SEO is a beautiful and diverse garden that requires varied skills to tend effectively — but too often, businesses get bogged down in the technical weeds. While hard skills are necessary for enacting many elements of SEO, overlooking some of the less technical aspects can be equally disastrous.
If you aren’t seeing success in your current SEO strategy, here are some non-technical slip-ups you might be having — and some solutions that could save your day:
You Didn’t Do Any Research
It should go without saying that you need to perform research before launching into any business endeavor — especially any marketing endeavor. While technical research on aspects of SEO like keywords is critical to success, you also need to participate in research that will inform your overall SEO strategy. For example, you should look into your business to develop realistic goals that will revolutionize your business success. Additionally, you need to perform research on your online audience, so you can build content and links that they will engage with.
The breadth of research necessary for effective SEO can be staggering, which is why you should rely on SEO services for both technical and non-technical aspects of SEO. SEO experts have experience managing the amount of ongoing research, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to look into some aspect of SEO.
You Aren’t Patient Enough
SEO isn’t a quick project; even the fastest estimates put the earliest perceivable results at around three months after launching an aggressive SEO strategy. For some businesses, SEO is an ongoing effort that never ends because you always need to work to show Google that your webpages are valuable.
Unfortunately, if you aren’t patient with SEO, you are likely to make serious mistakes that jeopardize your website for years to come. Black-hat SEO techniques are relatively non-technical and exceedingly fast-acting, making them easy for you to enact on your own — but they also put you in Google’s bad books. When Google detects that a site is using black-hat SEO, it takes action against the site, lowering its search ranking or perhaps removing it from the search index entirely. You simply need to practice patience with white-hat SEO to see the results you crave.
Your Content Isn’t Valuable to Anyone
SEO and content marketing go hand-in-hand because Google gives priority to websites that offer quality content. However, if you are only producing content to slip in links, it’s likely that your content isn’t helping your rankings — in fact, poor-quality content can actively hurt your SEO efforts.
You need to devote attention to the content you develop, making sure that there is an audience who is eager to consume it. Otherwise, visitors to your website or pages containing your links will bounce away, and that lack of engagement will interfere with your ability to improve your rank. You should invest in high-quality content production, hiring professional content creators to assist in achieving success with SEO.
Google has been around for more than 20 years, and it is easy to find information about how the search engine’s algorithm worked in the past. Yet, focusing on what came before won’t necessarily help you succeed in the future, especially when it comes to SEO. In fact, many of the SEO tactics practiced in the past now fall under the umbrella of black-hat SEO and will earn you a lower ranking.
Instead, you need to look to the future of the internet to predict SEO trends that will earn you a high ranking. For example, websites that optimized for mobile saw swift jumps in rankings after 2015. Today, you might prioritize your local SEO and your Google My Business page to attract customers in your area, or you might begin optimizing for voice search given the rise of voice-controlled smart assistants. Again, you should talk with SEO experts, who likely have accurate predictions on what will affect search next.
In most cases, the technical aspects of SEO are best left to the experts, so you can devote your energy toward better understanding your business and marketing goals, audience and content. If you can improve your non-technical SEO assets, you will improve your digital marketing overall — and your search ranking is destined to follow suit.