10 SEO myths that will limit your google ranks in 2020
It is no secret how important SEO is for digital content. Well written and produced content that incorporates the principles of SEO can make the difference between your website or social media page enjoying a high amount of traffic, and falling to the bottom of the list of search engine rankings. Below is a list of the most common mistakes to avoid when creating and producing SEO content.
SEO myths 2020
- Utilizing the wrong keywords: Search engines, as well as users, prefer long-tail keywords. The way in which you define and view your products and services is far less important than the way your customers define them. From time to time, the terms you use when referring to your products might be different than those commonly used by customers. Do your research, and understand your audience. There are numerous tools, such as Google Ad Words, Google Trends, and Moz Keyword Explorer available to assist you.
- Overuse of keywords: This one should go without saying, but I will say it anyway. Keyword usage, while extremely important, MUST be organic. The overuse of keywords will absolutely not help your content rank higher. In fact, it will result in the opposite. And plus, most search engines will immediately recognize this practice, and your content will actually be penalized in ranking points.
- Using inconsistent or illogical links: Quality, natural links are a huge part of your content's search engine ranking. It has become a baseline assumption that your content will include links of this nature. However, packing your content full of links that don’t make sense with what the content is about will also cause your rankings to suffer.
- Not optimizing your content for mobile use: Almost 90% of consumers digest digital content via their smartphones. Let that sink in. If you are not optimizing your content for mobile use, you’re only getting your message out to 10% of digital consumers.
- 4XX errors: This means that a link is broken somewhere, and therefore cannot be reached. You may also see one of these errors if something is externally blocking the page.
- Not using or under-utilizing meta descriptions: Meta descriptions are how Google determines the relevance of content with regards to an internet search. If you skip this step or do a poor job creating it, search engines will not know how to classify the content.
- The creation of duplicate content: Site audit tools are used frequently by search engines, and they will flag duplicated content. Not only will this result in lower rankings, but you could also find your content removed.
- URLs that contain underscores: Search engines can have a very difficult time with underscores. When using underscores, you run the risk of search engines incorrectly documenting your site indexes. Using hyphens can prevent this from happening because search engines are able to much more easily identify them.
- Using title tags of incorrect length: Title tags which are too long (tags consisting of more than 60 characters) are cut short in the SERPs. And those title tags that are significantly less than 60 characters run the risk of being missed by search engines altogether.
- Low Word Counts: Search engines love long content. If your work is too short, search engines will simply assume that it is very light on content, and rank it accordingly. Don’t add meaningless words just to increase the length of your content, but make sure you are thorough and informative.
- Slow HTML load speed: The average person will click off of a website if it takes longer than ten seconds to load. Speed will also have a significant impact on your search engine rankings. Having poor load speed implies that your website is outdated, and poorly maintained.
- Not making use of analytics: It is important that you continually monitor your content to see what is working, and what is not. Poorly ranking content is doing you a disservice, but failing to make it better is inexcusable. Search engine analytic tools make it very easy to track your rankings and traffic generation.
- Failing to optimize your content for local searches: If you happen to run a national chain of home goods stores, this one is of the utmost importance. While it makes sense to advertise snow shovels to Buffalo in February, it would be a bit silly to use the same marketing campaign in Phoenix.
- Failing to use anchor texts: Using generic “click here” texts for links is just about the laziest way to sabotage your digital content. Search engines consider it to be poorly produced, and rightfully so. (It is poorly produced.) And readers question if you believe in what you are posting.
- Publishing content that is poorly written: This is another one that should not have to be said. But sadly, it is still a very common occurrence. If your digital content is poorly written or produced, it will be treated as such by both search engines and any consumers who happen to stumble across it on the fourteenth page of their Google search results.
- Creating content that is not “link-worthy”: This goes hand in hand with publishing poorly written content. When other articles link themselves to your post, it helps both of you. They piggyback off of your established credibility, and you become viewed as the “expert.” The benefits here are fairly obvious. So, therefore, if your content stinks, no one is going to want to link themselves to it.
- Not using creative design elements: While written content will always be king to search engines, consumers do have a strong appreciation for attractive visual elements. Adding quality visuals to your digital content all but guarantees additional eyes will find there a way to your website. However, not incorporating these elements will leave you missing out on a considerable amount of potential web traffic.