We all make mistakes. Errors often occur because we don’t have the knowledge or education required for a specific situation. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy that takes time to master but only a few weeks to implement.
If you want to drive organic traffic to your website and increase sales, you have to understand SEO (including the most common SEO mistakes). Here are the most common mistakes in SEO and the associated corrective strategies:
The Infamous H-1 and H-2 headlines
These headline tools have very different functions and using them correctly is critical. Sometimes, content creators aren’t familiar with SEO, so the person publishing a blog on their website may consider the headlines as design elements like using the H-1 or H-2 format to showcase a quote. It might look nice on the page, but it’s bad SEO practice. Here are a few tips to avoid this:
- H-1s are for your on-page title only. Once you’ve come up with a title, don’t use H-1 for anything else. Remember to think about the keywords you know your audience might use when crafting your headline too.
- Think of H-2s as chapters as if you’re creating a table of contents for a book. H-2s are there to separate your chapters or sections in a blog post.
- H-3s are strong for subsections within a chapter. They are great for readability, and they present another opportunity to use keywords.
Don’t Cut Corners With Your Meta Descriptions
According to a Semrush study, almost seven out of 10 sites had issues with missing meta descriptions. Good meta descriptions help Google understand the relevance and encourage users to click on your result. If they are missing, click-through rates will fall.
Meta descriptions provide additional opportunities to include keywords and related phrases. They should be as unique and tailored as possible, or Google will automatically generate them for you based on the keywords in the user’s search intent. This can often lead to mismatched search terms and associated results.
Avoid duplication as much as possible because two or more pages with the same meta descriptions can make it difficult for search engines to determine their relevance and rank on search engine results.
Images And Alt Text
Alt text (also known as alt attributes or alt descriptions) is text accompanying images. Alt text is read aloud by screen readers and helps visually impaired users navigate the web. Think of it as a specific photo caption. Alt text can also help improve your site’s SEO performance by adding further relevancy signals to a web page and helps Google better understand the contents of an image (and the contents of your page).
Suitable alt text should:
- Describe the image specifically. First and foremost, the alt text should provide text explanations of images for users who are unable to see them, so they should be as detailed as possible.
- Include keywords. While your priority should be describing and providing context to the image, you should try to include relevant keywords in the alt text of at least one image on the page (but only if it makes sense to do so). This can signal to search engines that your page is highly relevant to a particular search query.
Suitable alt text should NOT:
- Include phrases like “image of,” or “picture of,” etc. It’s assumed your alt text refers to an image, so there’s no need to specify it.
Have you made any of the above mistakes with your SEO campaign? It’s hard to keep track of everything SEO-related, but these are some of the quickest fixes to optimize your SEO strategy. For more information, Semrush and Moz are great SEO references and sources to up your game.
Are you having trouble with your overall marketing strategy? Feel free to reach out to us for your marketing and PR needs today.