17 silly SEO myths that we should giggle over
There are always myths about several topics that popularly float around. But I have heard multiple myths over SEO that honestly make me cringe a little. I say a little, but in reality, I’m cringing a lot. It’s a marketing strategy that can transform a business and with a strong SEO strategy in place, you can go have crazy fun while search engines bring you continual traffic without you doing a thing. It’s fantastic. If you don’t really know what SEO is.. then go read about what SEO is and how it can improve your biz here. It’s pretty great and I’m not just saying that because I wrote it. 😉
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Let’s discuss SEO haters that obviously have it all wrong. Because all of these silly little myths are worth giggling over. Go grab a glass of wine, get comfy, and read on!
1 | SEO IS DEAD
Haha. I just feel like we should all giggle a little bit when we read this. SEO can’t die, search engines are alive and well (obviously… Google!) and can’t really function without being able to search. Yes, maybe algorithms change but this isn’t dying it’s just simply improving. SEO may become more complicated but I don’t believe that optimization will ever die, just evolve. The whole purpose of search engines is to provide high quality content to those who search out sites through key words. Google changes their algorithm to promote these high quality sites. No worries about holding a funeral for SEO!
2 | META TAGS DON’T MATTER
If meta tags don’t matter then why are users less likely to click on your link if it shows up in search results? Obviously you are already showing up in search results so you may as well take the “meta plunge.”
3 | LENGTH OF CONTENT DOESN’T MATTER
I devote a portion of my e-course to this and discuss in more detail, but the length of content definitely does matter and Google looks for a certain word count. Be lengthy without giving up on quality content. Quality is always key and first priority, but length should also be a major priority especially when it comes to kissin’ the search engines butt.
4 | SEO IS A ONE TIME EFFORT
Unfortunately, this is not the case. Although I do provide a lot of tools that my students in SEO Simplified only have to use once, there are certain aspects of the site that need continually updating. But hey, if this update doesn’t take long and is bringing in more sales + traffic then why not?
5 | SEO IS JUST TRICKS
Google actually flags down most “tricks.” Google is smart and knows what’s up. If you are being mischievous and trying to break the algorithm your site is flagged which is no good. Tricks are the equivalent of someone trying to be sneaky and attempting at getting around the algorithm. Don’t try this or trust anyone who encourages you to do this. First of all, this method is quite dishonest and I don’t approve of taking that route. Second of all, just focus on improving your quality instead of worrying about all of Google’s algorithm holes because that’s a waste of your precious, precious time.
6 | SOCIAL MEDIA/ACTIVITY DOESN’T REALLY MATTER
Heck yes social media matters! Social media brings traffic, high traffic sends lots of thumbs up to Google. Social media can be a huge benefit when it comes to SEO just because it does drive quite a bit of traffic to your site and also helps you gather up some more loyal fans to your lovely brand! I have a whole section in SEO Simplified where I talk about driving traffic to your site through Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and Pinterest. I thought that this was beneficial so I made sure to add it!
7 | GUEST BLOGGING DOESN’T REALLY WORK
Guest blogging does really work, actually. First of all, within your guest post you should have anchor tags or links that link back to YOUR site. This tells search engines that your site is not only popular because of your traffic but also other sites are talking about you (even though you’re the one talking about yourself)! Guest blogging can have a big impact when it comes to SEO and I wouldn’t want anyone turning down a guest post opportunity just because they don’t believe it has any benefit.
8 | BY LINKING TO OTHER SITES YOU LOSE TRAFFIC
False. Google loves when you do this! They see it and boost your ranking because of it. So link away, babes!
9 | GOOGLE DOESN’T LIKE SEO
Cringe. Considering Google is the number one search engine in the world I’m pretty sure this is the biggest myth of them all. Google is updating their algorithms and commits a large majority of their business to this because they want to provide search users quality information with every search made. Google states here that SEO can “potentially improve your site and save time.”
10 | ALL YOU NEED IS GREAT CONTENT
Although great content is a major plus, it is definitely not all you need. There are a variety of factors that go into having a completely optimized website that every site owner needs to be aware of (in my opinion!)
11 | GOOGLE WILL JUST FIGURE IT OUT
Actually, no, Google won’t just “figure it out” considering Google isn’t typically a person that finds your website it’s a bunch of mindless little bots that surf the backend of your code. If someone that’s a business owner or blogger wants to risk losing a large amount of organic traffic because of their firm belief that Google will figure it out, than that risk can be taken.
12 | HAVING A SECURE SITE IS NOT IMPORTANT
Google actually talked about this and made an announcement that websites that were secure would actually be promoted in the future. So this myth is definitely a lie. The whole point of Google is to promote QUALITY sites and if a website is secure then Google sees no reason not to promote it. It makes sense.
13 | SEO IS ALL ABOUT RANKING
Not true, and this can actually be a GREAT thing for business owners who don’t end up in the top three! There have been studies that those below the top three are still getting a good click through rate which is incredibly awesome!
14 | KEYWORD OPTIMIZATION IS THE KEY TO SEO
Although keywords are crucial for having great SEO, it is not the key. Search engines will never (at least I hope not!) punish those who use keywords. But search engines will definitely punish those who use way too many keywords and do not balance them with fantastic content. I’m afraid that many people believe that keywords are the key and so they try to inform the search engine of this key word instead of naturally stating the purpose of the page with the key word.
15 | GOOGLE SPIES ON YOU THROUGH GOOGLE ANALYTICS
No Google doesn’t. Google analytics is provided to you so that you get tons of awesome, free benefits. These skeptics crack me up, though!
16 | GOOGLE BOTS DON’T READ CSS
Yes, Google bots read CSS to scan through to make sure you aren’t pulling any tricks like hidden div tags! Google bots are smarter than you think for little bots that don’t have any eyes.
17 | HYPHENATED DOMAIN NAMES MAKE A DIFFERENCE
No, hyphenated domain names don’t matter. After the “.com” then yes, make sure to use hyphens! But before the .com it doesn’t matter. Just a little tip that some get confused over! Google bots recognize hyphens as spaces and this is why SEO peeps encourage others to use hyphens in file names and such. But hyphens before the “.com” have no purpose so no worries!
Glad we could giggle together, friend!
I'm Haley, the funder of Market Beautifully and the host of the Market Beautifully podcast. I'm obsessed with tortellini and educating others on how to market as beautifully as possible in the business world. What you do is incredible and I want to help make your voice louder so that your message can reach more people. I'm a fan of ladies who are entrepreneurs at their core believe that we will make a difference together.