After talking with clients about ways to optimize their websites and swapping stories with other SEO consultants, I’ve noticed a few misconceptions about search engine optimization (SEO), regardless of industry or business size.

  1. SEO is just for large businesses – If you have a website, it can be optimized, and if you want to increase sales, build brand awareness, etc., you need to drive traffic to your site. So why not take advantage of organic search? Whether your site has 5 pages or 500, each page has an opportunity to rank when someone searches for relevant keywords. Take advantage of that opportunity!
  2. SEO is outside of our team’s skills – Find a marketing partner who can help you to optimize your site. Your web team may not be up-to-date on the latest SEO best practices, but with a little direction, they can probably make the necessary site updates.
  3. SEO comes at the expense of design and content – When done right, optimizing your site should improve user experience. If it’s well designed, easy to navigate, and has compelling content, viewers will remain on your site longer and visit more pages while they’re there. The more people engage with your site, the better it will look to search engines, so make your site user-friendly and full of good content.
  4. SEO is all about using keywords as much as possible – Many people think that the key to SEO is selecting a few keywords and over-using them in the content. That’s not true – search engines see that as keyword stuffing, and it won’t help your page to rank higher. While identifying a few keywords for which you want to optimize key pages of your website is important, you need to work them into the content and page elements naturally. Overusing them will be a turnoff to site visitors, including search engines.
  5. SEO is an event – Some people look at SEO as an event rather than a process. There’s no magic switch, that once flipped, will cause your site to rank highly. Deciding to “do SEO” and selecting keywords won’t automatically improve your rank. You’ll need a strategy, and as you see results, you’ll need to make adjustments to optimize your site. SEO is an on-going process.

Maybe you’ve shared some of these SEO misconceptions. If so, I hope you’re at least intrigued to learn more about how SEO could help your brand. If you’d like more SEO tips from a brand perspective, sign up for Build Your Brand newsletter and follow me on Twitter (@lindseygravity)!