To say that SEO has changed a lot especially these past few years is an absurd understatement. SEO, as any marketer know by now, is a continuously evolving and developing animal, not much different from any carbon-based creature in its ability to adapt to the changes in its environment. As search engine giants continue to refine their algorithms for maximum user experience, so as the diligence and creativity of online marketers to circumvent the new rules arising from algorithms updates. Ignoring the fact that the best way to gain page ranking is by delivering relevant and engaging contents, most online marketers focus on improvising “schemes” to bypass the search engine rules to create a “fake” page ranking, and bombard users with unsolicited content. But as I have said, search engine algorithms continue to evolve, weeding out these marketers and punishing sites that violate search engine rules. Through the years, these marketers have developed a lot of tactics to counter new algorithms and updates. Some of these methods have long been exposed by Google, Yahoo and other major search engines. Keyword stuffing, frenzy link building, Meta tag spamming and other black hat tactics use to work before but since the release of Panda and Penguin, Google’s new algorithms, the old-school tactics no longer work. These practices have long became myths. But myths still persist. And practices and strategies are still being formulated based on these myths. Here are of five of those myths that every self-respecting marketer should avoid in 2015.
1. Link-building is archaic
By archaic I mean old and no longer works. But this is a myth. Some marketers are claiming that making backlinks no longer works because of the improved search engine algorithms. On the contrary, backlinks can still be considered as a major page-ranking utility. If lots of users link back to your site because of the quality of the contents, then backlinks are good. What doesn’t work are frenzy link farms perpetuated solely to avoid the parameters set by search engines’ algorithms and cheat on page-ranking. Links should be earned. Users should link back to your site voluntarily and with no strings attached.
2. Social Media is #1 in SEO
The general belief since last year is that Social Media is the new platform for page ranking. Not true. Google itself admitted that it doesn’t use social media in page ranking. The only time Google use social media is for personal search but only within Google’s social community which is the Google Plus. Engaging in social media for the sake of SEO is wrong. Social media has no direct effect towards brand marketing. However, being able to engage thousands of users in social media helps the marketer build a better brand and this would eventually help in gaining links from web publishers, bloggers and other users. With this comes better page ranking.
3. Submit URL to search engines to be indexed
In the olden days when Internet was young, we fill-up forms to submit to search engines, informing the world of our presence. Nowadays, although the practice is still being done, it doesn’t do your site any good in terms of page ranking. Site submission does not guarantee anything. Even without submitting your site’s URL to any search engines, web crawlers will eventually discover your site and index it.
4. More indexed pages, more page ranking
Some marketers believe that the more pages our site have, the more chances for our site to gain page-ranking. More pages mean more content. More content is more page ranking. Again this is utterly false. Google and other major search engines does not rely on the quantity of the content but rather on the quality. Users who are happy with your site’s contents would link back, repost, comment and share your site’s information. That’s how you build your site’s credibility. Search engines can detect credibility the same way that they can detect bogus and duplicate contents within your site. Focus on the quality, not the quantity.
5. Pay Google to get organic page ranking
Nothing could be farther from the truth with this belief. First off, organic search results are based on the relevance of the content being matched by the search engine upon users’ request for information. Organic search results are free and has nothing to do with Google AdWords. Proper keyword placement, internal linking and better content will get you page ranking. There are other myths out there that are still being practiced by many marketers. Some myths as absurd as the next one. The five mentioned above are by far the most common SEO misconceptions. It is up to the marketer whether to believe them or not. A better solution is instead of focusing on how to get higher page ranking, focus instead on delivering high-quality and engaging content. Page ranking is sure to follow. Content is the true path to righteousness. Relevance is the true path to better page ranking.