This blog post is designed to dispel some of the SEO myths that are still muddying the waters of search engine optimisation. These are the comments and common questions that we are hearing from business owners every day. There are some that cast a negative light on Search Engine Optimisation and the perceived risk involved in setting up a digital marketing strategy.
“I already have Google Ads”: – Search Engine Optimisation is not a form of advertisement. SEO is the process of improving the visibility of a website on search engines via the ‘natural’ or ‘unpaid’ search results. Basically this is the method of displaying your page above others by ensuring the content on your page is relevant, up to date and linked to from other locations on the internet. Where PPC ads appear on Google’s right hand side, SEO results appear directly under the search bar of Google. For more information relating to these differences click here. Similarly, SEO does not fall under the responsibility of your website developer, and, unless he has specifically included SEO as an additional service, SEO will not be ‘built’ into your website. This may explain why your company’s snazzy new, very expensive website is not seeing the deserved results in terms of conversions. One of the many frustrating SEO myths.
“SEO is about tricking Search Engines”:As SEO consultants, we spend our time trying to outsmart Google’s algorithm in a constant battle to gain top visibility and ranking. This skewed and outdated mentality can be described as a ‘Black Hat’ approach to SEO which simply doesn’t work and is categorically false. While Google are quick to red flag any website that is viewed as falsely using SEO, for those ‘White Hat’ professionals it is not viewed as an issue. This is for the simple reason that SEO represents a long term strategic outlook for a site, not a quick fix solution, and obviously therefore is reliant on a cooperative relationship with search engines.-
“PPC campaigns guarantee success in organic rankings”:While many are unsure of the differences between PPC and SEO, there is also a common SEO myth that having PPC campaigns will generate organic search results without the need for a specific SEO strategy. The clever people at Google, Yahoo!, and Bing have all put in place systems to ensure that this and a number of SEO myths cannot and will not happen, no matter how much is being spent on paid advertisements. Similarly, having excellent SEO does not mean that PPC should be completely ignored. There are multiple benefits that can come with having good organic and paid placement. Firstly, it often puts the site on the first page in multiple spots, which captures a viewer’s attention and increases the clickthrough rate significantly. Secondly, PPC can be an excellent method for gaining visibility in the shorter term while your SEO is being improved.-
“Keyword stuffing creates high rankings”: Repeating key words countless times on your home page, sometimes in multiple fonts and colours, has little effect on ranking, and has low overall correlation with top placement. In fact, ‘over optimisation’ can really hurt a site, as the usability of a website is just as important as it’s ranking. In saying this, there is little point in fussing over the number of times a word has been mentioned. The old fear that a word should be mentioned no more than 100 times is indeed one of many SEO myths. Search engines have adjusted their algorithms accordingly to account for reasonable amounts of duplicate content.
“We’re ranking, job done!” A common failure with companies attempting SEO is the shortsightedness of their digital strategies. Although you may be ranking highly and reaping the rewards in terms of click through, conversions, and sales, you must not view this as a win forever. To be successful, you must be relentless. Companies that rest on their laurels will see their highly ranked position slowly slip away as competitors continually try and gain the top spot.
SEO myths are changing as Google does, it certainly pays to make the effort to understand which SEO rumor is in fact true and which is added to the ever increasing list of SEO myths.