Search engine optimization is a field rife with valuable information that helps your potential customers find your product or service. But, of course, there are massive misconceptions out there that muddy the waters and make growing organic web traffic on Google a real chore. Be on the lookout for these SEO myths and how to debunk them.
SEO Myth #1: It's Not Worth Going Back To Old SEO Content
While creating new content is always a great idea, don't ignore your past efforts! Just because you wrote a piece a few years back doesn't mean that it can't pull in traffic today. It's a total myth that content creation is the only way to improve articles.
After all, this is search engine optimization—time to start optimizing those articles.
An article can quickly fall to the wayside, whether it's slightly outdated information or has remained on your site for more than six months. However, it's time to edit and refine.
But does that mean every article is worth the time and effort of optimizing? No, definitely not. It depends on past performance, the potential for future returns, and the relevancy of the content.
If you update an old piece of content, you have a better chance at bringing it back to the forefront of the Google SERPs. Just remember to tweak that grammar!
SEO Myth #2: Don't Worry About Alt-Text
Alt-text is an essential way to boost accessibility on your website and be a fantastic SEO tool. And if anyone's spouting SEO myths disregarding alt-text, promptly ignore them.
Alt-text gives basic information about the photo to the reader. However, a short and succinct description is fertile ground for SEO purposes.
When you include your target keywords in the alt-text, it essentially gives Google and other search engines a lot more to work with.
Just think of how good your content already was. Having a few images that include your keywords is an excellent way to add more relevancy to your online content.
A good rule of thumb for alt-text and alt attributes on images is to keep it short, accurate, and include keywords. Generally, shoot for around 120 characters or fewer to describe a photo with your chosen keywords.
Integrating your SEO keywords into an image's alt-text can be an art form, so start practicing. You'll start boosting traffic in no time.
SEO Myth #3: Local SEO Doesn't Matter
Another classic example of SEO myths is disregarding local SEO efforts.
(Hint: it matters a lot.)
Local SEO helps people find products and services in their immediate area. As such, it's easy to see why certain businesses might not pour a ton of their SEO efforts into it.
However, it's crucial to build brand awareness.
A great and easy way to integrate local SEO into your content is through long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are (surprise, surprise) longer, more specific keywords.
So, for example, instead of 'digital marketing consultations,' try something like 'digital marketing consultation services in Riverside.' This use of long-tail keywords helps narrow down a Google search and connects locals to products and services they may not have been previously aware of.
Another stunning fact is that around two-thirds of customers like to peruse online stores, then go in person to buy a product. With local SEO, this gives you a fantastic leg up over your competition.
And, likewise, those locals can leave the ever-important online review. Reviews are crucial to building your brand and getting your name out there.
The more reviews, the more people will notice. Plus, if a customer sees a slew of positive reviews, it can quickly push a potential customer into a confirmed buyer.
SEO Myth #4: Don't Worry About Meta-Tags
This SEO myth is so ridiculous that we can't help but roll our eyes whenever we hear about it. Meta-tags are the various pieces of data that appear on Google's search engine results page. With SEO and SEM, they can make a massive difference. In short, SEO myths like this rob your website and business of valuable resources.
For example, when you search for a site, you'll see the meta title and meta description. And while it's not necessary for you to include your SEO keywords in these tags, it's well worth the effort.
Having a dedicated meta description (with applicable keywords) can not only help Google categorize your content but help prospective customers find your company.
If you don't include a distinct meta description, Google will usually just take the first part of your page's content. While this is fine, we highly recommend taking the time to craft the perfect meta descriptions and meta titles to polish your site. And again, it makes it easier for people to find your site.
SEO Myth #5: Good SEO Will Help Your Site Instantly
While good SEO is the goal, a cohesive SEO strategy may take weeks to a few months to see significant returns. It's just the nature of the beast.
SEO myths like this are dangerous because they make SEO agencies look bad if they don't see instant traffic, giving business owners unrealistic expectations.
You already know that SEO constantly changes if you’re an SEO expert. Plus, you're often playing the long game.
And, if by some miracle, someone gets your site to the coveted number one spot on Google, you're not likely to stay there for long. If you got instant results, there's likely no comprehensive keyword strategy or long-term business plan backing the success.
That means that, while you're currently ranking well, it's only a matter of time until a more authoritative website takes your spot.
In short, don't seek instant results. It'll only result in SEO disappointment and even further unrealistic expectations. Remember, SEO is constantly changing, and it's mostly a long game filled with strategizing and research.
Final Thoughts on SEO Myths
SEO myths are fairly common online, and it's our job to debunk them and set you on the right path. After all, SEO efforts can quickly boost your brand presence online and give you the edge on the Google SERPs.
So, in the end, disregard these ridiculous SEO myths, and instead, lean into these SEO practices getting the most out of your site's content. We guarantee you'll have a better chance of making a memorable impact on your target audience.