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December 21, 2015

7 Common Lies About SEO

SEO Targeting
Photo Credit: Augur Marketing via flickr

There are seven common untruths often pedaled by so-called SEO gurus who are more interested in making money off you than in truly helping your business excel.

They are:

1. Content is King

Sure your need to have good content but content is not king. Popularity is king. If your site has the most users in it’s niche regardless of the brilliance of your articles or content your site is going to rank No. 1. Actually if you want to find the most interesting articles on a topic go the pages 5-10 of Google search.

Often the blog posts buried in the back of Google search have the most unique and interesting and often local perspectives.

I offer Mashable and The Huffington Post as examples. The goals of both of these sites is to pump out masses of content based on trends. Most of the articles are regurgitated content from various sources. There is nothing much original there. Yet, their websites get ranked like crazy for almost any keywords they want purely based on the popularity of their sites.

What is the answer? Of course, writing good content is important but make sure it is relevant to your niche and do not forget to promote the content as well. Content is not king, popularity is king.

2. Just Follow Google’s Terms and Conditions and Everything Will Work Out Just Fine.

Google does not want you to rank your website. They want you to use Google Adwords and pay them a fortune in pay per click charges. Google does not like SEO because people who get good at SEO do not need AdWords and Google makes ALL of it’s money from AdWords. Matt Cutt’s blog is the last place to look for advice on SEO.

3. Black Hat Techniques Do Not Work

Since Google does not want you to use SEO, essentially there are no white hat SEO techniques. Basically, all SEO techniques are gray hat at the least. If you are trying to game Google to get your listings above others when you employ SEO techniques then you are using black/gray hat techniques.

I had a friend who was an undercover narcotics detective for years. He told me once: “Crime does pay.” He saw people involved in criminal activity all the time who were making incredible amounts of money. However, the gains were often short-term since most ended up dead or in jail.

Black hat techniques can and do work, however, Google has some good cops on the beat. Google has the most money and hires the smartest people in the world. Chances are you will not beat Google with some aggressive black hat technique. It is probably best to stay as close to grey hat as possible and not get too “greedy” and use aggressive black hat techniques. If you do, you had better know what you are doing.

4. Using Your Keywords in Your Domain Name Does Not Work

I love Neil Patel’s blog. I think his blog is one of the most comprehensive and informative blogs on SEO. However, I saw that he said that using keywords in your domain to get ranked for your keywords does not work anymore. Wrong. It works and it works extremely well. I own a site, Type in Classified Submissions into any search engine and you will see it as No. 1 for these keywords. I also own a site “” Type in Best Plumber Fort Lauderdale and I am on the first page of Google with Powerhouses such as Angie’s List, Yellow Pages and Google My Business Pages. There are countless other examples.

If you want to rank specifically for certain keywords, using those keywords in your domain is a huge factor. Of course, you could choose to promote your brand instead which often is the best choice. But sometimes you just want to rank for specific keywords and if that is your main goal using those keywords in your domain is a great technique that works very well.

5. You Will Get Penalized if You Buy Links

It is OK to buy advertising but not links? How could Google tell the difference between if somebody is advertising on a site or if they bought a link? What is the difference anyway? If the link you bought is getting you real traffic there is absolutely no problem. My advice, just meet people in back alleys and pay for your links in cash. Then the Google police will not be able to follow the money trail. As long as the sites you are buying links are quality sites I cannot see any problems in buying links.

6. I Know Google’s “Algorithims”

Anybody who says I am an “algorithim expert” or even talks too much about algorithims is, at best, delusional. Do you work at Google? Do you have inside information on exactly what works and what does not work? We already know that Matt Cutts is here to benefit Google, so anybody parroting him is not to be trusted. Nobody knows the Google algorithims and Google is not going to tell anybody. Why? Because it does not want you to game the system. It wants you to pay for AdWords.

The type of SEO I like is observational. I do not listen to what anybody says too seriously. I test and I see what works. If you want to learn SEO, type some popular keywords into Google and see what sites come up first and try to figure out why. Look at what Google does, not at what it says. There are no algorithim experts.

7. I Will Get You Ranked On The First Page of Google

Actually this is the least of all lies. Get me on the first page of Google for what? “Craigslist Alternative Pierre South Dakota, Cars, RVs, Jon Boats and Tractors?” I can guarantee that I can rank you for that term. Sure I do not control the “algorithims” at Google but common sense tells me I will have zero competition for these keywords. There are only 10,000 people in beautiful Pierre South Dakota and the chances of somebody using that exact title are almost non-existent. So actually I consider saying that “I will get you on the first page of Google” to be a white lie.

To prove my point, I have actually made a video entitled “ Craigslist Alternative Pierre South Dakota, Cars, RVs, Jon Boats and Tractors” and you can search those exact terms in Google and my video is No. 1 on Google. Even if you just type in “Craigslist Alternative Pierre South Dakota” I am No. 2 right after Craigslist’s South Dakota actual page. The ranking was almost immediate. Well, do not ask me to do the same for “Personal Injury Attorney New York.” It might take a bit more work.

My approach to SEO is to see what is actually working. Take what anybody says about SEO, including me, with a grain of salt. Part of what makes SEO so challenging and fun is that nobody really knows the rules.

Think about it, why do you need a guru anyway? You need a guru when you do not have any inside information. Spiritual gurus are supposed to have special information about the after life that us regular people have no access to. That is why we tend to “revere” them. I encourage to be your own guru and see what works (both spiritually and with SEO.) I love hearing about people’s experiences rather than theory. Please share your SEO experiences here in the comments area.


Matthew Meyer is the webmaster for The Free Ad Forum Free Classifieds and SEO and Marketing Blog as well as classified ad submission service. If you visit his website he is giving away free classified ad submission software that he programmed himself as well as the free re-brandable ebook “101 Ways to Get Backlinks to Your Website.”