The 10 most expensive SEO mistakes you should avoid!BY TERENCE SIM
Do you currently have a website? Or do you plan to design and develop a new website soon? No matter which side of the fence you’re on, it’s important that you know the importance of search traffic you can get from search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
Traffic to Internet Marketers is as important as the location of your real estate. That is the KEY component and really, the only one that really matters. If you cannot generate highly targeted traffic to your site, you will not make money. Period.
Most of the customers that we encounter usually designate their company’s web designer or IT personnel to drive traffic to their website. That is unfortunately going to fail from day one because their job specs are vastly different.
A Web Designer is not the same as a Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Specialist. Would you get your GP to operate on your body since both of them are Doctors? Probably not. The same should be applied for your business which is your bread and butter.
Many web designers do not understand the importance of Search Engine visibility, which leads to highly targeted traffic. Many designers are capable of designing a solid well designed ‘pretty’ website.
However, they have no idea what to do when it comes to SEO. Below is a list of common mistakes that you should avoid. By sticking closely to the guidelines, we hope you can generate more targeted traffic, and thereafter, earn more sales from your website.
1 ) Keywords Missing from Website
This is one of the most important area for your website. Are the users and search engines, ‘seeing’ the main keywords on your website?
If you can choose and utilise the correct keywords, potential clients can find your website. If the keywords aren’t there, how can search engine list you on their Search Engine Results Page (SERP)?
2 ) Keyword Density
Some clients who have heard of Keyword Density have asked us this question : “Can we use the same keywords over and over again?
Repeat it many many times on the site?” We termed this Keyword Stacking. Search Engines are highly intelligent and if they know that you are trying to spam them, they will downgrade or even skip the page or site.We recommend a strict percentage of times for the keywords to appear in different variations on all pages of your site.
3 ) Copy & Paste from other sites
Hands up if you read this with a grin. Have you ever copy and paste a paragraph of text on other sites and us eit on your website? If you do, this should be high alert. Do you know that Search Engines are able to know whether the content on your site are original content or copied content? If they detect page duplication, you may be even blacklisted by the Search Engines.
There are many examples of “Black Hat SEO” on the Internet which you can Google and read up on. The most popular being the BMW Germany ban (2006) and the JC Penny SEO case (2011).
4 ) Placing in unrelated keywords
Some unethical SEO companies who engage in “Black Hat SEO” will try and convince you that they can do an SEO job for you for 50 keywords, at a fraction of the cost as compared to another legitimate company, and yet they are able to produce results in one month. If it is too real to be true, it probably is.
What some of these companies do is that they key in keywords onto both the front end and back end of a website. They place totally unrelated keywords such as “sex” and “paris hilton” into your Meta Description, Meta Keywords and etc. They also place in White Font on White Background so that the website owner may not be able to read the words.
This technique is considered spam by search engines and may cause the website to be removed from the search engine results page (SERP).
5 ) Keywords Stuffing
Some web designers think that by placing in 50 times their main keyword on their homepage will result in their page being listed #1 on Google. That is a big MYTH on the Internet. This point differs slightly from the one above as some web designers may choose to spam the “alt=attribute” on 100s of their e-commerce pictures on the site.
If Google find out that the alt txt does not really match with the product, they will consider it as spam.
6 ) Hidden Text
Some web designers think that if you can’t see the word, it is OK to place it there. This is wrong. Do not. I repeat, DO NOT try to hide your keywords by making them invisible. Google will know and they will hurt you where it hurts the most, your organic ranking.
7 ) Small Text
Some web designers try to place in popular keywords in extremely small font on the site. They think that as long as the users cannot see it, and that they can fool the Search Engines to see the text, they are doing a great job in SEO.
Again, Google will be able to know and will thereafter penalise you.
8 ) Google=Yahoo?
Many companies or Marketing Managers assume that Google and Yahoo are the same. Some clients even thought that they are the same company. Unfortunately for many Digital Marketing agencies, this is not the case. Google and Yahoo have their own Algorithm and hence, will display different results for the same keywords.
Internet Marketers make it a point to master what each search engines needs for high visibility and hence, is able to deliver what client wants.
9 ) Cheap Hosting!
Client have always source for cheaper alternatives. However, when it comes to hosting, we always encourage our customers to have their server in the country of their main business. Cheap is not good and good is not cheap. Cheap hosting usually experience high lag time, low bandwidth allowance, frequent downtim and etc.
Try to pay a reasonable amount of money for a more stable hosting. Remember that one of the main algorithm for SEO is also the speed index of your website. How fast you can display your website fully to your customers will also affect your SEO ranking.
10 ) Missing web page elements.
Some web designers built a site that has 50-100 pages and missed out on certain deadlinks or invalid images on the site. Do take extra care in building as a bad site that you give your user, means a bad ranking on Google and Yahoo.
Terence Sim, Sales Manager, iClick Media Pte. Ltd.