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The Top SEO Myths, All Of It Hearsay

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If you do a Google search on SEO myths, you’ll bring in about half a million hits, all with an SEO expert of some form or another diligently listing the optimization misconceptions they run often encounter. They often disagree on certain points, but there are some common threads, which leads us here to a quick compilation of the more agreed upon SEO myths and how they are debunked.

The Top of the Top SEO Myths:

1. Meta tags are the key to high rankings.

While meta tags are important part of an overall campaign, and helpful in their own wa, description tags and keyword tags, according Jill Whalen, don’t have much affect on your search engine ranking. In fact, as far as keyword tags go, they are largely a waste of time, according to Danny Sullivan, and may even lead to penalties if the keywords in the tags don’t match the content of the webpage.

2. You need to resubmit your site often to achieve high rankings.

As search engines like Google automatically crawl the web for existing sites, chance are there’s no real need to submit anything. But if you’d rather play it safe, most experts agree that once is enough. According to The General Center for Internet Services, submitting more than once could have adverse reactions.

3. Buying multiple domains increases rank, perhaps pushing your site into the top 20.

“This is another method that can get your site barred. While it is good to have your domain name be a search term, you should try to limit your domain name aliases to less than ten,” says Jigsaw. In addition, multiple domains, especially one-page sites that appear to be nothing more than doorway pages, is a bad idea. Subdomains, on the other hand, may be a better idea.

4. SEO firms can guarantee high rankings, even top 10 results.

This is largely regarded as a hard sell tactic and roundly agreed upon that this is a bogus guarantee. Take it from a seemingly honest SEO firm like iTech Developers.
“NO ONE can guarantee you Top Ten results–not even us. We’re not afraid to say it, because it’s the truth.”

5. Links, links, links, and more links. The more the better.

Links certainly don’t hurt, especially inbound links. But there are guidelines, and more isn’t always better.

“The Truth: Outbound links to related and unrelated sites are factored into page rank. Reciprocated links count higher than unreciprocated links. The more quality inbound links to your site, the higher the PR, but nobody knows exactly how Google factors their PR and their algorithm is constantly adjusted. A million links to and from unrelated sites could drop your PR and if your site is found linking to obvious FFA or link farms, your site could be penalized as being ‘guilty by association’,” says Big Oak.

6. Once you’ve achieved a high ranking, your job is done. Don’t fix it if its not broken.

This is a point somewhat debated, but the majority say that continually updating your page is the key to keeping that ultra-important relevance that got you there in the first place.

Search Engine Guide’s Jennifer Laycock says,” maintaining a No. 1 position and growing the quality and amount of traffic that is delivered to your site takes constant monitoring and planning. Keep in mind that as your site moves into the No.1 position, you leave unlimited numbers of web sites behind you that are now vying for the position that you hold. If you want to continue to stay ahead of them, you’ll need to continue to work on adding appropriate and optimized content, building incoming, targeted links, and exploring new ways to tweak and update your site so that you can remain in that top position.

It would be nice if this were a game with clear rules. Alas, that’s not the case. When in doubt, the purists will tell you to rely on content.

“So how do you win?” asks Sullivan. “I still fall back on making sure you have some of the best content you can offer, built in search engine friendly manner. Build it — and don’t put up search engine barriers — and for many people the traffic will indeed flow.”

For more a detailed list of search engine ranking factors, check out seomoz, where you’ll find a rather painstaking account of them. Jill Whalen’s list of SEO articles is another good source.

The Top SEO Myths, All Of It Hearsay
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  • http://www.giftexposure.co.uk David Thompson

    As each day goes by the myths increase, the sad thing is the people passing on these myths will never see the inside of the top 50 pages for anything competitive

  • http://www.google.com/notebook/public/17335248139538896058/BDSIKQgoQpL2E0qMj Cassandra

    Thats it. Thanks a very, very lot!

  • http://www.the-little-things-in-life.co.uk Peter

    I like number 4 made me chuckle

  • http://www.business-sale.com Cutter

    Dont you just love heresay