Thursday, February 28, 2013

Top 5 SEO Myths That Need to Be Broken

As you enter into the e-commerce space, you're going to be learning all about driving traffic to your website. One of the first (and most important) concepts you should learn is about Search Engine Optimization or SEO. Simply put, the goal of SEO is to increase the rankings of your website when a specific search term or phrase is entered. Depending on the topic this can be a crowded field.

For instance, Google "locksmith" and your hometown. What you're sure to come up with are dozens of pages of locksmiths businesses. If your business is among those ranking on the first page you stand a much better chance of garnering that new customer. Along with understanding SEO you'll also run across some SEO myths.

You would follow these myths at your own peril because they might end up preventing traffic to your site as opposed to increasing traffic.

Here are the top 5 SEO myths that need to be broken.

You only have to optimize your site once.

Wrong. You might get lucky with your first wave of comprehensive SEO content and achieve that number one ranking but you won't be there for long. All of your competitors will be working on their own SEO strategies which can knock you off the top ranking at any time. This means you've got to consistently improve your SEO on a regular basis. Look at it this way: Would you only have one "special sale" for your business to attract customers? Of course not! The same can be said for SEO.

Links to social bookmarks aren't considered SEO.

Actually they are. Adding social networking bookmarks to your content are becoming an important and viable component to a comprehensive SEO strategy. Based on the findings of recent surveys, close to 14% of a website's ranking power can originate from sites like Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus. In other words, fire up those accounts and make sure they're part of your website.

You should always be posting content.

Yes and no. The myth is that without new content your site won't be picked up by search engines. The key issue is one of relevancy. Your content needs to be relevant for the search. If it is content for the sake of content then you're defeating the purpose. Making content relevant is at the heart of successful SEO and that will be determined by many factors both on your web pages and off those pages.

Forget title tags and meta tags; they don't work.

That would be a big mistake. This is where those on/off page factors come into play. A common mistake by webmasters is to title home pages as "home" as opposed to the keyword in title tags. Going back to the locksmith example, you shouldn't tag your landing page as "home" but "locksmith in Austin" (or wherever). Focus on a 160-character meta description of your content that will include a relevant keyword phrase and you'll come out a winner.

You can't have enough backlinks.

Yes you can. Backlinks link other websites to your site. It's a way of expanding the potential for traffic. However, once again it comes down to a matter of relevancy. You want to establish your website as a place of authority that means you want quality backlinks and not general spam. Linking to news stories and videos work but you'll have to occasionally go back and make sure those links aren't broken.