The 17 SEO myths that hinder your strategy and results – WAU
SEO is a topic surrounded by several theories and practices on ranking factors, penalties and algorithm updates. It is so much information that it is sometimes difficult to filter what is right or wrong. And to complicate matters a little more, this is a very dynamic topic. For example, a technique that has worked well for some […]
SEO is a topic surrounded by several theories and practices on ranking factors, penalties and algorithm updates. It is so much information that it is sometimes difficult to filter what is right or wrong.
And to complicate matters a little more, this is a very dynamic topic.
For example, a technique that worked well a few years ago may have no effect today.
Just as there are practices that many considered useless, but which still have significant weight in the search results.
This confusion characterizes the SEO myths well. They are the biggest villains of marketers who struggle hard to put their website or blog on the first page of Google.
For that reason, let’s point out and take down the top 17 SEO myths that are disrupting your digital marketing strategies. Follow!
1. The main search results are quick to achieve
The first myth to be eliminated is that SEO can produce results in the short term. Like content marketing, search engine optimization strategies need more time to bring noticeable returns.
This will depend a lot on the competition for the chosen keywords. For example, if you are going to start an SEO job on the term “digital marketing”, know that you will have to sweat your shirt a lot to get a spot on the front page.
After all, it is a word with enormous competition, where marketing agencies, universities and specialized blogs will compete for the same space.
Therefore, it is highly recommended to bet on long tail keywords, such as “digital marketing course” or “digital marketing for beginners”.
In addition to being more specific and targeted, competition is less. Therefore, the top can be reached with less difficulty.
2. The top is guaranteed after being conquered
If after a lot of work, you have achieved the top-3 ranking of Google or Bing for one of your keywords, congratulations! Is this a sign that now the post can be left there that will not lose the throne? In no way!
What guarantees do you have that another competitor will not improve a post or page that has previously lost its place in the ranking?
It can also happen that the approach you took in one year is out of step in the other. It’s like writing about SEO, as new techniques and theories are covered over time.
So keep an eye on your page’s ranking constantly and, if necessary, update them with new information and data.
3. Keywords have become irrelevant
Many people believed that, after the launch of Google Hummingbird (new version of Google’s algorithm implemented in 2013), keywords would lose all their strength as a search factor.
The fact is that keywords remain very important, as it is still the easiest way for Google to match a site to a search done in its search field.
The difference is that the algorithm has become more intelligent. He knows that he can send results of “Futebol de Salão” to people who search for “Futsal”, as well as show “notebooks” for those looking for “laptops”, for example.
Anyway, Google made the relationship between sites, search results and users more natural and less tied to exact matches. But keywords remain extremely important in this filter.
4. Guest Blogging no longer gives results
In the years 2014 and 2015, several posts about the death of guest blogging popped up on the websites and blogs that talked about SEO.
The truth is that the practice of writing as a guest on other pages has never been condemned by Google, not least because it is difficult for the algorithm to identify a guest post.
The sites that were being penalized were those who sent links to other pages in an exaggerated way, without having a context or a logical connection between the contents.
Google understood this as a malicious practice and punished rascal sites with losses in ranking or even with the removal of their indexing.
The well done guest blogging, with quality content on relevant pages, that have to do with your blog and that direct contextual links, continues to work very well.
5. Any external link received is welcome
This is an argument that we started to demystify in the previous topic. Number of links received from other sites is not the same as quality.
For example, if you have a blog that talks about football, getting lots of links from websites about fashion, cell phones or computers can be bad.
After all, as Google sees no correlation between these themes, and probably between the content as well, it is natural that it understands it as an attempt to deceive the algorithm.
Google has always considered link building as one of the main ways to grow in the ranking, as long as these directions are meaningful and relevant.
6. Any external link sent is bad for the site
If it’s so good for your site to receive relevant links from other pages, why can’t you do the same?
Well, there are many people who believe that sending links to other sites will expel their visitors.
The point there is not to lose traffic, but appreciate a good learning experience for the public.
For example, if you bring data from a survey done by another site, redirect to that page. The other information in this survey may be of interest to your audience.
In addition to helping your readers, you can earn some mentions from these sites, especially if you let them know they are being linked.
Anyway, it is that old phrase: “kindness generates kindness”.
7. Meta-descriptions are not important
Anyone who has consumed SEO as content for some time must have read that meta descriptions (those that are under the page title in search results) do not have a direct influence on ranking.
They are not really a ranking factor. However, we must not forget that they talk directly with the public. These are spaces of up to 160 characters that can and should be used to convince users to click on titles.
So, if it can influence people’s decision, why wouldn’t it be relevant to search results?
8. Google will find your new content quickly
Another myth that runs through the lessons and practices of SEO is that you simply publish a new post on your blog and Google will index it promptly.
We’re sorry to tell you that Google doesn’t do that kind of magic. Someone or something needs to tell your algorithms that a new page has been put up. Without an indication, this process may take a few days to happen.
On the other hand, you can make life easier for the searcher if you use a plugin that generates and updates your sitemap automatically (like Google XML Sitemaps, for WordPress) or if you share the post on any social network.
9. Long content is no guarantee of winning first place in the results
Many believe that the more words a post has, the better ranked it will be. Once again we fall into the myth of quantity more important than quality.
There is no guarantee that a text with more than 2,000 words will be better positioned than one of 800 for the same keyword or subject.
In general, they may even perform better because they are more detailed and present more information, but this is not a rule.
A text of 800 words, being concise, objective and very explanatory on a given topic, it can please users and, consequently, Google.
10. The greater the number of pages, the better the ranking of the site
Another serious mistake in this relationship between quantity and quality has to do with the number of pages on your website.
Wanting search engines to index more pages on a keyword will not make your domain rank higher – unless those pages you create have a high degree of relevance and quality.
But in general, it is more advantageous to make a single, more complete post on a subject rather than dividing it into several pages.
After all, it is better to have an excellent page in the main results than several medians at the end of the first, second or third page of Google.
11. Sponsored link campaigns help organic results
Ads on Google Adwords can even make your site appear at the top of search results, but not organic ones. One thing has absolutely nothing to do with the other.
The two media use very different criteria. The main difference is in one of the Adwords ranking methods, which is the amount paid for a given keyword in the auction.
Still, it is recommended to work with both strategies at the same time, since they are more complementary than competing with each other.
12. Social networks have no effect on the ranking of search engines
This can be considered a controversy in the SEO universe, since there is nothing to prove that, for example, a post that is widely shared on social networks is a guarantee of better positioning in the ranking.
However, the human factor should be considered more than the Google algorithm. After all, if a post is being shared and accessed by a lot of people, it will be a sign that the page is relevant.
13. Optimizing images is silly
Anyone who forgets this may not pay much attention or even ignore practices such as inserting an alt text tag, filling in the description or adjusting the image file name.
There are three simple actions, but that make Google and other search engines read the images you publish on the site.
This will positively impact both textual searches and Google Images searches.
14. Keyword research is unnecessary
This myth can be debunked with two arguments. The first is that, since keywords continue to be one of the main criteria for qualifying pages, research remains necessary to find the best terms for each page.
The second is that your insight or intuition doesn’t always have the best keyword suggestions. Working with data that reveals the relevance and popularity of terms is much safer, isn’t it?
So keep doing keyword research and don’t give up tools that can help with that, like Keyword Planner and SEMrush.
15. Keyword in the domain yields better ranking
For a few years now, having the main keyword in the domain no longer means much to the search results.
In the past, if a workshop specialized in the maintenance of imported cars named its website as “www.mecanicadecarrosimportados.com.br”, it was more likely to appear in the first results for searches for “imported car mechanics”.
Currently, the content and usability of the page are more relevant factors, as this makes more of a difference to the public than the site’s domain.
16. Header tags directly influence the ranking of results
This is a myth that is still widespread on the internet. Right away, we don’t want to devalue the famous H1, H2, H3, etc. tags, which serve to classify and organize the content of a page hierarchically.
They even help us to divide a text into blocks and facilitate our understanding of the content. For search engines, tags also perform this function of ranking content.
However, they are not considered ranking factors. Still, it’s important to use them, because tags, by contributing to the public’s browsing experience, indirectly influence the classification of pages.
17. If the content is excellent, that will be enough to rank well
Useful, valuable and memorable content for the public can bring numerous benefits to a page, but he won’t do all the ranking work alone.
After all, if other sites are writing content as good as ours for the same keywords, what will be differentiating them in the ranking?
It is at these times that other factors weigh in the balance, such as:
- quantity and quality of external links received;
- sharing the post on social networks;
- optimized images;
- good usability;
- responsive design;
- loading speed, etc.
The problem with these SEO myths is that many of them have become common practices and thoughts of many marketers. Therefore, it is not so simple to open wide that they can be the cause of a possible lack of traffic, engagement or conversions on your site.
But if you look closely, you will notice that they were demystified because they no longer made sense in terms of delivering a good user experience and relevance to search engines.
Anyway, put them into practice and check if your results will not improve.
If you have come this far and unraveled the 17 biggest SEO myths, know that the subject has not yet been exhausted. To further dominate the topic, check out our SEO Glossary post: 82 terms you need to know!
It will be a quick game and you will leave the next text eliminating your main doubts about SEO.