Five Things That Can Ruin Your Rankings and What You Can Do About It
If your site isn’t getting traffic you not only lose out on potential customers, you will fall behind your competitors and risk having Google downgrade your rating. And, if you continue to make the same mistakes with your site, your SEO rankings will suffer. Fortunately, this is easy to fix — but only if you know what to look for.
Being aware of the following five frequent missteps will help keep you on the right path.
After Google’s Panda updates, Web content as we know it was shaken up. While content farms used to reach a higher ranking than businesses like yours, their style of keyword-stuffed writing no longer ranks well in the search engines. The trick is for you to make your writing seem natural while, at the same time, driving visitors to your site.
Higher Quality Content = Higher Rankings
For effective Wweb content, avoid using only keywords to build your article. Keywords that have nothing to do with your content or even with your site will damage your rankings. If Google finds that this is the case, your site will be marked as spam and your search engine ratings will fall. Keep your content fresh, relevant and sincere.
Google LOVES fresh and unique content
Own Your Content
- Nobody wants their content plagiarized. When another site has content that is eerily similar to your own or downright word-for-word, you must be vigilant in claiming your copywritten material. If you are not indexed before a website that has copied your content, then Google will assume you will have copied the content; this can be dangerous for your rankings. Luckily, there is a way to deal with content theft.
- If you find that another site has plagiarized your work, then the first thing to do is politely request they take it down. If they ignore you or refuse, then go to the website Who Is Hosting This to find out which hosting service the site is using. You should then contact the hosting service and explain the problem you are having. You can even issue a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) notice: this is something that both the hosting service and Google will take very seriously.
- Constantly check that your content isn’t being copied by running searches with your content in quotation marks. If you’re the only site that pops up, you’re good to go. Don’t lose out on rankings when it is something that is within your control.
Keep Your Website Functioning
- If Google visits your site and finds it’s down, that’s a red flag. The first time might be ignored, but each subsequent time tells Google that something is wrong, and your ranking will suffer. To fix this problem, check that your site is up regularly. Consider hiring outside testers to check.
- You could also see if the problem is registering at Free Web Monitoring. If you are receiving negative feedback fairly frequently, it might be wise to switch hosts. It may even be worth paying a little bit more each month just to ensure your site doesn’t continuously crash.
- Be sure to make sure your pages are working; sites often go through changes over the years. If you’ve added pages or updated pages, then go through the rest of your site and decide if older pages and information are still relevant. Otherwise, Google could see your site as just another spam site. Again, this is another problem that can be easily fixed by continually checking your site.
If your content links back to dead sites, your ratings will plummet because they will not be considered a good site by Google. Google sees dead links as evidence of a dead site. Maintain your site and constantly check for links that are functional. As always, it’s a good rule of thumb to have someone checking your site and testing it out. Assign this to an in-house Web guru or hire an outside party.
Google HATES spammy links
Along with spammy links comes too much backlinking. The last thing you want is for Google to downgrade your rating because you have too many backlinks; that’s exactly what will happen if you stuff your site with links to poor quality sites. Google is looking to see if the links included are relevant and of a decent quality — they don’t want to see irrelevant links to poor quality sites because this doesn’t offer readers any extra value.
Poor Spammy Links = Lower Rankings
Consider Your Hosting
- Back when you were first starting out with your Web presence, it might have seemed like a perfect idea to go with a free web hosting service. Google is smarter now and can weed through sites that are on free hosting platforms. Reconsider whether you want to keep your site at a free hosting service.
- When the time comes to make the switch, make sure you do your research on which hosting service to use. It might even be that your free host has the ability to transfer your content to one of their paid domains without a switch in content. Always keep in mind that you don’t want your site to look cheap, so only do this if the host eliminates the extra buttons and banners that advertise their hosting and can make your overall design look cheap.
So many mistakes in SEO can be easily avoided and remedied if you know how to tackle problems with your rankings. Sometimes the hardest thing can be to stop looking at your site subjectively and instead put on the eyes of an outside visitor. Constantly ask yourself: would you stay on this site or would you click away? If the answer to that question is no, it may be time to overhaul your website.
Olivia Rose loves to help a number of businesses understand what they need to do to improve; this includes coaching them on how to boost their rankings in Google.
Post from: SiteProNews: Webmaster News & Resources
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