SEO is extremely important. We could make a full stop here. In fact, we have already discussed some principals of good SEO such as keywords selection, which are universal, time constant and should be remembered by everyone who cares about high rankings of their website (that is, basically, everyone… because we do not know anyone who would not care about high rankings). It’s time to discuss the SEO mistakes and rubbish you may find on many websites! Because knowing what to do is one thing, but knowing what not to do is a whole new story.
SEO mistake #1: Keyword stuffing (whatsoever) and other traditional SEO techniques
Keyword stuffing – when keyword is implemented too frequently and unnaturally. If you want to sell a silver necklace that is a great silver necklace which fits every women’s outfit because silver necklace is a must-have (sounds irritating, doesn’t?) that is when keyword stuffing happened. Using a lot of relevant and well-arranged keywords is important. Some people think it’s most important. This is why a way, which seemed brilliant some time ago, is unacceptable today – hiding the text from the reader’s eyes. Seemingly clever, because we can implement the keywords stuffing, so we will be better perceived by the search engine algorithm, and by the way, our text, the one seen by the user, will still look natural and non-pushy. Well, this is not the way. The search-engine bots are becoming smarter with time. Keywords stuffing, including a hidden option, is a method that with the current Google algorithms very quickly will be caught and considered illegal and not entirely fair SEO practice. Consequences? As always with SEO mistakes – much lower ranking in the search engine.
The Internet is changing so does SEO algorithm. Today, Google is way smarter than before and it seems to be always a step ahead of its users. It ranks for those keywords that have not been mentioned in your content too. Last year (2019), Google made an algorithmic update called Google BERT. It helps to understand searches and content better than ever before.
SEO mistake #2: Desktop-only optimization
Here we have the latest data for you. Statistics from the first quarter of 2020 shows that over 50% of all traffic comes from mobiles. This is a trend that has been ongoing since 2017. If you still haven’t taken care of mobile-friendliness of your website… well, as if to say it gently, you’re making a major SEO mistake. You decrease your website’s visibility significantly. Don’t ignore mobiles. According to statistics, every second person should read this article on a phone. Do you?
SEO mistake #3: Exact-match anchor text
This is an ideal example of a SEO technique that used to be beneficial but today should be removed from any plan of a self-respecting and reliable SEO specialist.
Example: In this sentence, the blue words are the anchor text that sends you to our blog.
There was a time in SEO history when exact-match anchor text (meaning the same as a keyword) was a huge ranking factor. People used to acquire as many links using keywords as they could. Google clamped down on it. In fact, Google dropped the ranking for websites with unnatural amounts of keyword-rich anchor text backlinks. So if you don’t want to be penalized with lower ranking, the anchor text distribution has to be natural and it has to make sense while reading. There is no strict rule for creating anchor text. In general, it should strike a balance between being informative, but not excessively optimized. Google is now using surrounding text, as well as larger context, to establish link importance and exact-match anchors are no longer necessary for signaling backlink relevance.
Here you have some examples of different, appropriate anchor formats:
- branded anchors, example: Natweb solution
- naked anchors, example: https://natwebsolutions.com
- long-form anchors, example: Here we show you how to test your website for free.
SEO mistake #4: Low-quality content for bots rather than people
Never put SEO and all that machine and algorithms above people. This is a constant rule that we try to remind you of every time we talk about SEO here. Write and create content for people. After all, people are your clients and it is with them that you establish a relationship. A machine will always remain a machine (sorry not sorry Google). SEO and Google’s high ranking allows you to gain new customers. But it’s the quality of your services and your approach to the customer that make people stick to your brand.
If you think you’re smarter than search engines and you can trick them, time to bring you down to earth. The search engines are constantly getting updated. Thus, they inspect thousands of pages every second, constantly learning and acquiring new information. So, to make the most out of the SEO tactics, you must know the common SEO mistakes. Keep yourself updated. Always. Keep testing and checking. Or hire someone who can do it for you. Both your website, including frontend and backend, and your content have to develop constantly because that is what Google does. All we do is to try to keep Google’s pace.
Do you know any other major SEO mistakes? Let us know in comments.