5 SEO Keyword Mistakes That Still Happen Way Too Often

SEO Keywords

I’ve been in business in the online marketing field for nearly five years now (yes, it’s crazy how time flies!). When I started out my thinking was that in five years, the web-world would be quite different. But in reality, although the style of websites has changed, and Google’s algorithm has changed, the fundamentals of a good website are unchanged. Particularly when it comes to strategic use of keywords.

Yet for many websites, strategic use of carefully chosen keywords is still the missing link. So, if you haven’t yet had time to consider your keywords and where to use them on your web pages, or you’ve considered it but not yet taken action, then read on. Today’s article is for you!

And on the plus side, if you’re not making any of these mistakes, step away from your computer and treat yourself to something nice,¬†as a reward for your attention to keyword detail ūüôā

What is SEO?

If you’re new to the term SEO, it’s the abbreviation for Search Engine Optimisation, which, broadly speaking, covers everything you do to get your website to appear high up in the Google search results.

If the purpose of your website is to act as an online business card, you don’t need to know about SEO. But if you’re one of the multitude of businesses who want prospective new clients to find you in Google, you need to either understand the magic of where and how to use keywords, or enlist the services of a web copywriter to add the keyword magic to your online pages.

1. No Keywords in the Page Title (aka the Title Tag)

The Page Title isn’t seen on the page, it’s added to the code and is the line of text that appears at the top of the browser. In the Chrome browser, you can see the Page Title by hovering over the words in at the top, like the example below where I hovered over “5 SEO Keyword Mistakes” and the full Page Title appears in the yellow pop up area.

SEO keyword mistakes

The Page Title is a really important place to add the main keyword phrase that you would like to rank for in Google.

Yet I’m constantly surprised at how many websites still only have their Business Name as the Page Title, and it’s used on every page of their website. This is a massive, wasted opportunity.

If you have a WordPress site, plugins like the “All in One SEO Pack” and SEO for “WordPress by Yoast” allow you to add a custom Page Title to each Page or Post. Capitalise on this opportunity!

2. Keywords in the Page Title but not used on the Page

As mentioned in Mistake No.1, it’s important to use keywords in the Page Title, and then you also need to follow through by using them on the page, for example in the headline, early in the body text and in subheadings.

If someone finds you in Google by searching for a specific keyword, once they visit your website, they want to see (and see fast!) that they’ve found what they were searching for. If the same keywords aren’t used in the headline, or prominently on the page, they might quickly hit the “back” button to get out of there fast.

3. Target keywords aren’t used anywhere

This should probably be mistake No.1 because it definitely happens way too often!

Often a client will ask me “Mel, why aren’t I getting any Google traffic for {insert keyword}”.

The first thing I do is look at their website and often it’s a new phrase, that wasn’t incorporated in to their original SEO plan, and therefore isn’t actually used anywhere on the website.

When this happens you can either:

a. Add a new Product or Service page that targets the new keyword phrase

b. Write a blog article that targets the new keyword phrase.

4. Keywords are stuffed into the keyword tag

It’s a fact that Google doesn’t use the keyword tag as a ranking factor, so it’s fine to leave it empty.

If you add keywords there, basically you’re telling your competitors what keywords you are targeting on that page.

If you choose to fill the tag in, add a few target keyword phrases. And make sure they are the same keywords you’ve used on the page.

Don’t stuff it full of every keyword under the sun that pops in to your head that you think you might like to rank on in a dream Google universe where you have the only website in existence!

Read more in this article by Kate Toon on Should I complete the meta keywords tag?

5. Long winded or non keyword rich URLs

The URL is the link that people can use to get directly to a page.  Ideally the URL should include only important words, rather than every word from the title of your article, or worse, a jumble of meaningless symbols and numbers created by your website platform.

Find out more about this in a fab article by our Web Peep Shae Baxter on Why You Should Edit Your Permalink in WordPress

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Want to learn more about SEO?

SEO-training-SydneyWhether your want to learn about doing your own SEO, or enough to evaluate the results of SEO that you’re paying for, attending Kate Toon’s SEO¬†Search Engine Optimisation For Small Business¬†training course will help you learn essential SEO tactics that can improve your ranking,¬†get more visitors¬†and ultimately, do more business.

The next courses are being held in Sydney on 23 August and Melbourne on 10 October.

It’s a fabulous one day event full of valuable information, meeting new people, light-hearted laughs and a glass of bubbles at the end. What’s not to love!