On April Fools’ Day we thought it would be fun to make an infographic showing previous SEO strategies that have now turned into SEO mistakes. Today, SEO is more than just keywords. You can’t just buy an AOL keyword anymore.
We want to make it VERY clear that the infographic you saw on our social media accounts and below is a funny SEO joke with a few mistakes that you can make. We repeat, do NOT follow those tips and tricks. Instead, take a look at how those SEO mistakes can actually be very harmful to your website’s success.
1. Keyword Stuffing
Don’t live in the SEo past. the algoritm has moved on, so should your seo strategy.
Keyword stuffing was a good idea back in the day. Google thought, I see this term here a lot, it must be relevant. Alas, Google caught on to these tricks. Keyword frequency doesn’t necessarily mean relevance or quality. Algorithms have been updated to actually penalize you for keyword stuffing. Instead, make sure to cover semantic terms while always keeping in mind user intent and readability.
2. duplicate content
search engine algorithms have stepped upt their game, so should your content.
Long gone are the days of writing for bots. Search engines have gotten smarter over the years and are not able to recognize quality content. We’re not just talking about good grammar, spelling and punctuation. We are talking about original, credible, long form content that has topic structure and excellent readability. Also, don’t think you can get away with writing this content just once. Fresh and updated content is always going to rank better than outdated and reused content.
3. paid links
sure, it might help in the short term. but it’s not just bad practice, it’s a violation.
Link building is a way of establishing credibility, transferring PageRank and content value. When done naturally, this can be very helpful for the user and create beneficial partnerships between information. But of course, a shortcut was found. Instead of creating useful, valuable content, the option of paying for sites to link to content seemed like a much faster and easier way to acquire backlinks. This isn’t Google’s first rodeo. Soon they caught on and with the Penguin update in 2012 this practice became a violation of Google’s guidelines and harmful to a website’s rankings.
4. exact-match domain names
this was a fad that got spammy real quick. instead, focus on buisling your brand.
Google thought that the domain name was a good signal to use, but it was easy to abuse. Businesses would buy domain names that were irrelevant or misleading in order to crush their competition. This created confusion and they often ended up being untrustworthy. Instead, focus on your brand, give Google some credit. Let them do the work of matching searchers up with your quality content, great products and services and upstanding reputation. These signals can speak louder than an exact-match domain.
5. flat urls
sometimes this happens without trying. make sure to check your default settings.
As humans, our brains are wired to put things into categories. Why wouldn’t you want to do the same for your URL structure? Google is more partial to topic hierarchy and relevance so leaving a URL path for search engines to follow is better than breadcrumbs (I’m talking about the Hansel and Gretel kind). By creating this hierarchy of content, search engines are able to understand importance and relevance.
Although this was a fun April Fools’ joke, these mistakes are not funny when they are hurting your rankings, traffic and conversions. Make sure your strategy isn’t outdated and your SEO is free of these mistakes.