With all the conflicting information and flat-out garbage about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) being spewed out there these days, often by self-proclaimed "gurus," it can be difficult to navigate your way between fact and fiction when attempting to write a well-optimized article, blog, or web page. What is the magic formula?

The short answer: there is none. That we can all agree on. If there were such a thing, it would have been patented and packaged by an SEO version of Bill Gates, long ago. What we can't seem to agree on is just about everything else to do with SEO, from ideal word count, density of keywords, long-tail vs. short-tail research, PPC vs. organic search, frequency of blog posts, frequency of on-page optimization, the relative importance of links, the use of social media, the best way to measure results, etc., ad infinitum.

Many of these debates bleed into marketing, and that it is beyond the scope of this article, Nor will the debate end here. However, there are some definite truths, and definite untruths, about SEO writing that should be clear.

5 Undeniable SEO Truths

1. Content is King If there is only one great fact that you take away from this, please do make it this one! There is no substitute for high-quality, well-written, useful information. Write for the human reader first! It is the human element that ultimately matters here. If you're #1 in search engine rankings because of exceptional skill with the use of keywords, but if your content is drivel, and/or a disjointed string of clunky keyword phrases, it won't be read, shared, or assured of its coveted spot for long. And p.s., if you're doing e-commerce, this is especially bad news!
2. For Blogs,There is no Ideal Word Count When blogging was in its infancy, the steadfast rule was that blogs should be brief. However, this also was the time when common wisdom held that blogs should be posted daily, no matter what....even if there wasn't any subject one found particularly compelling that day. Fast forward to the present time: both conventions are outdated and no longer true. More recently, there's a myth floating about that pronounces a 450-word threshold for blogs; the misconception here being that unless the post is at least 450 words, it won't be picked up by the search engines. Wrong! Blogs should be as long as the content requires, no more and no less. If you ramble on to get to a certain word count, you risk losing your readers...for good! This likewise holds true if you abbreviate a subject to the point that your post is useless. For SEO purposes, blogs should have substantive content (see #1) and contain at least one or two strategically-placed keywords.
3. Behind Every Great Keyword is Great Research Of course, you might say. The question is: long-tail or short-tail? Some may argue that this will vary, depending upon the purpose of your copy. But if you must choose and you're not sure, long-tail research is most definitely the preferred way to go. Your results will be more refined, more relevant to your target niche, and will generate far superior click-through rates when not competing with a bizillion other pieces of content containing that same, single word or brief phrase. Try this as an experiment and see for yourself: do a search simply for "SEO" and see what happens!
4. Links do Matter This should be obvious to everyone by now, you'd think. But recently, an article was published by a self-proclaimed SEO "expert," in which he stated that search engines don't place much weight or value on links, inbound or outbound. HUH??! Links give the 'bots more of what 'bots love: more text! They also elevate your content visibility, credibility, and value. Enough said.
5. Follow up with Social Media Tweeting, sharing, digging, stumbling...whatever your preferred medium, just be sure you buzz up your content using at least one social media platform. Regardless of whether you like it, love it, or hate it, social media has become a major player in the SEO world, and it is a costly mistake to ignore it. Lead generation, status, referrals, recognition...these are some of the dividends you'll reap if you participate in the conversation! And do not neglect the golden rule of social media: give 80% away freely for every 20% of shameless self-promotion.

While these 5 truths may seem self-evident, it is the astonishing fact that they are contradicted, and even outright disputed, in the greater SEO debate. Whether you are new to SEO or an established veteran, keep to these essential, undeniable facts about SEO and you should have no trouble producing well=optimized and well-received content.

Author's Bio: 

Serena Carcasole is a certified Internet Marketing Specialist, business consultant and the President of Virtual Business Solutions ON DEMAND, a premier virtual assistance firm helping entrepreneurs around the world to succeed and grow their businesses. In addition to administrative services, Virtual Business Solutions ON DEMAND provides a host of specialized technical and marketing outsourcing options to meet business owners' unique needs. Some of the most popular services include Internet marketing through social networks, blogging, and article marketing; website and graphic design; search engine optimization support.

Virtual Business Solutions ON DEMAND has access to a large network of niche specialists, whose certifications include QuickBooks, Microsoft Excel Expert, Internet Marketing Virtual Assistant, and other. As a full-service outsourcing provider, VBSOnDemand provides full project management support for even the most complicated projects. VBSOnDemand donates 1% of sales to the Canadian Cancer Society. For more information:
Website: http://www.vbsondemand.com
Tel: 905-915-1203
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