Myths About Optimisation of Search Positions on the Internet

Views from a Search Engine Marketing Company in the UK

As a search engine marketing company in the UK, we come across many and various ideas about optimisation of search positions on the internet.

Many of these ideas have not been correct for some time, if ever. Whilst others have a bit more substance, we believe some common ones to be misleading in practice. Some unfortunately are still promoted by other search engine marketing companies in the UK and also internationally.

Your prime aim should always be to increase targeted traffic to your website. Web page optimisation and achieving better search engine placement for a given keyword are only steps towards this and not an end in themselves.

Here are just a few of the many myths that still circulate about optimisation of search positions on the internet…….


  • All you have to do is put your keywords in the meta tags.

    Unfortunately not true – many search engines don’t even check the keyword meta tags for example. (A meta tag is an internal ‘label’ in the coding and not seen by the normal visitor. Meta tags can be worthwhile if used properly. NCS can advise on this as an introductory part of our service. )
    Contact us if you need help with meta tags on your site.
  • There are lots of easy tricks you can do like repeating your keywords many times and putting extra keywords in the same colour font as the page background so visitors can’t see them.

    Search engine algorithms for assessing and ranking your site are being constantly refined to produce meaningful results for any search and to combat those using ‘tricks’ to artificially increase their web site positioning rank. (This is called search engine spamming).

    A trick used successfully today to achieve better search engine placement can get you banned (possibly permanently) tomorrow. Trying to use an ‘old trick’ like the font one above will probably get you banned even sooner. No reputable search engine marketing company in the UK or elsewhere should use or need these tricks to achieve its results.
  • You need to (use web site submission companies and) re-register your site with search engines frequently to ensure good profile.

    It is unnecessary, costly, and sometimes even counter productive, to re-register pages with engines regularly, e.g. monthly. Some web site submission companies still promote this service for obvious commercial reasons. Our advice is in general NOT to do this, particularly since often this is undertaken using automatic search engine registration software to keep costs down. This can be ineffective for some engines and even be penalized by them.
  • You have to register with thousands of search engines.

    Whilst there is a huge number of search engines worldwide, many have a niche geographic or industry focus. The vast majority of searches, however, use the biggest ones (Google, Bing/Yahoo in most countries). Many minor ones (and some major ones too) use one or two central directories. It makes business sense therefore to concentrate on optimisation of your position with the internet big players. Smaller engines may be particularly relevant for your site however, e.g. one specialising in your industry or geographic region.
  • Guaranteed search engine placement is a good idea.

    Some search engine marketing companies do offer a guarantee of ‘x’ number one placements, ‘y’ page one placements etc. and it sounds very seductive.

    We do, of course, want your target key words and phrases to achieve high search engine rankings but what we really want is to increase targeted traffic to your website.

    Guaranteed search engine placement can be achieved in ways that do not add to your target traffic, for example by selecting very low volume search phrases which no other site is competing for. If you are a widget manufacturer, you might well obtain search engine top placement for ‘left handed widgets with polka dots’ but how many people will actually be searching for it?

    You sometimes get more business from a medium placed but frequently used search term than a top placed low volume one. Guaranteed search engine placement can take your eye off the ball.


To learn more about optimisation of your site’s position on the internet, read our article ‘Search Engine Placement for UK Business Web Sites’, or click here for our service page on web site optimisation and promotion.


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