Make sure your business isn’t doing any of these practices that can have a negative impact on your search engine rankings.
Search engines are all about delivering the most relevant and helpful information to the consumer. As the needs of the consumer change and technology and programming improve, so do the algorithms that control which businesses and sites will appear in the search results first. Based on studies and analytics, SEO companies can see which strategies can help an SEO campaign and depending on the level of expertise from the SEO company your business will begin reaping the benefits of SEO strategies within the first couple months. However, there are a lot of pitfalls that businesses can fall into when performing SEO campaigns.
As a rule of thumb, having the mindset that you are creating informative and interesting content for consumers will help you do well in SEO. Some companies and businesses instead focus on the proven statistics, keywords, or try and take the easy way to success, but end up of being punished by search engines who have caught on to their schemes. Put yourself in the consumer’s shoes. When you are doing a search, let’s say for the best mattress store in the area, and you type it into Google, and results come up. You as a consumer, utilizing a search engine are going to expect that the first couple results will deliver what you were looking for. But imagine instead if the first result was a furniture store that in fact did not sell mattresses. So you click the first result, go browsing through the website and find out to your frustration that it was all a waste of time because this store doesn’t even sell mattresses, and that’s what search engines are aiming to avoid.
There are several techniques that can cause your business to be punished by search engine algorithms, so read carefully and make sure that your company is not taking part in any of these bad habits.
Your Website: Responsiveness, Speed and Metrics
There is an enormous shift in the way consumers are accessing their online information; the name of that movement is mobile. Mobile global users surpassed desktop users this past year, and it is expected that mobile users will continue to grow. 50.3% of e-commerce website traffic comes from smartphones. Search engines have realized what an important factor it is for business websites to be mobile optimized, since so many consumers are accessing websites via their smartphones and tablets. Sites that are not optimized for mobile devices usually present the consumer with more difficult navigation and more nuisance to try and gather the information they’re looking for. When Google is crawling the web, they analyze if a site is a responsive, mobile optimized site. And there is a difference between having a responsive design website and mobile friendly website.
Mobile friendly is actually not as “SEO effective” as a responsive design website. In the case of mobile friendly, you would have two websites, one designed exclusively for a smartphone screen and one designed for a desktop. That is two URLs Google has to crawl and it is not as user friendly because sharing these two specific URLs is not effective. On the other side, a responsive website is designed for the elements to move depending on what size screen the user is on. It is one URL, the page itself modifies depending on what it senses the size of the screen to be. This is the most user friendly option and provides only one URL for Google to crawl, so it is more of an advantage than mobile friendly site.
Another factor that search engines take into account is the speed of the site. It takes a couple seconds for a consumer to become impatient and move on to the next site. Search engines not only can see the speed, but they also take into account metrics from your site, including bounce rate and that affects your SEO rankings. So for example, if someone tries to go on your site, but it’s taking too long to load for their liking and they only spend a few seconds on the site, they would “bounce” off, giving you a high bounce rate and an SEO penalty. It’s telling search engines that users are not finding the content on your site attractive enough to stay on for long periods of time or it’s not user friendly enough to stay on for a longer period of time. Another metric that search engines use are engagement metrics and that is how much people interact with your website versus the other sites on the same search page. So if a user finds you and another site on the first page of Google, and the consumer visits your site for a couple seconds and immediately goes to the other site and spends several minutes, Google will take that metric as a point against your site because the user was not intrigued enough in comparison with a competitor’s site.
The responsiveness, speed and metrics measurements are all aiming to do the same thing. Google does not want to deliver content to users that has just been optimized to be on the first page, but has no relevance or depth or user friendliness. Search engines want to see consumers interacting with your page, spending time on your site and they measure that through these factors.
In attempts to drive the point home, again, the search engines are looking to present users with useful content. They want to continue to be in business as well, so they do not appreciate when businesses duplicate content or over-stuff with keywords in order to just fill the website. That’s why that rule of thumb previously mentioned really comes in handy here. Take for example a business trying to optimize for West Palm Beach counseling services. If you have a mental health question, you type it into Google, and then a website that you go to just keeps saying “West Palm Beach counseling is the best in the West Palm Beach area for people with mental health questions… blah blah… West Palm Beach… Mental… blah blah… Psychologist”, but it doesn’t answer any of your questions, you would get annoyed. Okay, we get it, you’re in that area and you’re a mental health professional, but I had a specific question that you “optimized” for and didn’t deliver useful content for. Now I’m a grouchy consumer, and search engines definitely don’t want that, and quite frankly neither does your business.
Copying and pasting other people’s original content will get you on Google’s naughty list as well. Searchers that run into the same content again and again are not going to be happy campers! Surface level information is also a negative mark against your site, and that’s just basically content that can be found across the board for the topic. You want to provide useful and unique content, so that search engines can see that’s it’s different and intriguing to users and thus rank your page higher than the competitions!
Hopefully your business wasn’t employing any of these habits on your site. Good news is, your rankings aren’t set in stone, so give us a call to find out ways that you can improve your rankings to be found above your competition! At Digital Resource we have proven techniques that we employ in our SEO campaigns to grow your business’ rankings organically. You can find more information online or you can call us today at 561-429-2585! Our internet marketing agency can help your business’ online presence grow!
With a business degree from Florida Atlantic University, Julie has years of experience advertising and marketing for several businesses including real estate brokerages and photography companies. She brings her background in writing, graphic design and communications, as well as her experience in the field, when assisting clients with their internet marketing needs. She treats every client with the upmost level of professionalism and care, ensuring everyone who works with Digital Resource has a smile throughout the process!