SEO is a vital digital marketing tactic if you want to find consumers that are searching and shopping in your niche. However, SEO is not an easy thing to master, and year after year more rules and best practices are added to the growing list. This leads a lot of business owners to disregard SEO or underestimate its power. While it’s true that SEO might not be the most helpful digital marketing tactic for your business, it’s certainly one that you should take advantage of.
To remind you of just how helpful SEO can be for brand visibility and conversion, Stephensons, an SEO agency in Barnsley, has listed 5 of the most common misconceptions about SEO that keep business owners from working at this tactic.
1. “It’s impossible to rank on the first page of search engines.”
This misconception is often held by small-business owners, watching the industry leaders take over the first 15 results on search engines. Considering over 75% of people don’t ever go past the first page of results, if you’re not on the homepage then you’re not likely to be seen. This, coupled with the fact that there’s no guarantee SEO will get you up there, puts a lot of business owners off from even trying.
However, it is possible to rank on the first page of search engine results, but it will take a lot of work and dedication to your web design and keywords. When it comes to SEO, aiming for the first page can be greatly beneficial even if you don’t think you’ll make it, as you’ll soon see yourself start to rise anyway.
2. “SEO relies solely on keywords.”
It’s easy to see where this misconception comes from, as keywords are undoubtedly one of the most important facets of successful SEO. However, they aren’t the only part of SEO that can help push you up the search rankings. If you’ve tried SEO keywords and didn’t see much difference in your site’s rankings, this might be why.
There are countless SEO techniques you can use once you’ve got your keywords down. SEO relies on the information that search engines gain about how trustworthy your site is, which means if other sites link back to your site it will improve SEO. Some things that contribute to SEO can only be improved once your business begins to grow, such as the speed at which your website loads.
3. “The older your site the more trustworthy it is.”
It’s long been touted that domain age affects whether search engines deem your site to be trustworthy. After all, if a business has been around for a long time, they’re likely to have served many customers and achieved a great deal of success. But, think about all the sites out there that have been around since the dawn of the internet, and are now decaying and lifeless.
While domain age can affect SEO, this is only true when it is coupled with high-quality content and regular page additions. All things considered, since domain age only matters in conjunction with content updates and keywords, you can rest assured that it won’t have a detrimental effect on your site’s ranking, simply because it is new.
4. “Only text in the body of your website counts to SEO.”
Back to keywords, you can only fit them into your website’s text, right? Actually, keywords in images, video, and audio all contribute to the ranking of your site, and even the quality and load time of these things can affect SEO.
This gives you the option to add high-quality, multi-media content to your site instead of blog posts or FAQs, and still drive successful SEO. Even text that is not in the body of your site counts toward SEO. For example, the buttons on your site that may read ‘home’, ‘about us’, or ‘contact’ all signal to search engines that your site is built around user experience.
5. “If I’m not seeing results, my SEO efforts aren’t working.”
The unfortunate truth of SEO is you may work at it solidly for months, or even years, and see no change. None of us outside the search engine’s coding team know what’s going on with those algorithms, so many businesses are simply making educated guesses based on the results they see. If your business is in a particularly saturated niche, wherein all competitors are vying for the same keywords, it may take far longer for you to see your site move. This tempts a lot of people to give up on SEO altogether.
But, just because you’re not moving up in the rankings, doesn’t mean your SEO efforts aren’t having an effect. If someone comes to a search engine for a very specific query that you happen to have answered in a blog post, your site is going to be visible to them. It may be underneath your competitor’s site, but if they haven’t produced the content this potential customer is looking for, your site will be the next one they check. Never underestimate how much high-quality content can be the deciding factor for individuals.