SEO practices have evolved in the past couple of years. Hence tricks and shortcuts that may have worked in the past are no longer possible. In fact, search engines can penalize your site or even ban it for adopting fraudulent methods. These mistakes may not be intentional but they do affect the company website to a great extent
Here are some of the most common SEO mistakes to avoid:
As expected, content tops this list. Primarily, content is one of the biggest factors that brings visitors to your website. If it has been copied from other sources, search engines can easily identify its authenticity.
Another reason is the quality and quantity of content. If you maintain a blog, do you provide content that is providing value to your target audience? Or do you just write generic fluff without any real value, just to maintain a presence on the website? Either way, whatever little number of visitors comes to your website, will quickly leave it. This can be easily found by checking the bounce rate of your website in Google Analytics. If your audience is bouncing or exiting your website without navigating to other pages, then you have a problem that needs to be quickly identified and rectified.
How do you think your visitors will react when they learn that your content is no different from others or worse, it has been blatantly copied from other sources? Instead of “repurposing” or blatantly copying content from other sources, how about you invest that time in actually creating original and meaningful content?
Quality of keywords:
Now that you know the importance of fresh and engaging content, let us dig a little deeper. Keywords play a very important role in SEO strategies. If you are targeting all the wrong keywords then it is highly unlikely that you will reach your target audience.
You need to thoroughly research which keywords are most suitable for your business and what is the competition around them. If the keyword is already very competitive, then it is better to avoid it in the beginning. Instead focus on keywords that can help you generate higher number of searches with lesser competition. This can found using Google Keyword Planner.
Avoid stuffing content with keywords. It does not help improve your ranking on a search engine. This is one of the most common seo mistakes to avoid being banned or penalized, as mentioned earlier in this post. Your keywords should be placed naturally and in a sufficient number, depending on the length of the post. If it is a blog post of around 800-1000 words, then the keyword should be used around 3-4 times.
Lack of mobile friendly site:
If your website takes too long to load on a mobile phone or is not mobile friendly, then it can result in lower SERP rankings. Also, you are losing out a major chunk of the share. There are a number of online tools out there that can help you identify if your website is slow as well as the reasons behind it, such as GTmetric, Pingdom, WebPageTest, etc.
Always identify where your target audience is located and how do they search for information. A simple Google Analytics review of your website will help you identify this source. Optimize your website accordingly.
Various studies today have emphasized on the increased use of mobile in day to day lives. A vast majority of searches take place on mobiles so it makes sense for companies to keep their site mobile friendly.
- The role of analytics in SEO:
How will you identify the performance of your website without analytics? These metrics need to be reviewed on a regular basis so that anomalies can be quickly spotted and sufficient measures can be taken. Analytics provide an opportunity to identify shortcomings as well as leverage opportunities. Hence, they are essential to determine if your SEO practices are successful.
With the help of advanced analytics, you can find out which pages or posts are performing well and which are not. Suppose that one of your blogs is performing extremely well as compared to the others. You can leverage this page to either direct traffic to other pages by way of internal linking or add CTAs that can help you convert them into leads.
Lastly, not hiring an SEO expert:
Just because you have read many articles about “Common SEO Mistakes to Avoid”, and initiated SEO practices for your website, it does not mean that you will immediately start reaping the benefits. It depends on whether you have followed these practices correctly.
If SEO is not your forte, then it is best left to the experts. These professionals are well versed with the basics as well as newest trends. Their experience helps them get your website on track with minimal trial and errors.
Atul is Founder & CEO at Xenia Consulting. He has over 22 years of experience in marketing, across corporates as well as SME,start-ups. Over the last 5 years, he has gained significant expertise and has helped several companies drive growth leveraging digital marketing