Jolina Pettice

5 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid

Jolina Pettice     Online Marketing, SEO

Are you engaged in a Search Engine Optimization program and wondering how to get SEO Pitfallsmore out of it?

Look no further, I’m going to share with you 5 Pitfalls to Avoid as part of an SEO program.

Having worked with many, many clients I’ve seen just about everything.

However, there are 5 pitfalls that consistently pop up and limit the return of the program for the client or at the very least create more hurdles than were necessary.

So, here are 5 SEO Pitfalls to Avoid:

1. Designing Sites in a Vacuum
Many a client will search far and wide for the perfect web design vendor without as much as consulting their existing SEO partner. This is a mistake because, while I love web designers, they are not all trained in the world of SEO.

Designing a new website needs to be a joint venture among all parties to ensure the SEO successes to date are not lost and the new site will be search engine friendly.

2. Write It & Forget It
Website content is not a ‘set and forget’ project. Rather, web content should be treated as a living organism which needs ongoing care and nourishment (read new content).

A ‘set and forget’ mentality when it comes to web content will only keep you successful for so long. Eventually, competitors catch onto to the benefits of SEO as well and if they are creating new content they are likely to trump you for target keyword phrases.

3. Marry 1 Analytics Package
Whenever possible, run more than one analytics package on your website.
Each analytics package (free or not) has its own unique capabilities and granularity of reporting. If you run two packages, understand the delta between the two methods of reporting and use the best data from each to help inform decisions.

In addition, in the event of an analytics loss you have backup data. Imagine having a loss of analytics the month or two prior to an important meeting and not having a backup. No one wants to see a downward trend, even if it is due to a reporting glitch.

4. Focus on Ego Phrases
Some clients make the mistake of hanging success of the entire program on what we call ‘ego phrases’. i.e. wanting to rank for a particular phrase because they think it is important, not because data predicts it will drive traffic

As much as your SEO firm will tell you it’s not the strategic thing to do, they will still want to make you happy. So instead of focusing time and energy on rankings that will drive traffic, they are forced to spend time achieving a ranking that may not.

At the end of the day, your SEO firm should be held responsible to driving traffic to your website that is likely to convert. Pinning the program to one or two keywords will only limit your return.

5. Limit Success
All of the above mentioned pitfalls are likely to limit success of your SEO program. But they are not the only ones to look out for.

Often success is limited by creating silos between different online initiatives. Be sure your SEO, PPC, PR and any other marketing groups are talking. There are many ways each initiative can benefit and/or learn from the other but without a forum for information exchange it’s unlikely to happen.

For example, if you have an SEO partner and a PPC partner make sure they are exchanging information regarding high-volume or high converting keyword phrases. The information can benefit both programs.

We have one client that does this well by bringing all partners on the phone together twice a month. It may seem time consuming, but we’re all on the same page driving toward the same objectives and leveraging the others’ knowledge.

Overall, a good SEO partner will do everything they can to be sure you don’t stand in your own way to achieving success. But if you are guilty of one of the above, try to see the other side and in the end everyone will win.

Do you, as a client or someone working for an agency, have other pitfalls to SEO you can share? If so, leave them in the comments.

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  1. A little tough love for the marketers can make or break the success of a SEO investment. Great tips Jolina!

  2. Avatar Jenny Kotulak Broker says

    Rather, web content should be treated as a living organism which needs ongoing care and nourishment (read new content).
    I think this sentence you wrote says it all. Keeping a website stagnant will not get you any Google Juice. Plus consumers will find it very boring and never return. Good post.

  3. Avatar Strategic Growth Advisors says

    Thanks for the insightful post, Jolina.

    In my own point of view, I like to see the whole SEO set-up as a newspaper. Keep it as original and well-written as can be and people will keep on reading it (as well as buying it, of course). However, let it slide down into obsolescence and the competition will easily put one over you in no time.

  4. Avatar Dan Patterson says

    I completely agree with your ‘ego phrases’ point. I’m always convincing clients that they need to focus on more specific phrases that are more likely to convert and are easier to get rankings for. It’s just a constant struggle!

  5. Avatar Elena Morgan says

    Search engines generate nearly 90% of all Internet traffic and are responsible for 55% of all E-commerce transactions. Today, it is essential for all online businesses to make SEO an integral part of their online business strategy.

    So I would like to recommend one of my client who helps you define, evolve and implement a powerful SEO strategy to leverage your online business potential

  6. Avatar Dan Waggoner says

    Another great Post….I guess the only thing I could add is watch the duplicate content and keyword stuffing. It’s burned me on more than one occasion.

  7. When it comes to servicii seo and seo services there are only a handful of companies who really know what they're doing. Only these know what content is all about, fixing site issues, URL canoniclization and rewrites and getting you a lot of links.

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