What factors go into effective website SEO? Not even the experts can guess at every aspect of how search engine algorithms work – while some ranking factors are confirmed, others can only be speculated about. For someone who’s new to SEO, it can all be baffling.
But knowing what mistakes to avoid can at least give you a starting point for improving your website SEO. By avoiding missteps like keyword stuffing or content duplication, you can improve your website SEO and achieve better results in search rankings. From using too many keywords, to neglecting your content and your analytics, these are the SEO mistakes you shouldn’t still be making in 2023.
Overdoing the Keywords
You might think that the more search keywords you wedge into a piece of content, the more search traffic you’d get. You’d be wrong – that’s keyword stuffing, and it hasn’t been effective for a very long time. While it was popular in the Wild West days of the early internet, keyword stuffing didn’t prove to be a very effective long-term SEO strategy because it’s hard to stuff tons of keywords into a piece of content and still produce a good piece of content.
Some webmasters went so far as to write keywords on the page background in white text that blended in, in order to rank for more terms.
Instead, choose a primary and a secondary keyword relevant to your content and to your products, services, or industry. Use your primary keyword in the opening paragraph, in the closing paragraph, and two or three times in the rest of the body. Use your secondary keyword and related keywords one or two times. Each page of your website should have a different keyword. Don’t try to rank for multiple keywords on the same page; that’s very hard to achieve.
Neglecting Quality Content
Producing good content is probably the single most important thing you can do to improve your website SEO. Neglect good content at your peril.
The content on your website should be useful to viewers – it should give them information they want or entertain them in some way. It should create community by encouraging viewers to share it on social media or by encouraging them to comment on blog posts. Each page should contain original content – duplicating content harms your SEO. Add photos to written content and publish video content, too.
Forgetting About Local SEO
A local business that forgets about local SEO is leaving money on the table. If you’re a small, local business, people in your local area are the ones who will be buying your products and services. You don’t need to attract the attention of a national or global audience – you need to get the attention of your neighbors.
You need to use localized keywords. If you want to attract digital marketing clients in Arizona, for example, you should use a keyword like “SEO agency Phoenix” to attract those searches.
Optimizing your website for local search will cut out a lot of the traffic you might get from national and global searches. But the traffic you do get will be of more use to you, because they’ll be more likely to complete a purchase.
Skipping On-Page Optimization
Backlinks are a great way to lend authority to your site, but on-page optimization is still important. Today’s search engine algorithms rank websites in part by how responsive they are – do they load quickly, are they mobile-friendly, and are they easy to navigate?
Lots of people are using phones and tablets to get online a lot of the time now, so your website needs to be just as user-friendly in a mobile browser as on a desktop. You should also edit your metadata to include your chosen keywords on each page.
Eschewing Analytical Tools
What’s the point of trying to improve your SEO if you’re not going to pay attention to your analytics? Monitoring your website’s traffic, conversions, and rankings can help you improve your SEO strategy and learn more about what your customers want. Learn how to understand the data in your analytics tools so you can make better choices in the future.
Don’t let common SEO mistakes drag your website down! Learn what missteps to avoid, and what to do instead. SEO skills can take time to develop, but they’re well worth cultivating. You can save money on marketing while still getting plenty of organic search traffic if you know how to get your website to the top of search returns.