When performed correctly, professional SEO can have a substantial positive impact on your bottom line. Hiring a Search Engine Optimization company is a big decision that can save you time, money and achieve better results than doing it yourself, but you can also risk damaging your website and reputation. Irresponsible SEO is difficult to track until it is often too late.
You can permanently damage your domain by not following best practices. Buying links and participating in link farms is one of these activities that once performed may not be reversed and can be so damaging that you would be better off buying a new domain. Many agencies attempt to manipulate search engines results in unfair ways and implement practices that violate guidelines. Don’t put the online fate of your company in the hands of an amateur’s; you are ultimately responsible for the actions of the company you hire.
8 SEO Risks You Should Avoid
UNETHICAL OR BLACK HAT SEO TACTICS TO AVOID
Unethical or black hat SEO tactics can hurt your rankings and even get you removed from the SERPs.
You are probably wondering what these “black hat” SEO and marketing practices, tactics and shortcuts that will get you penalized are. These are the tactics highly incompetent and shady ‘’SEO experts.”
Well, here are the top 10 devastating SEO tactics that will get you kicked out of Google’s search results. Most of them also apply to Bing and Yahoo Search, among other popular search engines.
1. Keyword Stuffing
You’re probably thinking the more the keywords you want to rank for appearing in your content, the more the chances of ranking up high. Well, that’s not entirely true. The reason is, more often than not if you stuff your content with a specific keyword or keyword phrase, you are doing that at the expense of a naturally flowing and grammatically correct article.
Search engines, more specifically Google wants users to get the best information there is about that keyword. So, it will just be a matter of time before your content becomes useless. Follow web design best practices to avoid running into keyword stuffing.
2. Click-baits and low-quality content
These are the ‘’watch this video before it gets banned” or ‘’read this before it’s too late” types of articles. They are generally short, very low-quality articles and media, meant to create backlinks and to divert traffic to the parent website.
More often than not, the people who do this use automation software that duplicate tons of backlinks to divert traffic. The detriment to this is that you’ll probably get traffic but not actual customers. It’s terrible for branding and Google blacklists the practice.
You’ll be doing well in the short run, but you’ll probably end up with a tainted website and all your efforts down the drain once Google filters you out. Hiring SEO consulting services can help avoid this.
3. Article and Content Spinning
Take a look at these two sentences
‘’Hello, my name is Doug. Despite my four drunk-driving arrests, I would like to get my life back on track by getting myself a job and starting a family.’’
‘’Hi, my name is Doug. Notwithstanding my four alcoholic driving captures, I might want to recover my life on track by landing a fresh position and beginning a family.”
The two sentences mean the same thing, just worded differently. The first one is a naturally written sentence, while the second one is spun content from an article-spinning software.
People spin articles differently, manually or automatically, but the reason is more or less the same – more content and keywords on the cheap. Publishing spun content means low-quality content, fewer visitors to your website and eventually a low search engine rank.
4. Registering a misspelt version of a well-known, high-traffic domain name
One other frowned upon tactic shady ‘’SEO gurus” use to divert traffic to their website is registering a misspelt version of a popular and well-known website or domain name. For example ‘’tripadvicer.com’’ instead of ‘’tripadvisor.com’’.
Once search engines realize what you’re doing, all the cash that went to pull off such stunts will frivol away, and anything directly associated with your results will follow suit. Search engine optimization marketing services, when performed properly, will give you quantifiable results that stay.
Domain Squatting or cybersquatting is buying several domains with phrases and words that look or sound like the original high-end website, with the aim of getting backlinks and traffic associated with these phrases.
For example, you could register a domain name with the word ‘’Amazon’’ or ‘’PayPal’’ in it. Sometimes these domains are used to catch misspellings or to redirect visitors. Either way, you need to avoid this tactic.
Cybersquatting is illegal in some countries, including the United States under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act.
6. Aggressive link-buying
If you are doing SEO on your own, buying tons of links from already established websites is probably one of the very first ideas that would tickle your fancy to get backlinks and traffic to your website. There’s nothing wrong with buying links from high traffic websites to get visitors.
The problem comes in when you don’t use the ‘’no-follow’’ feature that allows you to still benefit from these links without affecting your natural rank on the search engine. If you buy links and don’t use them for their intended purpose, you risk penalties and fines from Google. Our Nashville SEO expert solutions will create natural link growth.
7. Content cloning
Content cloning or mirroring is creating websites with more or less the same content with the intention of building a web presence associated with the mirrored or cloned content.
Google will quickly pick up on this, and you risk fines, penalties or worse still getting deindexed.
That’s because Google will consider both or all of that content plagiarized.
It’s even worse if the content you are cloning or mirroring doesn’t belong to you, because you risk tainting the reputation of the website you are copying content.
8. Excessive Social Media Automation
There’s no problem with using some automation software to assist you to post new content to your social media pages automatically. It saves time and money.
However, overusing these tools could prove detrimental to your brand’s reputation in the long run.
If you bombard people with several posts every day, you risk losing high-quality traffic as people might misinterpret your content as spam.
It also comes off as desperate and forceful marketing tactics.
HOW TO STEER CLEAR OF SHADY SEO
So, now you know the shady tactics people out there are employing to discredit the art and science that is SEO. Well, doing the exact opposite of what you’ve just read above sounds about right. But that’s not always enough. Avoiding fines and penalties from Google goes beyond doing white hat SEO. Find a Rochester, Nashville, or Atlanta Google SEO expert.
Easy as it may sound, consulting a legit and competent SEO expert is probably your best shot at making every penny you spend trying to rank on the first-page count.
Getting a trustworthy SEO expert that understands your niche inside out is probably the most important goal. There are also many search engine optimization tools out there that can help you perform analysis and research.
Search engines are evolving to mitigate the ever-changing tech world. You’d not want to find yourself on the wrong side of things when search engines deem the tactics you are currently employing out of date.
Hopefully, this brief overview on SEO will help you understand this extremely important marketing tactic better, whether you are performing search engine optimization yourself or hiring an SEO company. Please feel free to reach out to us for a quote or to learn more about how we can help you.