Optimization of your website, and blog is an essential component of your content marketing strategy.
SEO or Search Engine Optimization has definitely seen quite a few changes over the years, it still remains on top of most companies marketing agendas as it is an extremely useful tool to drive customers to your websites, and provide a substantial boost to the sales.
SEO methods are constantly changing due to rapid development of the Search Engine, and also a shift in the user perspective. It is not easy to constantly improve your SEO techniques, and stay on the top of the results page.
While optimization is constant, and ever evolving, there are certain practices that remain effective for a longer period of time while compared to other tactics.
Let us go through certain mistakes that businesses tend to make while indulging SEO so that you can avoid them, and ensure that you obtain favorable results.
Picking the Wrong Keywords
SEO is all about choosing the target keywords that will determine the rank of your website. One of the most documented mistake is neglecting the preference of the popular search engines.
It is easy to define your services in a certain way, but it is important to realize what keywords will your users use to refer to your products. What you might consider correct might have a completely opposite meaning for your potential customers.
So you need to ensure that you have properly researched, and assessed the data for the right keywords to use.
Tools like Google AdWords, Google Trends, SEMrush help in finding out popular, and adequate keywords.
Trying to Game The System
There always have been plenty of methods that help to “cheat”, and get ahead on the search engine index by utilizing spam tactics in order to generate a larger magnitude of views.
While this is helpful to short, temporary gains, in the long run, this might prove to be detrimental as search engines have started handing out penalties to the websites indulging in such shady practices.
Yes, it is definitely tempting to use these tactics for a short period of time, but when you will realize the risk that it brings with its usage, you are better of resorting to normal SEO methods. This will ensure that your website’s index rank does not degrade.
Publishing Plagiarized Content
Ctrl+C, and Ctrl+V seems a good way to fill up that empty blog post, doesn’t it? Well, don’t even think about indulging in it, if you don’t wish to get a plagiarism strike against your website, and fall in the search engine index ranks simultaneously.
Not only is the quality of your content compromised but the modern search engines severely penalize this approach.
Instead of blatantly copying content or “modifying” the pre-existing content, it’s worthwhile to invest in generating fresh, and engaging content, and ensure that your website doesn’t fall behind in the search results.
An Overloaded Website is a Slow Website
Ask any modern-day web developer, Images, videos, gifs, beautiful font increase the overall appeal of a website to its prospective customers.
While this statement is partially true, it is extremely important to create a balance between the visual features, and the functional features in order to create a website that loads fast. A slow website doesn’t have too many visitors.
Why is it important to optimize your website’s loading time? Well, website loading time is a metric that Search Engines use to rank websites, so ignoring it might prove to be disastrous in the long run.
Skipping Title Tags, Forgetting about Meta Description, Forgetting the Image Tags
SEO is not about including particular keywords, and deploying fresh content. Equally important are including essential tags, and writing proper meta descriptions. Why so? These optimizing factors are sought out by search engines, and if done properly will help in improving the rank of your page by a pretty big magnitude.
Image tags are something that content marketers end up skipping while creating the content. This should not happen, because image tags are a sign of how you are targeting articles.
The Search Engine bots cannot see the images visually, BUT they do read the alt tags, which can be a pretty big factor while determining your website’s rank.
But where is the Content?
Navigation is a very important feature for a website. It is an important metric for both visitors, and search engines alike. Ideally, a customer on your website should find the required content/information within a span of 2-3 clicks.
Labeling the important menus, creating an FAQ section that is easily available, listing the important hotlinks in a clean, formatted manner is essential to ensure that the customer doesn’t find it too hard to navigate through your website.
From the standpoint of a search engine, good navigation ensures that search bots can easily scrape through the site, ensuring good readability, and a better rank in the Search Engine Index.
It’s common knowledge to implement keywords as anchor tags for links within the website itself. However, if you go through the metrics released by Search Engines, very few Companies actually implement this tactic. It ends up being a confusion for the Search Engine Bots which results in lowering of ranks.
Using placeholder texts like “Learn More”, and “Contact Us” are less preferred than using anchor text like “Click to speak with a professional”.
Is it optimized for the Local Search?
While investing in SEO, most of the companies tend to prefer doing it for better ranks in the Globally popular search engines totally forgetting about the local search engines.
If your business focuses on customers form a particular region or city, say New Delhi, you should first focus on SEO for the local search engines of New Delhi.
This can be done by using region-specific keywords in your articles, and descriptions. You might also want to include local phone numbers, and a local address so that you will show up in the local search results.
Not Investing in a Fast and Mobile-Friendly Experience
Technology has been evolving, and changing at an incredibly fast pace. The result is evident in the form that PCs, and Laptops are no longer the standard devices common masses utilize to access the content on the web.
The world today relies more on Smartphones, and Tablets to access the content available on the internet. SEO realizes this, and therefore judges your website performance particularly on mobile devices. Google, Bing, and other popular search engines can recognize if your content is mobile-friendly or not.
If you didn’t consider a mobile-friendly experience for your target audience, your rating will be compromised. So be sure to invest some time to ensure that your content is mobile friendly.
Forgetting about Analytics
This is perhaps the step most of the content marketers overlook while working on SEO. The only way to know if your SEO optimization tactics are working or not, is by tracking their progress. Most of the marketers end up not paying attention to the data, but analysis of this data is very necessary.
Google Analytics, and Google Webmaster Tools are well-developed tools developed by Google that you can use in order to measure, and analyze your website’s overall performance. Using the data generated you can tell how well your SEO tactics are working, and the ways you can improve on them.
Search Engine Optimization is an important component of any content marketing strategy in today’s world. It’s easy to type in “SEO tips, and Tricks” on Google, and get a bunch of advice on how to implement various SEO tactics, it’s easy to make typical SEO mistakes.
The ideal approach should be to learn from others mistakes, and ensure that you don’t end up repeating it in your endeavors.
This list of 5 most common SEO mistakes is not exhaustive by any means, but they should be easier for you to recognize them now, and rectifying should not prove difficult.
What are the other SEO mistakes that you think the businesses are making?