If it is your first time trying your hand at Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or you are a seasoned veteran of inbound marketing, everyone seems to make the same mistakes repeatedly. Some of these mistakes are obvious, and some aren’t so quickly recognizable. With the fact that everyone makes mistakes in mind, here are six easily avoidable SEO mistakes.
Don’t Stuff It.
At the dawn of the internet and the birth of Google, all searches were rudimentary and focused solely on keywords. It was not uncommon to see the bottom of a web page filled with hundreds, even thousands of different words, many (actually most) of which had nothing to do with the content on the page; this practice was known as keyword packing. Over the years, Google and search engines such as Bing have improved the algorithms to punish keyword packers. In short, if you get spammy with repeated phrases like “the best furniture store,” “the best furniture in town,” “the top furniture store” or you use keywords totally unrelated to your topic, you will end up getting lower placement on search engine result pages (SERP).
The Correct Words are Key.
Keeping in mind keyword stuffing is bad; using the right keywords is vital to your SEO. The trick when choosing keywords is to select ones that are relevant to your target demographic. There needs to be a balance between casting too wide a net and being too specific. For instance, if you are an attorney then you want to chose a keywords and phrases that are not too generalized, for example “Lawyer” is important but is used by every other attorney with a website, making sure to use a phrase like “Bodily injury lawyer in Naples” will separate you from lawyers in general and makes it specific to your region. There are tools which can help you find the right keywords such as Moz Keyword Explorer and the Keyword Planner in Google AdWords. Soovle is another useful tool that lets you see what search phrases are being used by potential customers with regards to a keyword.
This point is straightforward. Plagiarize someone else’s content, and search engines will harshly downgrade your status. Cutting and pasting content is not only wrong; its not going to help your SEO results. Don’t plagiarize content, period.
Today, the majority of searches and e-commerce purchases on the internet are done with a mobile device. It does not matter how good your keywords and content are on your website; if your site is not optimized for mobile devices, you can expect a low return on investment from your SEO campaign.
Ignoring Titles and Image Descriptions.
Make sure your title contains relevant keywords, and it matches your content. This point is often overlooked and can negatively impact your SEO campaign. In addition, make sure that the alt tags of your images use keywords; they are ready by search engine signals as well.
Slow Loading and Downtime.
If you have invested time and effort into your SEO campaign, but your site host has slow load times, then you can expect that visits to your company’s sites won’t convert into paying customers. The average internet user waits a total of three seconds for a website to load before they leave and you can expect that the amount of time will shrink to instantaneous over the next few years. Using discount site hosts can be disastrous; in addition to being slow, they often go down. Imagine getting a top SERP ranking only to have your website down when customers click on the link. Make sure that your site host has both quick load times and little to no downtime.
If you keep from making these common SEO mistakes, then your campaign is taking its first steps to become a success.