Ten common SEO copywriting myths

SEO copywriting myths - question mark

During every conference, someone comes up to me and says, “I’ve heard that you can…” – and proceeds to tell me about a spammy technique that they “just learned” or a brilliant idea that their IT department “just thought of.”

There are a lot of SEO copywriting myths out there. It’s scary, actually.

During SMX West, Jill Whalen discussed some common SEO copywriting myths – which was a brilliant idea. I’ve included some of Jill’s myths and added my own. Feel free to add your own in the comments section!

  • I should put all my keywords on my home page. Nope, this won’t help at all. Instead, use your overarching keyphrases on your home page- and use more specific keyphrases on your subcategory and product-level pages. Besides, nothing looks sadder than a keyphrase-stuffed home page.
  • My site is only relevant for five keyphrases. Not true! Even the smallest sites can be relevant for a number of keyphrases. Keyphrase research will shine the light on your true keyphrase potential.
  • Keyphrase-stuffing is A-OK. This was never OK and never will be. First, the search engines think it’s spam. Second, stuffing your copy will completely decimate your tone, feel and conversion flow. It’s just not worth it.
  • Invisible text works great! It may…for awhile…until you get caught. Invisible text is another big search-engine no-no.
  • Anyone can be a SEO copywriter. True, anyone can be a SEO copywriter. But it’s more important to work with good SEO copywriters. Consider training your in-house writers on SEO copywriting best practices – and only hire folks who can demonstrate relevant experience.
  • It’s all about the search engines. Yes, search engine positioning is important. What is also important is creating compelling, high-value text that resonates with your target market. Remember, the search engines don’t pay your bills. Your customers do
  • I can stuff my Title, right? Wrong. Title-stuffing is far from SEO best practices. Besides, why not create a compelling, “clickable” Title that gets your prospect’s attention?
  • Prospects don’t want to read a lot of copy. Prospects will read a lot of copy – if it’s relevant and if it’s presented well. A solid copy block of 1,000 words will freak out the average reader. However, that same 1,000 words in an easy-to-read format could gain good readership. Test different formats and see what works for your readers.
  • The first conversion opportunity is when a customer clicks-through to my site. Actually, your first conversion opportunity is the search engine results page. A good Title and description will encourage SERP click-throughs -so use techniques like the Google Snippet Trick to gain better conversions.
  • I have to write exactly 250 words for good search positioning. Writing 250 words has always been a rule of thumb. Sometimes, writing more copy is just fine. Sometimes, you can’t write 250 words about a product or service no matter how hard you try. Copy length depends on the overall SEO content stategy, what you’re writing about and a host of other factors. Don’t tie yourself down to a specific word count.
2 replies
  1. Scott Salwolke says:

    Heather this complements Jill’s article very well. It seems as if the myths are taken as truth, while the things that are really important, the words, are overlooked. Not just the keywords chosen, but how they are integrated into copy that connects with readers.


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