Top Ten SEO Mistakes to Avoid like the Plague
October 26, 2010
There are hundreds of things at any given moment that can go wrong in any SEO campaign; although some of those things are going to happen at some point, there are ten major flub-ups that need to be avoided at all costs to lessen the chance of catastrophes happening. Unless you are running a SEO campaign that you hope is going to go up in flames like the Hindenburg (why would you do that?), you are going to want to pay close attention here and take some notes.
#1: Not Having the Right Title of a Page
Your title is the first thing that crawlers encounter when they visit your Web page, even when your link appears in the search results page- it is your title that attracts users and makes them go click-happy. Shame on you if you use deceptive page titles. You need to use keywords in that title and be clear and concise. Here’s another title tip: Do NOT use the same title for all of the pages belonging to a website. Boo. Every page needs to have its own unique title.
#2: Not Focusing on the Right Keywords
Okay, we all know that when it comes to SEO the buzzword is “keyword”. With so much money being spent on those small but mighty words you have got to make sure you are targeting the right ones. Take the time to do some research and get those key phrases and keywords right or your Hindenburg is going to catch on fire for sure. Don’t just assume you know which keywords your target market is using, Smarty Pants.
#3: Having No Textual Content
This one probably goes without saying, but all the same, no matter how colorful and photogenically attractive a website is, if it doesn’t have enough text, the search engines are never going to find out what the site’s purpose is. Blimp on Fire, anyone?
#4: Having the Wrong Content
See #3 above.
#5. Choosing the Wrong Target Market
It does no good to anyone if you are trying to sell the latest risque fashions to a nun. You have to design everything about the site in such a way that it appeals to and attracts the right audience. Have a hot music website be appealing to the younger crowd and a website about geriatric walkers make Granny get up and dance with large text and content that reassures her that your walkers and canes are going to really get her moving.
#6: Indiscriminate use of graphics and animations
No one disputes the fact that graphics and animations look cool, but these are like movies: the more you see them the less attractive they are. Keep it simple but purposeful, and you’ll find plenty of repeat customers asking for an encore.
#7: Not using Header Tags
These are super important because they are supposed to highlight the point of your Web page. For some reason people use bigger fonts for the tag, which is a faux pas in SEO. Search engines look for important keywords in these header tags, so use them to highlight your text, not bigger font. Bigger is not always better.
#8: Using Keywords to Death
Perhaps there is no explanation needed here, but to prevent a disaster we’ll speak briefly. If you use keywords too many times, all you are going to accomplish is getting the website blacklisted on the search engines. Beginner SEO-ites instinctively often think that the more keywords they have, the better. I smell a fire. Be natural with keywords- write for Internet users, don’t write for the benefit of the search engines.
#9: Improper Linking
Linking is a very powerful and positive SEO method, but only if it is done the right way. Keep in mind that indiscriminate incoming and outgoing links are going to severely damage search engine rankings, so you need to get inbound links from reputed websites.
#1: Not Jumping on the Blogging Bandwagon
Even if not blogging doesn’t directly affect your rankings (although it very well might), you need to get writing because chances are super huge that your competitors are blogging away like crazy people to rake in that highly relevant traffic.
Avoid these top ten SEO mistakes and you’ll ensure that your campaigns are going to avoid going up in flames. Oh, the humanity!