Every professional worthy of the name is tormented by commonly held myths about their profession. This is especially true of newer and emerging professions. The general ignorance in digital marketing is astounding to say the very least so we’ve gathered up handful of misconceptions that every business owner should be aware of.

People do not read your website

This is aimed more at people who believe a standard web set-up from the early nineties with some of the usual web copy will enable them to make more sales.

We’ve all seen websites with this type of thing all over it,

Established in X, [Insert company name here] is a leading provider in / of [insert complex product offering language] solutions/products. We have a global presence because we are in more than one country blah blah blah testimonials blah blah, award from 3 years ago, blaaaah!

Google and other companies have been preaching about content for years, it is not expensive and it gives people a reason to come back to your site and these days it’s easily managed through a vast selection of user friendly content management systems so you don’t need a web developer on site to add a post or page. If a person comes to a site that is completely static, they’ve seen it once and with thousands of other pages out there with much more interesting content, why would they come back a second time? That’s if the search engine will bring them to your site in the first place, poor quality will affect the search spider to, which leads me to my next point.

SEO is not the number one spot in Google

It never was and unless you are a hugely successful household name or internet organisation like Wikipedia it never will be. It’s next to impossible for you to rank for shoes if you are a shoe company or cars if you are a car dealer.

Search engine optimisation is about creating an excellent user experience and about pleasing an invisible robot/spider leaving bait (content) to entice it back and tell the world about your site. It is also about achieving hundreds of recommendations through the use of back links and while you may only have 1000 or 2000 backlinks and rank for a handful of keywords, you are ranking for them! They are driving traffic to your site. It’s up to you how you monitor what happens when they visit but wouldn’t it be nice to know how many of those people convert.

You will never have an FBI grade analytics tool

As much as you would like to follow your customers around the internet to make sure they are not jumping in to bed with the competition you can’t! Firstly, because technology (for businesses at least) has not reached that stage. You will also probably be breaking the law if you were to get your hands on this type of software and above all it is creepy. 

Redesigning your website will never get you more followers

If you put a goblin in a pretty dress, it’s still a goblin. The same logic applies to websites, if you dress up your old site and don’t add functionality, tracking or valuable content it is still an old site. A site redesign should go beyond updating images, text and front end facing elements.  Companies should be pushing the boundaries of the web. Those that do can realise the benefits of reaching hundreds, thousands or in rare cases millions of new people by integrating blogs, social media, tracked web forms and other software enhancements to a site. Your site can gather intelligence and make sales for you if you let it. You cannot call your site successful if you redesign every couple of years.

Likes, followers, plus ones and other point scorers on any social platform are meaningless

Social should do a few things for your business but the objective should always focus your social media on attracting people to your site. Social media is supplementary to your businesses main objective, to make money, to sell more products, to reach new customers.

When you take away all of the gimmicks, pretty backgrounds and supposed expert hipsters preaching SMM out of the equation, what you’re left with is another form of communication between you and your customers.

The only difference is that you are part of a network and everybody’s watching, you don’t want to find yourself in the heat of a social media scandal so make sure you are on your best behaviour. Show some personality and create new content for the search spiders and target customers. Social Media is the ultimate lead detection and PR tool provided that you’re company accounts actually talk to people. Create quality content on your site and measure your effectiveness preferably with a non-weapons grade analysis tool and you will eventually achieve a recommendation from users in the form of a review that links back to your website or perhaps the share your link around with other people in their network. If this person is in your target demographic then chances are they have friends in the same demographic.

The digital space is riddled with myths like this and whether it’s a lack of understanding, elevated expectations or treating each aspect of the digital marketing ecology in isolation that causes these myths to stay around, we may never know. The fundamental principle of digital marketing is to constantly test and measure your message and with a plethora of tools available, we would encourage any company, whether it’s a question of growth or survival to implement a digital marketing strategy.