So you’ve optimized your website to make it rank better in search engines. You might have done it yourself or by contracting an SEO company. Either way, you didn’t get the results you expected, and now it’s time to figure out why.
This is a far too common experience in digital marketing. Bad SEO will not only be ineffective but it can also be detrimental to the growth of your business. Here, we take a look at what might have gone wrong and how you can turn the situation around.
Dodgy SEO companies
The web is full of self-taught companies who offer SEO services, and whose expertise only consists of a few tutorials they found online. What they offer might sound tempting, especially for your wallet, but don’t expect your business to benefit from it. What you’ll get is likely to be nothing more than spammy content and bad backlinks, which will take time and money to undo.
So, how to tell a serious company from a dodgy one?
Checking whom they work for will give you a general idea: the more reputable the client, the more serious must be the company. You should also be wary of what sounds too good to be true. Every company promising great results in a short time and on a low budget should raise a red flag. Nobody can actually promise the coveted first page of Google search results, least of all with a quick turnaround time. That is not to say that such result is impossible, but it takes a lot of work, time, and whether it will be achieved or not depends on a lot of factors. This is what dodgy SEO companies won’t tell you, and sometimes even ignore.
Do-it-yourself SEO can also be tempting. Why pay someone if you can do it yourself? This way you might have to invest some of your time, but you’ll save money and learn something new as you’re doing it. This might be true at the beginning of your entrepreneurial venture, when the website is small and your business is just starting out. As it develops, however, a general understanding of SEO best practices will no longer suffice. This is when you need to call in the experts. What you can learn about SEO in a short period of time is only the tip of the iceberg, and the SEO world is constantly-evolving. The necessary dedication to keep up can only be met by those who spend all of their time dedicated to the practice. As your business grows so do your competitors, and a website optimized with consistent and effective SEO work will be an extra weapon in your arsenal.
Poor targeting SEO
Targeting short and high-volume keywords is an outdated strategy, but it is still a widespread SEO bad practice. Google stopped rewarding short keywords and keyword-filled backlinks long ago, making them ineffective and possibly detrimental. But what does this actually mean?
A link made of many targeted keywords is unlikely to have been acquired naturally, and fake links are perceived as spam and therefore penalized. This reflects how SEO has been increasingly more about quality rather than quantity over the past few years.
Such development leads us to another reason why high-volume keywords are no longer desirable. First of all, the competition for these keywords is so strong that it is almost impossible to reach top rankings. Secondly, they will drive general, unfocused traffic, which might make for short-term results but will not pay out in the long run. Longer and more particular keywords, instead, will drive organic traffic to your website, thus building a solid and growing audience which is, after all, one of the ultimate goals of SEO.