These are the full details about how Shayan Italia scammed us out of $13,200.00. It’s quite long, but for those who have any business dealings with Shayan, this is a MUST READ, as the details and facts are plainly laid out. Everything from dates, screenshots, contracts and more, discover for yourself who this fraud is. Because Shayan Italia is NOT the person you think he is…
Our SEO firm runs a special a few times throughout the year known as our Page 1 Guarantee Ranking Special. This is offer is completely white hat, as we do very thorough research into each clients’ market, calculate approximately how long it will take to rank certain terms page 1 and create optimized articles and manual back links to rank them. *We do not and cannot promise specific ranking positions (i.e. #1, 2 or 3 on the first page of Google) or specific traffic numbers.
Our firm personally invests into established companies that are seeking SEO services and agree to our 24-month contract. Once the company information is filled out and sent back to us, we begin with thorough market research, where we will research 1,000 to 2,000 industry keywords and pick the low-hanging fruit to go after first. Our two most popular packages are for 10 keywords or 15 keywords. After the keyword research is finished we send our recommendations to the client for approval. Once the client and are SEO team are in agreement with the keyword selections, we will begin building the campaigns. Typical ranking times are anywhere from 3 to 6 months but they do not pay us until they rank page 1 in Google for their first keyword.
With this ranking special we are investing our hard earned money into specific companies. Due to the fact that it may take us up to 6 months or more to rank them up to page 1, we must ensure that we are compensated for our time and resources by requiring them to sign a 24-month retainer before work begins.
At Overdrive Strategies, we prefer to work with fewer companies over the period of a few years versus a new set of clients each month. We’ve also found that not only does this help us build stronger and longer-lasting SEO campaigns, it also helps the client establish a stronger reputation and rankings online over a longer period of time.
IMPORTANT WARNING About The Company ‘Biranyi360’
This post is intended for SEO and investment companies working with Biryani360.com OR Shayan Italia. This post has been written in hopes that other SEO companies out there will avoid working with these scammers and save your firm the time, energy and resources ours had stolen from us.
We interviewed and took on a company known as “Biranyi360” located in Mumbai, India. The interview went well as Shayan (the owner of Biranyi360) discussed his business and we covered the features of our ranking special and made sure to answer any questions Shayan had. We made sure he had a product that would produce enough in profit margins, to sustain paying a company for the first 3-6 months of service while we worked hard to increase his ROI (Return On Investment). We explained that SEO most oftentimes has a slow recuperation time for it’s investment, but that it also delivered the highest ROI for any online marketing currently available. The interview took place on Skype to the user ‘shayanitalia’ and concluded with going through our normal regimen that a company is ready for the contract commitment.
“He was seeking page 1 rankings and I was confident in the results we had gotten for other companies and his company seemed like a great fit. He already had a profit margin running, so he could afford our services. All we had to do was push how much we made him additional.” – Zach Miller, Overdrive Strategies SEO Consultant
Shayan Italia got back to us with the profit margins for his company Biryani360 and we ran the statistics to insure we would be a good fit. Once we gave him the OK, he would be signing the contract that day or the next.
Shayan Italia signs the contract and agrees to all the Terms and Conditions. Which clearly stipulates that he will begin payment upon his first keyword ranking Page 1 in Google.co.in and the amount will be for $495.00USD per month for 24 months. Below is the signed contract.
Shayan’s SEO campaign for Biryani360.com begins and his stats show the fact that his website is less than 1 year old with 0 SEO work and links built to it. He was Page 1 in Google for a few terms already from the natural rush of orders he got from ‘word of mouth’ campaigns and fliers. But none of these keywords qualify for our Page 1 Guarantee; however, we do track it so that anyone could see our SEO efforts even effected keywords we DID NOT target. Which only the best White-Hat SEO firms will be able to accomplish.
Zachary asked Shayan Italia for payment information to keep on record. We never received a reply to this request.
After 30 days into his campaign, we had ranked him up to page 1 for the keywords “Biranyi in Mumbai”. We even have picture proof of the day we got these results for him, as we do for every client that ranks Page 1 in Google.
If You Doubt We Got Results For Biranyi360? – Take A Look For Yourself!
As usual, our SEO Engineer sends off an email congratulating the client on their rankings and letting them know that their first invoice will be need to be processed for the upcoming month (always on the 1st of the month).
Shayan had even mentioned that he had seen an increase of 13% in sales since we had started SEO, changed his website for better conversions and helped him in some of his promotions.
BEFORE OUR CONVERSION & SEO OPTIMIZATION
AFTER OUR CONVERSION & SEO OPTIMIZATION
After 60 days into his campaign, we had ranked him up to page 1 for the keywords “Biranyi in Mumbai”, “Biryani Online Order”, “Online Biriyani Order”, “Online Biryani Order”, “Biryani Online Order”, “Biryani Order Online”, “Order Biryani Online” and “Biryani in Mumbai”. All of this was really amazing, as he was receiving upwards of 4,000+ organic Google visitors a month that he had never before reached! So we were extremely pleased with what we had done and after servicing 1,000+ companies, we knew the results were fantastic for such a short period. However, when it came time for Shayan to deliver his credit card information OR setup a recurring PayPal subscription, we heard nothing but silence.
We finally received an email reply from Shayan stating:
I didn’t expect to pay so soon. Can we move the first payment to next month, instead?
We agreed to this, so long as he still paid for 24 months of service.
Come the day to collect the payment information and process our first payment from Biryani360 and Shayan Italia. It was Day 90 into our SEO campaign and we were also getting ranked up to Page 1 in Google for new terms, including “Biryani Home Delivery”, “Best Chicken Biryani in Mumbai”, “Food Deals in Mumbai”, “Chicken Biryani Home Delivery” and “Best Biryani in Mumbai”. At that point, his campaign was going really well and seeing a steady increase in rankings for multiple keywords each and every month.
“From our perspective (as SEO engineers) – his campaigns were going very well and we were excited to see how it would continue to grow!” – Amy White
Time for Payments to Start
Once a client is ranked on page 1 for their first term, they are sent an email congradulating them on ranking page 1, a screen shot of their website in Google, a ranking report and notification that payments will be starting soon.
We sent Shayan the normal email and ranking screen shots and notified him that his payments would be starting soon.
That’s When The Problems Began!
It seems like a natural attitude shift amoungst humans – that once you’ve gotten something for free – you don’t want to pay for it. Fortunately – for us, however, we are not slaves and need to be properly compensated for our time. None of this can possibly come as a surprise to any of our clients as payment information is clearly stated in all of our propsals/contracts and within our terms of service agreement.
However this stage is where we can meet with some “resistence” from clients to begin payments (we’ve even had one client go so far as to transfer his entire website (301 redirect to keep our SEO work), change his phone number and business name just to try avoid paying us!) It’s crazy what some people do to try and get something for nothing…
“He talked up a huge game from the get-go and I should have seen this coming from a mile away…” Zach Miller says regretfully. “He told me he was working with some of the biggest investers in India, and that things were going really well but he wanted to boost his online sales and traffic with SEO. Nearly ever time we spoke, he would always talk about his “millionaire mentor” and his “multi-million dollar investers” but never mentioned any names. I wanted to give him the benefit of a doubt and believe that all he said was true but honestly, it really didn’t matter to me either way whether he was a millionaire or not, I explained what was involved with our Page 1 Ranking Guarantee Special – he seemed excited and he moved forward in signing our 24-month client contract, which he agreed upon.”
As soon as the page 1 rankings came and he had to pay up – that’s when all the complaints and excuses began.
Shayan Italia then contacted our Support Center and requested a consultation from Zachary our Head Consultant to discuss the campaign and address some questions he had.
Zachary made a joke that Shayan was going to introduce us to some Indian millionaires that he personally knew (sure!). All he wanted to see was if we could fulfill on our promise and get him Page 1 in Google, he later utilized this “lie” to try and have us keep delivering SEO because he was “in progress” of talking to his mentors and ready to introduce us. He said, what is $495 compared to having millionaires that can pay us $100,000 dollars.
What Did Biranyi360 Complain About?
Shayan had a few things to pick out from our service. 1) He said he saw no increase in his traffic. 2) He saw no increase in his revenue. 3) He saw no tracking for our statistics and rankings.
Now, at this point,we had suspended his SEO campaign until payment was rendered for the previous 30 days of work. And he had ignored our request for payment for so long, that he was even going into delinquency for it on the 10th of November. We let him know that there would be a $25 / day penalty, just like a credit card or any other bill you have to pay. We let him know that a late fee would occur 30+ days in advance, should he be late. He flat-out refused to ever pay a late fee in his messages, and even lied about being good for the first payment of money (which never arrived).
Zachary talked with Shayan for over an hour on Skype.
However, in Zachary’s own words as marked down in his “exit notes” for every consultation he has, it states:
Reprimand me if you want, Shayan was a complete asshole. Client yelled at me for over 60 MINUTES without allowing me to explain anything we did for him. This consultation was not to help the client at all! It was for him to yell at someone inside our firm. Please do not allow consultations from this client ever again WITHOUT paying up front first. Finally, near end of Skype call, client threatened to slander the firm if we pursued payment AND threatened to not pay for anything stating an article found here (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tech/tech-news/TinyOwl-employees-take-co-founder-hostage/articleshow/49676114.cms) as reason to why he was immune to legal responsibility to pay for anything that comes from a company based anywhere outside of India. In my personal opinion, I believe we are about to have a ‘dine and dasher’ for our SEO bill in a few days.
While the first sentence was unprofessional. We have never seen Zachary use such strong language from a consultation that is meant to improve the client and their website. This can only lend to how terrible the actual phone conversation was. Below is photo proof of the conversation. Recordings of that conversation are available for those who request it via our ‘contact us’ page.
Shayan Italia’s “Complaints” Were Illogical for 4 Reasons:
The major argument was “he didn’t know what results we were getting him” which was irrelevant, as our contract was based on performance for ranking his keyword. Not traffic. Not sales. But Google Page 1 Rankings.
If You Doubt We Got Results For Biranyi360? – Take A Look For Yourself!
We even showed Shayan his Google Analytics where we were getting him 33% of his traffic from just Google Organic Search (what we were hired to do).
November 10th – 12th
Shayan came back, trying to get previous Google Analytics. He had forwarded an email that stated the Google Help Team was working to restore his analytics, and it would be finished by November 15th. Just 5 business days after the request was put in, November 10th.
Finally, after waiting 2 full weeks for the analytics to come back. Zachary reaches out and gets a hold of Shayan asking to view the Google Analytics too. Upon reaching Shayan, we find out that Shayan has already left us and says what we now know as the ‘final scammer’s goodbye’.
As an SEO company, there is already a lot to over-come like: Google updates, un-educated propsects, unrealistic client expectations (compared to their budget),contracts , not to mention the fact that so many SEO companies have poor reputations as it is…
That’s the main reason why our SEO engineers created the Page 1 Ranking Guarantee as a way to prove ourselves upfront – and put OUR MONEY where our mouth is.
We all know, there are many bad SEO companies out there. But let’s be clear on one thing – SEO companies that do not deliver upon client expectations are not considered “bad” – only SEO companies that don’t deliver what they promised the client, are BAD SEO COMPANIES.
November 24th – 30th
What more needs to be said? He scammed us out of a lot of money and got away with Page 1 Rankings in Google for all his keywords. We tried reaching out to him again, but he has yet to reply, and of course, we doubt he ever will.
We Have A Contract – Why Not Go to Court?!
Normally, a disgruntled client like this wouldn’t have been a big deal – we would have shown them our contract, assigned late fees and taken the matter to court if needed.
Unfortnately, Shayan is from India – where U.S. commerce law is basically a joke to them. U.S. contracts don’t stand up in a court in India very well because the government is happy to take the side of the citizen even if they are “skipping out on a tab.” Basically in a nutshell – our contracts here are like a big joke to people in India because their government will back up their citizens even if they are scamming others.
Which is why we will no longer be accepting any clients from India. This has absolutely nothing to do with race! It’s all about contract/commerce law! The main problem is: the government in India is more than happy to back up their citizens even if they are the ones in the wrong. How could an SEO company – afford to put their trust into people who can easily get away with ripping them off?
With the way our Page 1 Ranking Special is setup – we will not be accepting any clients outside of U.S., Canada, U.K., and Australia because the contract laws within those countries are very similar to the U.S. and will stand up in court.
This post has been written in hopes that other SEO companies out there will blacklist Biranyi360.com and save your company the time, energy and resources our company had stolen from us.
*NOTE: all of our clients are sent out congratulatory messages with screen shots of their website ranking in Google and notified of payments beginning soon. All client are to pay the agreed upon amount when the first keyword ranks up to page 1. Read More About Our Guaranteed Seach Engine Rankings
After Shayan (the owner of Biryani360) received our email about ranking page 1, that’s where the complaints begin (which is normal) but it was complaint after complaint and the main issue he said he had was that he didn’t know what results we were getting him.
Why This Long Post?
Normally, I am a live and let live type of individual – however, when a company promises to deliver on a service, and they DO deliver on that service and there is a contract involved – you need to pay what you owe! Beyond that – when a former client threatens to blackmail your company (for no good reason) – you one up them and tell the whole story online!
It’s obvious, that there are lots of bad SEO companies out there. But let’s be clear about one thing – SEO companies that do not deliver upon client expectations should not be considered “bad” – only SEO companies that don’t deliver what they promised the client, are BAD SEO COMPANIES.
If this guy was REALLY the millionaire he kept saying he was – why not pay up the $990 you owe us? It’s irrelevant if we didn’t meet “his expectations” we met the goals that were agreed upon. We have the contract and rankings to prove it!
When Things Get REALLY Hairy
So what happens when a client won’t pay up? Or worse, what happens when you find yourself being threatened by a “disgruntled client”?! Well, normally, this whole thing would’ve been taken to small claims court to be sorted out quickly and very privately, since we had a solid, legally-binding contract with Shayan and Biranyi360, in which he agreed to our terms and conditions. But Shayan lives in India – where commerce laws are not the same as they are here in the United States. So it looks like our best way to insure he doesn’t blackmail us with false information, lies and rumors, is to create a website that shows the truth behind the scams and fraud that Shayan Italia has pulled on us and (as we’ve learned) MANY OTHERS. This website has been date-stamped for 12/01/2015, so that all information is legally accessible at the time it was edited. We are not changing our story, but we are almost certain Shayan Italia will, if it is to his benefit.
NEVER SCREW WITH PEOPLE WHO MARKET YOUR BUSINESS!
The CEO of Overdrive Strategies wanted it stated in our terms of service agreements that at no time may any form of slander be used against the company, out of respect for helping the company grow – after all, you wouldn’t bite the hand that helps feed you? Would you?! Well that’s just what Shayan Italia did. That and the attempted blackmail of our firm to add to all that.
As marketers and SEO specialists, we are here to do our best to help local and small businesses grow online. I’ve worked for Overdrive Strategies since they started in 2012 and I can speak from experience when I say that they actually DO what they say they will do! Our SEO engineers and consultants put a lot of time and effort into ranking our clients and have put together SEO packages that actually deliver results. When we’ve done our job – THEN LEGALLY – we deserve to be compensated fairly.
This Point of This Post
Shame on Shayan Italia and Biranyi360 for thinking that scamming us will get them where they want to go. Our firm was more than happy to try and work with Shayan and his team to increase their traffic, but all in all, his unrealistic expectations, threats of slander and refusal to pay for our services as stated in contract, led to no other solution than to create this website with date-stamping to prove our story and expose the REAL Shayan Italia. Once again, this post has been written so that other SEO companies, investors & businesses dealing with Shayan Italia and/or Biranyi360.com can avoid working with this scammer and save your company the time, energy and resources that ours had stolen from us.