Search engine optimization can get complicated and is always changing. It’s not a big surprise then that in the midst of all the change different misconceptions and myths arise. Some myths get spread around and never tend to die. In this article I will outline the 5 most common myths about SEO.
Myth #5) Getting a high Pagerank score will help me rank higher
Pagerank gets referenced quite often in the world of SEO. There was once a day where a high pagerank meant everything, but not anymore. It’s important to realize that pagerank is only one factor that Google considers in the ranking process, furthermore, most of the other factors are equally as important.
A high Pagerank score does not determine traffic or even quality. There are plenty of low pagerank websites that outperform sites with higher PR scores.
It’s also worth noting that some blackhat seo providers try to manipulate pagerank to sell links to unsuspecting webmasters. Always be careful when someone tries to sell you “High PR” links in large quantities for next to nothing.
Never ignore a link opportunity from a website that does not have pagerank. Let the actual quality of the website determine whether or not it’s worth pursuing.
Myth #4) SEO agencies have special relationships with Google that can help me rank higher
I can’t tell you how many agencies out there guarantee rankings but there are a lot! It’s shocking, but understandable given that these companies are looking for quick and easy sales, hoping to exploit those who are gullible enough to fall for their ridiculous claims.
This, of course, is a myth. Google does not have special relationships with any agencies. In fact, google has a dedicated page that says exactly that. I wonder what those firms would say if someone was to send them a link to this page: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35291 (Scroll down to about the middle to find it).
Remember, a reputable SEO firm will not make guarantees and stay away from those that do.
Myth #3) Nofollow links are useless
There are many claims that links with the “nofollow” attribute (originally created to deter link spammers) do not pass ranking value and as a result many people believe getting these types of links is useless. This is a myth. Not only have a few people shown that nofollow links do indeed pass some value, seen here and here, but even if these people were wrong (which they could be) there are still situations where having nofollow links is useful.
Links should never be thought of as something you do only to increasing search engine rankings. For example, a link in an article can still receive valuable traffic from actual people reading that article regardless of whether or not it has the “nofollow” attribute.
Myth #2) Content is king
There is no doubt that content is important, I will never say otherwise, however, content is NOT king. Content is simply a tool for a job, but without an audience it is pointless.
Focusing purely on creating content will not guarantee user interest or traffic. Google does not read your content and instantly decide it’s good and therefore it should be on the first page. In fact, Google is pretty bad at determining the actual quality of content. Sure, having a lot of content gives you more opportunities to rank for keywords, but ultimately you need to have a promotional strategy that will push your content out to the public.
Do not spend all your resources only creating good content, save some of those resources for promoting that content as well.
Myth #1) Getting a lot of links will improve my rankings
There are a lot of providers out there selling packages that will give you thousands of backlinks for the price of $20. These packages appeal to those who believe that link quantity is the major factor in high rankings. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Links vary in quality to the point where 1 link from an authoritative site could be worth more than 1000 spammy directory links. Furthermore, going after thousands of low quality links can have the opposite effect. Sites are known to get penalties when pursuing such links in excess and getting rid of these penalties is no easy task.
Having a few low quality links is normal and is not going to hurt you, but for the best possible result, always aim for links from authoritative sites in your niche.
Misinformation in the SEO industry is common. It’s important to research claims and not to take everything you hear at face value. Steering clear of some of these common myths will ultimately lead to more success with your SEO efforts.