5 SEO Techniques to Stay Away From

If you're just starting up your own business and have never managed a web presence before, you may not be aware of the do's and don'ts of certain marketing practices. Sometimes, without even knowing, you may be practicing some bad or "black hat" seo tactics. You may think that what you're doing will benefit your sites search rank, however you can almost guarantee that it will kill your credibility as a trustworthy business.

Here are 5 SEO techniques to stay away from:

Keyword stuffing

Keyword stuffing occurs when a site is crammed with keywords in order to increase a sites search rank. There are several ways in which you may (and perhaps by accident) be participating in keyword stuffing.

Here's a list of ways in which this malpractice can occur:

  • Unnaturally repeating keyword phrases throughout content
  • Stuffing keywords in anchor text
  • Creating keyword lists or blocks of keywords
  • Adding irrelevant keywords

You can avoid this tactic by simply creating useful content in which your keywords occur naturally.

Low quality content

You can almost guarantee that you will rank higher in search engine results if you produce high quality content. You want your content to be useful and engaging to not only your core audience but to those who may stumble upon your site. Here are some ways in which you can instantly improve the quality of your content.

Only Focusing on Ranks

Chances are your search rank will likely fluctuate from time to time. It's tough to get to number one and it's even tougher to stay there. It's possible for your rank to change without you having even done anything to influence it. Try not to put all your focus on your rankings and focus on creating quality content that your readers will naturally share and link to.

Overloading anchor text

Anchor text is the visible characters that hyperlink display when linking to another document or location on the web (seomoz). To avoid abusing keywords in your anchor text, try to think of the ways in which readers may link to you. This could be your business name, website URL, etc. Get creative and think of a variety of relevant words or phrases to use. Always vary and don't overload your anchor text.

Swapping links

In this sort of "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine" game, swapping links as a favor to another blogger or business owner as part of a link building approach is frowned upon. Links to your website is an important part of SEO because it signals to Google that your site is popular. However you need to be sure you don't abuse the way in which you get these inbound links. A good way to link to content is by linking to some of your own content in new blog posts. This is called internal linking and is a great way to increase movement, reinforce your topic, and what it is that you do.

It's easy to think that some of these tactics will benefit your search engine optimization strategy but they will definitely do more harm than good. If you willingly choose to use these unfavorable techniques you will be killing your credibility and your businesses trustworthiness. You can also assess the credibility of SEO companies buy measuring their practices and standards against what has been outlined above.