email, although in subsequent replies she also cc-ed in Ellie from Qtonix. (weboptimizes.com isn’t a real site). Stacy also spammed me about my Easter site. [Edit November 2021: it now appears that they’re also using the domain smartwebexpert.com to spam people.]
Rather interestingly, this time the spam came in via the contact form on the site (for my Christmas and Easter sites the spam came into my business address which is on the domain registration). So this means that Stacy MUST HAVE visited the site (even if she then just copied and pasted their spam template). This makes things more ‘interesting’, when looking at their report, as we’ll see below…
I noticed something interesting while going through your website,
It’s apparent that you have used Adwords marketing to promote your business in the past, however your website does see some organic search traffic here and there. Now, I believe I can help increase that portion of organic traffic significantly, at your website.
I believe you would like to come top on searches for keywords related to: your website. I found a number of SEO issues such as broken links, page speed issue, HTML validation errors, images with no ALT text on your website, that’s stopping you from getting that traffic.
How about I fix those, and also promote you through engaging content on relevant places on the web (read, social media).
I guarantee you will see a drastic change in your search ranking and traffic once these issues are fixed. Also, this is one time, so no paying adwords every month.
Is this something you are interested in?
If yes, please allow me to send you a no obligation audit report and quote.
Hoping to hear from you and take this partnership ahead.
Stacy Marshall | Digital Marketing Specialist
This is basically identical to the spam weboptimizes sent me about my Christmas and Easter sites. They really do seem to like that template. I’ve also NEVER used adwords on my sites…!
So I replied and got a reply from Stacy, which is here below. (Rather ironically it actually went into my spam folder…!)
Thanks a lot for replying us back.
I should not say a lot but yes, a huge amount of differences can be noticed and felt after doing certain changes to your website.
Please go through the detailed audit report attached with this email to know he problematic areas.
Also I suggest to initially fix all the issues from the website first before you start the promotion. The onsite issue fixes is an one time investment and you will notice the necessary changed things in the website after which we can start the organic promotion to get the genuine traffic flow to your website.
Below is the details with quote for the Onsite issue fixing plan.
On-Site Issue Fixing ($299 USD/One Time)
W3C Markup Validation – Fixing all HTML errors of the website to make the website error Free
Ensure proper Content Indexing
Custom 404 page Creation as per Google Guideline
Header Response Code Checking
XML site map creation as per Google Guideline
Fixing front-end & Server Errors
Setup of Temporary & Permanent Re-directions
Web Page Loading Speed Improvement
Alt Tags Check up
Setup of Meta Robots
Canonical Tag Optimization
Internal links Analysis
Broken links checkup
Google Webmaster Tools setup
Installation of Google Analytic
Google Crawling Errors Analysis
Bing Webmaster Tools setup
Once we complete the process, I will brief you in details about the promotion process and its pricing.
Please do open up if you come across any concerns based on my above content.
I would love to help you out.
Awaiting for your sincere response.
Although www.whyangels.com is different from www.whyeaster.com and www.whychristmas.com, in that it’s designed for adults than children, it’s still also already VERY well ranked on Google for searches like ‘what do angels look like’, etc.
Their Report & Recommendations
Like with their reports about my Christmas and Easter site it arrived as a PDF, attached to the above email from Stacy. If you’ve read my previous posts about my communications with Weboptimzes/Qtonix, you will know that I wasn’t exactly impressed with their reports.
Well, I’m afraid that this time is no different… It was in a slightly different format, this time majoring on a ‘keyword’ (well actually a keyphrase) that they had tested the site against – as well as some technical things about the site.
The ‘keyword analyzed’ (as their report put it) was “Best christian bible site in USA”. Well that’s a problem straight away. My site isn’t going for anything like that search term!
Yes it’s a ‘Christian’ site about the ‘Bible’. But if you visit the site, you will see the main heading on the site is “What the Bible says about Angels!” followed by the opening para “whyangels?com answers angelic questions from a Christian perspective; what the Bible says about angels and what God’s holy servants are truly all about!”
So as Stacy MUSH HAVE visited the site to spam me by the contact form, it also MUST HAVE been obvious what the site is about. It’s not ‘best’ anything and if she had bothered to read the About page, she would have seen that I live in the UK and NOT the USA!
So the 1/3 to 1/2 of their report about what words are ranking on Google, in relation to their ‘Keyword analyzed’ is completely useless as they used a phrase which is meaningless to my site…!
Also on the report is a score out of 100 for some technical domain and site things. It said my site scored 79/100 [which I think is a pretty good starting point!] with it passing 64 checks pages and having 11 warnings and 6 errors. (So it has 81 ‘tests’ but gives a score out of 100! And that maths does work – 64:81 is 79:100!!!).
Let’s look at those warnings and errors to see if my site really has those 17 issues!
The 11 Warnings:
Add a keyword to the title tag – This is WRONG (the correct keywords are in there!)
Start the Title tag with a keyword – This is WRONG (it wouldn’t make sense!)
Avoid duplicate Meta Description tags – OK, I’ll take this one – but it’s now fixed!
Use a keyword in the URL – This is WRONG (the correct keywords are in there!)
Add the keyword to Alt attributes – This is WRONG (the alts on the site are image appropriate – they don’t ‘need’ any keywords in them)
Uses efficient cache policy on static assets [x2 one for desktop and one for mobile] – This is WRONG (Google’s ‘page speed’ tool says they are fine on both!)
Eliminate render-blocking resources [on mobile] – This is WRONG (Google’s ‘page speed’ tool says it’s fine!)
Mirror Redirect is not set – This is WRONG (it is!)
Robots.txt file The file is missing – This is WRONG (there is one!)
XML sitemap [missing] – This is WRONG (it’s not in the normal place, but it’s there!)
The 6 Errors:
Add keyword in the Meta Description tag – This is WRONG (the correct keywords are in there!)
Use the keyword in the content – This is WRONG (the correct keywords are in there!)
Use the keyword at the beginning of the content – This is WRONG (it wouldn’t make sense!)
Keyword density – This is WRONG (the correct keywords are in there!)
Use the keyword in H1-H6 tags – This is WRONG (heading are correctly and appropriately used throughout the site – you don’t need to have <h1> to <h6> headings on every page if they’re not needed!)
Does not redirects HTTP traffic to HTTPS – OK, I’ll take this one – fixed now!
So out of the 11 warnings and 6 errors, there were one each that were true (so really my starting score should have been 97/100 not 79/100) – but I’ve now fixed them (so the score would be 100/100)!
Hmmmmm, that’s not a very good report is it?!
But we can also look at all the items on Stacy’s email that they can ‘fix’ for just the low low price of $299. Let’s see how many of those actually need ‘fixing’ shall we?
W3C Markup Validation – Not needed (There aren’t any errors! They could have easily checked this themselves.)
Ensure proper Content Indexing – Not needed (Their own report says it’s indexed properly!)
Custom 404 page Creation as per Google Guideline – Not needed (There already is one. They could have checked this.)
Header Response Code Checking – Not needed (There aren’t any errors!)
XML site map creation as per Google Guideline – Not needed (There already is one.)
Fixing front-end & Server Errors – Not needed (There aren’t any errors!)
Setup of Temporary & Permanent Re-directions – Not needed (Any needed redirects are already in place.)
Web Page Loading Speed Improvement – Not needed (Their own report says that the site gets 100/100 for page loading speed!)
Images Optimization – Not needed (Their own report says that the site gets 100/100 for page loading speed!)
Alt Tags Check up – Not needed (All the alt tags are correct. They could have easily checked this.)
Setup of Meta Robots – Not needed (All meta tags are set-up. They could have easily checked this.)
Canonical Tag Optimization – Not needed (Their own report says this is OK!)
Internal links Analysis – Not needed (Their own report says this is OK!)
Broken links checkup – Not needed (There aren’t any broken links!)
Google Webmaster Tools setup – Not needed (It’s already setup.)
Installation of Google Analytic – Not needed (It’s already installed. They could have easily checked this.)
Google Crawling Errors Analysis – Not needed (Google Google Webmaster Tools is already setup so I can check this!)
Bing Webmaster Tools setup – Not needed (It’s already setup.)
So out of the 18 things they want to charge $299 for, NONE need ‘fixing’! And they could have/have already checked 10 of them before saying they needed to do them!!!
Hmmmmm (again), it’s almost like they haven’t actually visited the site ‘properly’ and checked what its about and what its needs are before spamming me isn’t it?!
Looking at Their Site
With SEO spammers, I also like to look at their sites, to see if they practice what they preach (I mean would you trust a plumber who had leaking and rusty pipes all over their own house?!); and also to compare their site with a site they say they can help…
Their site is: https://www.qtonix.com I’ve already looked at their site twice in my previous posts. Sadly, it looks like their site has all the same page loading speed, accessibility and privacy issues which it had when I wrote my post about them spamming me about my Easter site.
fyi, my Angels site has no HTML and accessibility errors.
On Google PageSpeed, my site gets:
And on GTMetrix my site gets:
A 95% / A (91%)
To be honest, I’m not surprised that this report was as bad as the previous two. But what really did surprise me is that they spammed via the contact form (and so definitely having visited the site), still managed to get their ‘keywords analyzed; so utterly wrong.
However, if they’re making such basic errors as that, it’s not really surprising that the rest of their report was also so terrible.
So if you get an email from a ‘weboptimizes.com’ email address, I’d recommend you reach for that delete button.
But the choice, as ever, is yours.
ps, I still get about weekly spam from them for my Christmas and Easter sites as well…!!!