Don’t Fall For These 20 Common SEO Myths


The internet has loads of intimation on the best way to perform Search Engine Optimization (SEO) on your website. However, with so much information, it can be hard to determine what’s true and false.

The best SEO practices are constantly changing, so it can be challenging to keep up with the latest trends. However, some SEO myths won’t die. In order to help you navigate the world of SEO, we’ve compiled a list of the ten most common myths, along with the facts that debunk them.

Myth #1: SEO Is Dead

This is perhaps the most common SEO myth of all. SEO IS Dead makes an excellent headline for tech blogs, but it’s simply not true.

SEO is very much alive and well. In fact, it’s more important than ever before. With the rise of social media and other digital channels, the competition for attention online is higher than ever. That’s why businesses need to invest in SEO to ensure that their websites are visible to potential customers.

Myth #2: I Can Worry About SEO After I Launch My Site

This is a huge mistake. SEO should be an important part of your website development process, not an afterthought.

You’re already behind the curve if you wait until your site is launched to start thinking about SEO. Optimizing your site for search engines from the beginning is much easier than trying to fix it retroactively. Investing in SEO from the beginning will save you time and money and ultimately make your online marketing more cohesive and effective.

Myth #3: Keyword Stuffing Is an Effective SEO Strategy

You may have heard that stuffing your content with keywords effectively improves your website’s ranking on search engines. However, this is not the case. Keyword stuffing can hurt your ranking, making your content difficult to read and understand. It can also get you penalized by Google. So, instead of stuffing your content with keywords, focus on using them in a natural and effective way.

Myth #4: You Only Need To Do Search Engine Optimization Once.

SEO is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Therefore, to maintain and improve your ranking, you must continually work on your SEO. This means regularly publishing high-quality content, optimizing your website for mobile devices, and building links to your site.

Search engine algorithms are constantly changing, so what works today may not work tomorrow. By continually working on your SEO, you can ensure that your website stays ahead of the curve and maintains a high ranking.

Myth #5: Meta Tags Are No Longer Important for SEO

Meta tags are still an important part of SEO. These tags provide information about your website to search engines, which can help them index your site correctly. In addition, meta tags can help improve your click-through rate, as they appear on the search engine results pages (SERPs).

This SEO myth comes because the importance of certain meta tags, like the keyword meta tag, has diminished in recent years. However, other meta tags, like the description and title tags, are still important. So, don’t neglect your meta tags – they could be helpful in improving your website’s SEO.

Myth #6: SEO Is All About Ranking #1 on Google

It’s no secret that everyone wants to rank number one on Google. However, there’s more to SEO than just achieving this top spot. While ranking high on search engines is crucial, you must also focus on driving more traffic to your website and generating leads or sales.

There are many ways to generate traffic, such as creating compelling content, optimizing for mobile devices, and building links. Not ranking number one doesn’t mean you can’t generate traffic and achieve success. Focusing more on increases website search traffic and conversions, not just your ranking.

Myth #7: Page Speed Is Not Important to Your Search Engine Rankings

With today’s high-speed internet connections, it’s easy to forget that not everyone can access a fast connection. In fact, according to Akamai’s “State of the Internet” report, 28% of the world still uses a dial-up connection.

This means that page speed is still an essential factor in SEO. A slow-loading website can frustrate visitors and cause them to leave before they even see your content. In addition, search engines consider page speed when ranking websites. So, if your website ranks high, you must ensure it loads quickly.

Myth #8: Having an XML Sitemap Is Not Important

An XML sitemap is a file that contains a list of all the pages on your website. This file makes it easy for search engines to index your website, as they can refer to the sitemap when looking for new content.

If you don’t have an XML sitemap, some of your website pages will likely not be indexed by search engines. This means those pages will not appear in the search results, and you’ll miss out on potential traffic. So, ensure that your website has an XML sitemap to ensure all your content is indexed correctly.

That being said, a sitemap will not affect your website rankings, according to Google. Instead, it will only help search engines index your website more easily.

Most modern CMS systems have sitemap capabilities built in, so you shouldn’t need a plugin to do this for you. However, several free plugins are available if you don’t have a CMS or your system doesn’t have built-in sitemaps. Some plugins include Yoast XML Sitemap for WordPress and Better WordPress Google XML Sitemaps for WordPress.

Myth #9: You Should Only Focus on Google Rankings

Google is the most popular search engine, with over 3.5 billion daily searches. However, it’s not the only search engine out there. There are other popular search engines, like Bing, Yahoo, and Duck Duck Go, that you should also be focused on.

While Google may be the most popular, that doesn’t mean you should neglect other search engines. Each search engine has its own algorithms and ranking factors, so optimizing your website for all of them is important. This will help you generate more traffic from all major search engines, not just Google.

Myth #10: Buying Backlinks Will Get My Website to the Top of the Search Results

Backlinks are still an important ranking factor for SEO. However, Google’s algorithms have improved at detecting unnatural or paid links. So, if you buy backlinks to enhance your website’s SEO, you could do more harm than good.

In addition to being penalized by Google, you could also end up being entirely banned from the search results. Make sure you earn links from trustworthy, related sites. An example would be to request a link from a vendor or business partner. You could also create high-quality content that other websites want to link to. Whatever you do, don’t buy links in an attempt to improve your website’s SEO. It’s not worth the risk.

Myth #11: Social Media Has No Effect On SEO

Social media does not directly affect your website’s search engine rankings. However, it can indirectly impact your SEO by generating more traffic to your website.

More traffic means more opportunities for people to link to your website, improving your link popularity and helping you rank higher in the search results. In addition, social media can help you build relationships with other people in your industry, which could lead to backlinks and other opportunities down the road. So, while social media may not directly impact your website’s SEO, it’s still worth investing time in.

Myth #12: Only New Content Gets Ranked

New content does indeed have an advantage over older content. For example, when you publish a new blog post, it has a better chance of being indexed by Google and appearing in the search results.

However, that doesn’t mean older content is completely worthless. There’s still a chance that people will find and share your older content, which can help you generate traffic and improve your SEO. So, don’t delete your old content – update it and keep it relevant to your target audience.

Myth #13: Organic Results Are Improved by Paid Search

Organic and paid search are two different things. Paid search, also known as pay-per-click (PPC), is a form of advertising. You create ads and then pay to have them displayed in the search results.

On the other hand, organic search results are the regular listings that appear in the search results. Google doesn’t charge you to have your website appear in the organic results.

While it’s true that having a PPC campaign can indirectly improve your organic rankings, it’s not a guarantee. And, even if it does improve your organic rankings, it’s only temporary. Once you stop paying for the ads, your website will likely drop down in the search results.

Paid search can be a great way to generate traffic in the short term. But, if you want to improve your website’s SEO, you must focus on organic tactics.

Myth #14: It Is Not Necessary To Conduct Keyword Research

Keyword research is still an important part of SEO. By targeting the right keywords, you can ensure your website appears in the search results when people are looking for information about your business.

Not all keywords are created equal, though. It would help if you targeted keyword phrases relevant to your business and had a decent amount of monthly searches. In addition, you need to make sure you can realistically rank for the keywords you’re targeting.

If you don’t conduct keyword research, you could waste a lot of time and effort trying to rank for keywords that are too competitive or irrelevant to your business. So, take the time to do your research and target the right keywords. It’ll be worth it in the long run.

Myth #15: Your site will be penalized if you have duplicate content

Google doesn’t penalize websites for having duplicate content. However, if you have a lot of duplicate content on your website, it could hurt your chances of ranking high in the search results.

When Google sees multiple pages with the same or similar content, it has to decide which page is the most relevant and should be ranked higher. For example, suppose your website has a lot of duplicate content. In that case, Google may have difficulty determining which page is the most relevant, which could hurt your chances of ranking high.

To avoid this, ensure you don’t have too much duplicate content on your website. Use tools like Copyscape to check for duplicate content and make sure you’re only publishing original content.

Myth #16: I Don’t Need SEO Since I’m a Local Business.

Just because you’re a local business doesn’t mean you don’t need SEO. In fact, SEO can be even more important for local businesses.

With SEO, you can ensure your website appears in the search results when people search for businesses like yours in your area. For example, if you’re a restaurant in New York City, you want to make sure your website appears when people search for “restaurants in NYC.”

Local SEO is a bit different from regular SEO. In addition to optimizing your website for the right keywords, you also need to make sure your website is optimized for local searches. This means claiming your business listing on directories like Google My Business and Yelp and making sure your NAP (name, address, and phone number) is consistent across the web.

Local SEO can be a bit more complicated than regular SEO. But, it’s worth it if you want to make sure your local business appears in the search results.

Myth #17: I Don't Need To Worry About SEO Because I'm Already Ranking Number 1

Just because you’re currently ranking in the top spot doesn’t mean you can stop worrying about SEO. The truth is, your website’s position in the search results is never guaranteed.

Your competitors are constantly working to improve their own SEO and trying to outrank you. So, if you want to stay in the top spot, you need to work on your own SEO continuously. This means regularly publishing new and original content, building links, and making sure your website is optimized for the right keywords.

Don’t get complacent just because you’re currently ranking number 1. Keep working on your SEO, and you can maintain your top spot.

Myth #18: Get Top Rankings Quickly by Hiring an SEO Agency

There’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to get top rankings quickly, regardless of whom you hire. The truth is that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to improving your website’s SEO.

An agency can help you by providing guidance and advice on how to improve your SEO. However, no agency can guarantee that you’ll get top rankings quickly. If an agency promises to get you top rankings rapidly, be wary. It’s more likely that they’re using black hat SEO techniques that could penalize your website by Google.

The best way to improve your website’s SEO is to work on it over time continuously. Publish new content, build links, and make sure your website is optimized for the right keywords. With enough hard work and dedication, you can improve your website’s SEO and ranking.

Myth #19: Agency X Is a Google Partner, Which Means Their Clients Rank Higher in Search Results.

A Google Partner is a company certified by Google to provide certain services, like Google Ads. Being a Google Partner doesn’t guarantee that their clients will rank higher in the organic search results. Instead, it is a designation meant to show the company has expertise with Google Ads products.

Myth #20: Is Too Expensive and Not Worth the Investment

Many business owners believe SEO is too expensive and not worth the investment. However, this isn’t the case. SEO can be a very cost-effective way to generate more traffic and leads for your business. There are many free or low-cost ways to improve your website’s SEO if you want to do it yourself. For example, you can publish new and original content, build links, and make sure your website is optimized for the right keywords. You can also sign up for a free or low-cost SEO course to learn more about how to improve your website’s SEO. A successful SEO strategy takes a good amount of time, so hiring a professional might be worth the investment. A professional can help you save time by doing the work for you, and they can also provide guidance and advice on how to improve your website’s SEO.

SEO is an important part of any digital marketing strategy. It’s a long-term strategy that takes a lot of hard work and dedication to see results. However, it can be a very effective way to generate more traffic and leads for your business.

Don’t believe the myths about SEO. These SEO myths can lead you to make decisions that could harm your website’s ranking in the search results. If you want to improve your website’s SEO, focus on creating high-quality content, building links, and making sure your website is optimized for the right keywords. With enough hard work and dedication, you can see actual results. If you would like to receive a Free SEO Audit, contact us today.


Christopher Smashe

Chris Smashe founded Excel On the Web in 2004 after an enlistment in the Marine Corps. Chris has a knack for breaking down problems into manageable pieces and putting them back together, a skill he honed during his time in the military. In his spare time, you can find him with his grand-kids or on the water kite-boarding with friends.