3 SEO myths that hurt your sales & marketing results

B2BSEOAre you interested in hearing 3 SEO myths that I see hurting sales and marketing results?

Over the years I’ll admit to having had every one of these questions. It’s true. Hope that does not let you down! The good news is I learned and do not make these mistakes any more. It is not uncommon to still hear the questions asked so here goes.

Small business leaders cannot afford to make many errors. Bandwidth is narrow, tasks are looming and the pressures of finding sales results bear down. Search plays such an important role in lead generation that we much understand at least a few key elements.

While not exactly a “tell all”…I hope this offers a few insights that will help you avoid my wayward path!

Good SEO does yield profit.  Here are three ideas to help.

#1 Are “more links” better than “more content” to drive search engines?

This question often comes along with the question, “Which should I invest in, link building or content generation?” Links are an important part of your website’s authority (even with the changing link landscape). However, if you have budget to invest in your website, I would say, “Write content. If you can't around to it, hire someone to for you.”        

We like the model of finding writers from trade publications with deep industry expertise that have time to freelance. Get them set up and then, they write. You edit and direct. Publish in your name. Go.    

Too often, when businesses hire someone to do link building, they focus on the quantity of links rather than their quality–but linking is not a numbers game anymore (far from it, actually). You should focus on having relevant and diverse sources that link to relevant content pages.

When you invest in content, that content can be used for webpages, blog posts, lead generation offers, and guest posts on other sites­–all content types that will bring more links with them over time. Links will be the result of valuable content.

If you want to juice sales, get expertise on paper. Well, on pixels on pages.

#2 Is having a secure (HTTPS encrypted) site important for SEO?

Ever wonder why some website URLs start with “HTTP” and others start with “HTTPS”? The former is your standard “HyperText Transfer Protocol,” which facilitates communication over computer networks. The latter, “HTTP Secure,” provides the same functionality, only it has the benefit of an added layer of security called SSL/TLS.

Last year, Google announced that it had started using HTTPS as a signal in their ranking algorithms, which means if your website still relies on standard HTTP, your rankings could suffer as a result.

For now, however, HTTPS remains a “lightweight” signal, affecting less than 1% of global queries (according to Google). So while it’s clear that Google wants everyone to move over to the more secure HTTPS protocol, don’t freak out if you haven’t done it yet. There are more important factors that Google is looking at, such as the presence of high-quality content.

However: Leave it on or add it to your punch list to address after content is rolling!

#3 My site ranking is not so great. Does that mean my SEO efforts failed?

While there’s a strong correlation between search results placement and click through rates, ranking is not the supreme end goal that it used to be.

Studies of click through rates and user behavior have shown that searchers favor the top search results–particularly the top-three listings. However, it’s also been shown that on subsequent pages, being listed toward the top of the page shows similar click behavior. And with search results now being appended with rich text/snippets, results that appear below the top-three search results are getting much higher click through rates.

Even before all of that was applied, rankings did not guarantee success. Theoretically, you could rank quite well for a term, get tons of traffic, and not make a dime from it. Is that what you really want? I don’t think so.

We tell our B2B clients to focus on small but very likely to buy segments. One client has maybe 800 buyers in the nation of the product and service they sell. Do we need BIG traffic? No. We need GOOD traffic.

I’d suggest focus on conversion rates as much as traffic and high SEO ranking. We do not live in a “funnel” marketing environment. Avoid the tendency to think like a funnel!

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