Friday, December 14, 2007

Top 7 SEO Mistakes to Avoid

You've got your new site up and you’re ready to get it optimized for search engines. Where should you start? There are plenty of articles and advice on the Internet on how you should go about it and there's a lot of information to absorb. When applying your SEO practices, make sure you avoid the following no no’s:

  1. Omitting the Title, Description and Keyword Meta tags. I’ve seen it first hand many times – potential clients contact me interested in a re-design because their site has been up for over a year and they have no traffic or page rank. I check their source code and sure enough, they don’t have any tags. If you go to Google Webmaster Help Center, you’ll see they encourage you to have title tags.
  2. Leaving “Under Construction” on your pages. You want your site to be seen as something that is evolving and continually changing so people will come back? Don’t put up “under construction” or “continually under construction”. The search engines will ignore you.
  3. No Links! This is a must for your website, you need to have them. Link to relevant sites from your site and have some incoming links from relevant sites too.
  4. Keyword stuffing. Cramming your pages full of keywords is going to shoot you down in the SERPs. You need to do research on keyword density and keep your pages within those ranges.
  5. Hiring a dishonest SEO service. You get what you pay for. If you want to have legitimate results, hire an expert service and expect to pay anywhere from 2-5 k per month. Do your research and make sure to check references by speaking to the former clients personally over the phone. If you hire a service that “guarantees” top placement, you are most likely getting ripped off.
  6. Using important text in images. The robots and spiders don’t recognize the text in an image. If you have something important you want shown on your page, use text!
  7. Dead links. Make sure you check your links frequently. If your links aren’t live, guess what? The crawler is leaving your site – dead end.
You can use free services such as SiteReportCard.com to check on your site optimization and find areas that need improvement.

When doing SEO for your site, be honest and provide information to your viewers that is of value and is true to your product or service. If you stick to those guidelines, you’ll come along just fine. Remember, it’s not a lightning process and it can be done without spending a great deal of cash. Do your research and get started today!

Joanne

2 comments:

g1smd said...

Don't wait until the site is up to start thinking about SEO.


SEO starts at the very beginning of the site planning stage - especially if it is going to based on a CMS of some sort.


Very many sites need a complete recode of their back-end systems to make them SEO friendly, but now the site is live there is no budget or time left to do it.

Complete Business Systems said...

Excellent comment! It's so true - most people just want their site up right away and don't even THINK about SEO until after it's been up a month and they don't have any traffic.

Kudos to you g1smd for pointing that out!