The demands on SEO are increasing day by day

So are the possibilities in SEO.

Not only is the SEO discipline growing, but the size of the market, which is projected to reach $ 1.6 billion by 2027.

SEO has grown from an isolated practice to a significant revenue stream in recent years.

A channel that integrates with content marketing practices and general digital strategies.

The 10 Most Common SEO Mistakes to Avoid

SEO is unique in its nature.

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From shifting marketing terms to changes in search engines and customer priorities, marketers need to keep track of many changes.

As a result, SEO methods are constantly evolving due to developments in search engines and changes in consumer behavior.

It is never easy to keep up with the most successful optimization techniques.

And if done wrong, recovery can be difficult and even more time consuming.

Below are some common SEO mistakes with tips on how to avoid them.

Mistake 1: not knowing your audience

One of the basic principles of SEO is to understand your target audience.

That means you know your audience at the smallest and most detailed level.

SEO is the voice of the customer.

While many marketers believe they know their audience, they often fall into the trap of not understanding how consumers are behaving in their market and then on a granular level.

At the same time, consumers expect immediate responses and results to their queries. They often want this in real time.

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While historical data still gives SEO great insight into seasonal trends, marketers' methods of understanding their customers need to be holistic.

One of the most common mistakes in keyword selection is neglecting search engines and users' preference for long-tail keywords.

While you might define your products and services in a certain way, understanding what words your potential customers would use to refer to them is more important.

Tips:

  • Do you understand the market your consumers are buying in – what are the macro trends?
  • Use both historical and real-time data to understand how behavior is changing.
  • Match your keyword selection and strategy to what you find on the consumer's intent.
  • Use Google keyword planning tools and provider tools that are available to you.

Mistake 2: No SEO Plan and No Roadmap

There is no point in knowing everything about your audience and then taking little or random action to maximize the chances from that knowledge.

Many companies struggle to build or implement strategies from large companies to small and medium-sized companies.

Last year only 36% of small businesses had an SEO strategy.

Creating an SEO strategy and roadmap is critical to success.

However, many plans fail as building a sustainable and efficient strategy depends on multiple stakeholders – website, PR, content, product, IT and engineering.

It's also about ensuring that every strategy has an executive buy-in and understands the importance of SEO internally and is trained in SEO best practices.

If you don't have a roadmap – a blueprint for your success – you need to create one now.

Take a look at where your website and results are now and where you want them to be.

Set goals and agree on workflows.

Tips:

As part of your plan:

  • Evaluate and understand your competition – rankings, keywords, content and performance.
  • Divide the actions into tasks and agree on goals and key stakeholders.
  • Arrange roles for content, website updates, digital targeting, and SEO evangelism.
  • Look for technology – tools and platforms that support the workflow and your strategy.

Error 3: Creating the wrong content type

Another common danger in search engine optimization is creating content that isn't really about your audience.

The problem is, you want to rank a certain keyword, but you can't focus the text on your target topic.

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Search engines like Google want to provide their users with the most relevant content for their search terms.

So if your content doesn't meet user needs, it won't rank well.

This error is often a result of:

  • Trying to incorporate a few different topics into a single piece of content.
  • Creating poor quality work just to include keywords.
  • Optimization for multiple keywords in one article.

Your primary goal should be to create content that truly meets the questions and needs of your target audience, including using the right search terms.

Then search engines can track your content to match the keyword you are optimizing for.

Marketers can make two big mistakes with content:

  • You're not focusing on content for the right audience.
  • Do not produce content that is based on expertise, authoritative and trustworthy.

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So it is important to create content that Google wants.

Tips:

Mistake 4: Posting non-original content

Based on the above, the next typical mistake is related to the quality of your content.

While duplicating text used to be a common practice, search engines are now penalizing this approach.

Copying and plagiarizing content is considered a spam practice and is highly recommended.

Duplicate and thin content just doesn't work.

Instead of tearing down copies from other locations or using software that reshapes the content, it pays to invest in creating original and meaningful content.

This is the only way to ensure that your website is not downgraded and pushed to the background of search results.

Tips:

  • Create strong headlines that match the topic of your content. Do not mislead readers.
  • Make sure the content provides answers and actionable information. Give examples.
  • Create stories that people can identify with and engage with. Cite sources you trust.
  • Add videos and pictures to enhance the reading experience. Be creative.

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Mistake 5: skipping title tags and meta descriptions and forgetting to provide context with schema

Optimizing your content doesn't stop once you've added a target keyword to your articles.

Title tags and meta descriptions are essential elements of search engine optimization that should not be forgotten.

The skipping means huge missed potential for your content.

These optimization factors are taken into account by search engines when crawling your website, so if done correctly, they can improve the performance of your content.

Some marketers also forget to use the scheme to tag their content and let search engines know what their website is about.

Content creation is great, but without it, search engines will struggle to understand the context of your content.

This means that they rank lower in typical searches and are less relevant to certain queries made through voice search.

Another technical detail that content marketers sometimes forget is adding image tags.

The alt tags of the graphics that you include in your content are important as they are another indicator of how you are targeting articles.

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Search bots can't see the images, but they can read the alt tags and add that information as they index your pages.

Tips:

  • Write unique title tags for each page that are short but descriptive – not vague.
  • Make sure you match your keyword with intent and be careful about where you put it.
  • Avoid title tags that are too long and make them unique on all pages.
  • Follow Google best practices for creating good titles and snippets.

Error 6: Missing quality links

To get the most out of SEO, content marketers today should understand that the quality of the external links included in content is more important than their quantity.

For this reason, it's better to make sure you are linking to relevant, high-ranking websites with solid reputations – not just any website.

It is also useful to resort to websites that are linked to you as it will bring traffic back in the future.

Another counterproductive practice when it comes to links is the use of ineffective anchor text.

This wastes valuable SEO opportunities as the anchor text shows the reader and search bots what the link is about and how it can be beneficial to users.

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So avoid using "click here" as anchor text and make sure to opt for a variety of anchor texts as repeated use of the same text can be considered spam.

Tips:

  • Create a link building program that is based on quality and best practices – don't buy.
  • Monitor and look for broken links and fix them.
  • Create content based on E-A-T – quality content naturally attracts links.
  • Use technology and tools to monitor and build.

Mistake 7: going astray with your internal links

There are also common internal link pasting mistakes to watch out for.

Of course, it's important to think about your top performing pages and include links to them in your content.

This is one way to add visibility to them and create additional traction.

However, make sure you don't include internal links just to have them in an article if they don't fit the topic and focus of the article.

As with keyword stuffing, it's important to watch out for internal links and not overdo them.

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If the content and links seem unnatural, your target customers will not appreciate your work.

It would also not be favorably treated by search engines as it can be viewed as a fraudulent practice.

Tips:

  • Group current web pages with internal links.
  • Check internal links for problems – broken links, slow pages, important and unimportant pages.
  • Balance out the number of internal links you've used.
  • Avoid links from irrelevant pages.

Mistake 8: Not investing in a fast, mobile-friendly experience

SEO is not just about content and keywords.

It's also about the quality of your website, especially the performance on mobile devices which are the first choice for users today.

Google and other search engines can tell if your website is cell phone unsuitable, especially if Google looks at indexing for cell phones first.

If you haven't considered a smooth mobile experience for your audience, your search engine rating may be at risk.

The same applies to the loading speed, since search engines also focus on this.

You shouldn't be surprised if a slow website leads to lower positions on the SERPs.

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Companies that make mobile SEO mistakes usually fall around:

  • Slow location speeds.
  • Block files.
  • Pictures and videos are slow to load.
  • Interstitials Ads.
  • Bad local information.
  • Unresponsive web design.

Tips:

  • As a priority, improve your website's load time to prevent people from bouncing off.
  • Make sure you have a nice design so that users can easily browse your mobile website.
  • Optimize and ensure that local and mobile strategies are aligned.
  • Create mobile content to give users a better mobile experience.

Mistake 9: Not understanding how SEO works across digital channels

SEO has a social and digital dimension.

Since SEO is now an essential part of digital marketing – and to maximize its potential – it's important not to make the mistake of overlooking how it works with other channels.

If you don't integrate your SEO with other marketing channels, you are missing out on measuring the full impact.

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You and your company will struggle to increase SEO success internally and externally.

SEO requires the support of several key marketing channels while having a positive impact on all of them.

Building a symbiotic relationship and agreeing goals and measures of success across channels – social, email, paid, and PR – are all part of modern search engine optimization.

Tips:

  • Make sure your SEO strategies take into account inputs and outputs from all digital channels.
  • Evangelize SEO success in your company and show how it is helping other channels.
  • Stay in constant contact with digital counterparts – internal and external.
  • Make sure all members of your broader digital team are included in your SEO plan and roadmap.

Mistake 10: Not using analytics and using the wrong tools and technologies

The only way you can tell if your SEO and content efforts are working is to track their progress.

Many marketers would ignore the numbers, but this is a serious mistake.

Setting up and reviewing your analyzes on a regular basis is critical to your optimization results.

Google has numerous tools such as Google Analytics and Google Search Console that you can use to measure the performance of your website and to get an overview.

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With their help, you can see how your optimization works for the different types of content and use different strategies that you try out.

In addition, the SEO technology field has grown massively over the years.

There are various tools and platforms that you can use now to avoid all of the errors listed in this article.

The solutions range from:

  • Keyword research.
  • SEO management and workflow.
  • Link management, reporting and measurement.
  • Competitive analysis.
  • Automation.
  • And more.

Tips:

  • Look for a tool or platform that best suits you and your organizational needs.
  • Tools can often help with certain parts of your SEO strategy – tasks and are inexpensive.
  • Platforms can cover many needs – mostly businesses – and are more expensive.
  • Tools and platforms help you increase efficiency and implement the SEO strategy.

Summary

Search engine optimization is an indispensable part of any content marketing strategy today.

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Even the best of people can make many common SEO mistakes.

It is better to familiarize yourself with the challenges of others and avoid them in your marketing efforts.

These 10 mistakes have proven to be common so now they are easier to spot before you make them.

More resources:

Photo credit

All screenshots by the author, October 2020

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