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.
I had several items of spam come in from a ‘Randy’ who was using a gmail.com account with the name of a Canadian city and ‘4sale’ in it!
The subject was: Re: Whychristmas.Com Errors (the old using ‘re’ to make it look like you’ve been in contact before trick, hmmmmm.)
Dear Business Owner of Whychristmas.Com,
You can’t expect your website to increase your revenue with so many errors. Many business owners get puzzled as their website isn’t performing well, while others’ are flourishing. That’s unfortunate, but not your fortune!
Now, I will show you the number of broken links, pages that returned 4XX status code upon request, images with no ALT text, pages with no meta description tag, not having an unique meta description, having too long title, etc., found in your Whychristmas.Com.
I have a large professional team who can fix all the above issues immediately at an affordable price.
I guarantee you will see a drastic change in your Google search ranking once these are fixed.
If this is something you are interested in, then allow me to send you a No Obligation Audit Report for your review. We will fix those errors with no extra cost if you choose any one of our monthly marketing plans.
This is somewhat of a ‘best of’ SEO spam email with bits taken from various SEO spam I’ve dealt with over the years!
Anyway, I replied because that’s what I do…
This sounds interesting. Please send over the report.
Four days later I got a reply from a ‘Samantha’ who was using an @auroin.com email address:
Dear Whychristmas.Com Team,
Thank you for responding to my associate email.
I’m Samantha from AuroIN LLC, we are a full-service digital marketing agency growing brands in today’s connected world.
We are based in India. We offer innovative strategies, methods, and outcomes. Our services increase online visibility and traffic.
We have carried out the website audit for [Whychristmas.Com] with the limited access we have, and have listed the findings and necessary recommendations that should be addressed urgently to ensure the site is ready to perform the best in Google and become SEO friendly.
Website is doing pretty well. The site doesn’t need much technical support.
However, the website have more than 200 pages which needs to be taken care of with proper keywords optimization for promotion.
Please check below few area which needs improvements.
[Four images from an auto online report showing what’s ‘wrong’ with my site. Most of these are irrelevant/very minor to SEO, a couple are just wrong!]
Please find the comprehensive audit report attached with the email [Whychristmas.Com Audit Report.pdf].
(Note: For In-depth analysis of your website, please share your website Google console read only access. It will help me to understand more about your website errors and area of improvements.)
Further you can check the website [Whychristmas.Com] is having very low traffic. You must list the website in a high DA website and improve the website keywords ranking in search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing.
[This was an image from SEM Rush, a pretty good SEO site. Although its traffic estimator is VERY VERY wrong for my site. It says it had 140,000 visitors in December, which is still pretty good for most sites, but it actually had about 10 MILLION…]
Let me know if you are interested in improving your website SEO.
Visit our website at www.auroin.com
Please feel free to share if you have any questions.
Awaiting your earliest response.
Thanks & Regards,
Business Development Manager (AuroIN LLC)
More SEO spam rubbish, but she also forgot to attach the report!
Thanks for your email. However, there was no attachment.
About 15 minutes later, Samantha replied with the report!
Thanks for your quick response.
I apologize for the inconvenience had to you.
Please find the report attached with this email.
Have a great weekend!
Thanks & Regards,
Business Development Manager (AuroIN LLC)
Was it worth waiting for the report? In a word. No. It’s a auto one that anyone can use for free… (more on this later!) So I replied to Samantha. I also had some questions for her:
Thanks for the report. I see you use SEOpimer – and that my site gets an A+. But your site gets a B+ (https://www.seoptimer.com/auroin.com)
So isn’t it actually your site that’s more in need of SEO help?
I reply to SEO spammers to see what they say to get business.
My site gets over 20 MILLION page views every year, so it’s always interesting to get emails, from out of the blue, telling me what ‘errors’ it has…
I have some questions for you.
Please can you tell me why your company thinks it’s ok to spam people, from random email accounts, to get business?
Why does your site say you’re in New York, when you said that you’re based in India?
is your company happy breaching multiple international laws?
Your initial email was IN BREACH OF ALL the pieces of anti-spam legislation listed below (and many others from around the world).
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/business-guidance/resources/can-spam-act-compliance-guide-business
For CASL in Canada, you need consent to send electronic marketing – which you did not have: https://fightspam-combattrelepourriel.ised-isde.canada.ca/site/canada-anti-spam-legislation/en/getting-consent-send-email (You also need other business identifiers in the emails, which your emails do not have.)
The Anti Spam Act in Australia has similar conditions for consent and identity, which your emails also do not meet: https://www.acma.gov.au/avoid-sending-spam
In South Africa there is the Protection of Personal Information Act, which says you have to have consent to send people marketing emails, which you did not have: https://ispa.org.za/spam/
In France the Trust in the Digital Economy Act says that you have to have consent to send marketing emails, which you did not have: https://www.culture.gouv.fr/en/Thematiques/Industries-culturelles-et-creatives/Dossiers-thematiques/Le-spam/Le-cadre-juridique-La-legislation-francaise-en-matiere-de-spam
For The Netherlands, the Dutch Telecommunications Act says that you need consent to send people marketing emails, which you did not have. It also says that the true identity of the party should be disclosed up front, which you did not do. https://sherloc.unodc.org/cld/document/nld/1988/telecommunications_act_of_the_netherlands.html
I look forward to getting your answers to my questions.
Well it’s been well over a week now and I’ve heard nothing more from Samantha. I guess that Auroin are yet more SEO spammers that can’t/won’t answer basic questions about why they send out spam.
Their Report & Recommendations
The report from Samantha used SEOptimer, a good auto SEO tool. It gives my site A+, so I also find it amusing when SEO spammers say my site is terrible then send over a report with ‘A+’ on it! (And so when Samantha said ‘Website is doing pretty well. The site doesn’t need much technical support.’, she wasn’t wrong…).
Their site gets a B+ (which is much better than most SEO spammers), so why should they be telling me what’s wrong with my site, when they’ve not fixed some, pretty basic, issues on their own site?
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 domain is at auroin.com which was registered in May 2004.
Their site has 5 HTML errors – that’s VERY good for SEO spammers!
Using the WAVE Accessibility checking tool, this site has 30 errors and 40 contrast errors. That’s not so good (and some are really not good).
Using the Google Lighthouse speed test tool the site gets:
Best Practices: 96
My Christmas site has 0 HTML or Accessibility errors and gets 100/100 for all four items on Lighthouse.
The alt on their logo is ‘Aaron Logo’. It shouldn’t have the ‘logo’…
The heading one on the page (the most important heading SEO wise) is ‘Get in Touch With Us’ and is buried right at the bottom of the page. This is terrible SEO wise and also accessibility wise. The H1 should be the main heading in the page structure – this one very much is not…
They don’t seem to know what a form label is (they help people using assistive technology to use web forms).
The meta title and description on the site claims that they’re in the USA, specifically New York (as do their social media accounts). But ‘Samantha’ told us ‘We are based in India’!
There is NOTHING on the site saying where they actually are. They do have a phone number with an area code for Syracuse, New York – but that is NOT New York City!
There’s no address on the site, but on their Facebook page there’s an address in New York. It’s in ‘One World Trade Center’ that’s about the biggest and best sky-scraper in New York. Can I say that I find this VERY suspicious! You can also easily get ‘virtual offices’ at this address – that sounds more like it!
Their LinkedIn profile also says they’re in New York. However, all the jobs they’ve got on offer are in Bhubaneswar, the home of most of the SEO spammers I’ve ever dealt with – just like Auroin…
Their Linked Also says they have ‘Marketing offices in USA, Singapore & China’ (so virtual/fake ones then) and ‘Global delivery center in India’ (so where they really are)!
I also found listings for ‘AuroIN India Ltd’ with the same logo, located in Bhubaneswar – aha!!!
If I do a search in the New York Business directory, there is no listing for Auroin LLC. HMMMMMMMMM.
However, they *might* have some sort of business registration in the US. However, none of the actual work is being done there.
And if they they do have a US business registration, then they’re very much breaking multiple US laws (like CAN-SPAM) with their spammy behaviour…
On their site, there’s an ‘Our Partners’ section. It got a BBB Accredited Business logo. But if I look them up on the BBB directory, they have a listing but they ARE NOT currently BBB Accredited – oops.
AuroIn are SEO spammers.
They send out spam from random email accounts.
They don’t answer simple questions about why they send out spam!
They’re location is rather ‘clouded’ at best and they claim to have business registrations they don’t.
So if you get a scary looking email from AuroIn, the delete button might well be the best option.
But, as ever, the choice is yours…