Search engine optimization, as we know, is a long and rocky road to go. But in the end, it is absolutely worth it if you know how to do create an SEO audit, to build quality backlinks, to fix your website architecture and UI/UX and put out more content value for the visitors.
It is a sphere in which you can make a lot of SEO mistakes while in the process but if you do not learn how to fix them quickly, they can ruin the rankings, visibility, traffic and whole idea of your website.
In this article, we will talk about what kills your SEO performance and diminishes your chances of going ahead in search engines. Remember, it is a continuous process following a strict SEO audit plan will help with pointing out all “weak points” or some might call them “deadly mistakes” that are robbing your search engine optimization from reaching optimal results.
Also, let’s not forget to mention, some people focus only on their on-page problems and neglect the off-page or vice versa. You know, when you lack design, you hire a designer and fix that quickly. Remember this is only a single part of the whole puzzle, as we love to say. To have 1 strong side and forget about 99 others is only increasing the problems.
Here in the article, we will divide our common SEO mistakes into two pivotal parts. Starting with the On-page SEO mistakes we will point out what you must look and fix in 2020 and we will finish with the Off-page mistakes that ruin your link-building campaigns and also may cost you time and resources while doing it.
Let’s go straight to the point, it will surely be a helpful article.
Common on-page SEO mistakes – we picked some for you.
Going for multiple niches in one website
When you try to cover more than two niches on your website and you do not have a strong team behind your back which to upload new content or the whole idea of it is to inform people in different topics, then you are on the sure way to fail.
What you should do is pick one niche, no matter what it is and specialize in it in the most efficient way possible. This is the truest way to succeed, gain some more traffic, upload more researched and engaging content and give actual value to the users. It sounds simple but it is how it is done.
*Pro tip: people, it is no rocket science, pick one niche and dominate the competition, put quality work until you see the wanted results from your website. Observe, master your niche and be unbeatable in your overall SEO strategy.
Not updating content regularly
It doesn’t matter if you are running a blog, a sports website or you are trying to sell something. If you do not update your content regularly, for some niches it is good to do it a couple of times a week, for others not so often, but in the end, you always have to update.
Let’s say you have a blog and you post only one blog post in two months. Well, this is kind of lazy, isn’t it? No reader, no matter how engaged he must have seemed to be in your first articles will follow your website and be interested in reading more content from you.
There is no secret to starting and maintaining a successful blog. It is truly these simple steps:
- Update content frequently
- Update engaging and original content
- Always give sources and trustworthy information
- Keep a good and friendly tone
- Repeat often
That’s it, using the proper keywords in the text is also key, so do not overdo them with keyword stuffing practices, this will seem unnatural to search engines and people too. Use your target keywords only if they bring more sense to your overall paragraph and make the reading experience better.
*Pro tip: to avoid thin content sometimes it is good to work with copywriters that are real professionals in the sphere, by doing this you will be sure that your SEO content strategy is in good hands.
Poor User Experience (UX)
If your website is bland, then the results and especially user engagement will only get lower and lower. To engage people, you need to fix your UX, what we mean by that is you have to check your overall website performance weekly, sometimes daily:
- Checking website speed
- Mobile-friendliness is a must in 2020
- Do not overdo ads and useless pop-ups
- Optimizing your text, video and images
Here you can check again our suggestions for on-page optimization.
Wrong keywords targeting
When you want to compete with using highly-competitive keywords, then you can fail big time. To avoid this, you need to start by picking up keywords that are “suitable” for your niche and have low or mid-level competition. When you are launching a new website, you can’t jump and swim with the sharks right away. You need to start small but strong. What we mean by that is you have to create a keyword target plan and choose about 10 keywords that you are going to rank for.
After that, you can use a bunch of tools, starting with Ahrefs, Ubersuggest, Google Keyword Planner and others to get fast and accurate information on the keywords. Put them in a table and track your progress while using them your content, guest posts and anchors. Wow, this was actually an Off-page tip but we thought we should mention it, because great SEO content reaches both spheres.
*Pro tip: do not go for a lot of keywords, target no more than 5 or 10 in the beginning. We recommend using long-tail keywords. When you get better with time and see some results in your ranking positions and overall SEO, you can add more and track them.
Duplicate content in SEO
As you are now reading the word “duplicate” something is ringing the bell that this situation is not permitted in any way. Duplicate content can damage your website, as Google crawls all of your content and may report that you are using some “black-hat” techniques. To have duplicate content more than it is permitted on more or all of the pages on the website is not allowed.
Let’s say that some brand names, telephone numbers or contact forms are repeating on all pages, this is all right, Google will not penalize you for that. But when you think about about it, all of this “same content” is a really small percentage of your pages.
The real situation is when you use the same images twice or more when you upload exactly the same blog posts, texts and headers, meta-descriptions on all pages. This can cost you a lot of trouble, so never, we repeat never, consider such practices. It is useless and can harm a lot of ranking factors on your website.
*Pro tip: check your content with tools like Duplicate Content Checker, CopyScape, Grammarly and then upload it. This is the sure way to guarantee that your content is original and fresh every time before uploading.
Common off-page SEO Mistakes – now let’s talk about them.
Not optimizing your anchors properly
A lot of people are just creating thousands of links to their website and this is almost identical as “spamming”. No matter if you are registering your website into a directory or creating guest blog posts, you need to deliver utmost quality. Just using spammy techniques and putting your links in websites, especially in ones that are easier to do so, will not bring any results to the table.
Our point is, that it is no more 2010 and just bulking up links from all kinds of website “for the sake” of it will not work. It can do the opposite and negatively affect your website.
*Pro tip: you do not want to be just another spammer, you want authority and real results. This happens slowly and continuously. Depending on the niche, it may take from 6 months to a year to even see some results. But we believe if you create a proper link-building plan and target only trusty websites, your website is going to go up.
Providing low-quality SEO content for guest posts
As we have already mentioned, guest posts are a serious way to create domain authority and boost traffic to your website. Keeping good relationships with webmasters of other websites and providing them with great quality content, you can achieve incredible rankings in your search engine optimization process.
*Pro tip: in most cases, depending on the webmaster and website authority, the site you are trying to link to and send a low-quality content will not even bother to publish it. So, prioritize providing top-notch content, valuable, trustworthy and helpful for readers. Create a budget that allows you to make a guest post campaign, stick to it and soon amazing results will follow.
Linking with suspicious or poor maintained websites
Don’t you ever consider bonding with such websites, sometimes their rankings can be confusing by the “black-hat” techniques they are doing, so you might think it would be good to have a link from them?
In fact, this can seriously damage everything you are trying to build. Google will penalize such websites and even ban them from search engines. It is just a matter of time.
Do not go blindly for what they tend to pretend to give you. Such links come only with downsides. Think wisely.
*Pro tip: it is hard sometimes to notice such websites, but if you are using Ahrefs you can run their domain name and in just a couple of seconds see their Backlink profile, Domain Rating (DR), Organic keywords, Organic traffic, Traffic value and more. If these ranking factors are low and have no real value, then you should consider staying away from engaging with them.
Do not use “Black-hat” techniques in SEO
Even though some people would tell you that they benefit from black-hat SEO, they do not see the whole totality of search engine optimization. These are people who want to gain quick results, but at what cost? This can cost them allow their rankings to go straight to the garbage can and never “recover” their website presence and authority after that. Search engine optimization doesn’t happen overnight and it probably never will.
So, here are our recommendations on what to avoid, as these methods are considered black-hat and violate the rules of Google. Do not use:
- Keyword stuffing
- Hidden text with stuffed keywords
- Duplicate and aggressive content
- Hidden links, purchased links, etc
- Some black-hat link software
- Blog comment and forum spamming
Another SEO mistake to avoid is when you try to define search intent. People often put out the wrong keywords and content, so they do not get the wanted results, just because they did their research partly or in the wrong way.
To define search intent, you need to know exactly what the users are looking for and how you can provide this with information, text, image, video content and more.
Well, these were some of the most common SEO mistakes people make while optimizing their niche website. We guarantee if you do your research, perform SEO audit regularly and provide high-quality and original content every time, you will move past most of them.
Of course, it is important to say here that in most cases it takes a bigger crew of SEO specialists to fix the problems. One person can’t know and doesn’t have to know everything. When you think about it, most agencies or specialists are working with at least 3 more specialists that provide On-page problems fix, high-quality content and backlink building.
Search engine optimization is a wide and open world and mistakes can occur almost daily, so with the right preparation, search knowledge and working with the right experts and specialists nothing is impossible.
In fact, with the right team of SEO people you can achieve massive results with your websites within a year, this is proven by many great agencies. Stick to the plan, build your authority in search engines daily, fix your on-page SEO problems and your website will be perfectly fine.