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Five of the Most Common Search Engine Optimisation Mistakes

Search engine optimisation is an essential part of running any website.  You have to continually work to optimize your site for the sake of its visibility.  Without proper search engine optimisation tactics, you may have the best site in the world no one can find or ever sees.  Working with what Google and other search engine giants utilise for algorithms, to crawl websites and rank in their search engines, is pivotal.  There are many common SEO mistakes people make, and it is the avoidance of the mistakes that can lead to short and long-term success.

Every search engine has an algorithm that they utilise.  The algorithms vary from one search engine to the next.  The algorithm that Google uses is different than the one that Yahoo has.  You have to obtain knowledge so that you can try and play to all parties.  To maintain the highest status possible on search engines, you have to do initial optimisation, followed up by continuous monitoring.  Search engine optimisation is not a one and done thing.  No one is immune to SEO mistakes either.  Experts, as well as folks new to the search engine optimisation game,  will hit some fallbacks.  It is about being active to monitor for these mistakes, to detect them and correct as quickly as possible.  
As stated, there are classic SEO mistakes that everyone makes from time to time.  We have put down in detail some of the more common SEO mistakes to raise awareness and help with avoidance.

1. Forgetting About the Need for Quality Content

One of the more common SEO mistakes is forgetting about the value of good, quality content.  The whole purpose of a search engine like Google or Yahoo is to do good work, to provide quality content to readers.  The algorithm build is done in such a way that they are indexing content that is quality, relevant, as well as unique.  Some search engine optimisation professionals will try and play the system, manipulate things to gain shortcuts.  While these may work in the near-term, they are not quality, long-term solutions.

The shortcuts taken by some search engine optimisation professionals lead to the demise of quality content, a lack of overall effort in content creation.  The technique, known as “Black Hat” in the search engine optimisation world, is not a good one.  It is all about using search engine optimisation tricks, flooding search engines with keywords, using invisible test injection, reciprocal links, etc.  You may get a boost initially, but Google and Yahoo are too smart not to catch on.

Once the search engines figure out the tricks, which they do with algorithm updates that are frequent, your site is going to be demoted or maybe even removed from indexing on the search engines.  Why would you want to take such a risk to get some short-term gains?  SEO mistakes grounded in reliance on tricks are prevalent.  Instead, what you want is to have a site that is the authority when it comes to the content creation taking place.  You want top-notch content users can rely on, and search engines can put in trust.  Prioritise quality content, and the gains will come, over time.

2. Search Engine Optimisation One and Done

Another of the more common SEO mistakes is thinking that search engine optimisation is a one and done effort.  You have to monitor search engine optimisation continuously.  It is not something you can achieve success with one time and expect to have a high ranking on a Google search engine page forever.  Businesses may hire search engine optimisation consultants, get results, and then get rid of them thinking they are good to go for the long-haul.  They are not!

Search engine optimisation is no different than having a quality marketing campaign.  The campaign may boost sales in the short-term, but when it ends, they fall off again.  You need to have continuous marketing, continuous search engine optimisation so that you can maintain momentum.  Once you start to gain in the search engine rankings, keep the pressure on so that you can build on the success you have had thus far.  

3. Link Building Failures

It was not that long ago that search engines put a lot of reliance on keywords when doing the indexing.  Google and Yahoo used to figure out which sites had specific keywords users would search on, locate and them promote them in the rankings.  Everyone is now an expert when it comes to cramming content with keywords, and the search engines have caught on.  Algorithms have been updated by Yahoo and Google so that they look for far more than just keywords.  The search engines want a site that is the authority and needs evidence of it beyond just the keywords within the piece.  One way that the search engines look for authority is to take a peek at the quality of the inbound links.

Inbound links are the links that come from other sites that lead users to your content.  A great example of this would be someone who writes an exclusive news story on their website, only for several other sites to reference and link the original piece.  That type of inbound link will assist as you try to gain credibility with the search engine giants.  

It is not just about having links coming into your site, though, they need to be quality inbound links.  Having links coming in from a range of different sites can be significant.  Examples may include forums, blogs, industry sites, etc.  When you have inbound links that are of high quality, the search engines see these as endorsements, to build up your claim as the authority on the internet for content.  

Common SEO mistakes revolve around poor link building.  Poor link building may encompass not doing any link building at all, or just having links flying from one site to the next that does not give you much credibility, authority.  You do not want to take your link building strategy and put it on the back burner.  Leading to search engine optimisation success can be pivotal.

4. Too General With the Keywords

We talk a bit about how keywords are not as relevant as they were prior with the search engines.  While this is true, you still want to have some keywords, keyword strings that link up with what individuals search for on a Google or Yahoo engine.  

The keyword is still a key factor to help users finding the right content they want.  When a user searches for a phrase on a site, when they look for a particular piece of content, a keyword will be a factor in matching them up.  

The trick with keywords is to be very specific, to find your niche.  If you are selling used cars, going with a keyword that is just “used cars” is far too general.  Know your target market and have a keyword string more of a target, such as “used cars under $10,000 in Boston, MA.”  When a user searches for inexpensive used cars is that geographical area, you will be more likely to get a matchup on the search.  Seeking out general consumers will do very little to assist in the growth of your site.

5. Forget the Pyro

Companies spend far too much time making sure their site looks flashy.  Web developers will utilise flash, graphics, to make the site look like a pyrotechnic show.  While the site itself may look amazing, with plenty of flashes, it can make it very hard for search engines to index.  You want to have a site which is friendly to Google and Yahoo.  If the search engines are struggling to index your site due to the flashy design of it, you have a problem.  You may have the prettiest site in the world that no one ever sees.  This is a common SEO mistake as you want the site to look good, but not to the detriment of where you rank on search engines.

Search engine optimisation is a delicate game, one which you have to develop a strategy around short and long-term.  Continuous search engine optimisation is the name of the game.  Having an awareness of the most common SEO mistakes is also pivotal.  When you understand the most common mistakes, you may be able to catch yourself better if you go down a rabbit hole.  Know the common mistakes, how to deal with them, so your site does not falter as a result.  


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What is SEO

Below is a small list of links which will help you in your journey into search engine success, these articles will offer insight and valuable tools to help you leverage the web to its potential.

[ What is SEO? | What is a Rank Tracker | Google Change History | Shopify SEO ]

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