There are a number of things you should avoid doing when hiring a SEO company or doing your search engine optimization yourself. There are countless SEO companies that promise you the world, and even more “goldmine” programs that promise you instant riches. These are to good to be true, though. All to often I will do a consultation with a client on their SEO and find a number of mistakes; the following tips should be kept in mind when considering SEO work.
Believe it or not people make a huge mistake when doing keyword research. This is one facet of SEO you can NOT overlook. People typically will go for the home run, meaning a keyword that gets a ton of organic hits per day. They don’t understand that for some massively competitive keywords you’re going to use careful and precise planning in order to even compete with the big boys on Google.
From a glance it (big volume keywords) looks promising but they don’t realize they either need to have deep pockets and lots of time where they can afford to spend lots of money with little to no ROI. Sure, I am not going to argue the fact that keywords that get tons of views are enticing, but it’s better to start of slow. Go for the ones that get medium to low searches per month.
For instance, you can go for a keyword that gets less searches (for example 25,000 per month) and then target harder keywords. Ideally you want to search for medium to low keyword searches with relatively low competition. Once you master the easier ones you can then try harder ones.
As a general rule I would target keywords that get 10,000 searches per month and about 10,000 competing sites. You can check the search with the Google Keyword Tool and then go to Google and type in “keyword here” in parenthesis. This will show you the amount of competition that is competing for your keywords.
Lacking Onpage Optimization
Like most things in life you have to have a good solid foundation to build a house and SEO is no different. If you have a poorly optimize site with crappy content all of your search engine optimization efforts are going to be wasted.
Tips For Good Onpage Optimization
- Keywords in title tags.
- Keywords in description tags.
- Keywords in H1, H2, and H3 tags.
- Good internal linking structure.
- No crawl errors.
- Solid content that is very valuable (the longer the better).
Building Links To Quickly
It’s been said that between the turtle and rabbit the turtle wins the race. Why because the turtle paces himself while the rabbit expends all his energy and gasses out. SEO is no different than a marathon. If you try to build your links too quickly Google will raise red flags and you run the risk of getting your site sandboxed or deindexed.
So how should you build backlinks in a way which Google loves? Slow and steady. This could mean building 5 backlinks in a week for 3-5 months. You can gradually increase the number of 5 links to 10,15,20 per week, but make sure you don’t go overboard and build 10,000 in a week and then nothing. This looks awfully spammy in Googles eyes and you don’t want to go down that road. Believe me I am speaking from experience.
Any good SEO consultant will tell you SEO takes time and their is no loophole that is going to allow you to get first page listings on Google quickly. If fact if you see the phrases “get ranked in Google fast” close the window immediately because its simply not going to happen. Sorry to state that but it’s the sad truth. Proper SEO takes time and it’s typical to work on it for 6-12 months. For massively hard keywords I have even worked at it for 3 years!
One of the most controversial topics between SEO’s is; can backlink hurt you? The answer is yes and no. Yes in the fact that if you build a bunch of links from nasty sites Google will view your site as a dirty site. This simply means you’re in a bad neighborhood.
Low value links such as a spam blog, profile links, forum links, stacks of wiki links, spun content, paid links can cause your links to get devalued by Google once they find out about it. Believe me they will in time if you choose to take part of any of the crappy backlink building tactics mentioned above.
Furthermore, you want to be very safe when deciding to link to another site. If it looks somewhat controversial or risky I wouldn’t even bother linking to the website. As a general rule of thumb make sure you avoid backlink building tactics that have a clear footprint.
Overdoing Your SEO
Believe it or not overdoing your SEO can have detrimental effects on your SEO efforts. This would include keyword stuffing, exact anchor text, and aggressive link building velocity.
Keyword stuffing would be considered as the following:
- Using your keywords more than once in your title and description.
- Bolding and italicizing your keywords only.
- Using multiple H1 tags with your keywords.
- To high keyword density. (3% or below)
- Hidden text covered up by images.
Exact anchor text would include:
- Not mixing up your keywords anchors enough.
- Using all the same keywords.
- Not using your branded url (which is how 70% of your links should be).
Aggressive link building would be:
- Building a ton of backlinks and then nothing.
- Backlinks with a clear footprint.
- Spammy backlinks done with automated programs.
- Massive link wheels.
- Spun articles blasted to various article directories.
- Spam blog guest posting.
The above information on SEO can save you a lot of headaches later on down the road. If you choose to do any of the following non suggested techniques above it’s on you. You have no one to blame but yourself. It makes no difference whether you hire someone to do your SEO or do it yourself, but please just make sure you’re not making any of the above mistakes. I just want to burn it into your brain that there is no fast way around SEO work that will stand the test of time.
In my 5+ years of SEO I have seen people making the following mistakes over and over again. What else can you add to the list of things you should avoid when doing SEO work?
Article by Garen Arnold
This is a guest post by Garen Arnold who is the chief editor of BlogSetupGuide.com. Through my vast knowledge of creating niche blogs/sites over the years I write about many valuable blogging and SEO tips for newbies for their online ventures.