Not everyone is well versed with all the ranking factors in Google’s algorithm. We keep guessing and experimenting our way to the top. It is not surprising why we get caught up in SEO gossip all the time. While you might struggle what to believe in, here are a few common SEO myths you should stop believing in.
Stuffing Keywords In Keywords Meta Tag
Over a decade ago, when keyword meta tags were introduced, it was expected that site owners would be honest about their business. This feature was easily abused when people included top selling keywords in their meta tags just to attract traffic. For instance, owners could easily put ‘diamond rings’ into their keywords to attract traffic, when in reality, they only sold gold rings. Who knows, someone coming to their site could end up buying a gold ring instead of a diamond. Because of such abuses, Google deprioritized keyword meta tags as a ranking factor. That’s why putting keywords in meta tags makes no difference today.
Social Media Does Not Affect Website Rankings
Your website becomes more valuable to search engines when users search for your website and share your content. Social media profiles are the best way to prove your social authority, thereby improving website rankings. Though they do not directly participate in ranking algorithms, they definitely influence rankings indirectly.
Here is what the study by Branded3 shows. While 7500+ tweets are ranked on the first page, 1000 tweets are ranked on the 41st page.
Link Building Does Not Help In Rankings
Site owners can improve their site rankings by increasing the number of high-quality sites that link to their pages. The links should be built naturally and organically and not through paid sources, which could also ban your site from being indexed in search. Links are still a big deal, both at the page and domain levels and their share in the ranking factors has been increasing year after year. Refer to this chart below about the Moz study on ranking factors, which indicates, Link Building constitutes 19.15 percent of the overall search rank, right after Domain Level Link Authority Feature.
Source: Weighting the Clusters of Ranking Factors in Google’s Algorithm by Rand Fishkin
Using The Yoast Plugin Will Increase Your Rankings
Yes, the Yoast SEO plugin is a great plugin. However, you can use any SEO plugin and you can still rank. Heck, I use the SEO features which are built into the Genesis Framework and my sites all rank really well. If you follow the Yoast SEO grading system, it will NOT improve your rankings. It’s OK for beginners but true SEO pro’s know it’s proper optimization that gets you to rank and not a green light. The grading system is loaded with issues that may just work against you.
Long/Short Content Guarantees Top Ranking
Good content increases the number of tweets, links, conversion and high rankings irrespective of the length of the content. It is not length but the content which should be valuable to the user. If you have solid content to support a 2000 words article, owners should freely post. If you feel 500 words are best in grabbing the attention and interest of the user, the same should be adopted.
Paid Search Improves Search Results
Paid ads or Google Adwords facilitate detailed analysis of your paid campaigns. Owners can test if their keywords work well for their target audience, if the ROI is justified and if the keywords need refinement. This can in turn help find ways to increase the conversion rate for organic results. Paid search nowhere means that it will help you rank better.
Google XML Sitemap Generator Improves Rankings
Having a Google XML sitemap itself does not affect your web page rankings. The only way a sitemap is valuable is for crawling all the active pages on your domain. The sitemap provides information about your site, its structure and active pages to Google. Therefore, when the URLs are indexed to allow for easy crawling, the visibility of your website increases.
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