Ever since SEO came into existence, most website owners and developers understood the importance and the role that it plays in their road to success. In the early days, links were distributed everywhere just to get enough people to visit their sites — even to sites that don’t relate. However, search engines like Google and Bing have evolved to prevent this.
Keyword placements also proved to be neither as popular nor as effective as it did before. Moreover, these kinds of tactics are now penalized, meaning, Google and Bing will probably rank them very low.
Newer SEO guidelines are more about getting traction and authentic visits to your pages by being really viral, by being an influencer or thought-leader on a particular niche, by being active in social media and engaging your audience, and much more. It may be a bit of rocket science at first, but as time goes by, it can be a walk in the park.
Here are the top 5 reasons why SEO becomes ineffective:
- Ugly Choice of Keywords
- Unnecessary Keywords
- Having Same Contents on Different Pages
- Broken Links and Clickbaits
- Meta Descriptions and Title Tags
1. Ugly Choice of Keywords
We didn’t say keywords are not useful anymore, rather, they should be chosen well and used well. Keywords are what search engine crawlers look for when indexing a website; they should precisely describe what the contents are. Most importantly, it should be relevant to what the target audience is searching for. There are online tools to determine how heavily a keyword or keywords are being searched for.
2. Unnecessary Keywords
Aside from using non-relevant keywords, there is another keyword-related problem: unnecessary keywords. This means you fill in gaps in your website with too much keywords, and using the same keywords over and over again. Duplicate keywords can confuse search engine crawlers and may mark your contents as spam or copied. You can check out plugins that can determine how many times you have used a keyword so you can prevent it from happening.
3. Having Same Contents On Different Pages
Imagine reading a book wherein 2 pages contain exactly the same contents: what would you feel? Studies show that people would definitely notice the similarity, and can eventually lead to confusion and, well, boredom and other negative effects. Search engines are made to please and serve the people who use them, and they don’t want showing duplicate contents. Be sure to post only original contents. Use online tools to check for duplicates or plagiarism.
4. Broken Links and Clickbaits
Now, who would like to click on a link and then later see a different website or an “uh-oh, the content you are looking for is not here, or 404 page not found error?” We don’t, and we’re thinking you don’t too, nor other people, too. Search engine crawlers also check the links on your contents and also check whether the link directs to reputable websites. Make sure to check the links before you post. You may also want to audit your website at least every 6 months to make sure that links are still working.
5. Meta Descriptions and Title Tags
Basically, meta descriptions are like an elevator pitch where you need to describe your business, or in this case your contents, in as few words but as precise and accurate as possible. Be creative but be simple.
Title tags are like descriptors: web crawlers look for tags so they know where to search. Again, and again, web crawlers are meant to look contents that are relevant and useful for the users. So, use title tags sparingly and purposefully. Also separate your contents into subheadings accordingly, then tag them properly.
Now, Up to You
With all these reasons in mind, do a thorough audit of your website and your SEO, if you already have one. Or keep a checklist when you are just starting out on your SEO marketing journey.