Sometimes the trick to a solid SEO strategy lies not in what you must do, but rather in what you must NOT do. Here are 6 SEO faux pas which can hurt your website’s Google ranking:
1. Not Having a Mobile Friendly Website
In a mobile first world, making sure your website is user friendly is no longer an option but a necessity. If your website is not responsive enough to fit snugly into any screen it is viewed on then your Google rankings will take a hit. This happens for two obvious reasons:
First of all, Google has already moved on to a mobile-first index meaning websites that are mobile friendly are actively favored on the search engine results page over those which are not.
Secondly, who wants to view a web page that doesn’t look good on mobile anyway? If your website does not look good on mobile, you can be sure the overwhelming majority of your visitors are bouncing off onto a competitor’s website within a few seconds. A bounce rate like that can only do damage to your Google search engine rankings.
2. Your Website Takes too Long to Load
Slow loading sites don’t offer a good user experience, and Google is all about offering their users a good user experience. If your website takes more than the fewest number of seconds to load, the worst thing that will happen is that your visitors may likely leave before your page even loads, leading to an unfavorable bounce rate. But on top of that, Google will likely push your website further down the results pages in favor of websites that load faster and offer a better user experience. You can check the speed of your website and get suggestions on how to improve the speed at: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/.
3. Duplicating Content
Sometimes, for outreach, SEO, and ranking purposes you may have to use the same content more than once. Going about this the wrong way may hurt your SEO goals and search engine rankings. Depending on whether the content is duplicated on your website or several websites, there are several ways you can go about making sure that content you decide to duplicate does not diminish in value. Some of these ways include using canonical tags and robot txt to indicate which of the content you want considered for the search engines and which should be left aside.
4. Failing to Put Keywords in Your Titles and Permalinks
Using keywords in your titles and permalinks to make them descriptive can have some benefit for your SEO and the user experience you offer your visitors. Leaving your permalink as it is, a jumbled mess of numbers, may end up hindering your organic reach.
5. Not Submitting a Sitemap to Google
If you want to climb up the rankings, then you definitely want to make it as easy as possible for Google to find and index all your great content. Google can do this on their own, of course, but helping them along by submitting a sitemap will not do any harm. This move is especially relevant when you make major content or design changes to your website.
6. Failing to Think about SEO from the First Day You Start Building Your Site
You should be thinking about SEO from the very beginning, before your website is even built. Now, you can still fix a website and get it aligned with SEO goals, but you are going to have a more pleasant and profitable time online if you don’t wait till your ship is sinking before making the necessary changes. An important part of this responsibility lies with your developer of course. We here at Eternity pride ourselves on taking a client centered approach to web building that takes your goals and target market into consideration so that once we are done, your website becomes your biggest ROI and the hardest working component of your business.