Search engine optimization (or SEO) is important for any successful blogging campaign, whether it is a personal journal where you share your thoughts on your favorite things or a business networking tool where you share your expertise with the world. Because optimization is such a complex group of techniques and strategies, there is plenty of false information floating around on the internet that a number of inexperienced people have taken for fact. We have compiled a list of 8 SEO mistakes that you need to avoid at all costs.
1. Automated tags – Most beginners will write a post that has a long title, which describes the topic using far too many words. You need to keep your titles short (no more than 60 characters) and optimize the tag using keywords that you are trying to target.
2. Buying links – Whilst you might get some sort of short-term boost to your ranking by buying links, you are playing a dangerous game by making this sort of decision. Google's bots are trained to look for questionable linking patterns and you will be caught.
3. Chasing PageRank – Whilst it is true that PageRank is important for the success of your blog, it is important to remember that this is not the only factor regarding your success. Use your SEO strategy to focus on other elements, such as analytics and relevancy.
4. Duplicate content – Some people think that creating pages for similar keywords is a great way to boost their ranking. This often leads to duplicate content, however, as there is only so much that you can say about the keywords before there's nothing left.
5. Free blogs – Whilst there are many free blogging services out there that can provide you with a good platform for posting, these types of services are able to support the plugins, themes and other extensions that you want to use as a part of your SEO strategy.
6. Keyword stuffing – This is one of the more common mistakes out there, even though it is completely unethical and actually ends up hurting your ranking. Target separate pages for each keyword, do not use hidden content and focus on creating useful pages.
7. Little content – Many blogs tend to be filled with posts that are simply too short. The main way that this hurts your SEO strategy is that it can affect your reader loyalty – they will come to expect a certain quality from your posts and you can not alter this.
8. Sacrificing content – Whilst it is important for your blog to have a nice design, otherwise potential readers will not be attracted to it, you must avoid becoming too obsessed with its appearance. Do not overcrowd the page and keep graphics to a minimum.
Whilst there are, of course, a number of other SEO mistakes that you should avoid making at all costs, the ones that we have outdone above involve the mistakes that we have found are most commonly made. They will hugely affect the success of your blog and your potential rankings. It does not matter whether your blog is for personal or business reasons – if you want it to be successful, you will need to familiarize yourself with each of the above SEO mistakes and avoid making them in your own posts.