Congratulations! You have made a visually inviting, easy to use website that is optimized for mobile. However, that stunning new website will not help you produce a strong return on investment (ROI) if it cannot be found online. In order to increase your site’s visibility, it is crucial that you implement search engine optimization (SEO) tactics. Doing so will permit search engine users to find your website online when they search for queries related to your industry.
You may be worried that you do not have the time and-or resources to optimize your website for SEO. After all, many of your competitors have hired in-house or outsourced marketing professionals who spend all of their time optimizing their site for search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing.
With a limited budget and no time to spare, how can you possibly compete in the digital market? It may not as difficult as you think! After you have created your appealing and functional brand website, analyze it to make sure that you have avoided the on-page SEO mistakes below.
You are not optimizing your title tag(s).
A title tag is arguably the most influential element on a webpage in regards to SEO. Why? It is because your title tag essentially defines the subject and purpose of your page. That is why an optimized title tag will quickly result in ranking improvements.
A common mistake by webmasters is to make their title tags too long. Any title tag that has more than 66 characters (with spaces) is too long and will prevent users from viewing the entire title.
There are three important elements to include in a title tag:
• The primary keyword that you are trying to rank for.
• A secondary keyword …if you are local company, it would be wise to specify your city.
• Your company name.
An optimized title tag for a taxi service in Dallas would look like this:
Taxi Service – Dallas TX | Company Name
You fail to include a catchy meta description.
You would be surprised by how many companies fail to include a meta description on their website. Many brands may include a meta description on their homepage but do not add one to their interior pages. Considering all of your site’s pages have the ability to show up on search engines, this is a potentially costly mistake.
Why is a meta description important? It plays a key role in your website’s first impression when users find you via search engines. If you do not have a meta description or your meta description is dull, search engine visitors may not be motivated to click on your site.
Your URL is not optimized.
It is important that your URL is clear and can easily be understood by search engines, your visitors and your potential clients. Your URL should never feature jumbled letters and numbers such as http://website/fslkgn598th998f. Your URL must be well-defined and include your primary keyword. Let’s say that you offer electronic repair services and specialize in computer repair. The computer repair page for the company should have a URL that looks like this:
You are stuffing your keywords.
This subject has been discussed so often that you have certainly come across it if you have studied SEO essentials. For those who have not heard of keyword stuffing, however, there is something you should know. Keyword stuffing is a technique that was very popular in the early days of SEO. Webmasters would overuse the keyword in which they were trying to rank for throughout their webpage or website. Google caught on to this technique and now penalizes sites that use it.
If you want to rank higher for a specific keyword, the best practice is to include your keyword 1-2 times out of every 100 words. If you do not want to get so specific, just remember to use natural language in your copy. If your keyword is used so often that is seems out of place, you may be using it too much.
Your page does not feature an image with an ALT tag.
Not only can the use of images improve your SEO; it will help attract visitors to your site, keep them there and improve your conversions. To put it simply, images make a page interesting. Google takes notice of this and there is a strong connection between the number of images on a page and how well that page is ranked.
It is important to let Google know what your image(s) is about. To do this, make sure that you include an ALT tag. To enhance your SEO even further, include the keyword that you are trying to rank for in the ALT tag.
You do not make a unique page for each service you offer.
This mistake can best clarified using an example. Let’s use the electronic repair services example from above. As we mentioned, you specialize in fixing computers. Let’s also say that you offer television repair services. Your home page mentions the two services mentioned above and your title tag reads: “Electronic Repair Service.” Although you may have mentioned that you fix several types of electronics on your home page, this does little to alert Google about your specific services. Sure, someone might find you on Google if they search for electronic repair, but what about the user searching for television repair?
In order to rank for the most possible search queries, it is important that you make service-specific pages. In this case, the best practice would be to make a separate landing page for your television repair services, your computer repair services and any other service that you offer.
You do not feature enough copy.
If each page on your website only features a couple of sentences, you may not experience a very strong improvement in your SERPs. Google favors websites that provide an abundance of useful content. That is why it is recommended that you offer a minimum of 300 words per page. In addition, do not simply add copy for the sake of adding copy. Make sure that the copy you provide has a strong purpose and is useful for your readers.
Avoiding these common SEO mistakes makes all the difference in the search engine prominence of your website. What other easily avoidable SEO or Internet marketing mistakes do you often see brands make on their company website?