SEO management is a powerful online marketing tool. But like all things powerful, a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing. Knowing a few elements of the process can do more damage to your online visibility than knowing nothing at all. So when key elements of a strategy get promoted without understanding of the context behind them, many DIY online marketers damage their own website’s reputations with search engines when they try to game the system or give themselves an advantage in gaining the web traffic they need to grow their businesses. For a number of reasons, employing SEO strategies for your website should be done with a full knowledge of the strategy itself and the context behind it.
Here are some key trends that have either been misapplied or abused to the users folly and should be forgotten if you want to achieve any kind of SEO success:
- Keyword Stuffing: For some reason people still try to stuff keywords in the backend of their website. For more than a decade now, keyword stuffing has been abandoned even by blackhat SEOs because Google, Yahoo and Bing see the strategy coming down fifth avenue and routinely sandbox your domain within the blink of an eye when they do. Keywords should be used on the page, the visible page. Google’s search algorithm is sophisticated enough to recognize when keywords added to the meta data are not the primary (or even secondary) focus of the content the page reader sees.
- Relying on Set-It-And-Forget-It SEO Tools: Online tools like Yeost, which give you quick and easy settings to play with and suggestions without context are a dangerous and lazy strategy to embark upon when looking to score SEO success. If you don’t understand the context behind a strategy the application thereof can end up costing you credibility. Focus first on content. If your content is applicable to your industry, your audience, and your work, it will score a win for your search positioning. It’s that simple. Too many tricks and tools only signal to search engines that you may just be trying to game the system. And once you get a Google penalty, it is a long road to reversing the damage.
- GEO-Targeting With Keywords: Creating landing pages with keywords for specific suburbs or geographic areas that correspond to locations from which to draw traffic, as opposed to locations where you have actual business offices, is an easy way of getting slammed with a Google penalty. Google’s algorithm recognizes the difference between a business with multiple published business offices or locations and a business with multiple landing pages for multiple areas it’s trying to get traffic from. You’ll only serve to hurt your existing traffic flow. And who wants to work to do that.
- Artificial Link-Building: Link-building was once the golden goose of SEO management. For years, businesses colluded to supply and receive links from other businesses on their respective websites in order to increase the amount of links they each had pointing to their sites online. Today, Google takes a good hard looks at your site’s inbound links and when they simply don’t make sense, both sites get penalties. Artificial link-building is way too blackhat these days to be a respectable strategy for any SEO protocol. And because of the popularity of the practice, Google has removed some of the luster of inbound links examining them more closely and severely punishing sites that abuse the practice. Get your links the good, old fashioned honest way, but create good, useful content your customers/clients can benefit from. Promote it via social and you’ll start getting all of the natural links you need to soar to the top of the Search Engine Results Pages.
If you would like to learn more about how whitehat search engine strategies can help your business grow, call Proctor Digital at 773.664.5819. We can help build a custom SEO strategy that will target the traffic you need to grow your business online.