I’ve come across hundreds of websites while offering SEO services to local business owners. Whether I’m conducting an initial audit of a website, or beginning an SEO campaign and fixing major errors, I’ve noticed a lot of common SEO mistakes that leave these business owners wondering why they never reach the first page of Google.
Here are 3 common SEO mistakes business owners make:
1. Title Tags
A title tag is an HTML element that specifies the title of a given web page. These show up in the search engine results page as a clickable headline of roughly 60 characters that will take the user to the given web page.
The purpose of your title tag is to tell Google exactly what keyword you want to rank for. For example, if you own Dan’s Plumbing Inc in Salinas and you know the keyword, “Salinas Plumbers” is searched more than any other term, then you’ll want to put that first in your title tag. An appropriate title tag would be “Salinas Plumbers | Dan’s Plumbing Inc”.
However, that’s not the case with majority of the websites that I audit. Most of the time, I come across title tags that have either the brand name first, missing keywords, or have exceeded the character limit. All three of these mistakes can be detrimental to your chances of ever showing up on the 1st page of Google.
You can test out your skills of creating a perfect title tag here: https://moz.com/learn/seo/title-tag .
2. Inconsistent NAP
NAP stands for the business’ Name, Address, and Phone number. The NAP of your business must be displayed the same way on your website and social directories as it is on your Google My Business listing. Google and other search engines cross reference your NAP on the internet to make sure your business is legitimate. If your NAP has inconsistencies of how it is displayed online, then Google will not trust that your business is legitimate, and therefore you won’t make the top 3 local map section.
Business owners rarely have this part of SEO dialed in the right way because the slightest difference in NAP can be the difference between a website showing up in the top 3 of Google Maps or not. For example, if a business is listed on Google My Business as:
123 Main St.
Eugene, Or 97408
You can’t have any misinformation or inconsistencies with how it is displayed on your website or other social directories, such as:
123 Main Street
Eugene, Or 97408
Notice how the first one has street abbreviated, and the second has street spelled out. This may seem small, but these inconsistencies can be easily overlooked and will absolutely kill your chances of making the top 3 Google Maps.
Content is king when it comes to search engine optimization. It won’t matter what you do in your SEO efforts if you don’t have keyword rich content on the web page. That’s because the Google algorithm crawls millions of websites in seconds after someone conducts a search. Based on the keywords that were used in the search, Google and other search engines bring the most trusted website to the top of the first page that relates to the keyword that was used.
Typically, websites often lack important keywords that people would search for in Google. Without keywords your website simply doesn’t stand a chance of hitting the first page.
My advice to business owners is to start thinking more like a search engine when writing content. Of course you still want to deliver high quality content that is valuable to the customer, but it also needs to be written so that Google and other search engines views your content as relative and authoritative to what people are searching for.
These three factors of SEO are extremely important to ranking any website on the first page of Google. Without properly optimizing the title tags, NAP, and content of a website, it really won’t matter how much money you spend on trying to reach the top of the search engines.
If you need more traffic to your website, but you’re unsure of how to do it yourself, or you simply don’t have enough time, then get in contact with us today. We offer a 90 day trial money back GUARANTEE on all SEO campaigns.