Search Engine Misconceptions Finally Cleared Up!
There are many rumors that go around about search engines and what makes your website have good SEO. What is true and what is false? And how can you be sure? We will address those rumors here and give you a clear understanding of what gives your website/blog a good SEO. Here are Four Search Engine Misconceptions.
1. Search Engine Submission
In the classical age of SEO times (the late 1900s), search engines had submission forms that were part of the search engine optimization process. Site owners would tag their sites with keyword information, and submit them. A bot would crawl in and include those resources into their index. The problem with this was that most of the submissions were spam. Since 2001, it has become useless and unnecessary to submit your entire website with every change that you make. Since 2007, we’ve had availability of tools like more effective sitemaps that make those changes apparent and Google will crawl as they see those changes come through. Webmaster tools to submit individual pages of your site or tools like Google’s fetch and render, so you can see what Google is seeing when it indexing that page, and fix as necessary. With all of the tools at our fingertips, there is no excuse not to be indexed by the search engines by using best practices set out by Google. You can read them here.
2. Meta Tags
Meta tags and meta keywords used to be super important in the SEO process. You would include keywords you wanted your site to rank for, and when users typed those terms
, your website would come up. This ended though because of spam, and eventually, search engines dropped this as a ranking signal. Now, in 2017 there are more tags than ever to utilize in different ways on your website. Google never re-implemented the meta keywords back into circulation due to over spamming, but now we have more choices than ever! From page header tags (H1 – H6), title tags, to show where important information on the page lays, to alt tags aka image optimization or attribute tags that assist the search engines in identifying the pictures since search engines can’t read images unless they are utilizing these tag types. Other tags include meta descriptions that are still used and super important because it summarizes the content of the page and shows directly in the search engines.
3. Keyword Stuffing
A large myth about SEO is the focus word density. How many times is your keyword in the content? Search engines have tried to prove time and time again that you don’t need to fill a page with your keyword to get good SEO, but yet people still believe this is the way to go. It’s not! Having good content and good link(s) are more important, and this way, you won’t be perceived as a search spammer. There is a best practice that states you should have your keyword in your content about 1-2% of your total word count. What most writers don’t realize is that Google is smart, they use associated keywords to link to your main search phrase. For example, if your keyword you are ranking for is dogs for sale, you can use associate keywords such as canine, puppy, k-9, doggy, and the list goes on. This way you aren’t spamming your writing and it makes more sense in the end.
4. The More Pages the Better or Larger Articles Get Better Ranking?
Google, Bing, and many other search engines look for duplicate content and overlapping articles, keyword spamming and much more. When you publish a piece of writing, the search engines crawl it and their algorithms look for guidelines and inconsistencies that do not follow their best practices. This myth about the more you have the better it is for ranking is completely false. If you are just running a content farm and throwing articles out left and right, it doesn’t matter how long or short they are, you will be penalized for it.
5. It’s All About Google! Forget the Rest.
As a buzzer is going off in your ear, you know that this is far from the truth. There are many benefits to using all different search engines, as you can’t predict the future and what your current audience is using -unless you are utilizing Webmaster Tools and Analytics, of course, to plot your audiences next move. Even then, there are definitely those customers that have their favorite search engine and even if a small percent, the smaller ones are slowly catching up and increasingly so each year with algorithm advancements and partnerships with larger internet companies such as Yahoo, MSN, and Facebook, to power up smaller search engines, that you won’t want to miss out on.
Many companies and websites still believe attempting these 5 myths will give them the best SEO possible, but when in reality, they are no help at all. Are you looking to rank better on all of the search engines? There are many levels to having good SEO, and keeping up on it monthly through monthly blogs and maintenance. If you are looking for some guidance, we can help you with SEO.