Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most important elements of your digital marketing strategy. There’s more and more content being released every day, which means your competition is getting stronger by the minute. The only way to fight for your piece of the cake is to have a strong, long-standing SEO strategy that brings positive results.
Still, even though the importance of SEO is indisputable, so many marketers tend to make mistakes that negatively impact their traffic, conversion rate, return on investment (ROI), engagement and many other important aspects. To help you make sure you’re avoiding any serious errors, we’ve put together a list of the 13 most common SEO writing mistakes, along with tips on how to fix them.
Let’s take a closer look together.
1. Writing for Search Engines
So many people see SEO as something you’re doing solely to satisfy the search engines. But, they forget that it’s the people who are supposed to read, like, share and engage with that content.
If you overly focus on making your content suitable for search engines, you’ll:
- Make it difficult for people to read and enjoy
- Disrupt content flow
- Ruin content quality
Focus on your target audience and make them your top priority, even when writing optimized content.
2. Not Doing Any Research
If you think you know everything about your target audience and your competitors without doing any research, you’re wrong.
Doing quality research is essential for running a successful SEO strategy. You need to use proper SEO tools to:
- Do keyword research
- Check your competitors and their content
- Learn about your target audience’s online behavior
You need the data and the numbers to base your strategy on. Don’t do anything in the dark, or you’ll end up with poor results.
3. Ranking for the Popular Keywords
Some marketers believe that the best way to rank high in Google Search results is to rank for the most popular keyword.
A popular keyword would be “coffee” or “digital marketing strategy.”
While there are millions of people typing these keywords in their search boxes, there are also millions of your competitors ranking for them. And, if you’re not an international multi-million dollar company, you don’t have many chances of ranking highest.
That’s why you should rank for keywords that are more unique and narrow but still in demand. Here’s what we have in mind:
- Roast your own coffee
- The healthiest type of coffee
- Buy a coffee machine
- Health benefits of coffee
Fewer people are ranking for these keywords, which means you’ve got the chance to use other SEO tricks and rank highest.
4. Keyword Stuffing
Another mistake people keep making is keyword stuffing.
Keyword stuffing is the excess implementation of selected keywords to the point of making the content extremely poor in quality.
Here’s an example:
If you want to roast your own coffee, you have to learn how to roast your own coffee. Did you ask anyone, “How to roast my own coffee?” If not, we can help you roast your coffee at home.
Even though the right keywords are there, their implementation is wrong.
Avoid keyword stuffing completely, and focus on implementing the keywords naturally and smoothly into the content.
5. Creating the Wrong Content
You’re creating content for your target audience to read and find value in. If you’re not creating the right content for them, all your efforts will be in vain.
Don’t make the mistake of creating the wrong type of content. Instead, make sure to:
- Do research about what your target audience wants to read about
- Cover their pain points
- Cover trending, industry-related topics
Focus on providing value instead of other technicalities and formalities. Valuable content will boost your SEO and increase your traffic and conversions.
6. Disregarding Link Quality
Including links in your content will make it more attractive to both search engines and your target audience. But, you don’t want to go for link quantity.
Stuffing your content with just any links is bad practice and will damage the quality of your content. Instead, you need to focus on link quality:
- Add links to reputable websites.
- Make sure the links are related to your content.
- Add links that are a valuable resource for your target audience.
Choose websites that are well-ranking and credible to make sure you don’t send your target audience the wrong way.
Build your links strategy wisely, and don’t make the mistake of adding just any links.
7. Disregarding Anchor Text
Anchor text is the text within a link, and you have the power to make it into anything you want. The worst thing you can do is go with anchor text such as:
- Click here
- This page
- Visit this website
Instead, use anchor text that contains a strong keyword that is relevant for your website. It will tell Google more about your website and help it rank higher for the right searches.
8. Not Writing Unique Page Titles
You want to make your content appealing to both search engines and page visitors. But, if your content appears on the results page with a boring, unattractive page title, nobody’s going to click it.
Your conversion rate will be low, and Google will slowly degrade your ranking status.
Make sure to write page titles that are:
- Unique for every page
- Short and catchy
Compare the two examples:
1. Top 10 Tricks to Keep Your Shoes Tidy, Clean and Long-Lasting
2. Joe’s Shoe Shop: Shoe Maintenance
The second example is dull and uninteresting. The first one promises so much and will definitely get more people to click.
9. Ignoring On-Page Optimization
Numerous on-page optimization factors can help you rank higher in Google. If you ignore that, you’re taking a huge step back in your SEO strategy.
That means you can’t ignore any of the following:
- Meta descriptions
- Title tags
- Image tags
- Heading keywords
You need to develop a strong on-page optimization strategy and learn how to respect all of the elements we’ve listed above.
10. Ignoring Local SEO
Optimizing for local search is another very important segment of your SEO strategy, especially if you’re a business providing services to people in a certain region.
You have to make sure that those people find you easily and learn how to reach your business within seconds. Here’s what you should do:
- Create a Google My Business (GMB) account.
- Include region-specific keywords in your content, titles and meta-descriptions.
- List yourself on Yelp, Google Places, etc.
You can also optimize your content for voice searches by including long-tail keywords and phrases that are typical when people are using voice search instead of typing.
11. Not Creating Valuable Content
There’s no better way for you to attract your target audience and build a strong, long-standing reputation than to create content that is valuable for them.
Valuable content has the following characteristics:
- It’s highly informative.
- It contains valuable facts, data, statistics and information.
- It covers burning topics.
- It uses credible sources of information.
If you create valuable content, you’ll be seen as a trustworthy brand. This will inspire more people to develop a stronger interest in you and keep up with everything that you publish.
Valuable content will get you more conversions, shares, comments and improved SEO.
12. Not Satisfying Search Intent
The search intent of your target audience member is the reason they’ve typed a search phrase in the Google Search box.
Usually, they’re looking for:
- An explanation
- A solution
- Tips, tricks and ideas
- Specific information
So, if you’re ranking for a specific keyword, make sure your content covers the search intent of the visitor.
If you’re ranking for “how to roast your coffee,” make sure that’s exactly what you’ll cover. Provide exact steps, background information, stages and explanations of the whole process.
Don’t deceive your visitors into clicking your page based on a catchy title and make it about something completely different. Always satisfy the search intent of the visitors.
If you need help writing high-quality, relevant content, check out this list of the best writing services that could help you write better.
13. Not Optimizing for Mobile
Your website needs to provide a fast and optimized performance on mobile devices. It’s as simple as that.
People and search engines will immediately see if your website isn’t mobile-friendly. This can ruin your SEO and damage your credibility. That’s why you should make sure to:
- Use a mobile-responsive design
- Speed up your page load time
- Create a better mobile experience
Optimize for mobile if you want to reach the full capacity of your target audience and have them enjoy your content fully.
There are so many SEO writing mistakes you could make if you don’t set your priorities straight and learn how to avoid them. Luckily, you can do it all with the right guidance.
Use the tips we’ve shared above to improve your SEO strategy and ensure you never make any of the SEO writing mistakes we’ve listed.