SEO, Thought Leaders

4 SEO Mistakes to Avoid

December 20, 2019

by Adam Stetzer

CEO, HubShout

Mastering SEO can be difficult, even for experienced marketing professionals. Avoid these common mistakes to ensure your optimization efforts deliver the maximum benefit to your business.

For those who are just starting out in marketing or are used to print advertising, digital mediums can be difficult to navigate.

The internet operates on entirely different principles than other popular forms of advertising do, and knowledge of one doesn’t always translate to the other. This leads many beginners, and even advanced marketing professionals, to make some common mistakes when tackling their search engine optimization.

Below, I’m going to explore several SEO habits that are harmful to your digital marketing strategy so your business has the best chance to succeed.

4 Common SEO Mistakes

  1. Keyword stuffing
  2. Not being selective with keywords
  3. Inconsistent content
  4. Not considering outsourcing

1. Keyword Stuffing

When the average person thinks about SEO, one of the few things that comes to mind is keyword usage. However, the general understanding of keyword usage is often flawed.

While some people think quantity is more important than quality, this principle translates to articles that read as “spammy” and are overcrowded with keywords. Far from driving traffic to a business’ website, it can push visitors away and because they see the site as untrustworthy.

Google's example of keyword stuffing


Further, if a key phrase makes up too high of a percentage of your total word count, it can be flagged by Google and other major search engines as spam. The worst-case scenario here is that your website is de-indexed, meaning you will no longer receive traffic from that specific search engine.

This consequence can spell the end of a business, so avoid keyword stuffing to protect your website as much as possible.

2. Not Being Selective With Keywords

Not only do you have to be careful about how often you’re using keywords, but you also need to be incredibly selective when picking which keywords to focus on.

Keywords need to be phrased in ways that are commonly searched online. For example, while it may be easier to use phrases like “a business near you,” most people looking for a particular resource will search “a business near me.”

Similarly, be sure to track what keywords you’re using after the launch of your marketing campaign. The products and services you offer may change regularly, and if your keywords aren’t updated to reflect those changes, you could see issues with the type of traffic you’re attracting.

3. Inconsistent Content

Having any content at all on your website is a great start for a digital marketing campaign. However, the frequency with which you update that content also matters. This is particularly true for a company that’s active on social media platforms.

Viewers expect consistent timing from their regular sources of content, and will often log in at certain times of day to check for new content specifically.

Facebook global engagement


Sticking to a regular posting or publishing schedule can help you maintain regular viewership and increase shares.

Likewise, while some variety in content is good and expected, it’s important not to vary the tone too much. Part of developing a brand identity is ensuring that all your content feels like it comes from the same source. This will produce a cohesive feel for viewers.

Additionally, make sure the tone you select for your content matches the perceived personality of your business. You wouldn’t want to take too lighthearted an approach to a medical office’s digital marketing campaign.

4. Avoiding Outsourcing

Not all marketing professionals are going to be experts in every type of medium. If you’re used to print or television advertising, learning all the best techniques for digital marketing and SEO might not be the most efficient use of your time.

Instead, looking for outside help may be a more effective strategy. Plenty of white label SEO companies exist to help people create the best possible strategies for online campaigns.

This freedom will allow you to tackle other forms of advertising and branding as well. You won’t have to rely entirely on yourself to provide every aspect your business’ marketing.

That being said, you don’t need to rely on outside sources for marketing aspects you’re fairly confident you can handle yourself. If you’re skilled with layout, tackle your website design on your own.  

Focus on your marketing strengths, and don’t be afraid to outsource the elements you’re less confident about.

Avoid Mistakes and Master SEO

Although these are only a few of the most common mistakes made in SEO, avoiding them can give you a stable foundation to build your own mastery of digital marketing.

Be careful with keyword selection and frequency use, since this forms the basis of virtually every digital marketing campaign. Additionally, prioritize consistency to keep your audience coming back, and don’t shut down opportunities for outside help.

Making the most of these tips to avoid common mistakes will put you on the right track for a successful digital marketing campaign, as well as develop your SEO skills for the future.

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