We all know the importance of creating online content to showcase the products and services that our businesses offer. But what good is that if our content is not ranked highly by search engines or is difficult to find on social media?
Search engine optimization (SEO) is about positioning a brand so that it is ranked highly enough by search engines to drive traffic from organic searches to its website. The quest to achieve ever higher rankings in search engine results pages (SERP) is ongoing.
Having said that, ‘SEO’ has become such a buzzterm in recent years that people have spread rumors and invented stories about it. Some even claim it’s not relevant any more.
It most definitely IS still relevant. And important.
There are now many misconceptions about SEO and its value. Here we’ll start to dispel SEO fact from fiction.
The Bad Old Days
Years ago, before search engines developed complex algorithms to rank content in their results pages, it was possible to overstuff content with keywords and use other cheap tricks to achieve high rankings.
Amazingly, many people believe this is still the case. Then they become disappointed and disillusioned, even claiming that SEO is too hard or that its importance is overrated. Hence we need to eliminate the fiction and rediscover the facts about SEO.
Search engines like Google now have highly sophisticated algorithms that take many factors into account. It’s no longer possible to ‘dupe’ search engines into ranking your content if it isn’t rated highly by these algorithms.
Penalty for Stuffing
Search engines will penalize content that’s overloaded with repeated keywords. That’s a fact. That penalty takes the form of a lower search ranking. Apart from that, any audience that actually does find your content will punish you because content littered with keywords is unreadable. It becomes repetitive and loses value. People will click away elsewhere in a hurry.
It’s been a long time since Google focused mostly on keywords and keyword density. Now, Google scans content to look for keywords, determine the quality of your text, and weed out trickery, along with many other factors before ranking your website accordingly.
Links can be useful to direct readers to other relevant content and can make it easier for search engines to crawl your site. However, it is the quality and not the quantity of links that is important. Google will definitely penalize content that’s overstuffed with links.
You can be rewarded for backlinking to other sites. But once again, pay attention to the quality of the backlinks by placing them in sites that have sufficient authority and are related to your business.
SEO Campaign Duration
There is a misperception that once you have achieved success with your SEO campaign, in terms of improved rankings and increased traffic, you can relax and continue to reap the benefits. This is very far from the truth. Not all content remains high ranking forever after.
To ensure sustained success, any SEO campaign must be an ongoing effort. Persistence is the key to SEO strategy. Search engines place a premium on content updates. So do leads and customers: it’s important for customer retention to continually provide fresh content.
There is much more to say about SEO facts and fiction than we can fit into one blog.
It’s almost a science all by itself. Managing an effective SEO campaign can feel complicated, confusing, even overwhelming for the average business owner whose skills are (rightly) based around products and services. This is where it’s always worthwhile to turn to proven online marketing experts who will combine listening to you with their expertise in SEO strategy and online marketing to produce stunning SEO results for you.
Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Results Professional Marketing and a clickable link back to this page.