There are many things that you can do to improve your SEO, but while you are writing your excellent content be sure that you are not doing things by mistake that will negatively impact how Google looks at your site in searches. Here are my top 3 SEO mistakes.
While some of these items may seem obvious, the competition on internet in some areas may cause you to take advice that is less than helpful, and may result in having your website disappear from Google one day (yes, it happens). When you are writing, imagine that you are a visitor to your page and write pleasant, informative content that engages the reader and invites them to return. And avoid these common SEO mistakes!
Besides being a Google no-no, it is also annoying for the reader, and it can make your post almost unreadable. Keywords are important, but not in the beginning of your website. When you barely have any traffic and people are just popping in and out, you really do not want them to see posts with specific words used over and over and over.
Instead, you need to focus on writing engaging content and giving any reader a reason to return. It cannot be overstated that people want to read quality posts. They are on the internet looking for information that can help them in their lives. You can give that to them in the form or well written and researched posts on a variety of subjects.
The purpose of keyword research is to identify relevant keywords or phrases so that you can create posts; it is not so that you know which words to overuse in your content. Googles algorithms are searching for relevant content, not relevant keywords. The keywords are only there to direct visitors to your informative and well researched articles.
This is the name given to a hyperlink that no longer points to its intended destination. There are several plugins for WordPress that will search for broken links, and notify you if they find them. Not only does this help your SEO, it makes visiting your site a more pleasant experience. There is nothing worse than clicking on a compelling link only to receive an error message! Screaming Frog has an excellent free tool for checking broken links and other SEO analytics.
Do not forget to have internal links as well. Linking to your other pages helps your visitors see your other quality content, and is incentive for visitors to “stay awhile”. Be sure that you are only linking to relevant content and use natural anchor text rather than “click here”. Anchor text is the text inside of a link.
For example, if you are writing about the benefits of eating eggs you can then create a hyperlink to your other page that has recipes. You may write “enjoy eggs any time of day with my free gourmet egg recipes”, with the text “free-gourmet-egg-recipes” linking back to your recipe page.
No Meta descriptions or title tags
You have 160 characters to use, so go for it! It is probably best to stick with around 135 characters because sometimes Google might add the date to the search result, which claws back the number of characters left for you.
Every post should have a unique, custom meta description. This is a sales pitch for your post and you should be writing compelling reasons for people to click on you in their search. Make your description positive, inviting, and a call to action! Examples are: “Learn how!”, “Find out more” and “Free today only!”
If you are using WordPress and have the All In One SEO pack, you can just scroll down below your post and write your own description in the box! Give visitors a reason to click on your site and check out what you have to offer by using an optimized meta description and/or title tag.
Using custom meta descriptions is beneficial for the click-through-rate, and therefore Google sees this as a plus for your site, even though Google does not use the meta description for ranking. Be sure to use a description that matches the content, and use a relevant keyword.
The idea here is that what other people think of your website is more important than what you think, therefore if other people link to you that must mean you have something worthwhile to say. It also goes to your popularity and trustworthiness, as well as relevance.
Doing things like giving away freebies and joining Linked-In are some ideas that are considered good, while adding your website to free directories can be very bad and a waste of time.
I have to say that I find the concept of external links confusing to say the least, and so I am going to do some research and write a post dedicated to that because it seems to be an important concept to some people in the know, but there are ways to do it right and many, many ways to do it wrong. When I have updated that, I will link to it from within this post.
Also, be sure when writing content that you have actual content. Short 400 word posts that have very little content are not offering much for the reader, and the posts do you no favors with SEO. In the early days of your website, you may still be trying to get a feel for how things work and may have some smaller posts, but this should be the exception to the rule.
Try to aim for 1000 words and up to 1500. If it is a lengthy topic, it may have 2000-3000, but remember to break up the text with media of some kind, or consider breaking it into 2 or 3 posts in a series.
The point of this post is to stop new bloggers from developing bad habits that will not serve you or your website or your website’s visitors. There are plenty of low-end websites out there that just barely give you content and you can tell that they are not trying very hard or are rushing the process.
And there are plenty of fun, slightly amateurish sites that I enjoy going to because I feel like I am with family, and I know that I am going to learn something new or interesting, regardless of the typo’s!
I got into blogging as a way of helping other people see what is involved with getting started with a blog and being an affiliate marketer. I enjoy everything about what I am doing, and I do like to learn from things that do not work, and I hope you do as well! If you have any comments or constructive criticism, please add it to the box below.