There is nothing special about search engine optimization. It’s not black magic, divination, or anything that you can’t learn with a bit of time and dedication. However, many view it as an unapproachable digital marketing technique packed full of constant volatility, uncertainty, and dubious tactics.
This reputation is further sullied by hundreds of SEO myths that regularly show up in digital marketing forums and Facebook groups across the internet.
You may not believe us when we say there is nothing special to SEO. However, we encourage you to set your skepticism to the side while we debunk some of the most common SEO myths.
SEO Myth #1: SEO is Expensive
Sure, SEO can be expensive. But you know what’s even more expensive? Missing out on customers because your website can’t be found on Google.
SEO is only as expensive as you want it to be.
You can take the do it yourself (DIY) approach, spend next to no money, and realize solid outcomes. If you go this route, make sure to emphasize the “Do” part of DIY. Getting stuck always learning and never doing is a recipe for poor performance.
If time is not an abundant resource in your world, you can pay someone to do it for you. This will likely cost you more money, but if you hire a reputable and experienced freelancer or agency, the outcomes are typically better than what you get with the DIY approach.
Or, you can take a hybrid approach like guided SEO. This combines agency expertise in the form of coaching with the SEO process and tools that you need to get great results. It’s a happy medium between going it alone with DIY and hiring an agency.
With guided SEO, you get a personalized series of lessons with specific homework assignments so you can get your site ranking with just a few hours a week. But guided SEO also includes a coach you can meet with monthly to make sure you are on the right track!
No matter which direction you choose, the best way to minimize your expense is to make sure that you are getting value out of whatever you are doing. Stay involved with SEO and collaborate with your team.
SEO Myth #2: SEO is a One-Time Project
Sure, you may sprint at the beginning of your SEO journey, but SEO is a marathon. Just like your business and the products or services you offer, SEO evolves over time. That means your SEO strategy also needs to evolve if you want it to properly support your business.
SEO is best approached as an iterative process wherein you learn which tactics work, which don’t, and slowly modify your site and your SEO strategy over time.
When you take this iterative approach to SEO, it’s best to schedule a time to analyze site performance and tweak your strategy on a monthly basis. Not only that, but you also need to schedule a time to implement strategic changes to your site.
The last thing you want to do when it comes to an SEO strategy is set it and forget it.
SEO Myth #3: SEO is Always Changing
For the most part, the same tried and true SEO techniques that were working two years ago, and five years ago, are still working today. That’s because SEO best practices don’t change overnight. They slowly evolve over time.
Google’s algorithms are updated on a regular basis, but if you approach SEO from a holistic standpoint, you will never get caught off-guard by those changes. On the flip side, if you start chasing the latest SEO “hack” or “trick,” you may find yourself in a precarious position.
There are four key elements that comprise a holistic SEO strategy.
- Providing your audience with useful information and a great user experience.
- Optimizing your content around the keywords your audience is searching for.
- Ensuring your site is clearly communicating with search engines.
- Showing your expertise and authority outside of your site in the form of backlinks, citations, and a strong social media presence.
SEO Myth #4: You Have to Blog
No, a blog is not necessary for every site. It’s merely one means of conveying your expertise to your audience.
There are plenty of other ways to convey your expertise and convince people to return to your site or become new customers or clients.
Having amazing content on your product and service pages is often the best way to highlight your expertise and allow your products and services to speak for themselves. You can also use topic clusters to address those subjects that are the most important to your particular audience.
One way or another, you need to be able to show people that visit your site that you can provide the unique value that nobody else can.
SEO is still one of the most affordable and impactful digital marketing strategies for anyone with a website.
Whether you’re doing your SEO on your own or hiring an agency, make sure you are involved, have a holistic strategy in place, and are following an iterative process. And don’t forget to base your strategy around providing visitors with useful information and expertise in the form of content only you can offer.
Finally, don’t let SEO scare you or stress you out! Like anything else, it’s completely approachable when broken down into its component parts. Apply a process to addressing each of those parts and it’s sure to work for you.