10 Fatal SEO mistakes you need to avoid

SEO is extremely important for every business in the world today. If done correctly, it helps to build your brand and rank your website higher on Google. While a lot of people think SEO is for setting up a website, this is not true. SEO is an ongoing process. You should make sure that you work on all aspects of SEO on a daily basis. For instance, if you are working on SEO content marketing then you should research the right keywords, link internally, include images, etc. to ensure that it reaches the targeted audience. Even though SEO is an integral part of every business operating in today’s digital world, there are a lot of aspects that are easily overlooked or not dealt with the right way. These errors can be harmful to the company’s reputation and you might miss the opportunity to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERP). Here’s a list of such consequential SEO mistakes that you should absolutely refrain from.

Keyword stuffing

We all know the importance of researching and using the right keywords for our content marketing SEO. However, what most SEO specialists do not pay attention to is the fact that the content is filled with keywords, making it sound unnatural.

Yes, content marketing and SEO go hand-in-hand when improving the ranking of your website but keyword stuffing is a no-no. There are a lot of people who use keyword stuffing as an SEO technique in an effort to manipulate the search engine and get ranked on the first page. Little do they know that Google does not appreciate such practices and marks the content as spam. Once you are flagged by the world’s largest search engine, it becomes extremely difficult to rebuild your reputation. You will be left with two options – spend months trying to revamp your content or start from scratch. So, how about avoiding this practice altogether and saving yourself from this hassle?

As a specialist, you should be aware that the optimum keyword density is 1-2%. This means that the keyword should appear once or twice for every 100 words written. Furthermore, a good content marketing SEO strategy can really help you with your ranking. Make sure that you research the right set of keywords, include a mix of short and long-tail keywords, and create stellar content with it.

Ignoring SEO audit

Do you know what keywords are you ranking for? Or your current search position? Can mobile users access your website without any issue?

If you do not have answers to these questions and are completely unaware of them, chances are you are not performing an SEO audit. SEO audits are an integral part of your SEO process. These audits help you identify some major and even minor SEO issues that your website might be experiencing. For instance, you might have experienced a decline in traffic, however, without an SEO audit, you might not be aware of it. Moreover, without an audit, you will also be unaware of the exact reason as to why that happened. It might be due to an internal issue that caused the decline or it might simply be a bad day for your business. Thus, investigating and conducting an SEO audit on a regular basis is extremely essential.

There are a lot of tools (free and paid) that will help you perform an SEO audit. Instead, use a mix of them for a thorough audit. A couple of essential tools are Google Analytics and Google Search Console. These two tools help in understanding the traffic and will also highlight any issues that your website may experience.

Use a variety of tools to check the number of backlinks your website has gained, the keywords you are ranking for, the page speed, etc. However, there is no harm in relying on a single tool, but different tools give you an in-depth insight into your SEO.

Not paying attention to site architecture

A well laid out site architecture helps improve SEO and increases your chances of being ranked on the first page. When building your website, carefully work out the website design and keep your important pages easily accessible.

This is important because a strong site architecture will help Google crawl your website more effectively. As a result, your website pages may be indexed faster and there is a high chance that your website will be displayed with the site links extension. If this happens, your users will now have a way to go to their desired page directly, without having to navigate much.

In case your primary or important pages are tucked inside the other 10 pages, crawling will be ineffective and those important pages might not be indexed. This will harm your business, as your potential customers will be unable to find the information/product/service they are looking for.

Ideally, your primary pages should be accessible within 3 clicks. Anything more than that is not recommended. The sooner Google will crawl and index your page, the higher the chances that your web pages are ranked higher. Also, make sure that your sitemap is displayed in the footer of your website to ensure effective crawling.

Not prioritizing UX and UI

UI and UX are vital aspects of SEO. No longer do websites with poor UI and UX rank on SERPs. Google places a lot of importance on user experience when ranking websites.

But, how does Google measure user experience? There are a few factors that Google considers. One is user intent. If the user searching for a specific problem or question lands on your page but is not satisfied with the information or finds a lot of disruptions such as pop-ups, ads, etc. the user is very likely to bounce off your page. Google understands this behaviour and ranks your user experience accordingly.

Another aspect is page speed. Nobody likes waiting for good 2-3 minutes for a page to load. People today like instant information or instant solution to the problem they are looking for. Thus, if your page takes more than 5 seconds to load, it is considered to have a low user experience.

Third, you should make sure that no disruptive ads, text, or pop-ups take up the much important space on your primary pages. Customers should have a smooth navigation experience and they should be able to find what they are looking for in a jiffy.

Forgetting about the mobile experience

Do you focus on desktop customers only? Or do you also give importance to mobile customers? If you fall into the former group, you are probably losing out on a huge aspect and are also hurting your website’s SEO.

When building a website, you should always keep in mind your mobile customers. Make sure that they experience smooth navigation just like desktop customers. Whatever features are available on your desktop version should also be present in the mobile version of your website.

Pay special attention to the website speed of your mobile version. Users look for pages that can load in under a second. Thus, assess your website through Google Search Console and understand where your website lacks performance.

Creating low-quality content

Content is king. As cliche as this may sound, it is true. High quality, relevant content targeting the right set of keywords will certainly help you rank better. On the contrary, if you do not pay attention to creating high-quality content, no matter what you do, your website will be unable to rank higher.

Low-quality content does not necessarily mean incorrect use of the English language, grammar, etc. Content with irrelevant keywords or keyword stuffing is also considered low-quality. Moreover, content that does not back up its claims is also referred to as low-quality.

You should also make efforts to regularly update your old content. If you published a web page six months ago, and if the laws have changed or you have updated your services or prices, the same should be reflected on your website. Your website is the first point of information that a potential customer will come across, thus it should always be up to date.


Contact Copywriter Collective today to find out more about our content marketing SEO services

Disregarding analytics

A lot of SEO experts tend to ignore the use of analytics in their daily SEO practices. Analytics are extremely essential as they help you track traffic, learn about your audience’s behaviour, find out where traffic is coming from, etc.

There are various analytics tools that you can use but we recommend using a mix of analytics and heatmaps. This is a very powerful combination that can help you improve your performance, based on collected data.

However, what is more commonly ignored is not setting goals and conversions in Google Analytics. Make sure that you set goals and objectives according to your business as it will help in tracking your performance and will provide opportunities to improve it.

Neglecting internal linking

Just like backlinks, internal linking is crucial. Linking a new page internally to your most authoritative pages will increase the chances of the new page being indexed quickly. This is a huge opportunity for your new page to rank higher in the results.

Internal linking also helps users navigate easily throughout your website. When you link to relevant pages, your potential customer might actually land on the page he/she is looking for and make a purchase. Moreover, your main goal should be to keep visitors on your website and decrease your bounce rate. Strategic internal linking helps keep visitors on your website for a longer period of time.

Not building backlinks

A successful SEO campaign depends on building backlinks. Make efforts to earn backlinks from credible websites. When working on this aspect, investigate the domain authority (DA) of the website that is giving you a backlink. Google reads and understands backlinks coming from a high DA only. This means your ranking will improve, only if you have been provided backlinks by a high DA website.

There are various strategies that you can adopt to build backlinks. A common way is to write a guest post. Author a guest post on a high DA website and earn a backlink through them. More common today is the HARO approach. Help a reporter out (HARO) is a service where journalists post their questions and you can contact them with your answers. If your answer is published, you will earn a backlink.

Not Leveraging the right SEO tools

Not a lot of companies use SEO tools and to be honest, there is no reason why they do so. These tools are extremely useful and help you a great deal to improve your SEO performance. Use tools to your benefit, perform SEO audits and take actions accordingly.

Leverage these tools to the maximum and subscribe to the paid version in order to access complete features. These will help you identify your SEO flaws, provide you with a set of actions that you should take in order to enhance your SEO, and will help you rank higher.

Wrapping up

There is no doubt that SEO is a vital aspect of your business. When done correctly, not only will it help you improve your performance, but will also help you scale your business and reach new heights. So, the next time you undertake an SEO project or work on your website’s SEO, keep these mistakes in mind, and avoid them completely!

Continue Reading: 5 Essential SEO tips and tricks you need to try

About the Author

Idrees Shafiq is a Content Marketing Manager at Cognizantt with diverse experience in the field of Digital Marketing. He has helped companies achieve their marketing goals through creative, well-researched content that follows the best SEO practices. Connect with him on LinkedIn and Twitter.