Top 5 SEO Mistakes to Avoid
So you have your brand new, shiny website and it looks amazing. One thing you seem to be missing, however, are all those visitors to your site that you were expecting. Well, unfortunately having a great looking site does not guarantee visitors or sales. So just how do you get your website found on Google, Bing and other search engines?
This article approaches the problem from a slightly different point of view. It looks at the top 5 search engine optimization mistakes being made by thousands of businesses across the globe. Making sure you avoid these mistakes can significantly improve your chances of being found on Google and therefore generate more sales for your business. These mistakes are not necessarily the worst mistakes you can make to affect your search engine positioning but could be considered the most common mistakes being made.
1. Not Having a Website That Search Engines Can Crawl.
In layman’s terms, this means ensuring all your links actually work and none are broken. Additionally having an entire website built using Flash will mean your site does not get crawled correctly.
Google uses bots that go online and crawl through your website, analyzing it for content and the overall theme of the page and site. This is one of the ways that your website is then ranked by Google. Broken links mean pages are being missed by the search engine and as such these pages cannot be ranked.
2. Not Making Each Page Unique.
A little knowledge can be dangerous. When you first start up your website you learn about keywords. You may think you need to cover every possible keyword that your users could be typing into the search engine. Many people simply place hundreds of keywords into each page and copy them over to each additional page they add.
This is one of the worst mistakes you can make. Google attempts to figure out what the topic of each page on your website is. If you use the same keywords throughout it will not rank your pages appropriately. For each page, select a few keywords and then use them sparingly on the actual page content.
3. Spending Too Much Time Trying To Get Links to Your Site.
Another misconception among new website owners is thinking that exchanging links with other companies will boost your rankings. Many moons ago this would have worked. Google would count inbound links and use that as a means to gauge how popular your site was. Whilst they still use this to a certain extent, if they see lots of reciprocal links they will discount them. Spend more time on providing quality content on your site and less time on exchanging links.
4. Poorly Worded Titles & Meta Tags
This is an area often overlooked. Consider this example: You call your first page “Home Page” and you use this as a page title. You then use a meta tag description to tell people “This is our Home Page.” Now imagine you are a customer searching on Google for the service or product you are offering. Hundreds of companies are displayed. Does the customer click on the one that tells them it’s a home page? Or do they click on the one that entices them by telling them what the page is offering and a brief description of the page? Take your time and make sure you come up with the best titles and tags for each page.
5. Not Making Full Use of Free SEO Tools.
There are a wide range of tools available to assist you in marketing your site and assisting with your search engine optimization. Some of these will analyze each page on your site for broken links, keyword density (how often your keywords appear in the content of the page), keyword stuffing (using hundreds of keywords that are not useful for the page) and quality inbound links (links from high-quality articles that link to your site; no reciprocal links).
By ensuring you don’t fall into the traps above; and making sure you dedicate the right amount of time each month to your search engine optimization strategy, you can start to reap the rewards of better search engine positions. Ensuring you have quality content on your site will also keep customers coming back for more.