Undoubtedly, digital marketing has changed the way we look at marketing and it has undergone a sea of change since it began and it will bring more changes with it in 2019!
Despite all the new strategies and marketing tactics, SEO still remains the backbone of digital marketing. It helps improve the search engine rankings to a great extent.
However, some marketers and novice business owners cling to the old and outdated SEO practices which do not help them get the desired results.
Have a look at some of the outdated SEO practices which need to be avoided.
This is a small word but has a lot hidden in it. The word “keyword” is highly misunderstood by most marketers.
Often, SEO practitioners fit their content around a particular keyword. Sadly, this method will only help fit the content without having any proper alignment with the keyword and will be of no use to users.
This causes a gap in the communication as the message is lost. The users lose interest as they are unable to understand the brand’s message and move to another page.
Remember, if the keyword is not aligned with the content, it hinders the success of the content regardless of it being of high-quality.
Try and avoid using high-volume keywords just for the sake of visibility. Even Google will understand this trick and not rank you higher in the search result.
Writing content having many keywords in it is highly outdated. Google too does not depend on keyword density to determine if the page is an effective source of information for a particular search query.
While keywords are important, they are not the only reason for you to rank higher. What matters more for Google is the quality of the content. Make sure that you are able to convey the message or information in an effective way with minimum keywords.
Sounds familiar? Keyword stuffing is what most of the marketers do. Yes, keywords are needed in the content but that does not mean you overdo it. It is obsolete and must be avoided at all cost.
The idea of fooling the search engines is not good anymore. Remember, the content is read by people and not crawlers. Therefore, it is better to use the keywords judiciously instead of stuffing them.
2. Avoid Writing for Search Engines
Writing content simply to impress the search engines is a passé.
More than often, marketers repeat the keyword in the content and write several different versions of it to fool the crawlers and got the page to rank well. However, this isn’t going to work anymore.
Now-a-days there are advanced search engines and they sure do understand repeated keywords and their variations and poor content.
It is therefore recommended that you write for humans and not robots.
3. Poor content
If you thought that crappy content will still fetch you higher rankings, you are mistaken. There was a time when poorly written content, keyword stuffed content , non-credible content, etc did get you higher rankings, but now it has changed.
These tricks don’t work anymore.
Today, what works is good quality and relevant content that communicates the message clearly to the readers.
4. Matching domains
Using high value keywords in your URL definitely makes sense. However, if it is misleading or results in bad user experience you should avoid it.
A great way is to ensure that your domain names are short, concise and consistent with your brand.
Google did value exact-match domain earlier but behavioral data has made it change its perception. Today, if you sell good products and offer top-notch services to the users, Google will make sure to make your brand visible to people searching for it.
5. Spinning of articles
Sure, in the quest of creating high quality content with new words, phrases and sentences you can use software to spin the articles. However, the end result will always be a mess as the new article will use the same points and write about it.
This is not effective anymore.
The reason is quite obvious. There’s no doubt that robots can produce good quality content but unlike humans they lack originality. A human being can think and produce content that is original, helpful and having substance.
Avoid using spinning tools and instead focus on creating something original and relevant.
6. Buying links
There was a time when marketers would spend a lot of money in buying links to point at their website. However, in the process most of the marketers ended up getting links from low-quality domains which eventually did more harm than good.
Also, simply buying the links wasn’t enough, it had to optimized and maintained just like the websites.
Now Google can easily identify low-quality websites and also those that are sending links in huge numbers which ideally shouldn’t happen.
If you really want to boost the visibility and authority of your website today, then you have to earn the links and not buy them.
7. Outdated Keyword Research Tactics
Even today a few marketers use several keywords to understand which works best for the brand. This method also helps get a fair idea about what the users are looking for and also idea targeting. As mentioned earlier, marketing strategies have evolved, many tools have also been developed that are trying to replicate keyword data.
Many marketers turn to Google’s Keyword Planner (free tool), Google Trends (free tool),MOZ Keyword Explorer tool (paid tool) or SEMrush’s Keyword Magic Tool (paid tool).
Remember, even today it is important that you do your own keyword research if you want to get a better understanding of the geographic region, competition, industry, etc.
8. Anchor text
Internal linking is a great way to enhance your website credibility. It is usually done with the help of an anchor text (HTML) that enables a user to click on a link to know more about the content.
There are several types of anchor texts and you can use the one that suits your requirement or the one that is favorable according to the situation.
In the past, most marketers used exact-match or keyword-rich anchor text. Today, Google is better equipped to identify over-optimized content.
It is therefore imperative that you optimize the anchor text for humans and not for search engines.
9. Article Marketing
Article marketing and article directories are one of the oldest forms of digital marketing and they were used widely as a part of marketing for a long time. However, after Google unleashed its Panda update in 2011, everything changed.
Yes many Marketeers are still using the 8 year old technique! If you are one of them, its time to change.
It did not support such article directories and websites that offered poorly written content or stolen content.
Avoid using article directories and instead demonstrate you expertise by including high-quality and original content on your website. This will surely up your authority as well as trustworthiness.
10. Exact-match Search Queries
The tactic of targeting exact-match search queries was a popular practice a few years ago. Marketers would strive to rank higher by using exact-match search queries tactics. However, after Google deployed its Knowledge Graph, this tactic became obsolete.
So, if you are still using this method in the hope of ranking higher, think again.
To succeed in SEO, all you need to is update yourself and learn all the latest techniques and tools available. Also, make sure that your marketing strategies impress the users and not the crawlers.