5 Common SEO Mistakes You Could do While Optimizing Your Site

SEO Tutorials | April 7th, 2009 | 14 Comments

This article will not be really useful to many SEO’s, especially to those that live from SEO (aka, work in a SEO company and/or takes SEO projects as freelancer). These 5 mistakes you could probably do are not because you lack of knowledge, but because you over estimate your self, you have got too much confidence and you are most likely not taking into account even the most smaller things when optimizing your website for the search engines.

It is not nothing new, you have already read about these 5 points, maybe not all five at the same time, you have even thought oh I just learned something new when first read about them, but still..you got overwhelmed with link building and checking your sites SERPs that you have completely forgot about those small points that can cause you to waste time, get your site sandboxes and most likely lose money. Well nothing to worry about, if nothing else these errors people usually make when they are building a new site from scratch, design part and SEO optimization too. So, lets get to the point(s).

  1. Accidental use of hidden text
  2. Overwhelming with keyword density
  3. Immediate keyword repeat
  4. Forgetting to emphasize your keywords
  5. Not using the heading tags (H1-H6) properly

I know you have already read about this, and i know that you have a new blog that starts to rank, then it disappears from the SERPs and you get convinced that its just a Google dance, that you first ranked because Google throw a bone to your new site and then place it back to its proper ranking page. Well before you go to that conclusion you better check twice your site just in case you have done one of the 5 above mentioned mistakes. As for now, lets see options of why you could have done one of the five mistakes or even all five of them.

Accidental use of hidden text

Most likely you already know that hidden text is something Google and other search engines would penalize a site for. Most of the times it happens that people hide a bunch of textual keywords in their layout to trick the search engines since those keywords are not of any use to the visitors.

Now the scenario of how you could end up writing hidden text without knowing that the text is hidden. You have a website that has a black background, the layout container that holds the content also uses a white background image and you have set the color of the text to black, the code would most likely look something like this

body {
background-color:#000000;
}

#container {
background:url(images/yourimage.gif) repeat-y top left;
color:#000000
}

From the visual aspect everything looks perfect. Body of your site has a black background color while the content container has a white background image and the text is visible since it is black. Everything is perfect you might be thinking. Well you are wrong, search engines can’t read images which means that they do not know what color the image is. The background color of your body is set to black, the color of your text is set to back, that automatically results to “hidden text” for the search engines. So make sure that you also add a color code to the background of your container. The correct code should look like this:

body {
background-color:#000000;
}

#container {
background:#FFFFFF url(images/yourimage.gif) repeat-y top left;
color:#000000
}

As you can notice the background color of the container is set to white, while the text color is set to black so search engines can recognize the background color used for the container. Problem solved, or rather…avoided.

Overwhelming with keyword density

We do all know that keyword density plays an important role in the process of on-page optimization. Often happens that we over use our keywords in the content and overwhelm our page/site with our keyword, that often happens it makes the content not to have sense at all. Over using our keywords in our layout and increasing the keyword density of our page will alert the search engines that we are targeting that keyword, and apparently based on their algorithm layouts that have a too high keyword density are possibly spamming, hence the result of sandboxing.

Immediate keyword repeat

Same as the previous point. You get concentrate on your targeted keywords so much that you are not even aware how often you are using that keyword in your layout. This will result in immediate keyword repeat, increase the keyword weight in page and most likely end up being sand boxed by the search engines.

A great tool that I recommend you to use to better analyze your pages for keyword density, hidden text etc is WebCEO which is also listed in the seo resource page too.

Forgetting to emphasize your keyword

It is recommended that we should emphasize our keyword at least once. This gives some weight to search engines that that keyword is actually important for the content that is sitting in that page and that search engines should pay bigger attention to that keyword. In some way by emphasizing our keywords we do communicate with search engines, but of course even emphasizing keywords has to make sense, it has to be in bold when you want your keyword to make a point of the sentence.

Not using the heading tags (H1-H6) properly

I have seen this in too many sites already, people using heading tags the wrong way. Heading tags are supposed to be the headline of a chapter (read: page), so if your book (read: site) is about Website Design, then keywords website design should be sitting in the first heading (<h1>Website Design</h1>). Every other sub topic within your site, which might be Graphic design or Logo design should be labeled as h2-h3 respectively. By using properly the heading tags search engines understand what argument is being treated by each block of content in your site.

Hope you enjoyed reading this post. In the next days we will discuss about each of the five points individually so don’t forget to subscribe to my RSS feed and follow me with the updates. A great and free seo analyze tool I recommend you is WebCEO, it can help you understand and help you resolve the 5 seo mistakes you could make, and even more.

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14 Responses to “5 Common SEO Mistakes You Could do While Optimizing Your Site”
  1. seo blog says:

    Great points. I also find that over-optimization has been getting penalised recently.

  2. Yup and it has been penalized for good. The bad thing is that these are really common mistakes for someone that doesn’t do SEO as profession.

  3. Nick Rinylo says:

    Good Post, The headings should represent the importance of a subject within a page. So if you have 5 H2’s that is fine as long as the headings section are of equal importance.

  4. thom says:

    very helpful..
    So far, I used to read tips like ‘how to apply SEO’ and not of them give me points on ‘what i shoulkdn’t do’
    Thanks 🙂

  5. @Nick, thats right, I often see that mistake happening, over and over again.

    @thom, I am glad you liked the article and it helps you out to figure some things you should avoid.

    Thanks to both for passing by and taking your time to leave your comment.

  6. great man!!! thanks a lot…

  7. Ray says:

    well nice helpful post.will expect more posts like these in future too.

    regards
    Ray
    Free SEO, Online Marketing and Traffic-Generating Tips

  8. Internet Age says:

    Very relevant post, especially the links that caused me to go look at the SEO resources page, and I’m downloading the trial version of WebCEO as I’m typing this. I will give feedback on it later. Thanks for sharing!

  9. V.C says:

    Hi, good post. I have been wondering about this topic,so thanks for writing. I’ll certainly be subscribing to your posts.

  10. Ravi Moosad says:

    Hi thanks for the nice post. I am currently building content for the my site and I will make sure that it is SE optimized.

  11. SEO India says:

    Useful Article.Thanks

  12. Zulfikar says:

    The hidden text aspect of things is one I wasn’t aware of. I susspect alot of people like me who are not coders will be falling foul to this is and not have a clue.

    Thanks for bringing to topic and sharing 🙂

  13. Atul says:

    nice points

  14. I visit your blog frequently and its very good , I am not a expert webmaster but i like your blog as its very simple and understandable.. please keep it up , 10/10 marks…