In the ever-changing and dynamic world of the web, it is borderline preposterous to think that SEO practices, that drove results a decade ago, will continue to retain their effectiveness even in present times. With the advent of new-age voice-activated assistants such as Siri, Cortana, Google Assistant and Google Now and intelligent algorithms like Hummingbird and RackBrain, it is quite evident that certain SEO practices that generated huge traffic earlier may not even elicit a whisper now! While not all has changed in the rapidly evolving SEO space, there are tell-tale signs that quite a few of the age-old SEO norms can be considered dated now and should be shown the door immediately! Read on to know more about these ‘done to death’ SEO approaches that warrant a replacement anytime soon!
Random and Excessive Keyword Stuffing
Ask any conventional SEO fanatic to reveal their game-changing strategies and more often than not they will give you a rambling speech about how targeted keywords are imperative for your search rankings and traffic generation. You will probably also get to hear about how they went to great lengths to ensure that every possible keyword that mattered found its way to their pages and a place of prominence in their titles. Some will even narrate as to how they invested significant time and effort in creating separate web pages for each keyword variant!
Now, we all know and acknowledge the importance of keyword targeting. However, like all things excessive, if you overdo or misuse it, then you run the risk of churning out content that comes across as superfluous, repetitive, boring and possible spam – perfect attributes that can trigger poor click through rates and high bounce rates and eventually attract penalty from Google.
Wondering how you can leverage keywords in your website without incurring the wrath of Google and other search engines? The answer is by striking a balance between optimisation and over-optimisation of your website. The idea is to acknowledge and appreciate that keywords are truly meaningful only when they enhance your content suitably and fit in with the content flow in a seamless manner. Moreover, interesting and appealing titles do play a vital role in grabbing eyeballs. Hence, forego your SEO practice of making your headings keyword-heavy and opt for titles that are catchy and relevant to the context. As long as bear in mind that keyword density is not the final say when it comes to a remarkable user experience, you can be rest assured that your SEO efforts are in the right direction and will surely contribute towards boosting the rankings of your website.
Backlinks That Lack Context and Relevance
Another old school of thought that is quite popular with the self-proclaimed SEO experts is their eternal hankering for backlinks to do wonders to their site rankings. While it is a fact that your website’s credibility can increase by several notches if it is deemed worthy enough to be linked to by other websites, the fact remains that backlinks are highly misused these days with a rise in the number of paid backlinks and improper link building techniques in the form of meaningless press releases, irrelevant guest posts, spam-heavy comment links etc.
Before even you think of driving brand awareness and traffic with unrestrained article submissions to link directories and other channels, it is essential that you assess whether the linking page is credible enough to magnify the net worth of your website. Unless you have top-rated and relatable websites referencing to your page, you really don’t stand to gain much other than Google’s penalty!
Counter-productive Anchor Links
Similar to the backlinks, it is a common phenomenon to common across anchor links that add no real value to the content or its flow and are simply incorporated in an attempt to boost clicks and improve the website’s visibility on SERP (Search Engine Result Pages). You may also have come across web pages that manifest anchor texts that are near impossible to read or make sense of. In realty, such anchor texts are not really drafted for any real use or purpose but are more of a SEO tactic to garner a high ranking.
Avoid manipulating anchor links just for the sake of tweaking your site’s positioning on various search engines or you will soon find your pages disappearing from the first few pages of the search results or not appearing at all ( as Google blacklisted your page completely ! ). Always remember that your users will trust your site more if they find that your hyperlinks are pertinent, blend in naturally with the overall theme and take your story forward. Placement of your anchor links is also important as it is far more effective to highlight your internal and external links in the header, footer or the sidebar of the web page rather than stuffing them all throughout your website with no rhyme or reason.
Needless to say that SEO plays a decisive role in increasing the awareness and credibility of your brand and in bringing in targeted prospects to your website. Now that you have a fair glimpse into few of the ineffective practices, it is also essential that you seek the result-oriented services of a reputed and award-winning SEO company who are well-versed with the art of harmonising search engine-friendly SEO principles with mobile-friendly and intuitive website designs for a superlative user experience. After all, your users are humans and not robots. So, it’s time that you made feelings and emotions an integral part of your website design, especially if you aspire to convert fleeting interests into fruitful and lasting relationships.