Top 5 SEO Myths

I’ve been dabbling in the world of SEO for just over a year now but since joining Fruitbowl Media I’ve been submerged in a number of SEO books. One of my main roles as an Account Executive will be to produce reports, monitor and improve SEO for a number of our client’s websites and in order to achieve this I need to make sure I understand every little detail related to SEO.

This means knowing which techniques are useful and will actually improve a websites ranking and which techniques are just myths and may even hinder me in ranking well. Hence the reason for this blog post as I wanted to create a list of what I think are the top 5 myths when it comes to SEO and to hear your feedback on those myths, whether what I think is true or not.

Myth 1 – You must have lots of Keywords

I can hear you saying it now… “keywords aren’t important! What is he on about?” let me explain. In the beginning search engines relied heavily on keywords and the density of those keywords when ranking websites. This lead to ‘optimisers’ stuffing their web pages full of keywords in order to improve their ranking.

Whilst this may have worked in the beginning it doesn’t now, search engines have changed their algorithms and you may even get penalised for keyword stuffing. I’m not saying keywords aren’t important, far from it, but keywords need to be implemented into your content in a natural way.

Myth 2 – You need to be Technically Minded

Many people think the technical side of your website is key in making your site climb up the rankings in search rankings and that you need to be technically minded or a programmer to have a chance in improving your websites ranking but this is not the case, SEO is not a technical skill.

Sure is does help to make sure you have a sitemap.xml uploaded and a robots.txt file in place but it’s much more important that you’re not doing something Google doesn’t like. Google will rank you lower if you have something on your website which is slowing your website down, having lots of broken links or implementing black hat SEO (something I will talk about in a future blog).

Myth 3 – PageRank is Everything

This is one myth I fell for until recently. I was led to believe that PageRank was Google’s be all and end all measurement of how well your website ranked in their eyes, meaning the higher the PageRank the higher you ranked.

This is not strictly the case. Whilst having a high PageRank is a good thing it doesn’t necessarily mean your website will always rank higher. Pagerank is just one factor of many used by Google to establish the Reputation (or trustworthiness) of a website. But this is only half of the battle.

Myth 4 – Commenting on Blogs

When it comes to SEO, links are very important and people believe by commenting on blogs and forums and leaving links to their website at the bottom of their comment it will help improve their rankings. This is not true for 2 reasons:

  1. Most bloggers add the ‘nofollow’ tag to all comments
  2. Search engines know people ‘comment spam’ and therefore pay increasingly less attention to them

Myth 5 – Submitting your Website

In the past when a website was new you had to submit that site to the search engines, this informed them that your website existed. It is argued by some that you no longer need to submit your website as search engines will eventually find your website.

I’m still a little dubious about this myth, what if your website contains no inbound or outbound links, how would a search engine find it? What I do know is you do not need to pay a company huge amounts of money to submit your website to a search engine. If you see a company focussing on this service, steer well clear!

There are many more SEO myths than just the 5 I’ve listed above and probably some more that I’m not even aware of. If you know of any others or if you think one of the above myths has some truth to it then please let me know in the comments below, I’m always happy to hear what others have to say (even if I might not agree with you!)