Search Engine Optimization is a fast-changing field that is constantly moving and shifting as Google keeps changing the rules about how they operate. Part of the problem is that Google doesn’t tell us exactly what those changes are as they protect their algorithms are top secret.
Because of this, there is a lot of misinformation surrounding SEO and how to best make it on the first page of Google. Here are a 4 of the most common myths that we’d like to dispel.
Myth #1 Link Building.
When Penguin 2.0 was released in 2013, it changed a lot of how ranking was done. In the past, building as many links as possible without analyzing the linking domain was how SEO typically worked. This practice was known as link stuffing, and by doing this, your website would rank higher on Google. Building links is still a very important part of SEO, however you need relevant links that actually are important to your reader.
Nowadays, it is important to focus on the quality of links you are obtaining, rather than the quantity. Sometimes less can be more if you know how exactly to build links the proper way.
Too often, when businesses hire someone to do link building, they focus on the quantity of links rather than their quality. But linking is not a numbers game anymore. You should focus on having relevant and diverse sources that link to relevant pages. Remember Google wants your content and information to be useful. If the links are useless and don’t add any value then your page will be devalued.
Myth #2 Keywords and Meta Tags
Meta descriptions are coding attributes that concisely explain the contents of web pages. In other words, they are keywords. SEO experts use them to help categorize your website and different web pages. You’ve probably seen them before on Google’s search engine results pages where they’re commonly used as page previews.
In 2009, Google announced that meta descriptions and keywords didn’t have bearing on search engine ranking. That’s not to say that these descriptions aren’t important for SEO, though.
On the contrary, in fact: Meta descriptions present a major opportunity to separate yourself from your competition and convince searchers that your page is worth navigating to.
In fact, last year Google announced that it would be increasing the length of meta descriptions to allow for more descriptive snippets.
Myth #3 Home Page Content
Have you ever come across a homepage filled with paragraphs and paragraphs of writing? A lot of people believe that the more writing you have on your homepage the better.
However, your homepage content should be long enough to clarify who you are, what you do, where you’re located, your value proposition, and what visitors should do next. If you can do all that in less words the better. Visitors should leave satisfied, not overwhelmed or underwhelmed – and certainly not confused
Myth #4 Local Content
If you’re a local business, optimizing for local search won’t only help you get found, but it will help you get found by people who are nearby and more likely to buy from you, aka your ideal customers.
Google believes, (correctly for the most part) people want to find answers, things, or people that are local. A hairdresser in New Jersey is no good to you if you live in San Francisco. And because SEO search ranking is becoming that much more cutthroat, local is that much more important. Looking forward, Google will continue to take steps to curate the best local content to the surface of search results.
If you need some help determining the best SEO strategy for your business, talk to one of our strategists at Rad Websites. We’ll guide you through the difficulty help you define the best course of action going forward and create a plan that is sustainable and effective.