Change remains the one constant in the world of SEO, website ranking and digital marketing. Whether the change comes in the form of a new social media platform or a change in a Google algorithm, business owners need to understand that creating an online presence does not end when with the launch of the website. Instead, it requires constant upkeep and end revision to stay relevant.

The constantly changing face of SEO speaks to one of the prevailing myths about marketing on the web and achieving high ranking from the search engines – namely, that there is no magic pill when it comes to succeeding at SEO. Many people on both sides of the equation – marketers and business owners – push this idea for their own motives. Some unscrupulous marketers use this myth in order to sell the equivalent of internet snake oil to unsuspecting clients. For a fee – usually exorbitant – they promise to deliver the elusive “first page ranking.” On the other hand, business owners want to believe in the myth of the magic SEO pill in order to avoid the investment of time, money and effort required to create a proper digital presence.

Instead, industry insiders offer a much more prosaic observation: SEO is simply one element in an overall marketing campaign. Companies that succeed in SEO also succeed in marketing themselves in other ways, both online and offline.

Another myth surrounding SEO is that the fear of Google’s algorithm updates. For those who rely on so-called black-hat methods to gain positive rankings, Google’s actions do represent an ongoing headache. In fact, Google takes an extremely dim view of those who try to game their system. Many websites eventually felt the sting of Google’s punishing hand after attempting to beat them at their own game.

Again and again, experts stress the need to design websites with human users in mind, rather than Google’s bots. For one thing, if a business employs acceptable marketing and content-producing techniques, then changes in algorithms or other data-analysis practices will not bring the house down. In addition, Google’s SEO analysis also focuses on human behavior on the web. The company is looking to see how long people stay on a given site, how often they click on a particular search engine result, and how many other sites link to a site. All of these factors are determined by how appealing a site is to actual human users. SEO, at its core, should be seen as a means of creating informative, entertaining and compelling content that actual people actually wish to use.

In addition to the actual content of a site, link building is another key area of an effective SEO strategy. Here, too, many businesses focus on acquiring more links as an end in itself. Instead, experts stress that link building is a result good content and marketing practices, rather than a goal in and of itself.

For example, from Google’s perspective, a quality link comes from sites that complement each other. This means that the linking sites occupy the same market space or are associated with each other conceptually. In short, if a human would consider these two pages “linked” in some way, then a web link between the two is also likely to be regarded favorably by Google.

One way to get started in the link building aspect of SEO is to contact the site owner directly and ask to swap links. Again, if your site presents legitimate, useful, relevant content, then the other site owner probably will want to link to you without much convincing.