I speak with a lot of business owners.  And I’d be willing to bet that 90% of them have no idea what is going on with their website.  That’s ok, they’re busy running their business, right?

As a business owner, you can’t do it all. Along with running a business wisely comes hiring people that can bring that business to a higher level – whether through increased sales, increased traffic, or increased leads.

Before you hire an SEO firm to help you, educate yourself.  Then listen to their sales guy and see how he answers these questions.  Do they jive?

  1. How many different things does Google measure when deciding where to rank your website in their index?
  2. What percentage of searchers go to page 2 of any Google result?
  3. Does it matter if your site uses the www. at the front of the domain?
  4. Can you do things on other people’s websites to increase your own site’s rankings?
  5. Is St Louis and Saint Louis the same thing in the eyes of search engines? Should you care?
  6. Is that website that your sister’s boyfriend’s dog trainer built really doing your business justice?
  7. Do business owners have to submit their websites to Google, Yahoo! and Bing in order to be listed in those respective search engines?
  8. Should you buy the .net, .org, and .us versions of your .com domain?
  9. Did your webmaster ask you for a list of ten or twenty ‘keywords’ to add to your website when it was being built?
  10. How many times does a visitor to your website have to click before they find what they came for?
  11. Can you control the way your listing looks in the search engines?
  12. Can you track your website to find problems, broken links and missed opportunities?
  13. What’s a bounce rate?
  14. What is ‘shotgun advertising’?
  15. What the heck is Pay-per-click? And why is it a bandaid instead of a smart business investment?
  16. Should I register my domain or build my website first?