If you want your website to stand the test of time, SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) mistakes are the first thing you need to chuck out. Entering the good books of Google (Bing and Yahoo too) is possible only by following the right SEO practices. Solid footing in SEO does not happen overnight. Persistent effort over time is essential to grab top listing in Google’s SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).
There are some common and deadly SEO practices followed by many companies. If you are a small business wanting to publicise your products/services through great website content, avoid SEO mistakes at all costs. Google downgrades the ranking of the web pages indulging in those mistakes. Some of these common SEO mistakes are listed below. If SEO is your primary traffic strategy, stay with us.
Consult efficient website developers like Web-Network to develop a website that adhere to the best practices of SEO.
1. No optimisation for local search
Not optimising your site for local search is a grave SEO mistake. You need to set up your site in such a way that your local address, phone number and other contact details are available to Google and other search engines. If your business is targeting one or more specific geographical locations, make sure to register your site with Google Local Search. According to reports 73% of all online activity is related to local content. Optimising your website for local search becomes significant if your business is intended to serve region-specific customers. Here you need to go beyond global keywords. Your page titles and Meta descriptions should contain region-specific keywords.
2. No Image tags
Adding images in your website that match with the content is a great thing to do. But not assigning a text in html mark-up for an image is a mistake that need to be cast off immediately. You need to ensure that your developer assigns meaningful and appropriate alt tags and title tags to all images in your website.
3. No xml site map
Xml (Extensible Markup Language) site map tells Google and other search engines of the hierarchical relationship of different pages of your site. The main job of it is to enable indexation. It sends information about the URLs that make up a site. Ask your site developer to create an xml site map for your website.
4. Keyword stuffing
Filling a web page with words and phrases with the intention of manipulating a site’s rankings in Google’s search results is indeed a deadly SEO mistake. Keyword stuffing used to be seen as an SEO technique, but excessive stuffing may pave the way to even website banning and penalisation by the search engines. Packing the Meta tags and content of a web page with keywords gives poor and substandard appearance in terms of webpage quality. Therefore, stay away from this shady tactic.
5. Copied and duplicate content
Copied/duplicate content is nothing but substantive blocks of content that is copied from other websites. In other words, content that can be found at multiple URLs fall under this category. When there are numerous pieces of duplicate content on the Internet, search engines find it difficult to decide the most relevant content, and hence, show only one version (most likely the original or the best). Best search experience can be ensured by avoiding copied and duplicate content in your web pages.
6. Broken links
Links that are either pointing nowhere or not pointing to the location they are intended to look at are broken links. Hyperlinks from your web page that no longer point to the intended destination damage the user experience, dip your search engine rankings and lower traffic to your website. Google is keen on sending high quality websites to its searchers. Sites with broken links fail to impress Google. Broken links occur mainly because of linking to a third-party webpage (external links) that has been removed or renamed. It is better to make use of internal links (linking to one page on your site to another) as you have more control over them. Remember that bad links, broken images and 404 errors are a sure shot way to dig the graveyard for your website.
7. Overlooking site structure
A well-organised site structure is imperative in making your site search engine-optimised. Sites with rigorous and streamlined structure have more chance of getting higher ranking in the search engines. A logically structured and cognitively satisfying website appeals to users. This will cut bounce rate and increase dwell time. Crawlers can easily move about these sites and get indexed by spiders. All these lead to enhanced SEO rankings.
8. Irrelevant anchor text links
Anchor text is nothing but the clickable text in hyperlink. Giving irrelevant anchor links is a grave SEO mistake. If the text that appears on hyperlinks is not representative of the content of the target page, they are irrelevant anchor text links. Search engines determine the significance and theme of the source page and the page that it is linking to, based on the anchor text. Therefore, cleverly-phrased anchor text links is better than generic texts (like ‘click here’).
9. No title tags and Meta descriptions
Pages not having titles representing the content, or more than one page having the same title are grave SEO mistakes. Title tags define the title of a document, and hence, they should ideally contain keywords in it. Title tags need to be unique also. It is also important that pages should have appropriate Meta description (the 160 character brief extract of the web page’s content) in their html mark-up. The Meta description appears under your page’s URL as a snippet in the search results. It functions as a sales pitch for your web page. Therefore, make it as impressive as possible.
10. Links from non-credible sources
Links to your site from not-so-authoritative sources can be an SEO error. A few quality links are better than links from 100 un-trusted or not-so-authoritative sources. Linking to credible third-party sites will enhance your organic traffic. The website that you are linking should be in the same niche as yours. They should be relevant to your areas.
11. Not optimised with the right keywords
Keywords are the foundation ingredients for your SEO efforts. Overlooking them is a faulty practice. The content should be logically stuffed with keywords that others are normally searching for to find the same content. You need to have a keyword list containing the probable words that people might type in the Google search bar. It will be connected to the products, services or information that you offer. These keywords need to be rationally scattered across the content of your webpage. This enables the users to land on your site, thereby helping your site to rank above your competitors. In a nutshell, it is prudent to spend some time on keyword brainstorming.
12. Ignoring URLs
Ignoring URL optimisation might pave the way for low ranking for your website. Good URLs with keywords integrated in it is essential. Search engines scan the URLs to understand the content and try to match the searched keywords with the URL.
13. Not using Analytics
Not setting up Google Analytics and webmaster tools for your website is another SEO mistake. Analytics tools are important as they allow you to measure and monitor traffic to your website. They help you to do conversion tracking effectively. Measuring your website data assists you in getting a comprehensible idea about which areas of your site are performing well. Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools are helpful in measuring the relevant data.
In order not to get any Google slap, it is better to stay away from these SEO mistakes. Keeping up good SEO practices will defend the integrity of your website, besides helping it score high in terms of search engine ranking.
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