Search engine optimization is very much to a great extent misunderstood and as such no wonder a lot of people fail in their efforts. Every person who has something to do on the internet knows how to go to Google and conduct a search for whatever interests them. The list of websites that are displayed thereafter is the result of search engine optimization. The listed websites have been optimized for the particular keyword you searched for.
In this post, I hope to outline the very basic steps to take for a successful SEO effort. By the way, I may use the term SEO. The intension behind this post is to let you into the basics which you can build on as you progress. I started to do search engine optimization back in April of 2007. I made drastic mistakes and learned from them.
SEO Mistake In Choosing Keywords
The first and most basic mistake people make is in choosing the wrong keyword. Back then when I started my search engine optimization journey, many people including me believed that it was enough to build a website and you are ready to go. The expectations were high. You believed that after setting up a website, the traffic will start to come automatically. We were wrong.
Almost nobody conducted thorough keyword research. Those who conducted the research chose the wrong keywords. They were soon to realize that their website was nowhere to be found. There is more to conducting a keyword research. In doing this the right way and in order to make it easier for your website to rank higher on the search engines, the correct thing is to go for keywords that have good search volumes but low competition keywords. There is a metric called keyword difficulty KD used to calculate this. The scale is from 0 all the way to 100%. The higher this metric is, the more difficult it is to rank for the keyword in question. Many people look only at the search volumes and do not analyse the difficulty. The end result is that they spend time and money trying to rank for a keyword that is almost impossible to rank for. There are SEO companies which can help you conduct your keyword analysis without you having to spend a fortune.
Mistake Of Not Writing Quality Content
This is another mistake which most people are prone to make. Now that you have selected the keywords you intend to rank for giving that you have taken all the factors of keyword analysis into consideration, the next step is to write a quality and compelling content. You should try to make your content readable, understandable and make it flow in a natural way.
Back in the early days of search engine optimization, I have seen websites filled with gibberish content and filled with stuff that not even the author could understand. They were practically filled with keywords and their variants. This is called keyword stuffing. These websites were ranking higher until Google decided to do something about it and unleashed the Panda algorithm to weed out low quality websites.
Mistake In Building Back Links
Believe me, this is one of the most important areas of SEO. Back links to your website are very important if you want to rank. The problem is that again, people do not really understand this factor. I have seen people who claim they know something about SEO speak about back link building without having the slightest idea how it works. They heard about it and they are using the term because everybody talks about it. If you are not careful, your website can be penalized and you may never recover.
I am not going to talk about how links work but I will touch on the quality. For years, Google has been warning people about how they link to their websites. I have also seen a web page filled with only links to another web page. Thousands of back links from a single page to another single page? Well that’s crazy. The practice worked for some time then the Google Penguin algorithm update wiped out billions of websites including the most popular ones.
There are more mistakes in some other metrics that affect SEO but those are more or less not so drastic as the ones I have outlined above. Just for your information, the search engines do not give out the secrets of their algorithms but if you are smart enough, you can deduce the real truth from their websites or do thing by trial and error.
I am aware that not every person who owns a website can be a search engine optimization expert. I know that businesses would like to dedicate more time to focus on improving their productivity. In that case you may need to obtain the expertise of a search engine optimization agency to do the work for you.
Don’t Make This Mistake
Do not make the mistake of hiring someone who does not know what he or she is doing. There are bad players out there who promise heaven and earth but deliver very little. Search engine optimization is an activity that should be taken seriously. There are so many benefits from it. If nothing, it can drastically reduce the budget you spend on advertising.