5 Worst SEO Mistakes Site Owners Make When Trying to Improve Search Engine Rankings

5 Worst SEO Mistakes Site Owners Make When Trying to Improve Search Engine Rankings

There are a lot of urban legends floating around about SEO and effective ways to make a website appear on the first page of the search results.

Understandably, website owners on a tight budget and/or without the time or desire to keep up on SEO often hear these snippets and innocently try to implement strategies that they think will improve their search engine results. Many times, these strategies can result in exactly the opposite effect. This inspired us to put together a list of the 5 worst SEO offenses:

#1: Using automated software to submit your site to hundreds of directories.

You never know for certain which directories automated software will submit your site to. Inbound links from link farms, suspicious sites, and ‘bad neighborhood’ sites can kill you search engine rankings.

#2: Creating keyword stuffed content specifically for search engines.

The goal of a search engine is to put the most relevant content in front of a reader. Sure, search engines look for dominant keywords on a page and throughout a site to evaluate it’s relevance to a search query, but they also know how to identify keyword-stuffed content created specifically to trick the search engines. Content should always be created with the reader in mind and then optimized for search engines.

#3: Linking in from your own sites on the same IP address:

Most people have heard that having lots of inbound links is a way to increase search engine ranking. Either out of naivety or in an effort to trick search engines, many people set up multiple sites specifically for the purpose of linking to their primary site. Search engines are keen to this tactic and have a ways to identify this linking strategy and to disregard those links.

#4: Using text that is the same color as the site’s background (invisible text):

Some people try to stuff keywords onto a page without having to create relevant content by including a list of keywords that is the same color as the background text. This is a trick that search engines became wise to many years ago and is completely ineffective.

#5: Duplicate content:

When building a new site, many people are tempted to copy and paste content from other websites in order to bulk up their own. Copying and pasting copyrighted content is bad news and can kill your search engine strategy, but even those with good intentions who try to use content the legal way by obtaining it from free content site can suffer. Search engines can instantly detect if your page is the same as another. Because they don’t want to show browsers hundreds of instances of the same page of content, your page is likely to get buried while the site that posted the content originally appears in the search results.

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