5 Ways Your SEO Strategy Could Be Hurting Your Google Rank (And How to Fix Them)
Jo-Leigh Underwood
Marketing Tips

In today’s competitive digital landscape, it’s important to have a strong digital strategy in place to increase your online presence on Google and other search engines. Part of your strategy should address search engine optimization (SEO) and website rank. However, it can be overwhelming to dive into the world of SEO and identify where to begin making updates. Here are five common mistakes that can harm your search ranking and tips on how to fix them. By addressing these common mistakes and implementing the right strategies, you can start to improve your search ranking and drive more traffic to your website.

1. Keyword stuffing

This is the practice of cramming a large number of keywords into your website’s content in an attempt to manipulate your search ranking. This content can include meta descriptions, image alt tags, titles, headlines, and page content. Overloading your keywords can end up hurting your ranking because it makes your content difficult to read and can be seen as spammy by search engines.

How To Fix: Focus on creating high-quality, well-written content that uses your keywords naturally. Write for people first, not search engines.

2. Not having a mobile-friendly website

With the increasing number of people accessing the internet on their phones, it’s important to have a website that is optimized for mobile devices. If your website is not mobile-friendly, it could be hurting your search ranking. Google has a great tool to test how easily a user can navigate your site on a mobile device, you just need to plug in a URL!

How To Fix: Make sure your website is responsive and can be easily viewed on a variety of devices. Remember, you don’t have to work in isolation. Check out other websites in your space (even your competitors) to gather inspiration and see what is already being done.

3. Not using meta descriptions

When you google a topic and browse the results, you will notice each result has a short, relevant summary about the page. This is called a meta description and you have control over what content is displayed in these snippets. If you have a missing meta description, the quality and quantity of your organic search traffic could suffer.

How To Fix: Create unique descriptions of your web pages that include relevant information about the content a user will find on that page.

» Tip: your meta description doesn’t have to be in a sentence format. It can also be byline or product information.

4. Not having a clear and easy-to-use navigation

A well-designed website navigation is essential for a good user experience and tells search engines what content you think is important. If your website’s navigation is confusing or hard to use, it could lead to high bounce rates and a lower rank. A good starting point is to plan your website navigation around the homepage of your site.

How To Fix: Make sure your website has a clear and intuitive navigation system that makes it easy for users to find what they’re looking for.

5. Not using header tags properly

Header tags are used to organize the content on your website/webpages and make it easier for search engines to crawl and index this information. Think of it as a table of contents for your webpage. If you’re not using header tags properly, it could lead to a confusing experience for your user and the search engine.

How To Fix: Use header tags (H1, H2, H3, etc.) appropriately and in a hierarchical order to structure your content properly.

» Tip: only use one H1 tag per page.

The SEO portion of your digital strategy is crucial to ensuring your content is shown in search results on Google and other search engines. By keeping these tips in mind, you can ensure that your strategy is helping, rather than hurting, your search ranking.

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