There are a lot of misconceptions about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and what it can realistically do to drive your website’s traffic. If you are going to invest your time, energy and money into SEO, it probably makes sense for you to understand some of the basics and avoid the scams. Following are five of the most common SEO misconceptions we run into and the truths that lie behind them.
#1: SEO Can Be Guaranteed
If you see someone guarantee 1st page Google rankings in 30 days you should probably run away as fast as you can. While we would confidently guarantee that we can improve your search rankings through ethical SEO practices, for someone to guarantee page 1 in any given time period is wild speculation at best and most likely pure dishonesty. Time, effort, focus and competition will determine your success and it rarely happens quickly.
#2: SEO Happens One Time When My Site is Optimized
Search Engine Optimization takes a lot of effort and is an ongoing process. You definitely want to make sure your website is optimized but a large portion of the SEO process takes place outside the boundaries of your website. Examples of off-site SEO could include link building and social media marketing and they require ongoing effort and attention.
#3: Backlink Quantity Is As Good As Quality
When it comes to backlinks, quantity is definitely a good thing but a large number of low quality backlinks won’t do your website as much good as a smaller number of high quality links. Low quality links are probably better than none at all but probably won’t justify the resources put into them. We recommend relevant links from reputable sites with authority in your field.
#4: Meta Tags Don’t Really Matter Anymore
Meta tags probably aren’t as important as they once were, but they still have value for SEO. Due to a lot of meta keyword stuffing in the past, search engines significantly reduced or eliminated the impact of meta keywords. There is still value, though, in having meta titles and meta descriptions that are optimized for your website content and these remain beneficial in helping your website rank well in organic search results for those terms.
#5: SEO is Dead
Not likely. This one starts to show up in articles across the web every time there’s a Google algorithm update. The reality is that search hasn’t changed significantly since the mid-1990’s and organic SEO will probably be relevant for as long as the internet thrives. To ignore SEO would be done at significant risk to your website’s traffic potential.
SEO is Never Finished
The main thing to remember about SEO is that it really is never done. SEO is an ongoing process that always has room for improvement. It is definitely something you can do yourself provided you learn some of the basics and prepare yourself for the time investment. In the long run, many people decide it is more effective, and less expensive, to hire a professional who already knows the ropes and can speed up the process.