Search engine optimization is definitely an industry in which there are more myths than truths. This is normal because of a very simple reason:
SEO evolves so fast that it is so simple to end up not knowing what works and what is effective right now. This evolution led to the appearance of countless myths, combined, of course, with the fact that a lot of people talk about SEO without actually knowing it or being involved.
Here’s what we know right now:
12% of people that look online for local businesses do it every single day (BrightLocal). At the same time, almost all consumers looked for at least one local business on the internet so far. With such numbers, we simply cannot neglect local SEO and we have to use it.
Everything starts with dismissing the following myths that you should never believe.
Claiming A Business In GMB Guarantees Local SEO Results
There are numerous benefits associated with claiming your site in GMB (Google My Business). At the same time, it is completely misleading to claim that the listing is going to instantly skyrocket local SEO rankings.
The huge advantage of being listed in GMB is the fact that a lot of traffic can be generated to social accounts and websites. At the same time, local clients can be targeted and your visibility will be a lot higher on Google Maps.
Local rankings will be increased when the business is listed but you have to take many other steps to get that high position you are looking for. The guidelines published by Google tell you everything that you have to do to rank higher, but even that is not a guarantee that things will be done right.
One more thing that should be added is that you cannot just claim the site. You need to add quite a lot of data and then take into account many other factors that will influence local rankings.
All Information Entered In The GMB Dashboard Is Displayed By Google
As a business owner, you can add a lot of information to GMB. This includes contact information, posts, pictures, and more. Because of this, many business owners believe that Google will display all information provided. This is not actually correct.
Google just displays parts of the information provided in the dashboard. Also, there are situations in which business hours are changed. This happens because the search engine actually collects its information from various sources.
The GMB listing is verified and data is gathered from the site of the business, edits that were made on Google Maps, and even third-party sources. There is even the possibility that others edited the listing in the past. Unfortunately, even your competition is capable of editing listings. However, this does not mean that Google will approve when what is listed is seen as not being relevant.
When A GMB Listing Is Deleted, Google Removes It
Because of the fact that duplicate listings appeared, many started to think you can remove some. When you look at listings on GMB, you will find some. However, at the same time, there is a pretty good possibility that only one is verified. As a result, as a business owner, when you find a duplicate, you need to claim it, verify it and then delete it. This is the only way to delete listings.
The problem is that when you want to delete, you are told that all videos, photos, and practically all content are removed. What happens is transforming the original listing into an unverified one. Obviously, if you keep working on the verified one, it should not be a problem for you.
No Backlinks Are Needed When You Have Citations
When you look at the packages offered by the best SEO companies in Australia and all around the world, you will notice that both citations and backlinks are included. This is because they are both actually necessary for higher local rankings.
A citation is practically a mention of the business’ NAP (which stands for name, address, and phone). You will often hear that no backlinks are needed when you have enough of these citations. This is in part because of the fact that local business citations are very valuable for local SEO. However, this does not mean that NAPs are enough.
It is practically impossible to gain authority when you do not build links. This is true for any part of search engine optimization, including local rankings.
In fact, there is a huge possibility that citations will be less and less relevant in the future for local rankings.
Nobody Reads Reviews
Out of all local SEO myths out there, this is the most damaging one. The belief that people do not read reviews is incredibly damaging and subjective.
The truth is that reputation is a vital indicator that helps clients choose local businesses. Local reviews are actually read by 93% of the consumers. This is a percentage that should never be neglected. In fact, reviews are highly correlated with local SEO rankings. In addition, great reviews lead to better conversions, increased online reputation, and buying decisions.
Content Is Not Good For Local Search
This SEO myth did not start with the words of an experienced specialist. It is a shame to see that there are so many out there that actually believe it.
At its very core, local SEO is exactly the same as organic SEO. Content is vital for organic SEO and it is just as vital for local SEO. Google does use content as a clear ranking factor.
No matter what you might think, the quality of your content will be appreciated. And it will help with rankings in any part of search engine optimization.
On the whole, we can say there are so many out there that think local SEO is simple. This is completely incorrect. It can be very complicated, especially when you do work in a very competitive niche. Make sure you dismiss the SEO myths mentioned above and that you only trust the real professionals in the industry, those that can prove what they are saying.