Even if your website is top-notch, it won’t be effective if people don’t know about it. If you are looking to drive traffic to your site, SEO is crucial. Whether you want to improve your existing site or are building on from scratch, be certain that it is optimized for search engines and not breaking any rules. Below is a list of 5 bad SEO practices that could be impeding your website’s success:
- Is the primary navigation of my site Flash or Java-driven? If it is, contemplate using HTML wherever possible.
- Do I have content on my homepage? If you only have a small amount of text, make some alterations- your home page is the most important one for search engine spiders so there needs to be quality content on it.
- Are my page titles/section headings graphics? If you change them to text it will give the spiders more to work with.
2) Bad URLs: Its easy to overlook URLs when focusing on the content of your site. But URLs have a significant influence on your site’s search engine ranking. Make sure to look out for:
- Session IDs- Chances are search engine spiders will skip over these pages because they don’t accept cookies.
- Symbols- Avoid complex query strings and lots of symbols to make it easier on the spiders.
- Multiple Domains- Avoid spreading your site across multiple domains when possible because it dilutes your PageRank.
3) Low Quality Content: Producing high-quality content on your website is the most effective way to boost your rankings, but many marketers fall into traps while in the process. Try and avoid these harmful SEO practices whenever possible:
- Keyword Stuffing- although they are essential for good SEO, too many can be a bad thing. If you overload your page with the same keywords, the spiders as well as your audience will catch notice the repetitiveness.
- Duplicate Content- Google penalizes sites that copy content among all their pages, so do your best to make the content unique across each page.
- Irrelevant Keywords- Make sure you target keywords that are relevant to your site with low-competitiveness in order to boost your PageRank. Avoid using high-traffic words that are vague and very common.
4) Black-Hat: Yes, there are some sites that try to bend the rules of the search engine system. If caught, they can get penalized or even banned. It is essential that you avoid these illusory practices whenever they arise:
- Expired Domains- Waiting for a high-ranking domain to expire will not wield you great results right off the bat. Google has combatted SEO vultures by resetting each expired domain’s PageRank back to 0.
- Using competitors’ names in meta tags- Unless you have their permission, you’re setting yourself up for a lawsuit by the search engine as well as with the company itself.
- Using small text- Using hidden or extremely small text on your page won’t affect your readers, but search engine spiders are keen to these sorts of immoral practices.
5) Poor Link Building: Link building has become popular recently, and so has the way search engines view it. Now, the quality of the link and its uniqueness are of much greater importance than quantity. Two vital terms to remember while creating content and links are relevance and organic/natural.
If you can follow these five guidelines then you are certain to play by the current SEO “rules” and improve the PageRank for your website. If you need help with search engine optimization or have questions regarding SEO practices please contact iPoint today.