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Digital Marketing 6 things everyone* messes up when it comes to SEO

by Bruce Chant
SEO, search engines, search engine optiimisation, Google

Okay, so the headline snared you. We don’t mean everyone makes these SEO mistakes.

But, now we have your attention, you might find you and your digital agency are overlooking these six points in the pursuit of online business growth.

People often mess up SEO. Sometimes it’s because they simply don’t understand SEO to begin with, and sometimes it’s because these are things that are easily overlooked.

We don’t want you repeating the mistakes we have seen businesses make again and again.

Here are our ‘dirty half-dozen’ SEO mistakes and how you can overcome them.

URL transfers or updates to your website

Updating your website and keeping it fresh and relevant are fantastic and great business moves. But (and this is a big but) your URL changes when you move or update your website. I’d love to have a dollar for every time a web developer promised they hadn’t updated URLs only to find they, in fact, had completely changed them.

Changed URLs are like a change of address. When you move, unless you put a mail redirection in place, you may find important mail doesn’t reach you. It’s annoying, time-consuming, confusing for all involved, and something that could have been rectified very, very easily.

What does this mean when it happens with a URL? For your website this means the page Google was ranking is no longer anywhere to be found, so your rankings (and traffic) tank. After you’ve fought so hard for a good ranking, it makes no sense to let it slide and have to start from scratch again.

SEO, search engine optimisation, Google, search enginesDon’t forget to redirect! 

No measurement of success

You have goals and objectives to meet in business, right? You need to do the same with SEO. So, what do you want to achieve? How are you measuring whether SEO moves the needle for your business? Define it up-front. For example, “we want one new client per month”. Or, “we want an additional $15,000 in revenue per month”. Or, “we want to put on a new lawyer by December”.

This gives you (and your SEO agency) something to aim for. If you don’t have a defined goal or goals, then how do you know when, or if, you’ve succeeded?

No goal tracking

Just as we recommend setting goals, you must also track them. Please don’t start SEO without being able to see what is actually happening on the site.

Not tracking goals is like flying blind. Even if you get near your target, you won’t hit it. Contact forms? Track them. Phone numbers? Create telephone links and track them. Ditto for email.

If you can’t track it, you can’t measure it. And if you can’t measure it, you really have no way of knowing if what you are doing is having any effect.

 

FURTHER READING: Is SEO right for your business?

Ignoring the defensive position

Following on from the above point, remember that SEO is not a once-off proposition. You must protect your name and your digital position. Just because you have reached one goal doesn’t mean you should stop striving. It doesn’t mean that once you hit a good rank there is nothing further to do. You must keep on the attack, always ready to protect your position, to strive forward and to keep achieving.

Don’t just pat yourself on the back, sit back on your hands, and tell yourself what a good job you did. Because I can guarantee there will be a competitor snapping at your heels, ready to take over because you’ve been complacent.

Remember the bigger picture

While rank is a major part of SEO and we all strive for a good ranking, you must consider how good SEO will help you or your clients.

Good SEO makes it easy for people to find you, find out about you, inform themselves, and get in contact with you. Think less about “let’s try to get someone to do something” and more about “how can we help people?” This is the winning formula. Bring it back to basics and what you’re really trying to achieve.

 

FURTHER LISTENING: Brand Newsroom 153: Just what is the state of SEO in 2017?

It’s all about the X factor (or is it?)

Generally speaking, ‘SEO people’ don’t lack opinions. Just look online. If you get 10 SEO people in a room, you will get 10 different views on where SEO is heading, what the best way to rank a site is, and the best tactics to use.

The danger SEO agencies can fall into is that they centre their services around their favoured strategies or tactics. The days of the so-called “secret SEO weapon” are gone, but the tendency to boil SEO down to one or two favoured approaches to rule them all is still alive and well.

The truth is, SEO is a combination of activities. Individually, those activities might not seem impressive. But the skill of SEO lies in knowing what activities to deploy when and how.

There you go. The six mistakes we would love to see stamped out. If you don’t quite know how to get around these or want to start implementing good SEO, we can help.

 

If you want to know more about SEO, get in touch with Lush – The Content Agency. We’re Western Australia’s full-service content marketing agency.

About the author : Bruce Chant

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