This is a guest contribution by Greg Whelan of RankExperts.
The use of SEO has been on the rise for a long time, especially for people who venture in online business. However, while SEO is considered a core tool in enhancing online businesses, the same trend can trigger adverse effects if not implemented in the right way. There are certain limits that you must observe when employing SEO for your business – in other words, SEO for business should never be used blindly.
A great number of online businesses are established each day with most of them turning futile while others respond slowly. Note that some of these businesses make use of SEO strategies and still end up disappointing the founders. This implies that SEO should be used in a strategic and wise manner. It is the only way you will be in a position to make your business yield high returns.
To ensure that SEO works ideally for your business, certain techniques must be avoided. There are strategies which have been confirmed to be really alarming for online businesses hence the need to understand and avoid them now and in the long run. Below is a crackdown on five key SEO strategies which must be avoided for best gains in your business:
1. Purchase of Links
This happens to be one of the most profound habits among people who venture in online business. The good thing is that the trend has worked perfectly for most people in the past. However, the benefits attached to purchasing of links may be cut short in the long run.
It has been revealed that search engines are in the move to eradicate the trend of using purchased links in websites. Google for instance is working tooth and nail to ensure that the trend is stopped completely. It will surprise you to know that Google and other search engine companies have a great team of workers whose sole obligation is to trace purchased links and flag them. This implies that people who are used to buying links for their websites may get hurt in the near future after the fight against the link purchase is fully implemented.
At times, even the untrained eye can detect purchased links in any content. Some patterns formed by a set of links may not make sense at all hence they create suspicion. In addition, you might come across a set of unrelated links which do not even tally with the content in question. This is a pretty clear indication that the links are purchased. The bottom line is that search engine teams will easily know if you have used purchased links or not.
2. Focus on Quantity of Links Rather Than Quality
While use of a huge number of backlinks is considered a perfect SEO strategy, the same can go a long way in ruining your online business. One of the worst mistakes that people make is placing their focus on incorporating a bunch of links in their websites not knowing that quality overrules quantity.
Link building is pretty simple since most people consider it so. Actually, it might not take you long to have a lot of links built for your site. However, most people fail to consider the quality of links they get. Instead, they get excited with the number and forget the quality.
Any link created should be authoritative and attractive to ensure that surfers follow it without a second thought. It is always advised that you refrain from links which are characterized by low DA. This is one of the core recipes behind failure in online business.
3. Keyword Stuffing
For a long time, the threat behind keyword stuffing has been emphasized. It has been confirmed that use of many keywords in website content may trigger adverse effects to your business in terms of ranking. The sad part of it is that most people tend not to drop the practice of stuffing keywords in their content.
Keyword stuffing might have been working perfectly in the past couple of years but it no longer does these days. If you must elevate your business with the help of keywords, then optimization is paramount. You must focus on reaching the recommended density of keywords in your content and avoid stretching further. In most cases, keywords are expected to hit 2% density and nothing more.
Instead of using a lot of keywords in your website, it will work best if you focused on creating quality content. If keywords must be used, the appropriate application and fitting is necessary. The keywords must also be in context to ensure natural flow.
4. Use of Duplicate Content
This is one of the most dangerous SEO strategies that any online businessperson can implement. In most cases, businesses with more than one site tend to recycle their content. You might come across similar articles in different sites. It is also possible to follow a certain link and find similar content from that of the mother website.
If you have the tendency of implementing duplicate content, then your online business is possibly not doing so well. It is important to note that search engines are always on the lookout for unoriginal content, regardless of whether or not the site is owned by one person. Normally, search engines do not rank two copies of similar content. In fact, a penalty may result from using duplicate content. This means that the mission of elevating your online business won’t work.
5. Relying on Backlinks Alone
If you have the perception that use of backlinks is the only avenue towards achieving best ranking, then that is not so at all. There are other tools that must be employed to ensure best SEO for your business website. A lot of people have the delusion that many links in a website will remarkably boost traffic which in return elevates the ranking in search engines.
On the contrary, you must team up a number of SEO strategies and techniques for great results to be achieved. Depending on back-links alone will only boost SEO to some extent but not completely. You must ensure that the use of backlinks is balanced with other suites in the SEO sphere. Content marketing, use of social media, as well as onsite optimization can work as a perfect SEO blend.
The five strategies highlighted above are actually things that can be easily snubbed yet with very drastic and adverse effects in the end. They techniques must therefore be avoided at all costs since it is the only way you can move your business to a better level.
The RankExpert’s Head of Marketing Greg Whelan holds a degree from the University of Austin’s Mccomb School of Business and a MBA in Marketing. With his unique insights into the world of digital marketing, Greg oversees strategic planning for large to enterprise-sized companies.
Google is very strict on link placements. I am not sure if the SEO organizations, who are hired by website owners, know how strict Google is with the link placements. I have seen SEO organizations placing links in some article directories which does not have any page rank at all and I think this is because they want to get a bunch of back links to their customers (Quantity vs Quality) but this is adversely affecting customers website rankings. I agree that backlinks alone should not be strategy to get traffic to your site as there are many other potential ways to get it.
I agree with you. We work with a company “expert in SEO” and after a year we still don’t have results. the don’t know the basics! I’m not an expert, but started blogging for our sites and the results are so much better.
Great tips! Going way back to the basics with this article too, nice to see some reminding of what can totally wreck your online/physical business.
Purchase of backlinks, is not a quality backlinks. Backlinks want to be your content related quality backlinks.
Content leads the direction in the digital marketing arena today. Unique and engaging content supercedes all your efforts to get noticed by Google. Detailed post full of information indeed!
Very helpful post.. can you tell me , which is the best way to build backlink in this time without Guest posting?
Social bookmarking sites, blog commenting, forum discussions, High PR directories, classifieds, gives you more back-links and traffic.
Thank you very much Chandran :)
These all outdated strategies have been penalized by Google Panda and Google Penguin update. Its better to now focus on giving good user experience instead of just building links.
This article is very useful for me. We can build quality Back-links to generate traffic for the website.
Great tips! Hopefully, most people know by now to avoid these dangerous and outdated strategies, but sadly some still do not!
Also… is #5 listed twice for anyone else? I see it at the beginning of the list, and then again at the end.
Anyway, great work, Greg.
yup.. Google is very strict but we have another alternative.. It is not good that we depend too much at google.
I have seen many bloggers just rely on backlinks for better search engine ranking. But this strategy will not work any more now. There should be a balance between content and SEO. Thanks
seo was change day by day but most of the people follow same strategy to rank their website. after oct 2013 penguin update seo is completely change and new strategies comes to rank website.
it’s a good thing I never ventured into paid links because I heard the bad news about this. I’ve seen many famous Internet websites owned by famous Internet marketers now starting to suffer in search engine rankings from Google and shattered traffic ranks from Alexa because they allegedly more paid links for their blogs, websites, and discussion forums. I’m one who would rather build links naturally and improve search engine rankings by creating unique content for the site, submitting articles, creating PDF files for document distribution and naturally building relationships with people on social networks. I’m glad I will never resort to paid link building, because to me, it’s a form of cheating and dishonesty.
Last I heard, google is moving to a model where links won’t matter at all and “sharability” will takes its place. Meaning, put two pages side by side with similar content and similar on-page seo and the one that gets “shared” the most on social media will be the one to get higher serps.
Yet, I have to mention too that with all of this frowning going on that google has against paid links, I can assure you that most law firms spend $10,000 a year or way more just in paying for legal directories that will feature their live link.
So, either one day you’re going to walk in and find no law firms at all when you search for one or google will continue to tell us all paid backlinks are evil but yet allow benefit for “some” industries.
What do you mean by focusing on backlinks that have low DA? I use blog commenting as a primary way to build backlinks. I actually read the articles and I make sure my comment adds benefit to what the person worte. It just isn’t for the backlink. It is also to network and show my appreciation.
I have around 50 blogs that I rotate through. Around 10 to 20 a day, so I have a three day rotation. I also link to specific posts in my site. Is this a negative strategy? It builds up multiple links from the sites I read. I like to do this because I like to build relationships with my fellow bloggers and I’d rather not have to focus on finding new blogs to comment on.
I think these post deserve to be publish before 2 years ago. No meaning at all becuase we people already know this things and reading from last couple of years. Anyways good try but do something researchful next time. :-)
Really good points mentioned here, thanks for sharing. your blog is good and given information is very useful.
Yes I completely agree with you,to receive more traffic to your your blog/sites we should follow those rules.
All are great tips.Sometimes we only think about quantity not quality which cause great loss.
Totally agree with you ! One year back i was just working on link building and most of the my sites got hit by penguin update, then i came to know that content is the real king in SEO .
Relying only on backlinks is probably the worst technique. Each business page should have a blog where it announces the latest activities and changes of the company. This way the site always gets fresh content and viewers come to read all the latest activities of the site. Relying on backlinks may work at first but if Google penalizes your page later, you have no escape plan.
I really like the post. But you have to accept that, SEO is becoming tough day by day. Some times it is very difficult to maintain the momentum. Please let me know how to use keywords as anchor text in my blog content.
Great post, thanks for this sharing these article.
My prediction, Google will prioritize writing over previous years, googlebot increasingly being human, for that future authors will be expensive prices. For now, need to improve the quality of the writing rather busy with SEO. Just my opinion of a newcomer to the world of blogging.
We all know that Google hates unnatural links so purchasing links are really harmful and i am completely agree with the points. Thanks.
I was a fan of backlinks. I realized depending highly on backlinks alone is not good for my website after reading this post. And i’m agreeing to all other points mentioned above. Thank you for sharing this valuable information.
Exactly Google hates duplicate content. There are a lot of spinning tools available online and many newbie bloggers becomes fan of it as they think the content will be original after spinning it and it is not even time consuming but it is not so, that one is a great harm to the sites.
Fantastic tips! Going in the past to the basic principles with this informative article too, nice to find out some reminding of exactly what do totally destroy your online/physical enterprise.I love this idea.
Mate, you have listed 5th point two times, I know that would be by mistake. Great points you have shared, one should approach multiple ways and quality ways of making backlinks.
I am new in blogging so can you guide me regarding to the keywords and tags how many keywords and tags we should use in an article of 300 t0 400 words
There is two bad seo techniques also which is getting links from penalized or banned sites and second is link exchange also and every one should avoid these methods also.
Great share. I would also add to the list buying cheap quality, crappy links on sites like Fiverr and SEOClerks. QUALITY is what matters in 2014.
Thank you for useful tips!
I started my blog soon and have unique content. Never bought links but some of my keywords’ density is more than 2%.
All online SEO check sites tell me it is OK.
I will have to decrease their density and see if Google will like my blog…
Thank you once again!