SEO ‘Secrets’ Versus Reality

If you have been looking for ways to improve your rankings on search engines like Google, then you would definitely have come across many people offering to show you their “secret” to success.

The reality is that Google and other search engines are much more forthcoming with information about how they rank a site in the search results.

Having worked in the SEO industry for a number of years myself I can say that without a doubt there are two types of SEO companies and ‘experts’ out there:

SEO Advice Based on Knowledge and Experience

This is, of course, the type of company or person you want working on your SEO campaign.

They will know how to do the basics and they also won’t offer you any magic bullets when it comes to ranking on search engines.

In fact, working with these fact based organisations may even turn you off the idea of SEO because they understand that there are no quick fixes. Search engine optimisation is all about doing the little things right, and doing them consistently.

SEO Advice Based on “Guru” Status

Let me ask you this question: would you go and join a cult on the word of a self confessed guru?

While some of you may have answered yes (and that’s fine too of course) most of you wouldn’t dare.

So why do so many businesses get caught up with the almost religious fervor surrounding keyword rankings? I guess we all want something that sounds amazing to be true, because the truth is… well… boring, and even tedious!

Personally, I hate the word ‘guru’ and it should be a warning sign when it comes to choosing people to do your SEO.

The “Not So Secret Secrets of SEO Success”:

Instead of trying to debunk every single hidden secret that these SEO gurus have out there, I thought it would be better to just cover the basics – what are the types of core tasks you need to be doing to help your search engine rankings?

Optimise your website – not everyone has done this, and it needs to be checked regularly. Simple things like meta titles and descriptions can go a long way to improving the visibility of your website.

Content – this is my personal area of expertise (at least in terms of writing) and it has become more and more important as Google puts pressure on website owners to have quality content on their site.

This doesn’t always mean blog posts, but should start with the basics such as the text on your landing pages, home page etc.

Social Media – this is a whole other topic entirely, but I am confident enough to include it in the “MUST DO” list of good SEO. It gets your content out there which is a start (as long as the content is good!)

I want to leave you all with those three core SEO tasks to begin with and either examine more, start doing them or engage someone to do them for you.

There are, of course, many other things (such as inbound links) that will help your search engine rankings but I am a firm believer in doing the simple things correctly before moving on to more complicated strategies.

This is not just something for beginners, as I am currently doing some very broad SEO reviews on my own blogs and websites and I follow these same techniques.

Last tip: break up your SEO tasks so that they are easier to manage and if you don’t know something then ask! Just make sure nobody is trying to sell you the next “SEO Secret”!