5 SEO Mistakes to Avoid

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SEO is the Big Brother of the Internet

Some of us are hard-wired for words. You’ve seen them.   Those select few who enjoy playing with words, creating linguistic rhythms, making sixteen different words out of the same four letters. They salivate at the thought of a Scrabble game.   It’s just a gift some have and others don’t.

But SEO and the keywords used on the Internet is not a game.  It rules the Internet with a hard fist.  The keywords used on your site are what makes the difference between it being seen and it being dead in the water.

You Don’t Understand SEO?

That’s understandable.  There’s a lot of SEO soothsayers out there who pretend they have the SEO magic potion when instead they make SEO a lot more difficult than it needs to be.  You don’t need to ‘trick’ Google.  Nor do you need to work through reams and reams of data.  All you really need to do is to think.

Then there are those who make it sound so ridiculously simply, its no surprise that the SEO efforts don’t work.  They start off with the words “make a list of keyword” and conveniently side step in determining which keywords should make the list.

When you create you keyword list, think, think really hard, about your customers first,  and then think about your business.

Here are some other SEO mistakes that will explain more and that you should avoid.

5 common SEO mistakes.

1.  I’ve come to believe the biggest mistake people make is to ‘assume’.  They assume their customers know what brands they carry or they assume their customers understand industry terms and product names.  They don’t.  These assumptions and more are what creates bad on-site SEO. Face it.  Customers don’t spend 7/24 thinking about your business.  They think about what they need and they way they define that need is very different than someone, like you, who eats, breathes and sleeps your business.

So, your SEO Mission, should you choose to accept it, is to get into your customers heads.  Listen to the words they use to describe your products, services, your business.  Some will be pretty savvy.  They’ll have some familiarity with your  brands or the product names.  But most are not. So one needs to listen.  Hint:  Doohickey isn’t going to be a keyword, but the words your customers or prospects use are they key to successful SEO.

2.  People are not consistent in their SEO usage.  They use one set of keywords on-site, another when they create their business listings, another set when they do an article.  Rather than creating and building a solid digital footprint, they create this mish-mosh that doesn’t really work for their site or for their business.

3.  The other mistake people make is they select a few keywords in the beginning, but they never update their keyword list.  The popularity of keywords shifts over time.  Some keywords that were popular fall out of favor for others.  One needs to re-evaluate their keywords.  When is the last time you reviewed the keywords for your site?

4.  People don’t systematize their SEO process.  Most of the time, it is this like tossing darts or playing roulette.  They just select a few big keywords and call it a day.  The problem is they can never duplicate the process nor can they determine if they keywords they’re using are working.

5.  They don’t capitalize on  Holiday terms (e.g. Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc.), seasonal terms or industry terms (e.g. New Fall Fashion, etc.), which, in some industries can really aid the viability of a site.

Don’t get caught with ineffective SEO.  Make it a mission to get the right keywords for your site.  Your business will reap the rewards.

List other SEO mistakes or your thoughts and frustrations about SEO below.

Sheila Hibbard

Sheila Hibbard takes the fluff, hype and confusion out of marketing and social media. She provides small business owners with straight forward, no nonsense marketing guidance and techniques that produce results based on her 35 plus years in advertising, communications, research, strategic planning and social media. Author of Marketing Online Made Simple - WHO.

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    • Yes, and when over 75% of the real activity is taking place in organic, why bother with paid? Better to get smart about SEO. Don’t you think?

  1. Well said! I totally agree with you post. I cant stand the people who pretend to be seo experts, they advice others to their mistakes and drag them to the downfall. Recent google updates are the best example for that.

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