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Top 5 Common SEO Mistakes to Avoid in 2018

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Hello-hello, my dear SEO lovers!

Thank you so much for such a great response to our previous video! It has given me the desire to tell you something more about SEO once again.

If you haven’t seen our first video on SEO for bloggers, I might get very upset. And we don’t want that, right? Make sure you watch it!

So, you want to raise the appeal of your website for your target audience? Then bringing SEO into the equation is a must. Alas, not everyone can do that right!

Today, I’ll give you deeper insights on the 5 most common SEO mistakes. And of course, I’ll help you reach seventh heaven instead of hitting the search results bottom.

Now, let’s proceed to the worst SEO mistakes I hope you’ll never make.

Choosing the Wrong Keywords

That is a BIG one! Once again I just can’t stress enough how important it is to select the right keywords that you want your website to rank for. But are you choosing the right ones?

In the previous video, I told you about ‘search intent’. Remember, search engines are trying to understand a searcher’s intent behind every query. As for us SEO sinners, we only focus on keywords to get a good ranking, right?

Thing is, web users don’t care about our keywords! The only thing they want is to get relevant results for what they are looking for.

Let’s say, a user’s search query is “suits”. They might be looking for the television show, browsing for clothes, wanting to buy a suit, looking for reviews. This is a very broad search phrase which provides numerous options.

Now, if a user types in “sexy women’s suits” there’s definitely far more intent behind that. It’s clear that a user is either looking to buy one or browsing online to see the possibilities.

And what if that same user was to search “buying sexy women’s suits online”? The user intent is pretty obvious, don’t you think? 😉

Which of these is going to have a higher conversion rate? It’s obvious that the addition of the keywords “buying” and “online” are huge signals of user intent and this long-tail keyword will also perform better.

As you see, long-tail keywords used in this example are longer and more specific keyword phrases. Visitors are more likely to use them when they’re closer to a point-of-purchase. This is why you have to understand what words your potential customers would use to refer to your products and services.

Sometimes the terms you consider correct might mean something completely different for other people. Or they could be too generic to their individual taste.

Just take this into account and don’t make a mistake of optimizing for all the wrong keywords!

And, pretty please, do your keyword research before you start optimizing.

There’s a variety of tools like KeywordPlanner, SEMrush, and Ahrefs. They will surely help you in putting your finger on the pulse of trending keywords.

Keyword Stuffing

Another one of SEO mistakes to avoid is keyword stuffing.

Guess, this is the oldest tale in the book of SEO 🙂

My dear, if you think you can get away with putting your target keywords in every sentence of your content, you’re dead wrong.

In fact, using a gazillion of keywords is considered as a spammy tactic by the search engines. And we don’t want to hurt your SEO performance, right?

Google is smart. FYI, it has a special semantic search called Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI). LSI helps the search engines to recognize the topic of your content without relying on the keyword phrases.

So, please, keep away from keyword abuse.

Skipping Title Tags & Meta Descriptions

Okay, suppose you’ve selected the right keywords that correspond to the search intent and rank quite well. And, you even got rid of the extra keywords you’ve stuffed here and there in your marketing copy. And yet, you are faced with another challenge!

Remember, there are title tags and meta descriptions - the essential elements of SEO that should not be forgotten.

Neglecting them means a huge missed potential for your content. And your potential shouldn’t go to waste!

Titles are page specific. This means they carry the company name throughout other pages while focusing on certain keywords that are specific to each page. There’s no exact limit for a title tag, but if you want it to display properly, keep its length under 60 characters.

For those suffering from a mild case of laziness: titles have to be unique for every_single_page of your website. So you can’t just use the same title for a number of web pages!

For instance, on the TemplateMonster’s homepage -, you can see the title, referring to our company’s field of activity + company name:

Website Templates | Web Templates | TemplateMonster

If you didn’t know, the meta description is a 135-160 character snippet, a tag in HTML, that summarizes a page’s content.

There’s a number of things you have to consider while creating the meta description snippets.

They should:

  • be unique for every web page ;
  • contain a call-to-action ;
  • match your content ;
  • contain a focus keyword ;
  • 160 characters on average.

There are plenty of great examples of meta descriptions on the web. All you have to do is learn from other people’s wisdom!

Search engines say meta descriptions don’t influence ranking directly. Still, there is an indirect benefit.

Google uses click-through-rate (CTR) as a way of determining if the result is a good one. If more people click your result than expected, based on your position, they move you up.

Poorly Written and Duplicate Content

Content is king for a reason! Let’s face it: even the most well-written content may not get linked to. So, if you need links that bad, think value!

Top lists, video or text tutorials, infographics offer value in the eyes of your target audience, because people can learn something new and make use of it.

Duplicate content will make you face even more problems - search engines penalize for this.  Obviously, duplicate content offers minimum value, so I wouldn’t recommend copying and plagiarizing content.

Also, don’t get carried away ripping off a copy from other places or even using software that ‘spins’ the content into a new shape, try investing in original content and meaningful marketing copies.

Troublesome? Oh well, at least this approach will ensure your website won’t disappear in the back of search results.

Wrong Anchors

Oops! Inappropriate anchors alert!

Let’s call it ‘the Anchor Situation’. For some reason, internal links become stripped of unique anchor text. Instead, you see the “click here”, “this post”, and other generic anchor text for links.

This is such a waste! Having a call to action as your anchor is sweet. But you could have used some fantasy and tailor your anchor text to make it more content specific.

For instance, you want a link to your women’s clothes page within your piece of content. Then make the anchor text “sexy dresses for women” or something similar.

Besides, if you want a call to action that bad, include some relevant keywords in the anchor text. For example, “learn more about sexy dresses for women””.

Things get even messier sometimes. Using the same anchor text for links to several different pages is a very bad choice. As well as using the same anchor text for every link to a page. Has your fantasy failed you?

I’d recommend balancing the variations of the keyword phrase, the name of your company, or even a URL to make it look more natural to both visitors and the search engines. And again - don’t use the same keyword more than 50% of the time.

Okay, that’s it for today. Hopefully, this video has given you life! As well as being helpful in bringing your SEO skills to a new level.

If you want more videos like this, please subscribe to TemplateMonster’s YouTube channel!

Laters, darlings!

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