As annoying as they can be when somebody drops one on you, clichés do stem from a fundamental truth that may or may not hold good over time.
Similar to any other business, the SEO industry is littered with clichés that are not fully relevant. Anybody who is familiar with SEO content knows that the best practices in generating SEO friendly content is a landscape that is forever shifting. What was good a few years ago can be outdated after an algorithm update, or worse, get you penalized.
Certain buzz words can remain suspended in the industry without serving much of a purpose except inducing a cringe every time it’s uttered.
So, here is a list of five SEO clichés that won’t go away anytime soon.
1. Content is King
This is probably the oldest cliché in SEO content writing that emphasises the need for relevant and compelling content. Search engines are constantly scouring for inputs that show how much users like a website or a post and make proportional adjustments to how it ranks. It is not only about good content writing, if your content is inferior to your competitor, this cliché applies to you. Because when you take it apart to the bare essentials, all that the search algorithms are doing is filtering out the better websites that users find appealing.
Over the years, this cliché has also evolved with changing technology and what users have come to expect. While having great SEO optimized content about your product or service would have sufficed in the past, long tail informative content now carry more weight and are being chased by savvy SEOs.
An ongoing SEO and content strategy involving educating visitors who visit your site on products and services along with answering their queries is the new way to attract prospective customers.
2. Concentrate on Link Building
While search engines factors in multiple variables, links are still a big deal. Although the term ‘link building’ has been dropped due to the negative rap it garnered by black hat practitioners, it has largely been replaced with ‘link earning’.
There is a good reason for it, earning links takes effort. Search engines now have an appetite for better links, not more; therefore it is quality over quantity. Instead of getting caught up in a numbers game, do a little background check on the domain and the relevance to your site when you are approached about a link exchange.
3. Optimal Keyword Density
Nobody really knows exactly how many keywords you should include in to your content before it gets overly stuffed. What’s more, this is not the right question to ask.
SEO writing is no longer about creating forced content to fit around keywords, neither the algorithms, not the people who consume your content like a keyword stuffed piece. What you ideally need to focus on is writing informative pieces that the readers will enjoy or find useful while you blend the key words or key phrases naturally in the content. Forgo calculating density to figure out the best percentage and focus on the content.
3. Matt Cutts Once Said
Matt Cutts who was formerly the head of Webspam at Google is widely quoted and followed by all SEOs. As an SEO guru, his advice was almost gospel for SEO practitioners. However unless there’s clear evidence to back up your hypothesis and suggestions, quoting even the king of SEO Will not work. And since there have been numerous changes in SEO, even a quote that was true in 2009 may not apply in 2019 or beyond.
4. It takes Time
If you make a change to your SEO strategy today, you can be almost certain you will not see any changes tomorrow or the next week or even the next month. You could consider yourself lucky if you see an improved search engine results or link-building over the next year. The changes are slow and getting a link today does not mean its full value is realized anytime soon. It is important to understand that SEO is not a one-time task, having your site optimized for targeted key phrases once and waiting will not help you shoot to #1 even in the next 10 years. If things begin to happen, it will be because of SEO built up as an on-going effort over time along with your reputation and authority. Eventually if trusted sources keep coming back to your content, the search engines will notice and rank you higher. In the off-chance you have an idea that gains viral traction, your strategies would get a good boost.
The reality of SEO is that it is dynamic.
As the experts would agree with it, there are a number of practices that survive to this day that are no longer relevant. Since there is no written instructions on how to best optimize the search engines, it’s forever an iterative process of hypothesising and testing.
It takes the knowledge and expertise of an expert in SEO copywriting to come up with content that can stay relevant for a long time.