SEO has historically moved at the pace set by the technology and advances of the search engines, but today’s SEO has stopped chasing Google and started to focus on the end user – the customer. By looking at the user’s experience and making this a smooth, straightforward and hopefully enjoyable experience you will also be ticking the boxes for the search engines.
If your search engine optimisation involves doing any of the following, then think again and try avoiding these old SEO pitfalls.
1. Bad Link Building Practices
Links continue to be a valuable tool within the SEO armory, showing authority and trust towards a website, but you need to be careful when it comes to link building. The search engines have long since recognised irrelevant and spammy links, with Google famously creating the ‘Penguin’ update back in 2012 in order to stamp out disreputable link building practices.
Never pay a company who promises to boost your site by getting hundreds of links, chances are these are unnatural and will see penalties imposed on your site by the search engines. Start with linking to well known and reputable business directories, which are usually free. Then rather than link building use the relationships you’ve built to acquire links, such as your suppliers or guest blogging to earn your links.
2. Keyword Stuffing
Well over a decade ago, you may just have got somewhere with keyword stuffing, but today this really is a classic beginner’s SEO mistake. Over optimisation of a certain word or phrase on a web page will not achieve a good ranking position and more than likely take you to the bottom of the results.
Any content should naturally flow and be easy to read, and never be written around a string of keywords. Breaking content into small easily digestible paragraphs is also a way to keep readers engaged.
3. Focusing on Rankings
There are many meaningful SEO analytic reports that you should be looking at, not just a monthly ranking report. Being No.1 for a particular keyword or phrase may be something to shout about but knowing whether that page converts and delivers tangible results is equally as important if not more so.
4. Duplicate Content
Repeating yourself is never a good thing, and the same goes for your website content. These days if you have honest duplicate content such as a product that you want to display in two different categories for example, you can point Google to only one by adding a canonical tag and avoid any penalties.
5. No SEO Strategy
Many websites continue to be optimised by old SEO methods simply because they have no strategy in place. Knowing what your goals are will help you to understand the objectives you need to reach in order to move forward with your SEO, rather than following outdated practices which in the long run will seriously damage your search engine presence.
SEO is an ongoing project, not something to pick up and then let run, but by avoiding these bad SEO practices you can start to improve you search engine rankings and that all-important customer experience. If you’d like to know more about SEO then contact the team today for a chat, or why not Tweet us.