Let’s face it—we’ve all made some common SEO mistakes before, even the savviest of SEO specialists can fall victim to common SEO mistakes that leave their sites with limited visibility and exposure. But thankfully, those same pitfalls are also fairly easy to identify and correct.
SEO is an ever-changing beast that requires constant monitoring and upkeep to ensure your site is meeting the standards for search engines. New algorithms are introduced almost monthly, and the methods you used a few months ago might not be as effective today.
Search engine optimization isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to be complicated either. Keep reading for some useful tips on how to avoid making common SEO mistakes so that your site performs optimally in search results.
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Common SEO Mistakes That You Need To Avoid
Using the Wrong Keywords
One of the most common SEO mistakes that many businesses make is using the wrong keywords. Remember that when building out your content, you should be focused on the user, not the search engine.
You want to use keywords that your target audience is searching for but also keywords that are contextually relevant to your page topic. If you’re not sure which keywords to target, Google’s Keyword Planner is a great place to start, as it gives you both the number of searches for each keyword and the difficulty level of each keyword.
You can also use tools like SEMrush to see what keywords your competitors are ranking for and implement those same keywords on your site. Of course, be careful not to go overboard with this approach.
Although using the right keywords is important, using too many of the same keywords—even if they’re relevant—can be a red flag for Google and can actually hurt your rankings.
Improper Use of Anchor Text
Another common SEO mistake is the improper use of anchor text. Anchor text is what’s used to link one page to another page on your website.
If you’re not using your anchor text properly, you can actually do more harm than good to your rankings. Rather than improving your ranking for the keywords you’re targeting, you could actually hurt your ranking if you use the wrong anchor text.
Where keyword research is the process of finding the right keywords to target, anchor text selection is the process of choosing the right words to use as your hyperlinks. The anchor text appears in blue whenever someone clicks on your link.
You want to use descriptive anchor text that accurately reflects the destination of the link. You don’t want the anchor text to be too general or too specific. If it’s too general, it won’t be helpful for the person clicking on your link. If it’s too specific, it may not be relevant to the page you’re linking to.
Poor User Experience
A poor user experience can come in many forms. Not only does it affect how customers view your brand, but it can also hurt your search engine rankings. Remember that SEO is only one piece of the puzzle when it comes to ranking highly in search engines.
Your website needs to be user-friendly and easy to navigate, and provide high-quality content for your customers. If you’re making a lot of SEO mistakes or focusing too much on SEO, then you may be hurting your chances of showing up on the first page of Google.
This is because Google looks for websites that provide an excellent user experience. In fact, Google has openly discussed how they measure user experience and how this impacts SEO. So, if your website isn’t user-friendly, is difficult to navigate, or if you’re making a lot of SEO mistakes, then Google can penalize your website’s rankings.
Publishing duplicate content
Another common SEO mistake is publishing duplicate content across your website. Duplicate content is when the same piece of content is published on multiple pages or on multiple websites.
There are some exceptions to this, such as blog comments or forum posts, but generally, you want to avoid publishing duplicate content as much as possible.
Publishing duplicate content can be detrimental to your SEO efforts. Google penalizes websites that have duplicate content, so it’s important that you avoid publishing duplicate content on your website as well as on other websites.
To avoid this, you can use a content management system (CMS) like WordPress to create unique and engaging content for each page on your website.
Failing to diversify your SEO efforts
SEO is not a one-and-done type of strategy. You’ll need to invest in SEO consistently if you want to remain competitive in the search results.
Not all of your SEO strategies will work all the time. You may discover that a certain technique that helped you rank in the past is no longer working for you.
It’s important to be open to change if something isn’t working anymore. Not all of your SEO efforts need to be focused on your website. You can also focus on link building, content syndication, and guest blogging to help boost your website’s visibility.
Over-reliance on backlinks
Backlinks are an important part of your SEO strategy. However, relying on backlinks as the only way to rank on Google is a huge mistake.
You also want to make sure you’re getting backlinks from quality websites that are relevant to your industry. If you’re getting backlinks from ‘spammy sites’, they may actually hurt your website.
Not all links are created equal. Google’s algorithm looks at the authority of the website that’s linking to you. If you get a link from a brand new website with no authority, it’s not going to help you rank nearly as much as a link from a high-authority website.
Incorporating too many strategies at once
It’s important to keep an eye on the big picture when building your SEO strategy. If you start incorporating too many strategies at once, you run the risk of diluting your focus.
You want to focus on one or two key SEO strategies and fully implement those. Then, you can re-evaluate your progress and see what you need to do next.
You don’t want to spend all of your time researching different SEO strategies. You also don’t want to spend all of your time doing the wrong things. Make sure that you have a general plan and that you’re sticking to it so that you can see results.
Final Thoughts on Common SEO Mistakes
SEO is a continuous process that requires a lot of maintenance. It’s important to be on the lookout for new strategies and changes in the industry.
If you can avoid making these common SEO mistakes, you will see an increase in the traffic to your website. SEO is a long process and not something that happens overnight. Be patient and remain consistent and you will see the results soon enough!