General SEO

Learn the Common On-Page Myths Around SEO

by Tom Buckland Updated On May 16, 2019

There are a lot of common on-page myths when it comes to understanding search engine optimization (SEO)

As a result, SEO is a difficult concept to grasp.

When you think you have search engine optimization mastered, something changes that throws you off.

There is only one constant in SEO, and that is the fact that it is changing all the time.

However, there are many popular misconceptions around SEO tactics that can lead you down the wrong path when looking to optimize your website and blogs.

What is Search Engine Optimization?

Every major search engine found in the vast world of the internet has a “primary results” page when you search for something. Google, Yahoo and Bing all rank internet content based on what the search engine considers most relevant to the searcher. How they determine what is relevant is through the words you use when you search for something.

Search Engine Optimization is when you create content such as:

  • Videos of any kind
  • Blogs on any topic
  • Websites for personal or business reasons
  • Local Listings of any kind
  • Etc.

Then you optimize it to be ranked in search engines. There are a variety of optimization options that you can use to achieve your goal of being among the top-ranked articles. The top-ranked articles are the ones found on the first page of search results when you look for something in a search engine like Google.

A Google ranking looks like this:

The websites you see come up on the first page were fully search engine optimized around the words I searched for which was Technical SEO. Google ranked them on the first page because they were search engine optimized using a whole slew of tactics that were strategically implemented to help them rank in the top 10.


One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to SEO is that they go about it blindly. Listening to instructions from those who don’t have the authority or by reading snippets of information and thinking they have it all worked out will do more harm than good.

When it comes to SEO techniques and the top technical tools for optimizing your online content, you can check out my blog on Technical SEO here and contact me for further information on how to use these tools.

However, in this post, I am going to uncover eight of the most common on-page myths and misconceptions that can confuse you when it comes time for you to search engine optimize your online content.

Myths Around SEO

Myth # 1 – Meta Tags

In the past, meta tags were important during the SEO process. You would add keywords to your content that you wanted your site to rank for in search engines. You hoped that when searchers executed those words, your site would pop up in the query. However, most search engines have dropped this as a ranking tool. Being ridiculously spammed is the main reason that search engines dropped meta tags.

However, it is noteworthy to know that meta tags are still useful when it comes to telling people and search engines what your content is about when they are searching for information. Therefore, don’t exclude them all together. Recognize that these meta tags will not be used as a ranking factor when it comes to search engine results.

Myth # 2 – You only need an optimized website

You worked hard on your project and did all the research you needed to formulate a well thought out SEO solution to make sure your website is fully optimized. Having a well-designed SEO plan implemented on your website should be enough right? Wrong.

There are foundational aspects that you need to consider when developing an SEO solution. You need to think of things like whether or not your website is mobile friendly or is developed with robust content. Furthermore, there is the need for a unique meta description per page which we can help you formulate here.

The list goes on when it comes to developing a full SEO solution that will help your website rank in all the popular search engines. If you want to out-rank your competitors, you can’t believe that you simply need to optimize your website and that will be enough.

Myth # 3 – Stuffing content with Keywords

You created masterful content for your website and stuffed it full of keywords and terms that you believe searchers will type into search engines. Through this effort, you believe that your website will rank highly among the competitors simply because you have all the right keywords at a high density crammed in there. Stuffing content with keywords is one of the most common on-page myths.

Though keyword density and the right keywords and terms are important, you can’t fill your content full of keywords and expect a high search engine ranking. What you need to do is develop well thought out keywords and terms then use them strategically throughout your content. Having a keyword density of five percent is much more important for your website SEO than is a 20% ranking.

Overfilling your content with keywords and terms can lead your website to be ranked lower due to it coming across as spam rather than a relevant site.

Myth # 4 – Paid search will affect your organic results

No matter how much money you put into paid advertising or pay-per-click, you won’t be able to improve your organic SEO results. People think that the more money they put into this type of SEO strategy, the more results they will gain.

However, search engines have a separation between paid advertising and organic results. Therefore, no matter how much money you invest in paid advertising, it won’t do you any good. The bolstered notion of pay-per-click is a myth when it comes to your organic SEO results.

Myth # 5 – The more back linking you do, the better

One of the top misconceptions when it comes to SEO is back linking. Many believe that more is better when it comes to back linking. Therefore, they develop content that is loaded with back links throughout and assume that this will impact their ranking.

Loaded back linking couldn’t be further from the truth when it comes to your SEO solution. The reality is that the more quality back links you use, the better. Ultimately, it will always come down to quality and strategy rather than quantity. When you choose to add back links to your content, make sure they are relevant links that add value to your content and not just added back links for the sake of trying to improve your organic search results.

Additionally, you want to make sure you have a diverse back link profile. Meaning that you have a multitude of referring domains. Use high-quality links that are strategically used throughout your content sparingly rather than dozens of low-quality links.

Myth # 6 – Social Signals aren’t a determining rank factor


Many times, you neglect your social media accounts because you believe that they will not affect your websites overall ranking. You have asked yourself if it is worth the time you spend on social media networks because you want to know if your links from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram really affect your overall ranking?

In short, yes. Social media is something that can be measured and tracked with absolute precision. Having the ability to track these things with accuracy makes them more important than you might think. There is a correlation between your social media accounts and search engines. Google does use data from various social sites to help determine how useful your site may be. Additionally, Google uses this data as a determining factor of where to rank it.

Using social signals as a way to help rank your website when it comes to SEO can be time-consuming. However, with perseverance and determination coupled with a well thought out plan, your social accounts can be just as important when determining your ranking as anything else.

Myth # 7 – Content Long vs. Short Form

Of the common on-page myths, content is one of the most misunderstood. You may think the only way that you can rank highly in search engines is by posting only long-form content on your website. The fact of the matter is that though the length can contribute to your SEO ranking, it isn’t the only factor.

You want to determine who your target audience is and what they may be searching for when going to search engines. You can use Google Trends to help you measure popularity. What you want is to take this knowledge and create high-quality and deep content that is based on what you found in Google trends.

Organize your audience-driven content and scale it accordingly. What you need for this is a content strategy that is tangible. Have an iterative plan that will allow you to define the process and timeline of your content. When executed properly, content that is engaging and consistent is more important than whether or not it is long or short form.

Myth 8 – Domains

Most people who purchase domain names are in a hurry to get the most common domains they can find so that they will be ranked higher in search engines. You believe that you cannot have a high search ranking if your domain is a .guru or a .biz over a .com domain. In truth, this isn’t the only way to get a top ranking.

In the spirit of truths, yes approximately 98% of search engine results will pull a domain that is a .com. However, it is important for you to know that the keywords used in those domains also greatly affect their search engine ranking as well.

What you want most is to make sure your domain is consumable. You want a professional domain that will be remembered. Try to avoid things like numbers or unusual spellings when you are crafting your domain name. Also, make sure the domain name you choose is relevant to your organization. Make sure your domain creation is clear and concise to what you want it for when it comes to your business.

Now what?

We have uncovered a lot of the most common on-page myths when it comes to SEO. It can be a lot to take in and process, especially if you already developed your website around what you thought you knew about search engine optimization. I apologize if I just created more work for you by debunking what you have already done by showing you these misconceptions.

However, you can use this knowledge to help you further improve your website and content in order to get yourself noticed.

There are many aspects to consider when you are developing your content for search engine optimization. In the ever-changing world of SEO, you want to be sure that you avoid falling prey to some of the most common on-page myths and misconceptions when it comes to generating your ranking in the worlds most popular search engines.

One for-sure-thing you need to keep in mind when working with SEO and developing online content is that it will change on you. To help you prepare for changes, take a look at my blog on how SEO will change in the next three years here. Through this knowledge and avoiding the misconceptions that come with SEO techniques, you will be well on your way to a fully optimized website.

Get in touch with us to learn more about common on-page myths around SEO and website visibility. You can also fill out the form below to request a quote on our services and how we can help.



About Tom

Hi, I'm Tom, Founder & Director of HQ SEO. I live and breathe SEO. I hope you enjoy my findings. Interested in SEO?
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