Previously I talked about how web developers will put a link to their website on the new site they created for you, thus benefitting themselves and adding absolutely nothing good to your site. Today I would like to talk about ongoing fees that some unscrupulous developers will charge you on a monthly basis.
First off, there is nothing inherently wrong about charging ongoing fees, as long as there is a legitimate reason for the charge. Net101 charges ongoing fees that our clients can opt-in to after full disclosure of exactly what the fees are for. The fees I am referring to are often associated with search engine optimization (SEO) and social media. These can run into thousands of dollars a month. If your developer wants to charge you any fees for ongoing SEO or for social media, make sure to have them put in writing what these fees cover. Also, make sure to get a monthly report that states precisely what was done that month to justify the cost.
One of the most time consuming, and therefore most expensive, charges for SEO is for "link building". Link building is in fact very time consuming and when done properly it can really help your results in the search engines. The problem is that a shady developer will hide behind this and charge you for something you really are not getting. If your web guy/gal is charging you for link building, demand a list of the link requests they have made and a verification of the links back to your site. If they refuse to provide these, it’s time to find another vendor. If they do provide a list of requests, it’s in your best interest to review the list to see who they have invited to link to your company website. A link from a questionable website can be worse then no links at all.
The same goes for social media which also can be very time consuming when properly done. The problem with social media is, will your business ever really benefit from it? The only way to know for sure is to try it, but make sure that you get a detailed list of what you are paying for. Are 4-5 tweets a week and maybe 1-2 Facebook posts a week worth whatever it is you are being charged? Only you can decide if it is, but you can’t make a decision without the data provided by your vendor, that is why it is vitally important to use a reputable company and get detailed reports.