Do you know every webmaster's worst nightmare? A sudden drop in their website ranking after years of hard work and commitment. But the reality is that every website faces a drop in traffic at one point or the other. It's something you can't avoid.
So, in this article, I will share with you some SEO practices you must stop doing. Otherwise, your website ranking will be seriously hit in the nearest future.
But before we proceed, let's quickly discuss SEO and the best SEO practices to implement on your website.
What is SEO?
SEO is an abbreviation for Search Engine Optimization. It's the practice of strategically increasing the quality and quantity of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. If you implement SEO the right way, it could be the game-changer in your digital marketing strategy.
In a nutshell, search engine optimization involves making changes in your website design and content to make it appear on search engine result pages. The essence of SEO is to increase your website visibility via organic, unpaid, and search engine results.
How Does SEO Works?
It's a simple process. Once you launch your website, search engines like Google crawl your site and go through your design and content.
The essence of crawling is to check if your website is user-friendly, and your content is readable to humans. This process enables search engines to continually deliver top-notch content to users whenever they search for a keyword.
However, for your webpages to constantly rank high on Search Engine Result Pages (SERP), you must optimize every aspect of SEO on your website.
Types of SEO
If you want to implement a well-rounded SEO strategy on your website, you need to pay attention to the following types of SEO.
Majorly, on-page SEO has to do with optimizing your website content. It refers to any strategy tailored towards optimizing individual pages on your site.
When you follow the right Onpage SEO practice, search engines can easily understand your content's topic. They will also see your website as a valuable source of information for related keywords searchers are looking for.
This type of SEO includes strategic keyword research, creating top-notch and evergreen content, and using the target keywords in the right places within the article.
Technical SEO refers to the non-content elements of your website. It relates to any activity or strategy directed towards improving your website's backend structure and foundation.
Typically, the purpose of technical SEO is to improve the readability of a website and its users' experience. This gives search engines the impression that your website is outstanding. It also provides search engines with a perfect understanding of your website and makes crawling a bit easier.
In a nutshell, technical SEO is all about enhancing the users' experience of your website. A right user's experience could affect your website traffic and engagement.
Some of the technical SEO elements are; site speed, mobile-friendliness, indexing, crawlability, site architecture, structured data, and security.
Off-Site SEO are strategies designed to help improve your website relationship with other sites. The purpose of implementing an off-site SEO strategy on a website is to build its reputation and authority.
When you implement off-site SEO strategies on your web page, search engines will identify them as ideal search results. This is because other reputable websites have endorsed your site through backlinks.
The best off-site SEO strategy is to get high-quality backlinks. When you have a large number of such links from reputable and high authority websites, search engines will be convinced that your website is valuable to internet searchers.
These three types of SEO must be implemented together on your website. Otherwise, ranking on search engines' first pages will be a daunting task.
Now you have an idea of SEO, don't you? Very well, then. Let's go back to our main topic.
5 SEO Practices You Must Stop Doing Because Google Hates It
#1. Excessive Use of Anchor Texts
There was a time when anchor texts were game-changing SEO strategies. Anchor texts were so useful that they could instantly improve your website ranking.
However, things changed along the line when internet marketers started abusing the technique. So, using excessive anchor texts on your website could actually hurt the SEO. When there are too many anchor texts in all your keywords, Google algorithms could penalize you.
So, if you must use this technique, strive to get a more natural anchor text phrase. Google still uses your anchor texts to judge evaluable your content. However, if you want to play smart on Google algorithms with anchor texts, your website will face the music.
Even if you succeeded in outsmarting Google algorithms with your unnatural anchor text, the next algorithm update will always detect the irregularities and possibly penalize your website.
You can always outsource your SEO task to professionals to avoid getting penalized. Here are some of the best SEO companies to hire from.
#2. Quantity over Quality Backlinks
No doubt, backlinks build your website authority and reputation. But not all backlinks are high for your website. Some backlinks could make Google algorithms penalize your website and hurt its ranking potential.
Instead of spending money creating more links (some of which may be bad), try to build links from high authority websites.
It's never a good idea to buy links these days; you should build them organically. Otherwise, your website may be penalized algorithmically or manually.
Here are the types of backlinks that could affect your website SEO
- Press release links
- Discussion forum links
- Links from foreign Guest books
- Several random Nofollow links
- Private blogs networks
- NoFollow social bookmark link
- Blog comments
- Links from cheap link services
- Links built by automatic link building programs
If you aren't an expert in building quality links, you can get some of the best link building services online.
#3. Keyword Stuffing
Keyword stuffing is an outdated SEO technique that could make Google algorithms penalize your website.
Search engines are often confused when you use too many keyword phrases on your webpage. And this could negatively affect your website ranking potential.
Even if you want to stuff keywords, don't include more than two keywords per page. Otherwise, the strategy will be counterproductive.
Types of Keywords Stuffing that Could Hurt Your Website
- Repeating words or phrases unnecessarily.
- Always adding words that are out of context to your webpage
- Inserting blocks of the same keywords
- Using keywords that aren't relevant to the topic
Keywords stuffing can create a terrible experience for your website users. Ordinarily, every website page's essence is to inform, educate, serve, and engage your readers. And stuffing your page with keywords will defeat this purpose.
One of the greatest SEO mistakes people make is that they focus more on writing for search engines and neglect their readers. This will definitely create a bad user experience, send users away from your page, and increase bounce rate. And if this continues, it could send your business's potential customers away in the long run.
Search engines frowned at keyword stuffing and could derank your website on Search Engine Result Page (SERP). Don't try to outsmart the system; instead, optimize your keywords; this will increase your chance of ranking.
Below are tips on how to use keywords the right way;
- Assign a primary keyword to every page on your website
- Write a minimum of 300 words content on each page.
- Use the appropriate keywords density.
- Add a variety of secondary keywords, long-tail keywords, and synonyms to the content
- Insert your keywords strategically in the right page elements
- Check your onpage SEO
#4. Duplicate Content
Writing duplicate content is a common SEO mistake most webmasters make. It refers to any content that appears in more than one place on the internet.
Whenever a content appears in more than one place on the internet, search engines find it difficult to decide which of the contents is relevant to the search query.
Technically, there's no penalty for duplicate content. But it can negatively affect your website's search engine ranking. Whenever there's duplicate content on your website, you may suffer traffic loss or rankings due to the following reasons;
- Search engines are more concerned about the users' experience. So, they seldom show different versions of the same content on search results. Instead, they will choose the content that is most relevant to the search query.
- When you have duplicate content on your website, you will not get a fair share of links from authority websites.
Ensure you always publish original and SEO optimized content on your website at all times. If you have a busy schedule, you can outsource your content creation. Here are some of the best content marketing companies to hire online.
#5. Spamming Comments
Spamming comment is another bad SEO practice that could hurt your website ranking and traffic. Some website owners pay people to spam other websites with their links.
The essence of this is to spread their link across different websites. This practice was effective in the past, but not anymore. It can potentially hurt your website ranking.
Similarly, don't approve bad comments on your website. Only approve comments that are valuable to your reader. This is how you improve the integrity of your website.