Top Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Myths
There are many SEO myths and rumors we hear and read about everyday. While there are SEO tricks that work for a time, but inevitably come back to haunt the website using them, most of SEO is knowledge and work. Or research and time, if you prefer. We have listed some of the more popular Search Engine Optimization Myths so please read and let the truth about SEO be revealed.
SEO Myth: Your top ten search engine ranking can be guaranteed
The Truth: Some SEO firms will advertise a "guarantee" to have you listed in the top ten rankings. No one other than the search engines themselves can guarantee any ranking. Don't believe it. Trust their results for other clients and make your decision from actual client successes, not empty promises and guarantees.
SEO Myth: In-House SEO Is Cheaper
The Truth: SEO professionals can get higher rankings faster because Search Engine Optimization and Marketing is complex, technical and has a steep learning curve. We also place a team at your disposal, including a copywriters, developers and SEO specialists and unless you have a room full of marketing staff dedicated to SEO it is hard to keep up. How much is 10, 15, 20 hours a month worth to you in a dollar amount? SEO professionals make you money by saving you that time and effort, at a cost you can afford.
SEO Myth: Search Engine Leads Are Worth Less Than Other Leads
The Truth: Search Engine leads are the probably the most qualified leads, because they come from people searching for the exact products and services which the search engines have you indexed. They are looking for you, not the other way around. Keep in mind you must be targeting the right keywords, but that is the job of your SEO firm, to help you choose the right keywords.
SEO Myth: Websites are optimized while they are being developed.
The Truth: A small percentage of designers and developers actually optimize pages for the search engines while they are building. Most search engine optimization is done after the fact, if at all. As many as 60% of all sites are not properly optimized to rank high in the search engines, so anything you do to optimize your site puts it ahead of your competitors who don't.
SEO Myth: Simply inserting keywords in the keyword meta tag will help list your site for that keyword
The Truth: Most major search engines do not spider or index the keyword meta tag and those that do, if the keyword is not also in the copy of the same page, it's considered spam which could lower your rankings, not raise it. At best the keyword tag is used by directories when submitting your site.
SEO Myth: The more times you repeat the keyword in the page, the higher it will rank.
The Truth: This is a little tricky since each algorithm uses different factors for ranking. A keyword density of 3 to 15% is recommended for tweaking the page for higher placement (depending on the individual search engine). Combined with other optimization efforts and tweaks, the proper keyword density will get listed higher. A keyword density that is too high will get listed lower or penalized.
SEO Myth: Hidden links or text in a page can get your page ranked higher.
The Truth: Keyword stuffing and hidden links in the page can get your site penalized or banned if detected. It is considered spamming by some engines. Most people think it's not worth the risk.
SEO Myth: The more reciprocal links to other sites you have, the higher your Google page rank goes.
The Truth: Outbound links to related and unrelated sites are factored into page rank. Unreciprocated links count higher than reciprocated links. The more quality inbound links to your site, the higher the PR, but nobody knows exactly how Google factors their PR and their algorithm is constantly adjusted. A million links to and from unrelated sites could drop your PR and if your site is found linking to obvious FFA or link farms, your site could be penalized as being 'guilty by association'.
SEO Myth: You don't need to update your site to keep your rankings.
The Truth: By routine maintenance (removing outdated material, fixing broken links, queries, etc.) and updating your pages regularly, you are signaling the bots and crawlers to come back and re-crawl your site for changes to their listings. To maintain high standings, you need to keep at it and tweak the pages for better results if necessary. If neglected, your standings could easily slip out of the top rankings as new competing sites get indexed and optimized.
SEO Myth: You can achieve higher rankings on a keyword without changing the code or content of the pages in your site.
The Truth: Not likely for long. Any elevated results will be temporary. If you want to steadily improve your ranking, you must make changes to your site that help the search engines spider it. You might temporarily raise your ranking by running regular queries and reports on search engines for your keywords but steady results are dependent on your willingness to optimize and tweak the code and content of your pages. A simple thing like fixing broken links can contribute to elevating your listings. It's one of the most overlooked search engine tweaks. Search engines will not continue to spider a site when it runs into a number of broken links.
Choosing the right SEO Firm
We hope this article has been helpful. If you need help putting together the an effective Search Engine Optimization and Marketing campaign, please contact Big Oak today at 804.741.6776. We always give free evaluations!
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