Search engine optimization is one of the essential modern-day marketing strategies that you should never take for granted.
The number of businesses that are going online increases every day, and because of this, there are more and more websites that are fighting for the top spot in the search engine results page. It is then critical for you to come up with strong SEO campaigns that can help you achieve good standing.
In your quest to get to that top spot, you should be aware of SEO blunders that end up hurting your chances to attain your desired results. The following are prime examples of those that you should make sure to avoid committing:
Black Hat Practices
Some marketers want to see great results in a short amount of time. That’s why a number of them end up using black hat SEO practices which do allow them to achieve higher rankings through practices that are usually against acceptable guidelines. Once discovered, this would lead to a lower position in search results, or even as much as being banned.
Some of these black hat practices are the following:
- Stuffing your content with irrelevant keywords, or repeating keywords too much which leads to looking unnatural.
- Redirecting users to a URL that’s different from what they clicked.
- Having duplicated content, especially those coursed through content automation
- Paying other sites to link to your content
- Participation in private blog networks or link farms
Producing Low-Quality Content
Among the most important facets of search engine optimization is content. It is vital that you come up with high-quality and optimized content on a regular basis. Some sites, however, fail to come up with content that abide by what is acceptable for search engines.
For reference, the following are Google’s basic principles for content that you should keep on mind:
- You should put your users first, and not the search engines. You should make your pages specifically with your users in mind.
- Deception should be avoided at all costs.
- Never settle for tricks, i.e., black hat SEO practices.
- Aim to make your site stand out from the competition.
Google’s Webmaster Quality guidelines contain a lot more thoughts on what makes good content. It further pushes things that should be avoided, which are mostly black hat SEO practices.
Poor Website Loading Speed & Responsiveness
One of the biggest mistakes that can be committed against SEO is having a slow loading and unresponsive website.
Sites now have less than 15 seconds to impress your website’s visitors. Within this 15 seconds, your site should have loaded completely; your visitor should have been able to go to the page he wanted to go to.
If you are unable to do this, then you are most likely going to have high bounce rates which would send a negative signal about your site. Not only that, but you also would be unable to lead your visitors down the sales funnel so you would lose on a lot if you don’t do your part in speeding up your website.
As a best practice, make sure that you keep your site light and nimble. Remove unnecessary objects on your site. Also, ensure that there’s ease of navigation so that your visitors can easily roam your site as they please. Doing this, other ranking factors can be affected positively.
Confusion between 301 and 302 Redirects
Certain cases call for redirects. A lot of confusion, however, happens on whether what should be used is a 301 or a 302 redirect. These two are redirects that are made for specific uses but are mistakenly used interchangeably.
A 301 redirect is used when a page has permanently moved to another location. Meanwhile, 302 is temporary, which means that a time will come that the 302 redirects will have to be removed.
It is important that you use the right redirect as confusion would arise otherwise, which would lead to losing considerable traffic. This is especially true as search engines are not bound to simply follow whether what you used is a 301 or a 302 redirect but the situation proves the contrary to ensure that your traffic won’t be compromised, it is best to just use the right redirect for the right situation.
Poor Internal Linking
Internal linking refers to the practice of linking your page to another page within the same domain. Internal linking is very important as it helps improve other ranking factors such as how much time is spent on your site, and how many pages are viewed.
Internal linking is usually done to achieve the following:
- Providing an internal reference to explain better a concept you have mentioned,
- Aiding web crawlers read your pages easier, or
- As an SEO initiative to help improve the ranking of specific keywords.
Some tools that can help you make the most out of internal linking are Google Analytics, Rank Tracker, and WebSite Auditor.
Not Hiring the Right Team
SEO entails a lot of strenuous activities. And perhaps the biggest mistake that you’ll commit is entrusting all your digital marketing expectations to the wrong people. It is of prime importance that you hire a team of dedicated and skilled people that can help you take on the challenges of SEO.
Among the many skills and qualities that an SEO professional should have, you should put great weight on one’s passion to learn and to do. SEO is an evolving concept, and there’s always a need to learn what will work at this time.
Make sure that you hire the right people, and you are sure to be able to realize your SEO goals more efficiently.
Boost your SEO Campaign by Avoiding these Costly Mistakes
Mistakes are normal, but with knowledge of what these mistakes are, you can avoid them and prevent you from having to go through the consequences that they will bring. Do better SEO campaigns now by avoiding the six mistakes above, and doing all the best practices instead.