SEO Statements That Are No Longer True

Written by Danielle Bachini

The SEO industry is constantly evolving due to the fact that the way that the search engines view websites is constantly evolving. If your SEO approach is outdated, the search engines won’t view your site favorably. In fact, an outdated approach could even get you into trouble and result in a search engine penalty. Since the search engines are primary drivers of traffic to business websites, a penalty (and the loss of traffic that comes along with it) can be extremely damaging to the success of that business. That’s why it’s essential that anyone responsible for a business website stay up to date with what’s considered to be accepted practice in the SEO industry. What was considered to be SEO best practice even just a few years ago could now be irrelevant. Those responsible for an SEO campaign or outsourcing SEO work can stay current with SEO best practices by reading the search engine Webmaster Guidelines, visiting top industry blogs, and attending SEO seminars and trainings. Armed with this knowledge you’ll understand that the following SEO statements are no longer true:

“SEO success is determined by rank.”

We provide our SEO clients with multiple reports at the end of each month including a visitor report, an organic visitor report, a keyword report, a social media report, and a list of all of the link building activities that have been completed that month. One report that we don’t give our clients is a ranking report. That’s because rankings aren’t an accurate way to measure the success of an SEO campaign and it encourages the client to become obsessed with rank, as opposed to other metrics that matter more. Rank is an accurate way to measure success because rankings fluctuate based on many external factors that can’t be controlled. Search is personalized based on the location, past search behavior, and social behavior of the person conducting the search. Rankings can also fluctuate when a new search algorithm update is released, which happens more frequently than you realize.

“My site will be more trusted if I get more inbound links.”

Link building is still an important component of SEO, but the focus isn’t necessarily hitting a certain number of links per month. The focus is on building good links. Quality trumps quantity. It’s better to find 3 good link opportunities in a month than 50 low quality link opportunities. Low quality links aren’t going to get you anywhere today. Those links won’t generate traffic to your site (the primary purpose of a link) and they aren’t going to boost your search engine trust either. The only thing that they could do is harming your site. If the potential link source doesn’t resonate with your target audience and you just want the link for the sake of adding a link, skip it.

“The keyword needs to appear on the page this many times.”

Keywords absolutely need to be incorporated into content in order for that content to appear for a keyword search term, however there is no set number of times that it should appear. The key is always to keep the content as natural as possible. If the keyword is in there too many times it starts to stick out, and disrupts the reading experience. The content could also be viewed as “keyword stuffed” by the search engines and be labeled as spam.

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