Search engine optimization (SEO) refers to a set of techniques used to make a blog more accessible to search engine spiders. These spiders crawl the text on your blog and index each of your site’s pages. The goal of SEO is to make your blog show up at the top of the results when someone searches for one of your target words or phrases. Unfortunately, just a few small mistakes on your blog can derail your SEO efforts and make it difficult to rank for your desired terms. Avoid these mistakes when optimizing your blog for the search engines.
Many blog owners make the mistake of stuffing their text with keywords, thinking that if one or two keywords are good, then a lot of keywords must be better. This is a mistake for two main reasons. One is that keyword stuffing makes the content nearly unreadable, which causes blog owners to lose their readers. The second is that search engines constantly change the way they index content. Many major search engines actually penalize blogs that have the same keywords too many times on the same post. This can cause your rankings to drop, reducing the number of people that visit your blog and leading to lost traffic.
Picking the Wrong Keywords
You need to pick your keywords carefully, as choosing the wrong keywords can leave you with low traffic numbers and lagging sales – if that’s what you’re after. The key to picking good keywords is finding out what people are searching for when they want information on your niche. There are many keyword research tools that can help you determine what keywords people use to find information. If you have a traditional brick-and-mortar business, you should also keep your location in mind when determining which keywords to use. “San Diego graphic designer” will help you get more customers than “graphic designer” since many people look for businesses near their homes or places of business.
Failing to Update Content
You need to update your blog regularly so that the search engine spiders have more opportunities to crawl your posts. Google, one of the most popular search engines in the world, places particular importance on regularly updating content. One of the best ways to keep your content fresh is by writing more posts to your blog. Every time you publish a new post, you are updating your blog’s content.
Picking the Wrong URLs
Many blog owners make the mistake of allowing their blog publishing platforms to generate random URLs every time a new post is created. It is better to create URLs that contain keywords related to each page, as the use of these keywords can help the search engines decide what your page is about. Instead of http://www.site.com/post82814, create a URL such as www.site.com/types-of-widgets. That’s why we strongly recommend WordPress which does it automatically.
Too Many Backlinks
Any time another site links to one of your pages, the link counts as a “vote” for that page. Unfortunately, many site owners buy and trade links from sites that are considered spam. When a spam site links to your site, you can be penalized just for being associated with that site. If you ask another site owner for a backlink, make sure his site is relevant to yours. If you own a computer repair shop, a backlink from an antique clock website won’t do you much good. If you get a backlink from a computer parts manufacturer, however, the link might help you improve your search engine rankings.
Failing to Hire a Professional
Cutting costs is important to most business owners, but it’s important that you do not sacrifice results when you reduce your expenses. If you do not know how to properly optimize your blog, it is best to hire a professional who can get results. A search engine optimization professional knows how to improve your search engine rankings without resorting to amateur mistakes and unethical tactics. The money you spend on an SEO professional is money well-spent if your rankings improve enough to attract more traffic and generate more sales. Look for an SEO consultant who has several years of experience and a portfolio that demonstrates extensive experience in the field. Once you hire a consultant, request regular updates so you know how the SEO work on your site is progressing.