Gone are the days when websites got ranked with no or low efforts. The Internet market is in a fierce competition now and it needs lots of elbow grease for new entrants to stand out of the crowd.
There are a hundred or even thousands of articles on the internet that rant about bringing tons of traffic to your website but there are very few identifying common SEO mistakes you might be making as a beginner.
Most of the bloggers, including me, would solely focus on creating quality content since every single article on the internet is telling us "content is king".
It is, without any doubt, but there are few other things that one cannot ignore from SEO perspective. Don't get carried away with your website design or content quality, forgetting the essence of SEO.
Here is a list of common SEO mistakes you should avoid as a blogger.
Related Article: Keeping Up With Content: How SEO is Changing in 2016
1. Not Submitting Website to Search Engines
Once your new blog is live, the first thing you should do is to submit your site to search engines. You can have a cup of coffee, of course, between creating the blog and submitting your site but nothing else. This should be done right away as this will help your site get indexed faster.
You must sign up for Google Webmaster Tools and Bing Webmaster Tools. Once you are on webmaster tools dashboard, you can add as many properties as you want.
You will be asked to claim your properties using meta tags and once verified, you will be able to see your site statistics on your webmaster tools dashboard. You must also submit XML sitemap for your website which helps a search engine understand the structure of your website.
2. Creating Content Without Keyword Research
Writing content without keyword research means you are ignoring the terms people are searching and writing what no one is looking for. This is why you won't get any eyeballs no matter how good your content is.
You must do proper keyword research before you start creating content. There are lots of tools, both free and paid, available on the internet for keyword research. You can use Google Adwords keyword planner tool to generate keyword ideas. Long tail keywords are easy to target as compared to short words. You can create long tail keywords by grouping different related keywords together and forming one keyword.
3. Keyword Abuse
Finding a highly profitable keyword doesn't mean you start keyword stuffing in your article. If you over-use a keyword, not it only it looks spammy but can potentially get your site penalized as well. "Nike Best Air Shoes are the Best Air Shoes I have ever come across". Don't do that.
Maintain a reasonable keyword density throughout your blog post. According to SEO experts, keyword density should stay between one to three percent. Any value greater than this can get you a severe penalty by search engines. You can use synonyms to make it look natural. Alternatively, you should also use one or two keywords from "Related Searches" keywords that are suggested by Google when you perform a search.
4. Not Optimizing Images Properly
Most of the bloggers would use lots of images in their content without specifying any alt tags or image descriptions. This is a wrong practice and impacts your rankings in search engines. Google and other search engines love information and images that are not properly optimized get overlooked.
There should be proper image SEO in place in order to get higher rankings in SERP. Use your keyword in a file name, alt tags, and title and description tags. Again, don't do keyword stuffing. Try to keep it natural, as much as possible. Properly optimized images guarantee better rankings in search engines.
Important: If you are using any images you don't own, make sure you give due credits to the owner. Otherwise, you might be in trouble.
5. Backlinks, Backlinks, Backlinks
Someone told you that backlinks increase the authority of your website? Yes, they do but keep this in your head "Only the right backlinks increase website authority". There is no single definition of right backlinks. However, if you are avoiding spammy backlinks, you are all good.
Never buy those $5 gigs that offer 5,000 so-called organic backlinks in just 24 hours. Don't fall prey to such traps. Matt Cutts, the head of webspam team at Google, clearly advises to focus on creating appealing content rather thinking about link building. Always aim for natural backlinks. Those are the ones that actually add to your site authority.
Related Article: Get Found: How to Use SEO for Small Business Growth
While it's not easy to rank higher in search engines overnight, it is quite possible to avoid these common SEO mistakes that negatively impact your site's SEO score. SEO is not a science, but an art that people learn with time and experience. If you find this information useful, consider sharing it with your fellow bloggers for the greater good.