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4 Harmful SEO Misconceptions

SEO myths are hard to dispel. Four of them, in particular, are bad enough to cause damage to your brand and limit its revenue potential. Read this post and learn the most harmful SEO misconceptions.

Misconception 1: SEO is a one-time thing 

To get top rankings all you need to do is optimize the content of your website for search engines — once. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as that. In truth, SEO is not a sprint but a marathon. There are several reasons for this:

  • First, search engines like Google love strong and up-to-date content. They want to give users the best possible search results. The Google algorithm does not like to see outdated content either. So, you should continuously check, change and add to your content. But above all, keep it up to date. This also includes technical improvements and new internal links.
  • To get the best rankings, you should keep your website current with the latest technological advances. This means complying with the latest web standards, like the HTTPS protocol. And don’t forget, ranking factors also include good usability levels on all devices and fast loading times.
  • Once you get a good ranking position, you won’t necessarily keep that position forever. Google now adjusts its rankings in real time. This means you should be monitoring and optimizing your content and keywords regularly. And don’t forget: The competition never sleeps.

Misconception 2:  SEO is easy

Anyone can do SEO! Just jot down a few keywords, buy some backlinks, and you’re done. In reality, search engine optimization means balancing more than 200 different ranking factors.

  • Link farming and keyword stuffing used to be enough to get you a high ranking. Nowadays, Google expects unique and high-quality content. And giving Google want they want means knowing what users want. This comes down to creating quality and adding real value. And that’s as individual as your target group. Content planning and keyword research and creation are no less challenging.
  • Optimized content alone is not enough, however. Technical factors matter just as much, as explained above. Your online presence comes into play as well. That’s why it’s important to generate signals through social media channels and high-quality backlinks from other pages. But today, SEO also means ensuring Google sees you as an online authority in your field. This involves a lot of work, especially for new websites that do not yet enjoy Google’s trust.
  • SEO calls for significant expertise. For instance, you need to know how to use meta tags correctly for SERPs or how to avoid duplicate contentkeyword cannibalization and broken links. Expertise is an absolute must if you want sustainable results.

Misconception 3: SEO is free of charge

Simply go online and pick up some search engine optimization tip and tricks for free. And leave the rest to whichever member of your team happens to have a spare moment. This is not how it works. Getting good keyword search rankings on Google doesn’t takes financial investment.

  • SEO means continually keeping up with the latest developments and trends on Google and throughout the internet plus adapting your own website accordingly. And this takes time and effort.
  • The same applies to content. Content created in haste is prone to errors. This won’t get you far with Google. It takes time and effort to build high-quality content.
  • SEO can seldom be left to one single person. Professional SEO measures call for a strategic approach, good writing skills, technical expertise and analytical capabilities. In other words, SEO comes down to capacities. What you can’t cover in-house will have to be outsourced. And that will cost money.
  • SEO can be quite a costly investment, especially when you’re starting out. Rather than allocating budget to keywords and activities that won’t achieve much ROI, invest in dedicated SEO consulting services.

Tip: For targeted optimization, the ideal starting place is an SEO solution. Track your success, optimize your website and write content for your target audience.

Whether you need to overhaul your strategy, improve traffic and conversions, launch a new site, or upskill your team, we’re here for you.

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Misconception 4: SEO brings fast results

Optimize today and appear in Google’s search results tomorrow. As wonderful as this might sound, it rarely happens. For your website to get good rankings, you’ll need to have plenty of patience.

  • Establishing yourself as an online authority in your field and building an organic backlink profile from external websites takes a lot of work. So always bear in mind: SEO is a long-term undertaking.
  • Generally speaking, you will not see the fruits of your labor on optimization immediately. Plus, major Google updates will often result in huge indexing shifts. Whatever the case, you should check your rankings regularly and keep up to speed with Google’s activities.
  • If you are looking for a quick way to increase your SERP visibility, Google’s paid ads service AdWords is the way to go. Achieving better organic rankings over the long term, however, takes time.

Key takeaways

Once you’ve grasped that SEO is not something you can do on the side, you’re already winning. In fact, SEO is a discipline that requires expertise, takes time and demands effort. Ultimately, it has to be budgeted for. For maximum success in the rankings, you need a proper strategy and website that meets all the technical requirements and contains quality content that truly helps your target audience.

Bonus tips: Don’t forget the importance of off-page optimization. Be active online. Have fun with keywords and other SEO factors. And remember, you’re optimizing for human beings, not for search engines.

Boris Wartenberg

Boris Wartenberg

Boris Wartenberg is an SEO specialist at Searchmetrics responsible for technical and content-related search engine optimization. He has worked in online marketing since 2006 after completing his studies in marketing with a focus on sports and sponsorship. Having worked in content marketing and search engine optimization both agency and client side, Boris has overseen performance marketing for B2B and B2C clients, held several positions as an in-house SEO as well as having worked with well-known international clients such as Mercedes-Benz and Roche Pharma. He has evolved from a generalist into a specialist and is very passionate about all things SEO.

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