Do you know what works for and what takes away from your SEO efforts? Hubspot’s research shows that 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results. Now, more than ever, it has become crucial to create compelling, educational content that people that people can easily find and share.
However, there are common misconceptions floating around about SEO, most of which stem Google’s Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird updates. Here, we debunk these 7 myths so you stop wasting your efforts on what won’t move the needle on your SEO.
More links are better than more content.
With the aforementioned updates, Google has been building up to where we can no longer game the system. As part of that, link building is no longer a numbers game; the focus now lies in having relevant and diverse sources. Thankfully, as you in invest in content such as web pages, blog posts, and offers, all these content types will bring more links with them over time.
Meta descriptions have a huge impact on search rankings.
Google announced back in 2009 that meta descriptions and meta keywords have no effect on search rankings. They may not have an effect on Google’s algorithms, but they are still important for SEO. Providing searchers with a relevant and action-oriented meta description can make the difference on whether they click there or elsewhere.
Keyword optimization is the key to SEO.
As Google continues to get smarter about SEO it will continuously work to make quality content available for searchers. One of the more recent developments is that Google no longer tries to match the keywords you type into the search engine to a certain web page. Instead, it is trying to understand the intent behind these keywords so it can match the intent to high-quality content.
Having a secure (HTTPS encrypted) site isn’t important for SEO.
In August of 2014, Google announced that it started using HTTPS as a signal in their ranking algorithms. “HyperText Transfer Protocol” is the foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web. The difference being that HTTPS sites, as opposed to HTTP sites, have an extra layer of security called SSL/TLS which encrypts the connection and protects sensitive information. Although Google still classifies it as a lightweight signal (affecting less than 1% of global queries) expect its relevance to grow as Google begins the push to move everyone to the more secure protocol.
Local SEO doesn’t matter anymore.
Optimizing for local search helps you be found by people who are nearby and more likely to buy from you. With the release of its Pigeon algorithm, Google now treats local search rankings like traditional search rankings and it also improved the way Google evaluates the distance when determining rankings.
Microsites and other domains I own that link or redirect back to my site will help my SEO.
Don’t spread your SEO thin! Why put in all the effort to set-up and optimize domain after domain when all that effort can be put into your primary domain? Search engines are smart enough to know who the registrants are for a domain and can see if it’s the same person as your primary domain. Promoting yourself doesn’t hold as much value as others talking about you.
SEO and inbound marketing don’t mix.
SEO is a specific marketing tactic that focuses on improving a business visibility and traffic from search engines. It is plays a critical role in the first step of in the inbound methodology: Attract. SEO provides one of the biggest opportunities to reach and attract potential customers to your site. Without SEO aiding in the attraction phase, you cannot hope to convert, close, and delight as many customers as you can with a good SEO strategy.
Long gone are the days when good SEO could be achieved simply through simple keyword optimization. There are many moving parts to a successful SEO strategy. Now that you are aware of what is moving the needle on your SEO efforts and what isn’t, you can build a more efficient and effective organic search strategy.
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