Few marketing channels have changed as rapidly or dramatically as search engine optimization (SEO). The search landscape in 2021 is nothing like it was a decade ago. However, you may still stumble upon websites that use tactics that were used to game the system back in the day. These "black hat" SEO tactics are not only unethical, but they often result in a terrible user experience.
The icing on the cake is that Google is becoming increasingly adept at spotting black hat SEO. Websites that use it risk seriously negative SEO consequences—the exact opposite of what their owners are trying to achieve.
Here are five common SEO mistakes you should avoid if you want your website to rank well in search results this year.
Creating Keyword Stuffed Content
Keywords have always been the most fundamental way to monitor how your website ranks on Google. However, the way to increase organic search traffic is to create high quality, targeted content written naturally. Cloaking and auto-generated gibberish may have worked a decade ago, but Google is savvier than ever before, and they do not want to connect their users with spam.
Backlinks are an essential component of every modern SEO strategy—in fact, backlinks are one of Google's top three ranking factors. But you will not get excellent inbound links by buying them in the SEO equivalent of a back alley. High quality backlinks that come from topically relevant, authoritative websites take some time to build, and you can't accomplish it by taking shortcuts. Even if Google does not immediately figure out what is going on, it can still come back to bite you later.
Not Auditing Your Website
No web admin can afford to overlook the technical side of their organic marketing efforts. It is easy to end up with a slew of technical problems, especially on larger and older websites. Common culprits include broken links, duplicate titles, and missing alt tags. Regular site audits can help you identify any trouble spots early on and fix them before they have a bearing on UX and SEO.
Optimizing for the Wrong Keywords
For the most part, you want people to visit your website to do something, such as order a product or service or sign up for a newsletter. If you optimize for the wrong keywords, you will only attract low-quality leads whose search intent does not correspond to the action you want them to take.
Choosing an Amateur SEO Professional
Choosing an SEO specialist is the equivalent of entrusting someone with your digital reputation. They are the people that connect your website with potential customers. Unfortunately, there are more than enough amateurs who take shortcuts that might hurt your search rankings. Hire a professional instead.
If you are looking for a professional SEO partner that can help you elevate your company position in search results with selected keywords, you can trust us.
At Winsby Inc., we design and implement an SEO strategy that will make it easier for your target audience to find you online. Call us at 312-870-5656 or fill out an online form to talk to one of our SEO experts today.