50 Most Common Search Engine Optimization(SEO) Mistakes to Avoid
According to popular SEO blogs, there are more than 200 factors in Google’s algorithm to determine the rank of a website. The first result in Google Search results gets 30-33% of the traffic, the second one gets 18-20% and the tenth one gets less than 3%.
Search Engine Optimization is taking a complex shape every year. If you are interested in organic traffic, a proper SEO must be implemented. Search Engine Optimization is a process of many steps.
It is a sensitive process too. A couple of wrong practices may forever ban your website from Search Engines. Here’s a list of SEO mistakes that are most common.
Hope this helps you as a checklist. Optimize your website perfectly and you’ll start seeing a rise in your organic traffic graph.
Table Of Contents
- Top SEO Mistakes to Avoid
- 1. Keyword Stuffing
- 2.Copied Content
- 3. Neglecting Title Tag
- 4. Myth of great content
- 5. Neglecting Meta tags
- 6. Bad links
- 7. Bad Internal Linking
- 8. Not Mobile Friendly.
- 9. Irrelevant Keywords
- 10. No proper attention to Social Media
- 11.Not using Analytics
- 12. Web Master tools.
- 13. Buying links
- 14. Page Speed
- 15. Image Optimization
- 16. Not Customizing Permalink Structure
- 17. Crazy redirects
- 18. Over focusing on meta tags.
- 19. Not letting Google crawl the website
- 20. No quality backlinks
- 21. Using black hat techniques
- 22. Neglection towards fresh content.
- 23. Overambitious
- 24. Quit learning.
- 25. Underestimating the value of good keyword research
- 26. Low-Quality Content
- 27. Tons of backlinks
- 28. Broken Links
- 29. Very less content
- 30. Filling up the website with advertisements.
- 31. Hiring an Inefficient SEO
- 32. Ignoring the importance of Long tail keywords.
- 33. Bad User Experience
- 34. Improper usage of H1 tags.
- 35. Overusing the plugins or third-party tools.
- 36. Cheap Web hosting
- 37. Using Wrong keywords
- 38. Using Outdated CMS
- 39. Ignoring other search engines
- 40. Not submitting the sitemap
- 41. Selling links
- 42. No content strategy
- 43. Not updating the content
- 44. Poor Content Readability
- 45. Building links on same anchor text.
- 46. Ignoring Local Search
- 47. Poor Content
- 48. Targetting short tail keywords
- 49. Using Flash
- 50. Pop-ups
Top SEO Mistakes to Avoid
1. Keyword Stuffing
Repeating your keyword number of times in your content may lead to a penalty from Google. Write the contents for people and then optimize it for search engines. Just stuffing your content with keywords will not rank your webpage.
Copied content is not good for your website. Search Engines are smart and they know when you post the copied content. The owner of the original content may also report your website to Google.
3. Neglecting Title Tag
Title tags are still important. They are the ones which attract the visitors from Search Engines. Some people leave the title tags in default mode. Eg: Website name as title tag for all the pages in the website.
Your title tag must be like click magnet. It must attract clicks on the search engines. Your site loses rankings if your title tag is boring and no one is clicking on it.
4. Myth of great content
Great content always adds value to your website. Congratulations! But it is not sufficient to make all the magic. You need to optimize the website for search engines to take your great content to tons of visitors. Be active on social media to promote your great content.
Meta tags may not hold much credibility nowadays. But it doesn’t mean that we have to neglect them. They still add a little value to your Search Engine Optimization Efforts.
Backlinking is important. At the same time, if you got linked up with low-quality websites, they may affect you badly. Do not buy the backlinking packages from unknown sources.
It’s always better to get backlinks naturally and organically. Create a link worthy content and promote it. Great content with good promotion attracts lots of backlinks
7. Bad Internal Linking
Internal linking when done properly helps your website to perform better in search engines. Internal linking just for the sake of it makes your website look spammy.
8. Not Mobile Friendly.
Mobile is the future. If your website is not responsive, forget about search engine optimization. Apart from that mobile internet usage is exponentially increasing and going to cross the traditional laptop/desktop browsing.
9. Irrelevant Keywords
No matter however powerful are the keywords, if they are not relevant to your content it won’t help your website.
10. No proper attention to Social Media
Social signal is one of the important ranking factors in Google Search Algorithm. Building communities in all the popular social media networks definitely help your website to rank better. There are many niche relevant social networks that are great platforms to drive more visitors to your website.
11.Not using Analytics
You can know about your traffic in Google Analytics. You can find many details about your website visitors and that may help you to optimize your website in a better way.
12. Web Master tools.
Google Web Master tools is an awesome tool for all the webmasters. If you are serious about Search Engine Optimization, you cannot afford to miss this great platform.
Buying links is black hat. If you buy links in a bad neighborhood, it affects your website very badly. Hire an efficient SEO to build quality backlinks for you.
14. Page Speed
If your website loads slowly, you are going to lose your search engine rankings in Search Engine Result Page (SERP). Page speed is one of the top 5 ranking factors in Google Search Algorithm. There are many free tools online to check your page speed.
15. Image Optimization
Search Engines know about images only if you optimize them. Use alt and title tags to properly dGescribe your image. See that your image storage size is less. Huge image files take a lot of time to load and slow down your website. Google images is also a huge traffic source.
You can read our separate guide on Image Optimization for SEO.
Default link structures in lots of content management systems are not searched engine friendly. Customize them so that your title text appears in the permalink.
You can edit permalink structure in WordPress easily. WordPress plugins like Yoast automate lots of On-page optimization things.
17. Crazy redirects
Too many redirects reduce the site speed. Remove all the unnecessary redirects.
Just filling up your meta tags will not rank your website. If you stuff your meta tags with too many keywords you are just signaling search engines to be more suspicious about your website.
19. Not letting Google crawl the website
Check whether your robot.txt file is in right state.
Quality backlinks are important. One backlink from authority website is more powerful than 10s of backlinks from low standard websites. Engage in the webmasters’ community in your particular niche. Guest blogging on authority blogs improves your authority and link score.
21. Using black hat techniques
Some black hat techniques may help you to rank super fast in Google. But in long-term, your website loses credibility on search engines. Google spam team manually removes the sites which are trying to rank by blackhat means.
22. Neglection towards fresh content.
Blogs without fresh content are not expected to rank well in Search Engines. Search Engines love to serve fresh content to their visitors. Update your blogs regularly.
Search Engine Optimization efforts must be done strategically. You cannot rank for some keywords. You need to be picky and play the game. SEO is a slow process. If done correctly, it sure fetches you the good result.
24. Quit learning.
Search Engine Optimization is an ongoing process. You need to be open-minded and constantly learn the latest trends in search engine algorithms.
25. Underestimating the value of good keyword research
Keyword research is crucial. Google Keyword Planner is free. Long Tail Pro is also an awesome paid tool to find long tail keywords.
26. Low-Quality Content
Search Engine Algorithm is smart to find the quality of your content. Low-quality content fails to rank in search engines. Always work on your quality standards to provide great value to your website visitors.
Building too many backlinks in less time is very harmful to your website. Design a good link building strategy or outsource the task to an efficient SEO professional. Don’t be over enthusiastic to build more links to your website.
28. Broken Links
Always weed out all your broken links. Google Webmaster tools help you to find if there are any broken links on your website. You may discover the reason for why your great content is not yet ranked on Google!
29. Very less content
Most of the top pages in Google Search results are in-depth content and they are long and comprehensive. Thin content doesn’t rank well in Search Engines.
30. Filling up the website with advertisements.
Filling up your website with advertisements is not search friendly. Even your visitors get annoyed and may not visit your website again.
31. Hiring an Inefficient SEO
There are much inefficient SEO in the market. They do more bad for your website that you can ever imagine. Building spammy backlinks or doing things like keyword stuffing harms your site.
Always prefer to hire an efficient and reputed Search Engine Optimization professional than an unknown freelancer.
32. Ignoring the importance of Long tail keywords.
Long tail keywords bring lots of traffic. Ranking for long tail keywords is fairly achievable brings you the targeted visitors. Tools like Long Tail Pro, SEM rush etc are considered as very good software for finding long tail keywords in your niche.
33. Bad User Experience
If the user experience of your site is bad, end user loses his interest very fast. Don’t just build your website for search engines. Always keep the end user in mind when you are designing the website.
H1 tags communicate a lot about the content to the search engines. They are not just the text with big size. You may format them using CSS but never fail to use heading tags wherever necessary.
35. Overusing the plugins or third-party tools.
Don’t be fancy about plugins or third-party tools. Use them only if they are 100% needed. They slow your website and sometimes pull down your website. The more plugins you use, the more you are prone to bugs.
36. Cheap Web hosting
Good hosting is not expensive. Avoid using the cheap web hosts. Downtimes effect your rankings badly. It also affects your business and brand value. Cheap web hosts are really slow and their customer service usually sucks.
37. Using Wrong keywords
Always see that there are relevant keywords in title, meta tags, and headers. Keywords must be relatable to your content. They describe your content.
38. Using Outdated CMS
Outdated CMS are not secure and fast. Always update your blogging or content management software. Always use the latest versions to be up to the mark on speed and security factors.
39. Ignoring other search engines
Though Google is the major source of organic traffic, you need to concentrate on other search engines like Bing and Yahoo. Submit your website in Bing – Webmaster Tools to see if your site is optimized properly.
40. Not submitting the sitemap
A sitemap is important for Search Engines to gather all the pages on your website. A good sitemap helps you to get sitelinks for your website. You can submit sitemap easily from Google webmaster tools.
Selling links is a bad idea. You lose the link juice if you place the links on your website. Always mingle with authority websites. Apart from that search engines hate the idea of selling links. Don’t launch any backlink packages.
42. No content strategy
Content strategy is very important to implement an efficient search engine optimization technique. Plan your content in such a way that internal linking is possible. Lots of content in and around a particular niche build the authority for your website. Creative content marketing builds lots of backlinks naturally. Use infographics to communicate huge data in an interesting way.
43. Not updating the content
If your posts are outdated you need to update them. Search Engines loves to provide value to their users. Outdated content fastly loses its rankings. Update your posts regularly.
44. Poor Content Readability
If your content is not properly formatted or comfortable to your end user he will close your site in seconds. User’s time on site holds incredible value for your business and even for search engine optimization.
Anchor text plays a huge role if you want to rank for a particular keyword. But it smells fishy if you repeat the same anchor text to build all your links. Put relative keywords or key phrases in the anchor texts.
46. Ignoring Local Search
Nothing beats Local listing in bringing the instant leads to your business. Ignoring Local Search just makes your competitors stronger. Optimize your website for Local Search Listings. Create citations in online directories. Citations are counted as backlinks to rank your website in local search.
47. Poor Content
Your visitors will leave the website if your content is boring. Be interesting and solve their problem. If your visitors leave the website in no time, you will definitely lose your ranking.
Google counts the time of the visitor on your website to determine the quality of your content. If your content is poor, naturally your site doesn’t deserve the top ranking in Google.
48. Targetting short tail keywords
Short tail keywords are very competitive. It’s not easy to rank for a short tail keyword. It takes lots of time and effort to at least rank in the top 3 pages of Google for a short tail keyword. Check the competition and aim for the right targets.
49. Using Flash
Pop-ups are annoying not just to your visitors but also for search engines to crawl your website. Pop-ups block the way of search spiders. Wait till you gain some authority in search rankings to install pop-ups on your website.
If you are looking for more detailed information and solution than you can watch this video:
We are sure there are many other potential mistakes that can be made in Search Engine Optimization. Comment below if we miss anything.