I've watched this site for quite a while, and I have to say the people that participate here are for the most part serious about what they do, and how they handle situations. Hence, my need for some advise on a touchy subject.
I was approached by a new customer this afternoon in need of a website ASAP. They currently have an ad running in about 1.5 weeks for a product they wish to sell. The ad will direct readers to their website for the product. (yes, we all know that they should have started on the website earlier instead of waiting until the last possible moment) They already have hosting in place and I feel that I can get their website ready in time...(this is not the problem issue)
I have explained to them about the "sandbox" issue with new domains, and the time it takes to get indexed, and the time it takes for results to start showing within the SERPs.
They explained to me that they have a longtime friend that works for Google (3 years at Google), they went on to explain that this friend will help them evade the sandbox time and get them good ranking within the SERPs right away... 8-O
After pondering this for a few hours, I wondered the following things:
a) why have I been busting my butt learning SEO and fighting to get myself on top of the heap if someone like this can just walk in and be at the top?
b) the new client may just be full of garbage, however he does not seem like he is...
c) if something like this is possible under the table, and it got out, it would ruin my business forever being associated with that type of incident. ( I can almost read the newpaper headlines now...)
d) do I contact Google and explain my situation, perhaps this person could be caught within their company and stopped. I have no proof at this time however, something could be setup to catch them.
On the other hand, since I've been in this business for about 8 years now, I'd love to actually see it happen just to know it's really possible. If it IS possible then the SERPs ARE actually tainted, even now.
I realize we're all human, and some of us do things for one reason or another...or another...or another
I'm seriously considering calling this customer back in the morning and backing out of the deal. (No, I don't know any names yet or anything like that, you all know as much as I know at this point) The money would be good for the job, however I have issues with it.
Any help or advise or assistance you could give me would be greatly appreciated. This post is no joke and I'm dead serious about the situation.
Thanks in advance! You guys Rock!