Since every business owner dreams of ranking on Google, SEO is one of the cornerstones of digital marketing. But even if you create pages and pages of text, your campaign won’t progress much if you aren’t following key SEO fundamentals.
If you are new or unfamiliar with SEO, it might seem like a good idea to search the Internet for advice on how to get started with SEO. This, however, isn’t always the best plan because there are many SEO misconceptions floating around.
In a previous blog entry, we identified common SEO myths that many people still believe. Here are 4 more common SEO myths that you should avoid.
SEO Myth 1: “Google will never know I have bad links.”
Never underestimate Google; Google knows all and sees all. If you believe you can scam Google, you will suffer the consequences from the Penguin update.
If you believe that your site’s ranking is being harmed by low-quality links, you can ask Google not to take them into account when assessing your site. In October of 2013, Google introduced the disavow tool. This tool allows you to ask Google to not count certain links that are pointing to your site. In this case, spammy and unnatural backlinks that were purchased by SEO companies trying to outsmart Google’s algorithms were now being discredited.
You should still make every effort to clean up unnatural links pointing to your site, but you can also disavow these spammy links. At the same time, you should also be cautious when using the disavow tool, because if used incorrectly, you can actually hurt your site’s organic performance in Google’s search results.
SEO Myth 2: “My Website doesn’t need Meta Tags.”
At one point, meta tags were considered an element of SEO. Meta tags are still important, just in a different way. Google has stated that meta descriptions have no bearing on search rankings. However, you should not neglect tag because having a relevant and compelling meta description still offer benefits.
Adding meta tags can help tell visitors and search engines what your website is about. This helps your website stand out from other websites, which can increase the click through rate. Bottom line: Don’t neglect your meta tags simply because they don’t directly influence ranking.
SEO Myth 3: “Images don’t require optimization.”
In the past, webmasters could just upload pictures onto their site and ignore any image optimization; however, this isn’t the case anymore. On-page SEO is more important than ever! By excluding alt images, this will prevent your website’s SEO from being the best it can be. Search engines cannot see images on websites, so it is imperative to give the image an alt text and relevant file name so Google knows what the image is about.
SEO Myth 4: “User experience doesn’t matter.”
As Google began to provide better results to it’s users, they were able to invest more in their search algorithm. Through this investment, Google began to incorporate new metrics such as a user’s experience and website engagement into their ranking algorithm.
If Google sends you to a web page, they want to make sure you have a good experience on that page. They, too, are a business and they want to delight their customers. You need to think about it from the perspective of a search engine, Google didn’t create the web page, but they are endorsing the website. They need to ensure that users have a good experience on that page to keep people coming back to Google.
To improve your website’s user experience, you’ll want to focus on elements such as page loading time, quality images, great content, that the user is able to view your page on any device and that you have a responsive design in your website.
SEO myths have always existed. Since SEO continues to evolve with each new algorithm, SEO myths will probably always float around the Internet. Ultimately, these myths are just conclusions that were drawn from previously accepted SEO techniques, or a lack of understanding SEO fundamentals. The next time someone tries to perpetuate one of these myths as fact, it’s best to correct them and educate them. If you would like to discuss SEO with one of our experts, contact us at Premiere Creative or give us a call at (973) 346-8100.