Search engine positioning is ultra-competitive these days. Just having the right keywords isn’t enough when it comes to catching traffic. If you’re struggling with your ranking, you may be making one or more of these ten common SEO mistakes.
Find out which keywords and phrases get most sales. The words that generate the most hits might not be the phrases that convert. Use an analytics package to find these hidden hot-button words and focus on them.
Thinking too globally
Google treats global and local descriptors differently, so if you’re not including region-specific keywords and phrases in your content, titles and meta-descriptions, you could get overlooked. Put contact details in the headers and footers of your pages.
Using the wrong keywords
Inappropriate keywords harm traffic and sales. Global keywords are useless if you serve a small area; generic keywords that attract advice-hunters rather than bargain-hunters don’t help.
Say “Victorian furniture restorers Oxford”, rather than “Furniture restoration”, which looks like a “how-to” site.
Using generic words as internal links
You’ll have seen links like “click here”, “read more” and so on. This is dead SEO space. Calls to action could combine with anchor text, like “click here to find out more about our case studies”.
Repeating the same anchor text in every link
Make sure each text is unique. Repetitive anchor text looks odd and may be punished by The Algorithm as it looks like spam or scam. It seems that using the same anchor text more than 50% of the time is the threshold.
Repeating title tags on every page
Every site page needs a unique title, for SEO purposes and for tweets and bookmarks, so make them descriptive and different. You should put the company name at the end of the title:
Blog posts – SPG Copywriting
Case studies – SPG Copywriting
Website content – SPG Copywriting
The company name is retained, but the keywords for different services are first.
Neglecting link quality
A link from a well-respected blog will do more than a hundred from dodgy directories. Look for links that are relevant to you and your industry and don’t have too many outgoing links, as you just look spammy.
Having poor quality content
Using bad writers or article spinners leaves a very bad impression. Sure, the content will be optimised, but it’ll look rubbish and people won’t trust you – no conversions.
Producing link-unfriendly content
Content can be well-written, but if it doesn’t “speak” to enough people, or it’s a bit long or niche, it’ll lose out to snappier stuff. You need infographics, videos, top 10/20/100 lists and easy-to-follow text tutorials.
Not leveraging your design
If your site is custom-designed, you could get links from design galleries, or be featured on blogs that review good designs. There might not be many conversions, but it’ll build your authority.