If there is one topic on internet marketing that has elicited hot debates is search engine optimization. You are likely to find most online marketers discussing on SEO basics and tactics more than any other website promotion strategy.
By the way, you cannot blame them; the fact that traffic on the web is normally generated through search engines you would understand why the topic causes such a stir. If today you were to appear on the 1st page of google for a profitable keyword, money will definably find its way into your pocket.
The big question that webmasters ask especially newbies; what are the SEO basics that would propel my site or blog to the first page of Google?
My answer will not be straight forward considering how things are dynamic in the search engine ranking arena. If you are an SEO enthusiast, you probably have heard how sites have been affected with the constant change in Google algorithm formula.
It could be that your site was also hit by one or more of these algorithm updates. With livelihoods been affected with these chances you would expect some people to rejoice while others go up in arms to protest or complain.
All these are indications that any website that seeks to attract traffic cannot ignore search engine marketing. Whether it is employing SEO basics for the sake of ranking or using pay per click advertising to generate traffic, SEO is definitely worth the try.
SEO business is about right timing, if you delay to begin your SEO campaigns, your competitors will end up gaining mileage and you may never catch up with them.
Seeing that time is of essence, on this write up we shall go through some SEO mistakes that newbies employ thinking they are doing the right thing.
*Creating content just for the sake on it: One of the most important basics of SEO is content creation. The fact that it takes time to compose an article, it is ideal you do it the right way from the word go.
There is no point of creating articles just because you heard it is the best strategy to rank high. It is advisable to generate content that will boost your SEO ranking.
After you have written a blog post, ask yourself if you were the one reading it, would you share it with your friends? If the answer is “Yes” then go right ahead and publish the article.
In case, the answer is “No” then do all you can to improve the article’s quality. You will only benefit from your articles by making sure the content helps solve your readers’ problems.
It will take hours and sometimes days to generate rich content, but the end result will be worth your while.
*Surpassing the recommended keyword density: It wasn’t long ago when Google Panda update came calling, but the surprising thing is that people are still making the same mistakes.
This is mostly the scenario, a newbie learns about the value of SEO and goes searching for the phrase, top SEO basics or how to SEO. He then reads two or three articles without checking when they were posted.
In one of those articles he reads that the more you mention a certain word the higher you will rank. This newbie gets down to business but leaves out other fundamentals of keyword usage.
These include the right keyword density, how to use varying keyword phrases, power of onsite linking, use of long tail and short tail keywords. The mistake that this newbies made was to fail to research more on new guidelines of SEO keyword usage.
You should not focus too much on adding your keywords at the expense of your article quality. It will result to an increase in bounce rate and lowering your site ranking.
Rather than concentrating on repeating your exact keyword phrase, search of other varying words. It would also be advisable to interlink your webpages thus boost the experience of your site visitors as well as increasing your webpages SEO rankings.
*Spam content posting: There hundreds of software out there that help people to post comments. This is a good technique of increasing web visibility thus build an online brand name.
The shocking thing about using this comment posting software is that some people think spamming is the way to go. You will observe comments coming to your site that are not related in any way to your article.
People fail to know that comments will only add value when they are relevant. Besides, irrelevant comments will never be approved by site moderators.
The best thing to do is to go through posts before submitting your comments. These will help you gain online recognition hence build health relationships with people in your niche.
As you all know, trust is what ensures you build a huge fan base and generate online sales leads. Therefore, rather than wasting time sending spam comments, use that time implementing basic white hat SEO strategies.
*Joining link farms: Another SEO mistake that most people are still involved in is joining link farms. Backlinks are important in SEO but you need to link with credible and relevant sites.
It is not a surprise to see a site with just 100 backlinks ranking higher than a site with 1000 backlinks. The difference is that the first site is linking to relevant and high quality sites, while the second one is doing the exact opposite.
Google, through Matt Cutt sent out a strong warning to sites using black hat strategies to increase their SEO ranking to stop. You may rank now but one thing is for sure you will very soon get caught.
*Buying any SEO tool you come across: Time is money and it is even more uneconomical when you waste money on tools that don’t work. To me this is what I call double tragedy; wasting money on a tool that does not give you ROI and wasting time, which is in fact more valuable.
Just because some said a certain SEO tool works, does not mean you rush to produce your credit card. The secret is to research thoroughly before making any online purchase.
It is true that you have to spend money to make money, but that does not give you the license to be extravagant in the name of automating SEO.
*Reading every comment on SEO forums: Everybody is now writing or commenting on topics like …best SEO basics, Ideal SEO techniques and so forth. Majority of these people are only out to sell a product to you.
This is the case when you visit online SEO forums. Everyone seems to know what the right strategies are, but you also need to know that one SEO strategy may not work for another person. It all depends on your area of interest.
Don’t get me wrong, there are people who share valuable SEO advice on forums. But do not waste your time reading each and every comment that has been posted. You would be better off implementing the few valuable tactics you have read and see which one works.
Commenting is another basic SEO technique that can really improve your site ranking. But do not go overboard and spend the whole day posting comments on one discussion in the name of building backlinks.
There are many SEO forums and topics out there you can also share your opinions. This way people will see you as an expert and also help build your link popularity naturally.
*Posting articles in any article directory you come across: Article marketing is one of the best ways of building quality backlinks, generating direct traffic, attracting targeted organic traffic and ensuring search engine find and index your new site faster.
Even with all these benefits that come with submitting articles, it does not mean you post articles in any article directory you see out there. Article writing can be quite tasking therefore don’t add insult to injury by wasting your time submitting to low ranking article directories.
Article marketing only adds value to your SEO standings when you submit quality articles to high ranking directories. Hence it will be to your advantage to publish quality articles to at least 15 article directories that are of high quality.
*Doing everything manually: I must admit that I was a culprit of doing things manually. My argument was that doing things manually will ensure perfection. Later, I came to realize my competitors who opted to automate their SEO where way ahead of me.
When it comes to SEO, time is of essence. Rather than spending the whole day in front of your computer repeating the same thing, save time by using SEO tools. But remember what we talked about earlier, spend your money wisely.
The rule on the internet is this; in case you find a way to automate your SEO, you are right to go for it. That will help you save time thus attend to other online business matters.
For example, you can automate your backlink building by trying an SEO tool like SEO Spyglass or Link assistance.
*Spending all day on social networks: Anytime someone shares about SEO basics they will never miss to mention social media marketing.
The reason behind this is because search engines Crawl social sites frequently in search of fresh content. It therefore goes without saying, adding your webpage links to social sites will help boost your SEO value.
In addition, social media marketing helps in viral marketing, generating direct traffic and building your business brand online. Any marketer that ignores the power of social media does that at his own peril.
Seeing the importance of social media in SEO, some people have resulted in spending all day on these sites. Others have register on every social site they come across not caring to know how they are ranking.
This time spend on social sites can be utilized on other ventures like coming up with fresh content. Why waste the whole day reading peoples’ updates that are not related to what you do?
If you ask me, 10 minutes is enough time to spend on each social site you are registered in. That also brings me to the issue of how many social sites you should enroll in.
Have accounts on at least 5 social networking sites. You should also make sure that these are the sites where your target audiences spend of their time.
Summary: Do not worry; I too have committed some of the above mistakes when I was starting out. In most cases, we take the wrong route due to lack of knowledge and sometime it is because of curiosity. As the adage goes “Curiosity is what killed the cat”.
From today onwards start using your time wisely by implementing basic SEO strategies that have been known to work time and time again. If you have to read content on SEO, source for such content on top and quality sites and forums.
Is there something you did in the name of improving your SEO profile without knowing and it ended up to be a waste of time? Please share with us in the comment section below.
Learning from others peoples’ mistakes will ensure you concentrate on what really works.
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Author: Stephen Kavita