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25 SEO Experts Reveal the most Clichéd Industry Phrases

25 SEO experts reveal the most clichéd industry phrases that you should avoid at all costs and you’ll never guess what happened next…

We made it into a blog.

Oh you did guess that?

I’m sorry. I apologise for the clickbait headline, and I know it’s more hyperbole than cliché, but these Buzzfeed-esque titles have almost become a marketing cliché in themselves.

However, today is Cliché Day!

That’s right. This Monday (3rd November) is the official, world cliché day!

In case you needed reminding, World Cliché Day is the day when literally some people celebrate the usage of overused and unoriginal phrases.

Are you not excited?

The business world is littered with clichés, whether it be arguments, processes or simply words and phrases, and the SEO industry is no different.

We got in touch with 25 experts in the digital marketing field and asked them what they thought were the biggest SEO cliché crimes.

Click on the faces to see what they had to say:

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@Martijn was very kind as to email us in length about the SEO clichés he and his colleagues often come across. Here he expands on his tweet:
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Good content doesn’t need promotion.

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In recent years we have seen the rise of ‘content marketing’ as we know it today. Creating content of value for readers and potential customers will eventually lead to building a brand and retrieving more customer data through email signups, phone numbers, etc.

However, I think that the actual promotion of content is still underrated. It should play the biggest part in a content marketing strategy, even for the biggest publishers in the world. At The Next Web we see a huge difference in posts we’re not promoting, posts with some promotion and posts with huge promotion. We’re in a different position than most of the other companies talking about content marketing as it is arguably our core business. Nevertheless, even one of the biggest publishers worldwide, the New York Times, stated in their leaked innovation report that they should do more with promotion and audience engagement than they’re doing now.

Correlation implies causation

We’ve seen companies do more correlation research around SEO topics, which is a good thing! However, people sometimes jump to conclusions when they see certain results and interpret them incorrectly. For example, some people believe that a 0.11 correlation is a huge correlation, when really, a high correlation is often due to other ones being even lower. We should be more aware of this so we’re not getting the wrong quotes out in the open.

…And here’s a few more of our ‘favourites’:

1. ‘Matt Cutts once said…’


As he is the head of the webspam team at Google, King of SEO and the second coming of Christ, quoting Matt Cutts has become rather popular. Despite his enormous power to make or break a business in a single click, for some reason he often divides opinion on SEO forums, comment threads and on social media. More often than not, he is widely misquoted.

2. ‘Roll out’


What happened to merely ‘introducing’, ‘releasing’ or even ‘bringing out’ a new product or service? Since when did everything get ‘rolled out’ as if it was a sumo wrestler who had overdone their bulking phase and had to be physically pushed down to the ring? Unless the next algorithm update takes a drastic change of direction and is in fact a spaceship, I don’t won’t to hear the phrase ‘roll-out’


3. Low Hanging Fruit

A.K.A. quick wins. Low hanging fruits are objectives (fruit) that are easy to achieve (pick). Clever metaphor right? By that same logic, high hanging fruits are the harder tasks, bad tasting fruits are the ones you don’t want to complete and rotten fruits are… well I’ll let you think of one for that.

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This picture by Dutch Golden Age painter, Gerard van Honthorst, (1590-1656) depicts a child plucking some low hanging fruit. Mr Van Honthorst is believed to have invented the term whilst working for a boutique digital agency in Slough, Berkshire *
* Probably not true.

And Finally

I would like to give a special thanks to all the SEO experts who threw their hat into the ring and gave their two pennies worth. I’ve had a whale of a time. Hopefully we’ll all be singing from the same hymn sheet soon and we can push the envelope with some blue sky thinking going forward.
I hate myself.

Are there any other SEO or general marketing clichés that weren’t mentioned here? Why do you think they have become so popular? Is it necessarily a bad thing?

Let me know in the comments below or drop us a tweet @Midas_UK

George Bates

Author: George Bates

George is a Digital Marketer at Midas Media with expertise in a variety of online marketing methods. He specialises in technical SEO as well as creative content writing.

  • rjonesx

    How about the phrase “Link Juice”. Seriously, can we come up with something better? Anything better?

    • Ed Leake

      Okay, how about some probably [not] better suggestions:

      1) Link extract, or even ‘liquor’ perhaps?

      2) How about “Link Milk” for an udderly dairy twist?

      3) Link oil – a finite resource, the web’s gold!

      4) Link sauce or syrup, mind the sticky stuff.

      5) Link essence – provided by internet fairies.

      6) Link fluid … doesn’t sound too family friendly.

      7) Link nectar, from the lap of the gods.

      8) Link serum or spirit, not to be taken orally.

    • Agreed Russ! Although I’m guilty of using this…(sorry).

      Link love!?

  • Sam Carr

    Great post! And we really need to make that #SEOClichéDay happen… 🙂

    • We’ll have to do another piece where all the influencers put the case forward for a date Sam! Then we can analyse and measure the results…as we love to 😉

  • Thanks for the comments guys!

  • Rebecca McLean

    the phrase “SEO best practices”. It’s so vague and annoying, most SEOs who want to mislead use this phrase.

    • There are so many that this article could have been twice as long! Thanks for your input Rebecca

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