These are the things that typically happen to anything that gets old: they either grow or diminish in value. They either get preserved and perfected, or get stashed and forgotten.
SEO techniques are no exception. Most businesses aim to establish an online presence, and they know how valuable SEO is in attaining their goals. Still, tricks that help websites rise in popularity, and tools that make blogging easy, tend to change over time. Some SEO moves that may have been good when you were starting your blog or website may have already lost their edge as time passed.
That’s one reason why, on my blog at KevinOcasio.com, aside from providing tips and instructions for aspiring bloggers, I also try to keep updated posts regarding new SEO techniques and strategies. We have to keep up with the times.
While change is not always a painless process, there are some things we need to stop doing if we want to achieve progress and success.
Speaking of which…
Which of these outdated SEO techniques are you still using?
1. Not indexing your pages
On purpose or not, failing to index pages in your blog or website is a really bad idea.
It’s important to index all your blog- or webpages because it helps search engines to get rid of blank pages or 404s from the search stream.
Not doing so negatively affects the ranking process. In the past, when Google was not as smart as it is right now, the practice of not indexing pages on websites may have escaped attention. Now, however, failing to index your pages properly can push search engines to exclude your site from searches. And that, of course, is not something you want to happen.
2. Spammy Footers
Google absolutely hates it when you dump all kinds of links on your website’s footer and then neglect to categorize them probably.
Indiscriminately flooding your website’s footer with links and tags may have been acceptable in the past, especially as an SEO strategy. But that was before search engines have advanced so much and become a lot smarter.
Nowadays, websites that rely on link-filled and tag-filled footer alone for their SEO get penalized. Why? Google Penguin flags for link and tag manipulation and Google Panda flags them for poor website structure.
One thing to remember is that Google is now more focused on good user experience instead of mere technical SEO. So, when you build a blog, write your content for human users first before search engines. Make sure that your site’s design is friendly to your reader’s eyes, too.
Google defines cloaking as the practice of presenting different content or URLs to human users and search engines. Basically, this means having two different versions of the same website. One for humans and one for search engines.
You trick people into visiting your blog or website by making it appear as if you have the information they’re looking for based on search results page descriptions. Then when they visit your link, they see something else other than what you led them to expect.
Obviously, pulling a fast one like this on your readers leads to bad user experience. Your site reputation goes down, and so does your site on SERPs.
4. Content Swapping
Another SEO trick commonly used in the past, content swapping involved these sleazy steps:
- Initially posting a different content on your blog- or webpage
- Waiting for search engine spiders to crawl and index it
- Waiting until the site ranks well on SERPs
- Closing the site and preventing it from further indexing
- Swapping the content to a totally different material
In the past, Google and other search engines were too slow to catch on and re-index sites.
Now, though, with the recent developments in SEO policies, Google is able almost immediately detect and punish content swapping.
Honesty and straightforwardness still pay. One of the time-wasters you need to get rid of is spending time and effort on something that can just get you penalized at the end. Instead of employing this shady technique, concentrate on producing excellent content. You might even want to delve into the advantages of outsourcing your content. For a small price, you can save yourself from quite a lot of pressure and start reaping the advantages instead.
5. Keyword Stuffing
Google really has a huge thing against keyword stuffing. Again, the bottom line here is user experience.
A page flooded with irrelevant keywords is not only reader-unfriendly. It also harms your site’s ranking.
Instead of using the same variant of a keyword in your article over and over again, take a page off your thesaurus and use related keywords instead.
Then, concentrate on making your links more appealing to human visitors. This requires a combination of excellent writing and good CTAs.
Instead of aiming to become a good keyword user, aim to improve as a writer.
If you are still using any of these worn-out SEO tactics, there’s no better time to stop than now.
What you need to do instead is to keep yourself updated on the latest effective SEO techniques that you can use. Be on the lookout for new strategies that can help improve your site’s speed and performance. Keep your eyes peeled for plugins and comprehensive tools that can help your business become more competitive and boost your site’s visibility. But always, always keep in mind that you are writing for people first. Everything else comes second.
When you create a blog and maintain it, ranking well on search engine results pages is a worthwhile goal. But it should never be a hindrance to your aims to provide valuable and quality information to your readers.
I have to agree with Google on this one. The best way to ensure that you rank well on SERPs and get more organic clicks on your blog is to make sure that your content presents your readers with the kind of value that can improve their lives.
That goal must never change even as SEO techniques and tricks cycle in popularity.