Every year brings new changes, so I will make a list with the top 10 SEO mistakes in 2014 that still have a major impact on your website’s rankings. This list includes the most popular SEO mistakes this year which, even though they might seem obvious, they are often overlooked while dealing exclusively with smaller, more difficult to solve website issues.
SEO mistakes in 2014
1. Ignoring page speed – if your page speed is not under 3s then you should fix it or ask for help because people will not wait too much to see your content. Your bounce rate will be skyrocketing and visitors will not come back unless they absolutely have to – and let’s face it, most of the content on our websites is useful, but not indispensable. A bad first impression is hard to fix, so take care of your brand and your future conversions before people start to wonder about your financial situation and about the abilities of your IT team.
2. Wrong title tag length – even though we were told that the title tag should not be longer than 70 characters because Google will truncate it, this is completely false. Google doesn’t measure the number of characters, it only looks at the number of pixels in your title tag. In a SEO experiment made by standingdog.com, they demonstrated that you can surpass this 70 characters limit and still have your entire title tag included in SERP. From a title tag with a length of 95 characters and 448 pixels wide, Google truncated the title after the 93rd character. There is no recommended official pixels limit, but we know that Google uses Arial 16pt font as default. You can get the pixel length of your title tag in a second by typing it in the box that you find in this standingdog article.
3. Duplicate content – there are different duplicates that you can have. For example, you can have 2 pages with 2 similar URLs(eggmetrics/Home and eggmetrics/home), both leading to identical pages and content. Having more links leading to the same content will create confusion not only for your website visitors, but also for search engines. Duplicates will have a negative impact on your SEO efforts because search engines will spread your traffic and the good results. The way to fix it is by getting help from SEO professionals or programmers to remove duplicates and implement canonical tags to tell Google which is the URL that you prefer.
4. Little or no content – especially in online shops, having pages with only images, the name of the item and the price is one of the common seo mistakes. Thin content will send to the search engines signals that will not make you happy – your site will be perceived as low quality and not unique enough to be promoted in the top results for the topic that your page is about.
5. Wrong keywords density – include your keyword in the url, in the title, in the content and even in the filename of your images. Don’t try keyword stuffing tricks though because you will be penalized. Insert your keywords naturally in the text, always looking for the balance. We still have a long way to go with semantics, so choose the most popular variant of your keyword instead of the name used only by knowledgeable professionals for example. Always build your content with your goals in mind and read it with the eyes of your ideal visitor.
6. Poor site navigation – if your pages are hard to find or if your search doesn’t return correct results, then your visitors may end up frustrated and leave your site with a bad impression.
7. Bad backlinks – buying links en gros is not a good idea. Links coming from low quality pages with a bad reputation will negatively affect your site rankings. Even if you didn’t do anything wrong and you followed all the recommendations from Google, you should still check your backlinks because if you refused to link your site to poor quality sites, this doesn’t mean that your competitors could never feel generous one day and spend their time doing this “nice” work especially for you. Fortunately, all you have to do is to manually filter out the bad backlinks using our free backlink disavow tool, so that Google will ignore them when it calculates the ranking for your website.
8. No social media sharing – not integrating Facebook like buttons is one of the seo mistakes. Not integrating Google+ button into your website to enable +1s and sharing is a huge SEO mistake. The debate over Facebook likes influence on Google rankings is ongoing, but the positive effects of Google+ are obvious. You can’t really blame Google for not giving the same weight to Facebook likes as Facebook is a third party company and Google might not be too interested to follow our activity on third party platforms.
9. Poor mobile integration – in a world where everyone is moving towards mobile, ignoring mobile integration is a sure path to failure. You need a responsive design for your website to make it available and good looking on all the devices that the world is using – smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktops. We can help you determine the costs so that you can choose the option that suits you best, so feel free to leave a comment below if you have any questions.
10. Overlooking Google Analytics – if you don’t track your results and your evolution, how do you set your expectations? You need the metrics that Google Analytics is offering you in order to see what you are doing right, what you could do better and what you should remove all together. Knowing your audience age, location and age for example can help you produce targeted content and focus more on the groups that bring you the higher number of conversions.
If this list was helpful, you can make a task list out of it when you optimize your website. Getting lost in the details can be damaging both for the future of your brand and for your website rank.