There are many hidden reasons why your website doesn’t work too well recently. The online world is changing rapidly and many business owners are still living in the past. A method that’s effective a few years ago can be nearly worthless today. If it’s the case, then you need to rethink your SEO strategies.
A good SEO plan should evolve over time based on latest developments, such as changes in search engine algorithms and ranking methods. SEO never stays constant, so newbies and professionals need to adapt continuously.
Here are hidden issues that may ruin your SEO performance:
- Outdated content marketing methods
- Outdated title tags usages
- Existence of bad paid links
- Too much focus on press releases
- Reliance on automated tools
- Less focus on mobile experience
- Use of “thin” content
- Reliance on guest blogging
- Reliance on top phrases for relevant traffic
1. Outdated Content Marketing Methods
Many people think that keyword density is an essential part of content marketing strategy. However, it was still highly relevant when Google still used metadata strings to determine ranking. In recent years, Google not only uses metadata but also uses many other factors like RankBrain. This is a type of artificial algorithm to determine the accurate ranking in search results.
Focusing on keyword density may be a good thing. Because it ensures that you have enough certain keywords in your content without being spammy. However, key an eye on the latest search engine algorithm changes to optimize the content. For example, Google increased the meta description length from 160 to 320 characters. So, you should update the meta description accordingly to reflect the summary of the content can be displayed in the search results.
2. Outdated Title Tags Usages
Keyword stuffing in title could help search engines define the main topic of your content but poor methods can be counter productive. Instead of worrying too much on keywords usages in your title, you should create a snippet that fully describes the page and users should feel encouraged to click on that.
3. Existence of Bad Paid Links
Your past SEO campaigns may include buying links as your link building efforts. There’s certainly a time when proper anchor tag and relevant content page contributes in your search engine ranking placement. Link building is crucial for your SEO success, but some of your old paid links may actually be located in bad environments without your knowledge.
The Penguin algorithm update sent a shockwave all across the SEO industry and many websites lost their ranks due to improper link building efforts. If you find that it’s hard for your website to reach higher positions, it is possible that you have a bad link pointing to your website. A good backlink should appear natural and has no direct indication that it’s a paid link. Use Google Disavow links tool to get rid of those unnatural links pointing to your site.
4. Too Much Focus on Press Releases
Many websites owners and online marketers focus too much on pointless press releases. PR is among the most abused SEO tools and for years, we have been getting millions of nonsensical press releases that nobody would read. The actual purpose of these PRs is not for people to read, but for putting a few links with matching anchor text and relevant content page. Google already easily caught onto this SEO method. Your website may not be penalized from using PR links, but these links can be significantly devalued since years ago.
If you want to use press release, you shouldn’t do it only for getting a back link. It means that people need to actually read your press release, because they are expecting to get new information. You will still make press release, even if it has zero SEO value and you don’t add any link to it.
5. Reliance on Automated Tools
Spun and auto generated content is a prevalent thing in the SEO industry. Creating a good content requires research and time. If you check top positions in search engine for specific topic, you will find no junk content. All of them provide meaningful information that people will actually read.
There are natural language generation programs that are based on real time database information and artificial intelligent. However, people will notice that these auto-generated content feels somewhat emotionless. In general, nothing beats well-written, properly research content written by real writers.
6. Less Focus on Mobile Experience
In reality, most search engines searches have been performed through mobile devices. This is a fact that you can no longer ignore. If you want to succeed online, you websites should be responsive in terms of layout across all platforms, including different operating systems and device sizes.
7. Use of “thin” Content
Back then, many SEO practitioners use keyword-rich content to quickly get good ranks. However, it is already a waste of time and in some cases, you will only draw a penalty from Google and other major search engine providers. You will get better visibility by focusing only longer content. Blog posts with more than 1,000 words often rank higher than those with less than 500 words.
Periodically do the content audit on your site and remove the low quality content that adds no value to the users and created only for search engines.
8. Reliance on Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is a better way of generating links for your website. Your content is published only when it meets the standards of the blog owners and your links are placed in a highly relevant blog post. However, this method has been heavily abused as well and many online marketers take every opportunity to do guest blogging.
We have seen blog owners intentionally trade links through reciprocal guest blogging with sub-par content quality. Long story short, if you want to engage in guest blogging, it is important that you work only with authority and relevant websites. These websites should be highly trusted in your niche and you should forget about getting significant direct traffic from low quality blogs.
9. Reliance on Top Phrases for Relevant Traffic
Top phrases are frequently used by online audience to find specific piece of information on search engines. It is believed that top phrases translate to significant and relevant traffic for your website. It is true that higher rank based on top phrases means that your webpage will be visited by more people. However, there’s no guarantee that you will get more conversions or click-through. You should know that although top phrases drive traffic, only long-tail keywords can drive conversions.
Your keyword strategy needs to be highly contextual and your webpages need to properly describe your products and services in detail.
In simple words focus on creating content for real users without too much worrying on search engines. Optimizing the good content with proper titles, meta description and headings will help to rank high on Google.