Today, search engine optimization (SEO) plays an integral role in digital marketing campaigns. From improving the site’s visibility to directing traffic – SEO brings countless benefits to the table. So, do you have an SEO strategy in place? You can start by creating a digital storefront with an easy-to-understand layout and navigation tools. Once your website is up and running, learn about algorithmic changes, updates, and ranking factors to optimize your webpage fully.
However, keeping up with Penguin and Panda updates while catering to over 200 ranking factors can be pretty challenging. As a result, marketers often ignore Google’s regulations and keep their optimization efforts minimal. You might target a couple of keywords and stuff them on your website to bring in more traffic. Similarly, you can create an aesthetic website layout to capitate audiences and increase conversion rates.
These efforts might work, and you might notice your webpage moving up but not any far from pages two and three. Mainly because of your inadequate SEO strategy. Therefore, understand where your SEO campaign is lagging and fix those pitfalls immediately. Here are six SEO mistakes that can rob you of your SERPs rankings and how to avoid them.
Table of Contents
1. Missing Quality Links
Does your website have any backlinks or outbound links? If none of the web pages are citing your website, Google won’t see your site as an authoritative figure. The search engine bots cannot crawl to your webpage since internal and external links provide a pathway. Before this affects your rankings, develop a brilliant link building strategy by exploring all quality links relevant to your content. You can earn quality backlinks through guest blogging, brand mentions, and online directories.
Another counterproductive practice is adding links using ineffective anchor text. Marketers believe it improves their ranking chances, but in reality, it wastes precious SEO opportunities. The anchor text explains to readers and bots what the link is about and how it benefits the users. Hence, avoid using ‘click here or contact us’ as your anchor text. In addition to sounding spammy, it doesn’t add value to the link. You have to focus on developing a link building campaign on quality and best practices.
2. Unresponsive Web Design
In today’s competitive landscape, SEO goes beyond content and keywords. It is about your webpage’s quality, user experience, and especially performance on mobile devices. Nowadays, people surf through websites and indulge in online shopping through their smartphones. Instead of adopting the one-size-fits-all approach, you have to invest in a fast and mobile-friendly user experience. It will ensure people don’t face any zooming issues while accessing your website.
Moreover, Google and other search engines can determine if a webpage isn’t mobile-friendly. In turn, it can decrease the site’s rankings. The same goes for loading speed. If your webpage is taking forever to load on mobile devices, it will negatively reflect your overall rankings. Hence, ensure you have a responsive design to make it easy for visitors to navigate your mobile device site.
3. Publishing Duplicate Content
The practice of duplicating content has been there in the markets for decades. While it might have worked back then, today, search engines can penalize this approach. After all, there is room for plagiarized and duplicate content in today’s modern marketplace. Thus, instead of copying content or using spinning software, you must create original and unique content. You can talk about your products, give demos, explain their benefits, or anything that aligns with your brand.
Similarly, you have to ensure your content provides answers, addresses challenges customers face, and offers actionable information. You can give examples or create stories that people resonate with to improve engagement rates. Above all, you should never mislead the readers. Always make striking and impactful headlines that match with your content and delivers value.
4. Incorrect Internal Linking
Naturally, marketers place internal links on the top-performing pages to get more visibility and create additional traction. It might seem like a wise approach but make sure you don’t include internal links if they don’t align with the context. In addition to making your content look like a sales pitch, they leave a wrong impression on your target audience. Similarly, search engines see this as a fraudulent practice that manipulates search results.
Therefore, you have to adopt an intelligent internal linking approach. You can group related topics with internal links and avoid any linking from irrelevant pages. Also, balance the number of internal links you use because having many links on a single page looks spammy. Lastly, audit internal links for broken links and slow pages to improve user experience.
5. Targeting Irrelevant Keywords
Everyone knows how crucial SEO keywords are, but the real deal is to stay abreast of best practices. You have to ensure there are not too many hyper-competitive and irrelevant keywords on the website. Underusing and overusing keywords can make your content look inappropriate and promotional, reducing search engine rankings. Likewise, if your keywords have high-ranking difficulty, it will take forever to make it to the top results.
Thus, choose your keywords carefully. When a keyword is competitive, use the long-tail form of the same keyword for better visibility. Similarly, you only have to use keywords that align with your content to bring traffic with a genuine interest in your offerings. Alongside improving your rankings, keyword placement tactics and significantly improve the conversion rates.
6. Exploiting Tags & Meta Descriptions
Usually, marketers limit their content optimization efforts to targeting keywords. The title tags and meta descriptions are an equally essential component of SEO when we talk about optimization. These optimizing factors help bots crawl to your website and improve your content’s performance. Therefore, add keywords to your URLs and meta descriptions without making them look spammy.
Moreover, you can use schema to markup content and help the search engine understand your site’s context better. It explains to search engines what your site is about, putting your brand in front of prospective customers. You also have to insert Alt tags with images. Since the bots can’t see pictures, they will read these tags to index your webpage. If this doesn’t seem enough, follow Google’s best practices to create eye-catchy titles and snippets.
Undoubtedly, SEO can be pretty tricky and complicated, especially if you are new to the digital world. As a result, marketers make mistakes with keyword placement, link building, and web design. Some of them also end up using duplicate content which adversely affects their rankings. If you are on the same boat, learn about these mistakes and implement your SEO strategy’s best practices. Understanding the algorithmic changes might seem overwhelming, but gradually, you will get the hang of it.