SEO has often been thought of as a dark and mystical art – like Jedi mind tricks. But there are some common misconceptions that need to be dispelled.
1. Search Engine Submission
In the 90’s, websites had to be submitted to search engines as part of SEO. In many instances, the submissions were spam, so the process was retired along with Compuserve and ISDN.
2. Meta Tags Equal Google Gold
Not in 2014. Even Google has tried to set this straight by acknowledging that Meta tags are no longer ranking factors they consider. But, like the Loch Ness monster, true believers continue to hold on.
3. Links, Links, Links
It is important to have other websites link to your website. But quality trumps quantity. One link from an authoritative website is better than links from five blogs by your unemployed brother-in-law eating cereal from his mother’s basement. Think about it.
4. Keyword Stuffing is Effective
The days where you can hide keywords in the background are over. Focus on content for your visitors, and add keywords that flow naturally. There is no magic formula, but overuse of your keywords will annoy your visitors. Keyword stuffing is effective. See? Annoying.
5. Social Media Guarantee
There is some truth to this, but social media use will not GUARANTEE a higher ranking. Social media exposure can lead to more visitors, which can thus help increase your ranking. So like my page, ok?
6. Links and Words
There is more to SEO than the right keywords with the right links. SEO is an evolving industry, and if you want your website to remain relevant, you will have to keep up.
7. One and Done
SEO is a process, and one that is never finished. Staying atop the rankings is a constant battle. Running an hour on a treadmill is great, but you have be consistent if you want to keep wearing those skinny jeans.
8. SEO Takes a Professional
Negative. SEO can seem intimidating, but the basics can be easily grasped. Start by googling “understanding SEO”. Stick to results on the first couple of pages. If the site owner can’t boost their own ranking, they probably can’t help you.
9. You Can’t Start Now
Why not? You can roll out an effective SEO strategy at any time. Do some research, create a plan, and implement it. Even the most overwhelming task can be accomplished one step at a time. Think organizing your closet.
10. I Don’t Have Time For SEO
Do you have time for Facebook posts and Pinterest? Stop thinking of witty retorts to your friend’s status update, and start your SEO education. All it takes is a laptop, cup of coffee, and a free afternoon.
11. Startups Don’t Need SEO
SEO is EXTREMELY beneficial for startups. Trying to keep costs down? Learn SEO, apply it effectively, and drive traffic to your site.
12. Exact Match Domains Rank Higher
If you are selling cars in Raleigh, sellingcarsinraleigh.com no longer ensures high rankings. Spammers started using domain names for ads, and thus, strong rankings are no longer solely based on domain names.
13. AdWords Equals Google Gold
There are very few guarantees in life. Using AdWords can certainly help by providing you with tools to adjust your campaign, but it doesn’t guarantee success. Learn SEO and invest the difference into growing your business.
14. Keyword Positioning Guarantees Success
It can be easy to focus solely on keywords that have high search volumes. Stuffing your website by using these keywords in titles and headers will not guarantee results. Successful SEO is about combining effective techniques, not focusing on one magical solution.