SEO can be complicated for newbies. There’s a whole lot to learn and significant competition, so it is important that you get started on the right footing. Here are the top 10 SEO mistakes you need to know to make sure that your page doesn’t slowly drown in the depths of Google’s page rank.
1. Keyword Stuffing
Some people go a little overboard with the keywords they use. Search engines have tightened up over the years, so they can’t be fooled by endless repetition. Use your keywords where they make sense, and not anywhere else. Your audience can tell when you are keyword stuffing, and so can Google. Stop it.
2. The Site Isn’t Designed for Mobile
These days, smartphones are all the rage. Much of our internet usage is on mobile, so you need to make sure that your site is optimised for this huge segment of the market. If it’s not, soon your only customers will be the dinosaurs still carrying around their laptops or sitting at their desktops.
3. Meta Keyword Tags
Still using meta keyword tags? Quit living in the past. There was a point where these were important for SEO, but they now have little effect. In fact, they are kind of like a rambling old man in a retirement home. They may have done had a very important job in the past, but now all they can do is talk about it.
Meta keyword tags tell your competitors which keywords you are targeting, so they can easily steal them and take advantage of all your hard work.
4. Using Plagiarised Content
Search engines prize originality, so you need to make sure that all of your content is new and your own. Plagiarised content from other sites is obviously frowned upon – we all learned that in school – and it will lead to a much lower page rank. Sure, it can be expensive and time consuming to create your own content, but it is a crucial aspect of getting your page to rank well.
5. Forgetting About Social Media
Social media has become incredibly important for your SEO strategy. You should build your content with sharability in mind, particularly from users who have strong followings. You can also take advantage of sites such as Quora and Reddit to get your content to its target audience.
6. Skipping Analytics
Numbers are boring, right? Well, yeah, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t important, particularly when it comes to SEO. To get the most out of your strategy, you need to be looking at reports each week to see which terms are resulting in the most conversions. Many people focus on the terms that bring in the most traffic, but conversions are what really count. You can also use the same tool to analyse how your PPC campaigns are performing and feed that back into your SEO campaign to improve results all round.
7. Struggling with Keyword Optimisation
Keyword optimisation is day one of SEO school, so all of you beginners need to pay attention. You need to be optimising your site with keywords that match what you sell, as well as the common search terms that most people use. While you may like to refer to yourself as a food engineer, from an SEO services perspective, chef is going to help you a whole lot more.
You should try to think how your potential customers think, and write your website copy for how you expect them to search. This is where doing some thorough keyword research beforehand comes in handy.
8. Links from Dodgy Sites
Links are good right? Yes, but not all links are created equal. Search engines are smarter than we think, and they can tell the difference between the BBC and a site that advertises hot singles in your area. The first can give a huge boost to your site, while the second could be very detrimental. If your site is linked to by a lot of dodgy sites, search engines might assume that it is dodgy as well.
It is best to focus on getting high quality links that are related to your industry, rather than a whole pile of useless links. It’s kind of like how getting one doctor to give testimony on your character could be far more valuable than twenty thieves.
9. The Content Won’t Play
A great site needs to be functional for all of its users, no matter what device they are using. If you are putting in any extravagant multimedia, you should think about how it will affect the speeds and playability for your different types of users.
Google prefers content that uses HTML5, but you really need to consider how important it is, and whether the content will be accessible by everyone,
10. Having Duplicate Content Across Their Site
Many sites go to the effort of creating their own content, but then they duplicate it across a number of their pages. Google is on to these tricks and shortcuts, and it will punish you if you try to recycle your own content across your pages.