Jun 20, 2015

SEO Common mistakes to avoid

With the many updates Google has done in the last years, you just can’t afford to make mistakes. They will cost you traffic and of course money.

Many SEOs keep using the same old SEO techniques all over again, and wonder why they are not ranking well in search engines. Let’s take a look at the most frequent SEO mistakes, and how you can avoid them.

1. Build too many links to your homepage

No website in the world will look natural if it has links only to the homepage. If you are serious about SEO and you want results, remember that, your goal is to make the backlinks profile look as natural as possible.

Many online marketers get too excited about ranking their homepage and they forget to build backlinks to other pages. Instead of building hundreds of links to your homepage, you should split these links to your blog posts as well.

This is one of the most important factors Google considers when ranking websites.

Can you see a pattern? 530 links to the homepage, and the 2nd most linked page has only 7 links. It’s like calling Google and telling them that all you care about is your homepage.

This is a major mistake many SEO experts are still doing.

2. Build too many backlinks in a short period of time

You don’t need to build too many backlinks to your website in order to rank well. What matters is the quality of your backlinks.

Some still think the number of backlinks is very important, but that’s not the case at all. Instead of trying to get hundreds of spammy links, better concentrate your efforts on getting links from authoritative domains in your niche.

If you have a new website and suddenly 100 websites will decide to link to you, it will raise a flag to Google that you are doing something wrong. Keep in mind that “natural” is the word that should define your backlinks profile.

3. Not keeping track of your backlinks

Links are still the most important factor to rank in search engines and they will probably still be for at least a few years. This is why it’s vital to check your backlinks and find which ones provide value. Once identified, try to replicate those links.

A lot of SEOs concentrate their efforts on building backlinks and they forget to analyze the links that they currently have.

Here are some benefits of tracking your backlinks:

Identify the best backlinks and replicate them

Know what links drive the most traffic

You know when somebody is placing a link to your website

Be informed if your competitors are starting a negative SEO campaign against your website

4. Build low quality and irrelevant backlinks

Don’t believe anything you read on forums. If your website has too many low quality backlinks, it’s almost impossible to rank. Once link from an authoritative domain in your niche is more important than 100 low quality ones.

These are the types of links you should avoid

Irrelevant links to your niche

Site-wide links

Backlinks from pages with very little content

Links from pages that are suspected by malware

Link exchanges and wheels

5. Over optimize your anchor texts

This is by far the most common problem repeated by many online marketers. They still think that in order to rank high, you have to get hundreds of backlinks using the same anchor text.

If your website has backlinks with a lot of rich anchor texts, most likely your rankings and traffic will drop. You have to rotate and mix your keywords to make it look natural. If people will want to link to your website, most often they will use your company name.

How you should use anchor texts on your backlinks

When you build backlinks to your website, try to use your brand name 80% of the times, and your rich anchor texts only 20%. Use different combinations of your brand name, like-


Your Website


Your Website.com


6. Writing useless and thin content

When people will land on your website, most of the time they will be looking to find a solution to their problem. Your website must have the right answer. Nobody likes useless pages with thin content and neither does Google.

There are endless discussions about the posting length. Many says that the articles should have at least 500 words, but I think different. When you start to write a post, your goal should be to provide as much value as possible. If you have reached your goal after 1000 words, then that’s how long the post should be. If not, keep writing.

If your goal is to reach 500 words, then it’s impossible to write quality content.

Wikipedia ranks on top of the search engines because they provide long and detailed articles. Most of these have at least 2000 words.

7. Too many ads on your pages

Google tends to penalize websites that have many ads above the fold. Try to keep your website clean. Don’t use annoying pop-ups that can increase your bounce rate.

Even if your CTR might be lower, your user experience is much more important.

8. Website speed

Websites that load fast rank better. Most of the users expect a website to load in 2 seconds. Don’t use unnecessary plugins or scripts that can slow your website.

You can use the Google PageSpeed Insightstool to analyze your website. Another great tool you can use to analyze your website speed is PingDom Tools.

9. Ignoring ON-page SEO

ON-Page SEO is at least as important as your backlinks. This is how you can tell Google what your content is about. When you want to do SEO, always start with this ahead of everything.

These are the most important ON-page factors-

SEO friendly URLs,

Title tags, Meta tags and Descriptions,

Add your main keywords in the first 100 words but don’t exaggerate,

Include your main keywords in an H1 tag,

Long content. Write at least 1000 words / post,

Add 'ALT' tags to your images.

10. Buying links without using the nofollow attribute

Big brands have been caught and penalized because of buying links. If you want to buy links or banners to your website, make sure you use the nofollow attribute.

11. Duplicate content

Google values unique content and hates websites that have duplicate content. Don’t write about the same topic to many times. For instance, 'Earn money from home' and 'Earn money from home today'. This will never help you rank for both keywords better.

Also check if your current content has been posted somewhere else. You can use CopyScape for this.

Be honest to your work every time.


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