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.
This time the email came in from a ‘John Marion’ who was using an @globalgns.com email address. The email came into my big Christmas site. (I don’t normally add the family name of spammers for privacy, but 100% sure it’s a fake name.)
The spam came in on the 13th Feb 2023, the subject was ‘About whychristmas.com’ and it went:
I hope you are doing well.
I was looking for keywords and found your website on pages 3–4 of Google.
If you were on page 1, you’d get so many prospects/new clients every day.
Most of your targeted keywords are on pages 3–5.
You’re so close! many prospects/new clients daily
Do you mind if I run a FREE SEO Audit on your site whychristmas.com as to why you’re not on page #1?
I can send the audit report in a couple of hours. And furtively, If you are interested in our Advance SEO Packages, which can give a boost to your business, feel free to ask me.
I have more than 10 years of experience in digital marketing.
Can I send it over?
We look forward to your reply before proceeding further.
Business Dev. Manager
That’s a pretty classic SEO spam template. So I replied…
That sounds interesting. I look forward to seeing what your report says.
I didn’t get a reply. What I did get, about a week later, was more spam from an @globalgns.com. This time from a ‘Richard Jaffe’. This time the subject was ‘Re : Noticeable SEO Mistakes about your website’ (another spammer using the ‘re’ trick to make you think you’ve had contact with them before…) and it went:
I hope you are doing great and trying to take your business up to the next level. I am contacting you regarding your business website.
There are a lot of errors in your website whychristmas.com which are preventing you from achieving top position in Google.
I on the behalf of our ISO certified IT firm like to offer you the following:
Our main services are listed here:
- Fully SEO Optimized Website
- Fully Mobile Responsive Website
- Assured #1 Position in Google Search Result
- Huge Improvement in Business Revenue
- Website Re-Designing Services
- Mobile Application Service.
Just revert back to this email and we will send you more details about our company as well as a customized action plan for you.
Can you please share your time to discuss more on the calendar below?
[link removed for privacy]
I am waiting for your reply.
Business Development Manager
Polosoft Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
[contacts removed for privacy]
We are not spammers and are against spamming of any kind. If forwarding this email has caused offense to you or your company, then we apologize for the same. In order to stop receiving such emails from us, please reply with “Unsubscribe
More fairly standard SEO spam – even down you the ‘we are not spammers’ rubbish… But we do get a business name in the email footer. Interesting! So the main company here is ‘Polosoft Techologies Pvt. Ltd.’ (Pvt Ltd being an Indian business type.)
So I replied to Richard:
John was meant to be sending me an audit report, but he hasn’t yet. Can you tell me what’s wrong with my site?
Two days later I had a reply – from a DIFFERENT John who was using a Gmail account with their company name in it, hmmmm…
I have gone through your website and also done the audit report where you can find your website problems and improvement details.
Our SEO packages are very competitive and you can choose any of them
$ 299 per month starter package for 5 keywords
$ 399 per month is the most popular and for 10 keywords. Here we also guarantee google top rank in just 6 months
Please choose your plan and pay to start working from next week onwards. Let me know your comfort time to discuss more on google meet please.
Else you can call me directly on- [number removed for privacy]
For payment- [link removed for privacy]
we have lot of clients like
[links removed for privacy]
We can really help you here and grow your business very well. Looking forward to hearing from you.
John [Name removed for privacy as this might not be fake, it probably is but better safe than sorry]
There was a PDF attached to the email, which we’ll look at more below! It was time for me to call out their spam. So I replied:
I’ve been a web designer and developer for 20 over years. I reply to SEO spammers to see what ‘services’ they offer and the things they say and use to get clients.
My site www.whychristmas.com has also been on the web for over 20 years and gets over 20 MILLION page views each year. So it’s always interesting when people email me out of the blue claiming things like there are “Noticeable SEO Mistakes about your website”…
Your report was interesting to say the least. You’ve pasted in screenshots from SEOptimer and GTmetrix without giving any context or explanation of their meanings. And my site gets A+ and A on them – that’s pretty good right? (Your site gets B and F – oops.)
The report says that things like the robots.txt and sitemap.xml need ‘optimising’ but HOW?!
The report says that my site doesn’t have ‘Meta Language’. Yes it does. This is amazingly easy to check.
Your report is also contradictory. Under ’Technical SEO’ it lists the ‘Static URLs’ as ’SEO Friendly’ (but they still need optimisation?!) and then under ‘On-Page SEO’ it lists ‘SEO Friendly URL’ as ’not present’. Erm, how can the URL be both ’SEO Friendly’ AND ’Not Present’?!
And did you actually check on Google for any of the keywords you suggested? Out of the five, I’m NUMBER 1 on Google for that term already, for another I have TWO LISTINGS IN THE TOP 10 RESULTS. The other three are not things I’m targeting but for other very similar, and more appropriate, terms my site is in the top 3 results…
I also have some questions and your emails.
Please can you tell me why your company thinks it’s ok to spam people, from email accounts which don’t belong to your main domain, to get business?
Is your company happy breaching multiple international laws?
For the UK (where I live) you are not allowed to sent marketing emails to an individual without their permission – you did this: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-pecr/electronic-and-telephone-marketing/electronic-mail-marketing/ (Under UK law, I am an ‘individual’ as I’m a Sole Trader, not a Ltd Company.)
For the USA (where your site says you’re based), you are breaking several aspects of CAN-SPAM compliance: https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/can-spam-act-compliance-guide-business
I look forward to getting your answers to my questions.
It’s now been over two weeks and I’ve not had a reply from John.
What I have had is more spam from @globalgns.com email addresses! Hmmmmm. Spammers gonna spam I guess…
Two of the ‘new spam’ (from two different names) were titled ‘Fix 30+ Errors for whychristmas.com.’ which is possibly the most spammy subject ever! (This template also has, in the footer, that they’re using a Gmail address for initial contact and will reply from their corporate email. However, they’re not using Gmail addresses for the initial spam and their reply did come from a Gmail account. Laughable…)
I’ve replied to one of these asking them to send over their report showing the 30+ errors! If they reply, I’ll ask them why they’re still spamming me and why John #2 didn’t get back to me…
I had a reply! – Nearly a week later but it was a reply!
It was from a ‘Mike’ (one of the 30+ errors spammers) and it went:
I saw your website- http://whychristmas.com/ . We can give a new face to your website. Lots of improvement has to be done in your website like:-
- Spacing between the text and the area is not a good way
- Scrolling can be better
- Tightness and loading time of the website is slow
- We must use better fonts, colors and objectivity of website
- the last mobile compatible is must now. adays
See marketing is needed for all sizes of companies to have horizontal and vertical growth. Let me know and I hope we can be your long term partner here.
Please find the attached audit report, SEO activity Plan and Price chart Let me know if you have any questions.
Can we schedule a meeting and discuss more ?
Looking forward to a positive reply.
Attached was a report which was basically identical to the one from John #2. There was also a price sheet and a timeline sheet.
So I replied to Mike…
I guess you haven’t spoken to John Vanja?! I had dealing with him a few weeks ago. He even sent me an ‘audit report’. It was basically identical to the one you’ve just sent me.
So your company doesn’t even seem to know who it’s recently contacted!!!
Just like the ‘improvements’ you list, your report (as well as John’s) is total rubbish.
I also replied to John that Polosoft are spammers and asked why your company break multiple international laws. But he didn’t reply to me. Would you like to explain why your company spams people, and breaks the law, to get business?
You initial email said that there were ’30+ Errors’ on my site – but you’ve only listed ‘5 improvements’ in your email. Can you explain that?
Let’s have a look at your suggested ‘improvements’ shall we?
- Spacing between the text and the area is not a good way
That literally makes no sense. What is ‘the area’?
- Scrolling can be better
Erm, right. Again, this makes no sense! What scrolling? How? Where?
- Tightness and loading time of the website is slow
No, it’s VERY fast. In fact, the report YOU’VE JUST SENT ME (as well as John’s report) shows my site is VERY fast to load. In fact the report said it loaded in 0ms – i.e. INSTANTLY!!! So you can’t even read your own report!!!!
- We must use better fonts, colors and objectivity of website
Erm, again, WHAT? What is the ‘objectivity of website’?
- the last mobile compatible is must now. adays
That sentence also makes no sense. Also my site is VERY mobile compatible.
Please can you explain why all those ‘improvements’ are total rubbish and also why your company spams people?
And don’t say you don’t send out spam. I’ve had at least eight emails from Polosoft in the last few weeks. That’s spam.
I look forward to your response.
Later that day I had another reply from Mike. It was short and sweet…
I have asked my team to remove your email from the email list. No further email will go .
I sent sent a short and sweet reply back!
Thank you. Can you still explain why you send out spam, full of misinformation, to try and get business?
Somehow I doubt that I’ll get a reply to that one…
Their Report & Recommendations
Let’s look at the ‘Audit Report’ they sent me. It starts with a screenshot from SEOptimer (a free SEO tool, I know what it’s screens look like) showing my site gets A+. There is NO other information about what any of this means.
On the next page it just says that they use five categories for things:
On page SEO
Social Media Presence
Under ‘Technical SEO’, the errors they have are:
XML Sitemap – Present – Need Optimization
Erm, how? My XML sitemap lists all the pages! So this is WRONG.
Robots.txt – Present – Need Optimization
Again, HOW? (It doesn’t so WRONG)
Canonical Tag – Present – Need Optimization
This makes NO sense. You either have correct canonical tags or you don’t. I do. This is WRONG.
Google Analytics – Not Present – Need Optimization
This is correct. But it’s because a I use a privacy friendly analytics tool. They could have easily seen this by checking the site’s code. Having Google Analytics on a site also has NO direct affect to SEO. So we’ll call this IRRELEVANT.
Google Search Console – Not Present – Need Optimization
I’ve authorised my site via a DNS record, thus there’s no HTML tag or file for them to find. This is WRONG.
Customized 404 page – Found – Need Optimization
Erm another ‘how’. My 404 page explains the situation and tells people what’s gone wrong. Oh and their site DOES NOT have a custom 404 page. So, erm, yeah. This wis WRONG.
Header Tags – Found – Need Optimization
Again, HOW? I use header tags appropriately. Which is more than their site does! This is WRONG.
GEO Meta Tags – Not Present – Need Optimization
My site isn’t a ‘local’ one with an address. Hence, it doesn’t need geo tags. This is IRRELEVANT.
Page Size – 700kb – Need Optimization
This is WRONG on a number of levels. Firstly, my site is 245kb NOT 700kb! You get this number on GTmetrix, so I do not know where they got 700kb from! Having a page under 250kb is pretty flipping amazing in this day and age. Their site is 4.67mb – so over 16x the size of mine – but it’s my site that ‘needs optimization’ – right… (or WRONG)!
Duplicate Content – Found – Need Optimization
Hmmm, ok. Basically all sites have some duplication. I’ve found that basically all SEO spammers put this one as it sounds scary. We’ll call this IRRELEVANT.
Image Alt Tag – Found – Need Optimization
Nope. All the alt tags on my site are just fine thanks. This is WRONG.
Broken Links – Present – Need Optimization
If you run a broken links checker on my site, yes there are ‘broken links’. However, if you actually check them, they’re shown as broken as the server’s they’re on block the broken link checker! So this is WRONG.
Static URLs – SEO Friendly – Need Optimization
If my URL are ‘SEO Friendly’ how can they need optimisation!? This is WRONG.
Now onto the errors under ‘On-Page SEO’
Meta Title – Present – Need Optimization
WRONG. My meta titles are just fine.
Meta Description – Present – Need Optimization
WRONG. As are the meta descriptions.
Meta Keyword – Not Optimised – Need Optimization
WRONG. They are. AND they’re left over from when I started the site. No major search engine has used the meta keywords tags FOR YEARS.
Duplicate Titles – Present – Need Optimization
What? No there isn’t. WRONG.
Header(H1/H2) – Present – Need Optimization
WRONG. They’re fine.
Anchor text linking – Not Present – Need Optimization
VERY WRONG. All links have ‘anchor linking text’. This error is just meaningless.
Twitter Card – Present – Need Optimization
WRONG. They’re fine.
Meta Language – Not Present – Need Optimization
WRONG. It’s set to English – as that’s the language the site is in.
SEO Friendly URL – Not Present – Need Optimization
DOUBLE WRONG. Firstly, the URLs are SEO friendly and secondly, this same report actually said they were SEO friendly in the previous section!
URL Length – Not Optimised – Need Optimization
WRONG. The URL lengths are fine.
In the ‘User Usability’ (that’s tautology) section, I get ‘Good’ for all the items – hurrah! What’s less hurrah is that the’ve made errors in it!
They say my site’s loading time is 0ms. I know my site is quick, but it does actually take a small amount of time to load!
Under this section is a screen grab from GTmetrix, a free site speed testing tool (I know what its screens look like too!). My site gets an A with 100% in Performance and Structure. Again, there’s no explanation of what it means. (There is a 0ms for ‘total blocking time’ on the graphic, but that IS NOT the same as how fast a site loads overall.)
Under ‘Social Media Presence’ there are more errors. They say I’ve got a Twitter and Facebook account for the site – I have! But they also say it’s got a Pinterest account – I have not!
They also say it’s ‘Not Good’ that I don’t have an Instagram or LinkedIn account. Well, not having those has NO direct impact on SEO. I do not want an Instagram account for the site and a LinkedIn account would be pointless as it’s not a business site (as spending more than 30 seconds on the site would show).
The final section is ‘Keyword Suggestion’ (it’s missing an ‘s’) where they list five terms which they say I’m not ranking for in the top 100 on Google.
Let’s have a look at these:
a christmas story
Hmmm, well there’s a very popular film called ‘A Christmas Story’, so most of the results for that term are about that film! But a search for ‘the christmas story’ (which is a phrase I’m targeting) has my site at #4!
a christmas carol
Hmmm (again), well there’s a very famous book (and films!) called that. A search for ‘christmas carol history’, which I’m targeting, has my site at #2!
around the world christmas
MY SITE IS #1 ON GOOGLE FOR THIS!!! (And it also is for ‘christmas around the world’ which also makes more sense as a search term.)
christmas web sites
Well, I’m not targeting this. I wouldn’t expect to rank for it! But Google ‘christmas information website’ and I’m #1! (With four sub results!)
I have two results on the first page of Google with this phrase…
So did Polosoft actually check ANY of the search keywords they suggested? I’m thinking probably not and they just assumed I wouldn’t be ranking for them! Oh. Dear.
So overall, shall we say that I’m not exactly impressed with this report! It’s full of errors and meaningless information and lacks context and explanation where they do give actually useful info.
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…
We’ve got two sites to look at this time. The domain that GlobalGNSS / Polosoft Technologies use to send out spam (which in itself is a really iffy look) and their main business one.
The domain used to send out spam is at globalgns.com which was registered in June 2022 (possibly for spamming purposes?!)
Their site has 1 HTML error.
Using the WAVE Accessibility checking tool, their site has 3 errors and 6 contrast errors.
I can tell from the code that they’e used an off the shelf HTML template, so those good results are down to that, rather than what GlobalGNSS/Polosoft have done.
Oh and my site has 0 errors on both…
This site won’t load/run in Google’s PageSpeed tool. That is very odd. I wonder if the scripts doing their animations (see below) are stopping it from working…
So I ran it through GTmetrix (the tools they used for my site on their report) and it got a C with 67% on desktop – that’s not great… (A reminder that my site got A / 100%!)
The site is just one page. BUT it’s actually really tricky to use. It uses ‘fancy’ animations that frankly make me feel rather queasy when I scroll through the site/page. It moves and jumps all over the place.
It’s made of three parts, but it’s pretty much impossible to scroll to the middle section, it very easily jumps to the bottom of the page.
The site/page has NO Heading 1. The main title is a Heading 3. Don’t do that…
They have ‘logo’ in the logo’s alt. Don’t do that…
It says they’re ‘a subsidiary company of Polosoft Technologies’ – so at least we have that confirmed and Polosoft are indeed the main company/responsible for the spam!
The copy on the site is pretty much all marketing rubbish. It goes on and on about how they use ‘AI’ for their strategies! By this I take it they mean that they bulk spam people and use basic and free web tools to run their useless audits…!
I ran the text on this one page site through the ‘bla bla meter’ and it came back with 75% ‘bullshit’ rating [excuse my French]. Seems about right to me.
There’s an address on the site for San Francisco. Looking at it on Google maps shows that it’s for an apartment block!
There’s also a US phone number on the site – in Portland, Oregon. Hmmmm. The number is for a mobile network. Again hmmm. In fact it’s the same number which is on the footer/signature of the spam from Richard from Polosoft. OK, fair enough, we know they’re really the same company. But there’s also an address on Richard’s spam, in Baltimore (so the complete opposite side of the USA)! More on this below…
So that’s the GlobalGNSS site – I wonder if it’s just something they stuck on the domain they use to spam people in case people ever visit it. This is more than most spammers who use random domains do normally!
Now let’s look at the Polosoft Technologies site.
It’s at polosoftech.com which was registered in August 2016.
This site has 36 HTML errors. About 10 of these are from a translation widget, so those aren’t really their fault… But there are some other basic HTML errors that very much are.
Using the WAVE Accessibility checking tool, this site has 20 errors and 8 contrast errors.
Using the Google Lighthouse speed test tool (which runs this time!) the site gets:
Performance: 7 (SEVEN!!!)
Best Practices: 58
My site gets:
Best Practices: 100
So my site is better (well perfect) across the board. 7 (SEVEN!) is one of the lowest PageSpeed scores I’ve ever seen. It’s almost impressively bad. That 7 is on ‘mobile’ which is what Google uses as its ranking method. Their site only get 25 on ‘desktop’ which is generally more ‘forgiving’. That’s still TERRIBLE.
And as they used SEOptimer and GTmetrix on their report, I thought I’d put their site through those tools as well!
On SEOptimer, my site gets an A+, their site gets a B. The most shocking part is in the ‘Usability’ section. My it’s gets and A+, theirs gets and F. OUCH. (Having a PageSpeed of 7 will get you an F…)
On GTmetrix, my site gets an A with 100% for performance and 100% for structure. Their site gets an E with 48% for performance and 57% for structure.
As they said my robots.txt file needed to be ‘optimised’ I thought I’d have a look at their one – and it’s odd. One of (if not) the MAIN thing you put in a robots.txt is a reference to your XML sitemap. My site’s file has this – their one does not. They do have an ‘allow’ statement for a sitemap, but that’s not how your link to your sitemap within robots.txt.
They also have disallow lines for LOTS of things. It looks like they’re ones for old or staging pages, etc. That’s fine to do, but you also would normally remove the page and set-up 301 redirects to the more relevant pages, rather than setting disallow statements – as that’s also better for SEO…
Like on the GlobalGNSS site, they’ve got ‘logo’ in the alt for their logo – oops.
Again, there’s no ‘Heading 1’ on their home page – oops – that’s VERY important for SEO.
Remember that Richard’s spam had the subject “Noticeable SEO Mistakes about your website”? Well, they might want to have a look at their own site me thinks…
I mentioned that they have an address in Maryland in their email footer. It’s also on their site’s footer, along with an address in New Delhi. Their contact page lists four addresses in Maryland, San Francisco, New Delhi and Bhubaneswar (the home to many an SEO spammer).
Looking at the Maryland address on a map, it’s for a small residential house in a very suburban area on the outskirts of Baltimore. As above the San Francisco address is in apartment block.
The address in Delhi also appears to be an apartment block. But the address in Bhubaneswar, now that’s in an office complex!
On their Facebook page, they have the address in Bhubaneswar. They also list ‘service areas’ for “Maryland City, MD, US · Canada, KY, US · Los Angeles, CA, US · San Francisco, CA” (I wonder if they realise that Canada, in Kentucky is different from Canada the whole country?!)
Their Twitter account also says they’re in Bhubaneswar.
Their LinkedIn account has the Maryland, San Francisco and Bhubaneswar addresses on it. They list 51 employees on LinkedIn – but they’ve blocked seeing their accounts unless you’re in their network… But from what info I can see, nearly all of them are in India, mostly in and around Bhubaneswar with a few in Delhi. Only two of the non India based employees have photos on their profiles. Both of these look very ‘stock photo like’ compared to the other profile images. Hmmmm.
On their website, there’s a ‘Leadership’ page. It lists information about the CEO and HR Director – with links to their full LinkedIn profiles. The CEO is from Delhi and the HR Director is from the area were Bhubaneswar is located.
There’s also a ‘Careers’ page with three job listings – all in Bhubaneswar.
As I mentioned above, their full business name is Polosoft Technologies Pvt Ltd. ‘Pvt Ltd’ being an Indian business type. (In the USA you’d be an LLC.)
To me it’s pretty clear that the main work for Polosoft and GlobalGNSS happens in Bhubaneswar. The other three addresses might be ‘connected’ to them – as in family members, etc. but they clearly operate from Bhubaneswar and are an Indian registered company.
I have NO ISSUES with companies being in India, frankly I don’t care where a company is based. However, I do care about them spamming me, having useless reports and then being less than transparent about where they’re actually based and operate from.
They have a ‘Life @ Polosoft’ page and there are lots of photos of employees having fun – many with cakes of different kinds – yum! (All the photos appear to have been taken in India…)
It looks like Polosoft might be a very good employer. They might also be able to do really good work (although the quality of their report and own sites leave me less than convinced of this).
However, that doesn’t stop them being a spammer.
In the reply with the report, from John #2, he said ‘we also guarantee google top rank in just 6 months’ and in the ’30+ errors’ spam template it says ‘We’re focused on guaranteed Google ranking’. However, Google has something to say about claims like that:
Beware of SEO companies that claim to guarantee rankings, allege a “special relationship” with Google, or advertise a “priority submit” to Google.from Google’s “Do you need an SEO?”
[Update August 2023: GlobalGNSS / Polosoft Technologies are now also using the domain polosoftechh.com – with an extra ‘h’ on the end – to send out spam. I know they’re connected as the ‘unsubscribe’ link on the email goes to a page on globalgns.com! There was a ‘disclaimer’ on this new spam saying “We strictly adhere to United States Federal Laws of Anti-spamming” – only that disclaimer was missing several features needed to comply with CAN-SPAM – like a postal address – and they’d still be in breach of PECR in the UK and multiple other antispam laws!]
GlobalGNSS / Polosoft Technologies are SEO spammers.
They appear to have a domain set-up primarily set-up as a way of sending spam. Even when you’re told that you wouldn’t work with them, they keep on sending spam.
Basically all of the things they said about my site were wrong, misleading or irrelevant.
When asked to explain why they spam with lies, they don’t answer.
Their own sites are full of marketing rubbish, have VERY basic HTML errors and one of the worst PageSpeed scores I’ve ever seen!
So if you get an email from the @globalgns.com domain [or polosoftechh.com], or from Polosoft, the delete button might be your best friend.
But, as ever, the choice is yours…