If you are new to search engine optimization and find it difficult to get enough traffic for your website, blog or landing page, you need to know how to avoid some common SEO mistakes. Putting a stop to these will make a big difference to how search engines rank your content.

Much of the information you see online about SEO never was good advice or it is now out-of-date. Google has changed its ranking policies several times in the past few years and what worked well five years ago might now get a site penalized.

If you think you are making any major SEO mistakes, now is the time to stop, because these will never turn your site into a traffic magnet.

Keyword Misuse

The biggest SEO mistakes involve misuse of keywords. Overuse will result in the content being penalized by Google. Search results now include content featuring words and phrases associated with the topic being searched for, so you don’t need to stuff your site a lot of keyword variations.

Repeated keyword use is less important than it used to be. You only need to use them in your site’s tags, titles, headings, video descriptions, image captions and any content where they can appear naturally.

Some rookies think they will increase their search engine ranking by posting multiple pages of text, basically saying the same thing but with different keyword variations.

This no longer works for SEO and it could harm your website or blog to try this. It’s better for SEO to have fewer pages of quality content with good internal linking.

Linking Errors

Despite what you might have read, it would be wrong to believe that the more links there are leading back to your content the higher it will rank in search results. Google now penalizes any content that is linked back from hundreds of sites with nothing in common.

Spamming a link, whether intentional or not, is the worst thing a rookie can do. A website or blog will only rise up the rankings when it’s appropriately linked from pages of related content on a few high quality blogs, authority sites, directories and forum sites.

Untargeted Traffic

Another common mistake that many rookies make is thinking that the aim of SEO is to get a huge amount of traffic. The real aim is to target the type of visitors you need to view your content.

Paying for traffic is useless if the majority of visitors are leaving within a few seconds. This is known in SEO terms as having a high bounce rate and it disqualifies a site from getting a good ranking in search results. Sites that rise to the top are ones where visitors are interested in seeing what’s on the page and then go on to view more of the content.

Using Content Creating Software

Articles created by translation tools and article spinning software are among the worst for search engine ranking. Attempting to create a lot of content by using an automatic tool is one of the biggest SEO mistakes a rookie can make. These tools are unable to reproduce the quality of content that has been created manually.

Mistakes in Web Design

Having a website that is not designed to be responsive on mobile devices is now a big mistake that a rookie might make. More people than ever are searching for information on smart phones and tablets than on desktop computers. Mobile use is actually a requirement by Google for a website to be given a high ranking.

Usability, navigation, internal linking and flow of information all count for SEO. Mistakes in any of these could affect ranking.

When you stop making any of these SEO mistakes, your website, blog or landing page will benefit by gaining more valuable traffic from search engine results.