The strange and mysterious world of search engine optimisation still confuses the best marketers. The trouble with SEO is that the best practices are constantly changing. Google and the other search engines are always changing their algorithms. They’re getting smarter and smarter. The tricks that used to work wonders for SEO are now damaging. This handy list will bust the SEO myths out there and set you on the right track.
- Going over the top with keywords – Once upon a time, Google indexed its search results based entirely on keywords. If you were a surfing website, all you had to do was repeat the words ‘surfing’ over and over. Lots of keywords meant high Google rank. Not anymore. In fact, under new algorithms, you’ll be penalised for doing so. Keep it simple, use keywords, but sparingly. Trust that Google is clever enough to figure it out from your titles and good copy.
- Forgetting related keywords – Those main keywords, like ‘surfing’ are still important. Use them in your headings and titles. However, don’t forget all the surrounding words that are associated. Extra words like ‘beach’, ‘surfboard’, ‘waves’ and ‘Hawaii’. Use your initiative here and make sure these additional words are in your copy.
- Your website takes an age to load – You can do incredible things with websites these days. You can implement scrolling photo galleries, flash videos and games. These are all great, but they slow your website down. Google hates a slow website! You need a loading time of a second or less to please the Google crawlers.
- Failing to use unique titles, urls and tags – One of the best SEO practices is diversifying your keywords and tags. Don’t replicate the same phrases, titles and urls. Keep it varied and cover all the related keywords in your area.
- Forgetting about internal links. – All the good SEO marketing companies will implore the importance of linking. Securing strong links to your site from others helps build authority and Google love that. However, don’t forget to link to yourself! It builds a strong network and foundation of links throughout your site. It also helps keep people on your page for longer, which helps boost page ranking.
- Focusing on quantity over quality – Modern day SEO is all about quality. Google don’t care about the sheer volume of links that point to your site. They care about the authority of those that do. The bigger and better the sites that link to you, the stronger your page rank. This goes for your content too. Focus on making fantastic, shareable content. Don’t worry about quantity, just make it good content.
- Writing for search engines, not your readers – We’ve saved the big one for last. Although SEO is important, your readers and customers are more important. Don’t write your content specifically for SEO. Write it because it means something. Write it because it’s useful, entertaining or vital. Engage your readers and they will share it far and wide. That is far better for your SEO than cramming in keywords.
Are you making any of these big SEO mistakes? If you are, today is the day to make the change! Look for natural ways to build you search engine presence and you’ll be rewarded.