The Internet has taken over the world, people. It is the Colosseum that hosts millions of websites in a giant Gladiator fight every day. No one wants their website to lose out to competitors when somebody comes searching for them, especially small businesses who do not have big online marketing budgets.
But then again, there is a lot of gyaan juggled around about how to rank your online stores better on search engines like Google and Yahoo. In this post, we debunk SEO myths and bring to you a clearer picture of the do’s and don’ts when you optimize your website for search engines.
Myth #7: “The more I stuff my website with keywords, the better it is for my website’s ranking!”
Reality: This is the big mother of all SEO myths that have ever existed on the Internet. On the contrary, if Google finds you using the keywords too many times on your website, it penalizes your site. Focus on the keywords and create good content around them, instead of just repeating the keywords in an attempt to rank higher.
Myth #6: “Shh… I know secret ways to boost my ranking without much effort!”
Why it’s a Bad Idea: There are many unconventional or Black Hat SEO techniques that people use to increase their ranking in the short run. Like using invisible text filled with keywords, automatically redirecting well ranked pages to a different page (doorway pages) or completely revamping a webpage after it has been ranked well (page swapping). Such techniques result in getting your website getting blacklisted by search engines and should be avoided no matter what!
Myth #5: “My Social Media activity has nothing to do with my Search Engine Ranking.”
Reality: Search engines are getting smarter by the day and have started tracking the social media pages of brands as well. If you have a long term plan for your brand’s SEO, you need to add social media to the plan. Create engaging content on your social media channels and pay good attention to all aspects of social media marketing.
Myth #4: “My competitors spend a lot on Google Ads. That is why they rank better than me!”
Reality: Let’s get this straight. If you pay Google to run your ads, they will run your ads. What they will not do is give you any sort of preferential treatment. For the genuine search results, Google does not treat you any differently, just because you advertised with them. To rank better, you need to work on the traditional SEO methods.
Myth #3: “It’s okay to copy content from somewhere once in a while. I mean, who doesn’t do it?”
Reality: If you copy content for your website from elsewhere, you are effectively committing SEO suicide. Forget about copying product descriptions from anywhere else! Search engines detect duplicate text and ban websites that follow this practice. Even if you copy content from more than one source, search engines are intelligent enough to detect this and pull your rankings down.
Myth #2: “SEO is too complicated for my small business and I’m not sure it will even guarantee me results.”
Reality: SEO is not rocket science, so don’t put it off unless you want to remain unknown on the internet. It is one of the most important aspects of running an online business and isn’t that hard at all to learn. You do not need to be a genius to get your website to rank higher, just make sure you don’t ignore it and keep working on it step by step.
Myth #1: “I completed all my SEO work yesterday. Why isn’t my website ranking good yet?”
Reality: SEO is not something that reflects on search engines overnight. It takes time for websites to get indexed by search engines. Also, there is so much content on the internet to compete with, that you need to publish good content continuously over an extended period of time to ensure a good ranking. In a nutshell, SEO is a marathon and not a sprint race.
Have you fallen for any of these myths? We hope not! With these myths out of the way, we hope you have a clearer view of the road ahead. When it comes to SEO, it isn’t something that you can do overnight. You need to put in a lot of effort and do a lot of good research in order to rank better on search results.
But believe us – if you do put in the efforts, the returns are worth it!
[About the author: Nitin Purswani is the founder of Zepo, a DIY ecommerce platform.]
Image credit: shutterstock