Common SEO Myths Hurting Your Website

SEO is viewed by many newcomers to the world of owning a website as something of a black magic art full of arcane rituals and strange knowledge. Furthermore, many people who try to break through the veil of mystery surrounding Optimisation often fall victim to lots of outdated information, harmful information or outdated SEO myths that get spread around so much based on stuff that was the case 5 to 10 years ago.

Let’s pierce some of this mystery and these myths by looking over a few of the most common.

Black Hat SEO Is A Good Idea

Biggest myth of them all, especially now in the age of smarter search algorithms courtesy of the world’s largest search engine, Google. Black hat SEO consists of all those optimisation tactics whose principal focus is manipulating the search engine bots that work based off the parameters of the Google algorithm instead of focusing on pleasing human readers and giving them value. Tactics such as keyword stuffing, link spam, hidden text and spam friendly web design are all slowly becoming more and more difficult to successfully use.

If you want a stable long term SEO campaign that you can rely on, avoid any black hat tactics you hear about and focus strictly on developing value to readers, getting your content shared and other white hat tactics that still rely on link building and keywords but in a way that augments real value in site design and content.

You Need To Submit Your Domain To The Search Engines

Submitting a domain to the search directories of major search engines may have been necessary over a decade ago but it no longer applies at all. The way in which most major search engines, particularly Google, function today means that if your site contains plenty of good content, is relevant and is well backlinked to other quality sites, it will be picked up and ranked quite quickly. All you need to do is focus on creating and filling your website with content and you’ll start to see results of some kind soon enough.

Meta Tag Keywords And Descriptions Are Important

Meta descriptions that described your sites nature in the Google search rank used to be analysed by the search spiders for relevance and ranking measurement but this is no longer the case. While it’s good to create a neatly descriptive Meta description for the sake of your visitors as they click your page, it won’t improve your search rank. Instead, focus on creating well optimised page URLs, headers and content.

It Is Important To Have As Many Backlinks As Possible

Link building is indeed an important part of website SEO and because of this many DIY optimising site owners focus on getting links back to their pages placed on other sites (backlinks). However, where many go wrong, and especially now that Google has cracked down on link spam, is with thinking that quantity is more important than quality in link building.

Through its Penguin update, Google has recently cracked down hard on spamming links all over the internet or spreading hundreds of them through low quality websites like content farms and link sellers. Instead, what they look for is a smaller number of organically produced backlinks which other people give to your site from their own higher quality websites through mutually relevant content.

This means you should focus far more on building relationships with the owners of other high quality and popular sites in your niche for the sake of a few good backlinks instead of flooding the web with low quality backlinks.

SEO Means Sacrificing Quality Web Design

On the contrary, a very important part of top notch SEO lies exactly in the development and design of an elegantly clean and pretty websites. Good optimisation favours clean code, well interlinked pages, a well-organised website and plenty of clean division and breakdown of content. However, one thing that you should avoid in your web design is using too much Flash or JavaScript. Not only are both of these all too often annoying and damaging to site load times, they are also unreadable to the search bots that Google deploys to index the web.

Instead, stick to HTML, CSS and other text based design programming as much as you can. If you have images or videos on your site, give them all strategically keyworded HTML attributes in the background code.

Richard has been writing about technology and business solutions for nearly a decade. When he is not writing, you can find Richard working as an engineer, designing energy efficient Elevator Replacement Components.