Be Wary of Lead Service Awards

Be Wary of Lead Service Awards
Aaron O'Hanlon
Aaron O'Hanlon June 19, 2013

Recently I read an article about lead companies hijacking contractor's websites and selling leads to other contractors. This reminded me of the Footbridge Media support department and when they get bombarded with a specific request.

Every six months or so our client service department gets overloaded with adding "Super Service Award" badges or "Preferred Contractor" awards from various lead generation companies. These award badges are not actual "Awards", but a very weak SEO trick to capture leads and resell them back to you, or to increase the optimization of the lead service site.

The way it works is that you get an email from the lead service stating that you have recently won an award and that the best thing to do is to promote this award on your website.

Instead of sending you the image, they provide you with code. Actually for some of them, every contractor is getting the same code.

The code is not unique to the contractor, but rather the same code for every single contractor who has received the award in the same area providing the same service. These "award badges" actually go directly back to the lead service, which not only helps the lead service's SEO, but actual enables the lead service to potentially capture leads that may have been captured by your own site.

Imagine one of your website visitors goes to your website, clicks on the award and is now redirected to another site. The visitor then submits their information to the lead generation site, and the lead company now sells you the lead. They are basically selling you a lead that you already generated. Even worse, should the award link to a list of contractors in your area that potential client who found you, is not staring at a list of your competitors.

So, next time you a presented with an "Award" it is worth asking some questions. Particularly, just what does this award do?  Where does it take the visitor when clicked? In the end, you may find it is not much of an award at all.

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