Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, can seem daunting to most, with a lot of people not knowing what SEO is, or simply just not fully understanding it. In truth, anyone can create SEO content – with the right skills and know how – and it is incredibly valuable to have your website technically optimized so it isn’t lost among all the other results a search engine can find. However, there are many common SEO mistakes that are still in practice thanks to outdated SEO knowledge and black hat techniques that you should avoid.
One of the common issues faced by new websites is that they have no sitemaps. They have a lot of loosely connected web pages, but no real structure connecting them. A sitemap tells search engines, like Google, how your site is arranged, and the best way to navigate through your website. If there is no sitemap, and different web pages aren’t linked together, a search engine may miss a webpage with the most relevant information, and you’ll miss out on traffic.
Backlinks are used in SEO to help build the trustworthiness of site by linking other trusted websites. When a backlink is broken, it often returns a 404 response, stating the page does not exist. If a search engine continues to be directed to 404 pages, your website rankings drop, as the search engine will begin to view your site as a waste of resources. When creating backlinks, always ensure there are no mistakes in the URL and that it actually leads to a relevant page. It is also good practice to check on older backlinks as some websites will delete content, change URLs, or simply stop existing.
Internal links point one of your website’s pages to another page on your website. One of the factors that search engines use when ranking results is the average amount of time users spend on your site. Using internal links are a very powerful way of keeping users on your website longer. The important mistake to avoid is creating an unpleasant environment on your website.
If you’ve created a blog post or any other piece of content, try keeping the entire piece on one page. For example, if you’ve made a video, it’s perfectly acceptable to have some text to preface the video that’s just further down on the page, and include an internal link to another piece of content that is relevant to the video, but not necessary to click on to view the video. Another method that has become popular, but has led to people leaving websites very quickly and harming rankings is having a one page piece of content spread over several pages, forcing users to view several pages before they get to the content they wanted, for example a multi-page slide show.
Keywords are the words used in a search. When someone types a keyword into their search engine, the search engine finds all the relevant web pages that make use of these words. For example, the keywords “SEO Company” or “SEO content creators” would have brought you to this website. While utilizing keywords is still a huge part of SEO, there are two very big mistakes people make when they begin to see their traffic grow
The first is keyword cannibalization, which is when a website has the same keyword dominating the majority of your site. This mistake is made because people believe if they use the same keyword on multiple pages, search engine results will return more results, and dominate the search results. Unfortunately, this isn’t how search algorithms work, and having the same keyword repeated multiple times will just confuse the algorithm, and while your site may have more search engine results, they are often further down, such as on the fourth page of results which receives very few views.
The second mistake is forgetting the keywords that made you rank. If older webpages aren’t updated, search engine algorithms will always try to put more recently updated pages first. While in the search for more traffic and new relevant keywords, many websites forget about the keywords that brought you traffic in the first place. The trick is to keep keywords in rotation when creating content, but also ensure your key webpages are regularly updated, and that the keyword you are using is still relevant.
Should you be interested in implementing SEO on your website, and have SEO content specially created for your needs, please feel free to contact us, and give your website the special Connectica touch.