Best practices surrounding digital marketing and search engine optimization are abundant. While the industry changes rapidly as a whole, SEO professionals have grown accustomed to explaining a simple, cardinal, and timeless rule of SEO: focus on the end-user, not Google, and your site will perform well. Of course, this is a massive oversimplification, but the concept rings true.
Google’s algorithm is an extremely complex system that ranks websites that are best able to answer the inquiries of the searcher. When SEO “best practices” first hit the scene, white hat and black hat digital marketing professionals hit the ground running. While Google no longer ranks those websites that employ black hat strategies, the lines have blurred a bit when it comes to deploying a plan that actually works. Even some white hat techniques that used to work may now result in a site being penalized. As such, it is extremely important to keep a finger on the pulse of SEO strategy for today and tomorrow.
The competition runs rampant in most industries and that means SEO professionals are tasked with being efficient, smart, and fast in order to optimize with both short-term and long-term strategy in mind. Google’s algorithm can feel like a moving target, updating in an overwhelming frequent fashion. This often causes the SEO industry rumor mill to work in overdrive and can muddy the waters of myth and truth.
From message boards to blog posts, digging through the internet for accurate, timely SEO tactics can be a major headache. As a result, SEO professionals have fallen victim to deploying SEO strategy that ends up being a major mistake. Today, we aim to uncover some of the most common SEO mistakes made in order to avoid them in your own marketing plan.
The Most Common SEO Mistakes
SEO used to be one of the most straightforward aspects of digital marketing, but as the internet adds millions of pages each day, the intricacies of SEO have evolved tremendously. From keywords to content strategy, from title tags to link building, and from off-page SEO strategy to data analytics, the list of “basic” SEO principles seems endless.
No matter how big or small a company may be, having an online presence means having an SEO strategy. Marketers and business owners who hope to keep traffic flowing to their websites must do their best to avoid the following SEO mistakes:
- Failing to optimize for local search
- Focusing on generic keywords instead of specific phrases
- Not using Google Analytics to its full capacity
- Producing irrelevant, lean, or outdated content
- Putting more emphasis on traffic than conversion
- Neglecting an internal linking strategy, which includes optimized anchor text
- Disregarding the importance of unique meta descriptions and title tags
- Paying too much attention on the number of links, instead of the quality of links
- Creating content that adds no value
- Adding a ton of pages instead of optimizing and updating current pages
Some of the above mistakes may seem simple, but you would be surprised to find how many SEO “experts” commit them every single day. Either by oversight or a lack of a centralized strategy, SEO mistakes can have a long-lasting impact on a website’s ability to rank.
The reality is that SEO can truly be infuriating. Google’s algorithm aims to reward quality sites and punish poor quality sites, and this means that it is constantly being tweaked and corrected. The good news is that a solid SEO foundation should protect your website from any drastic drops in rankings, no matter how drastic the algorithm update. However, it is easy to become complacent and fail to revisit some of the SEO tactics employed years ago.
Take the time to evaluate how your SEO strategy is working and whether or not it meets today’s standards. At Big Customer Network, we are SEO experts with years of experience in getting our clients to rank. Contact us today to learn more about our SEO services.