In a recent “Webmaster Help” video, Google’s Matt Cutts talks about some of the SEO myths that are frequently seen circulating on the Internet. Of course, given the fact that the answers come from Google’s head of WebSpam team, you can take the information with a grain of salt. Nevertheless, you can watch the video and formulate your own opinion.
Matt responds to this question:
What are some of the biggest SEO Myths you see still being repeated (either at conferences, or in blogs, etc.)?
And based on his answer, there are quite a few “myths” out there that he’d like to clarify. Matt’s Answer: “One of the biggest, that we always hear is if you buy ads, you’ll rank higher on Google, and then there’s an opposing conspiracy theory, which is, if you don’t buy ads, you’ll rank better on Google, and we sort of feel like we should get those two conspiracy camps together, and let them fight it all out, and then whoever emerges from one room, we can just debunk that one conspiracy theory. There’s a related conspiracy theory or myth, which is that Google makes its changes to try to drive people to buy ads, and having worked in the search quality group, and working at Google for over thirteen years, I can say, here’s the mental model you need to understand why Google does what it does in the search results. We want to return really good search results to users so that they’re happy, so that they’ll keep coming back. That’s basically it. Happy users are loyal users, and so if we give them a good experience on one search, they’ll think about using us the next time they have an information need, and then along the way, if somebody clicks on ads, that’s great, but we’re not gonna make an algorithmic change to try to drive people to buy ads. If you buy ads, it’s not going to algorithmically help your ranking in any way, and likewise it’s not going to hurt your ranking if you buy ads.”
Here’s another “myth” that Matt Cutts talks about:
“I would say, just in general, thinking about the various black hat forums and webmaster discussion boards, never be afraid to think for yourself. It’s often the case that I’ll see people get into kind of a ‘group think,’ and they decide, ‘Ah ha! Now we know that submitting our articles to these article directories is going to be the best way to rank number one.’ And then six months later, they’ll be like, ‘OK, guest blogging! This is totally it. If you’re guest blogging, you’re gonna go up to number one,’ and a few months before that, ‘Oh, link wheels. You gotta have link wheels if you’re gonna rank number one,’ and it’s almost like fad.”
What Matt is NOT saying is that some of the dubious techniques that he’s talking about now have worked in the past until Google started to make algorithm changes about two years ago to prevent them from working in the future.
“The idea that you’re going to be able to buy some software package, and solve every single problem you’ve ever had is probably a little bit of a bad idea,” Matt Cutts.
“It’s kind of interesting how a lot of people just assume Google’s thinking about nothing but the money as far as our search quality, and truthfully, we’re just thinking about how do we make our search results better,” he adds.
If you are curious about Google’s earnings report, you will notice that Google experienced a 21% revenue increase on the company’s own sites (Google.com, YouTube.com, etc.) year-over-year. Paid advertising (Paid Clicks) were up 26% during the same period. Google’s total revenue for the quarter was up 19% year-over-year, which based on the market reaction after their earnings call, it looks like it wasn’t enough to meet investors’ expectations.
If you have any questions about your current SEO Marketing Strategy or if you simply want to start adding SEO for the first time as a new marketing channel for your company, our SEO Team at MGR Consulting Group will be glad to answer any questions that you may have. Feel free to contact us anytime.
Of course, if you have any input about Google’s comments, feel free to share them below. Until next time, this is Manuel Gil del Real (MGR).