Common SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) Mistakes

SEO can be a very valuable tool…if used properly. However, there are many common mistakes made by amateurs and even by experienced experts. These mistakes are easily overlooked but they can cost your site the visitors it needs.

1. Wrong Keywords

Keywords are the lifeblood of SEO. Get the keywords right and life is bliss. Get it wrong, and you can end up on the other end of Google’s rankings. Thus, keywords have to be researched properly. For example, if your site is about Christmas gifts, you may find that ‘Christmas gift ideas’ is better than ‘cheap Christmas gifts’. When choosing keywords, it is always a good idea to pick one that has a huge number of searches and at the same time, low competition.

2. Keyword spamming

When creating a site, make sure to include only relevant keywords because that’s what the search engine ‘spiders’ (those that crawl the web and read the information of your sites) look for. Spamming pointless keywords is, well, pointless since the spiders will just overlook them. So if your site is about golf, do not include keywords such as ‘coping in college.’

3. No Keywords in Title Tags

Some companies prefer to put their company name or site name in their title tags. For a better ranking in the search engines, it would be better to include keywords into your title tags.

4. Terrible Site Navigation/Terrible Content

Yes, your keywords will make sure your site will appear on the first page of Google. But when your visitors click your site and see a jumble of mess, they will exit immediately. The result: you may gain visitors for some time then lose them quickly. Having good keywords is not the end-all of making a website. Your goal is not to just bring in visitors but to have them actually go over your site. Keywords can bring them in but it is the content that will make them stay.

5. Low maintenance

Once a site is finished and ranks high in Google, the owner congratulates himself on a job well done and sits back to watch the money flow. The money flows…for a while. But the Internet always changes. New websites are added everyday with new content. Old websites are rehashed in better forms. Keywords change as people’s desires change. If you want a website that will last for many ages, you should take the time to continually update your site.

6. Free Hosting

You don’t spend money on it so how can it be bad? Well, sites that host for free like Tumblr or are only good for personal blogs. If that’s what you want, fine but they aren’t going to be flexible enough to allow you to use SEO properly. You will have to abide by whatever rules the sites have since they own your domain and not you. If you’re looking to monetize your site, then it’s better to get your own domain name.

7. No Advertisements/Social Media

Don’t just rely on having the correct keywords because chances are, there are hundreds or thousands of sites out there with the correct keywords too! If you really want to attract those large numbers of visitors, then promote your site using social media like Facebook or YouTube. Contact other blog/site owners and ask for a backlink to your site. Make sure that your backlinks come from sites that are of the same topic as yours.

8. Black Hat SEO

We should always follow rules and even SEO has rules. When we don’t follow these rules, we are practicing what is called Black Hat SEO. If the search engines find you playing around with illegal practices, they can remove your site from their listings. Examples of Black Hat include stuffing your site with nothing but keywords (people visit sites to read the contents; keywords just guide people to the site), or joining free for all (FFA) pages. These are pages with links to completely unrelated sites.

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