As Google and a slew of other search engines are continually updating, it becomes difficult to keep up with what is happening in the SEO world. Every update requires a learning phase and demands that SEO tactics be developed to suit the new algorithm. But with each update we adapt to, old penalties start to creep up again. This isn’t necessarily intentional but it can be a side effect of every Fred, Penguin and Panda that comes along.
Just to set a friendly reminder for every SEO veteran out there or provide some framework for an SEO novice, here are the classic penalties that should always be avoided but are easy to fall back into the habit of:
- Keyword stuffing – This penalty is exactly what it sounds like, stuffing too many keywords in a paragraph for the sake of SEO, even if the paragraph doesn’t read well or necessarily make sense. Avoid stuffing but using keywords wisely, rather than throw them around, use them where it matters most.
- Pages for every keyword variation – While your site may have a few keywords, creating a page for every single variation or similarity of this keyword will do nothing but penalise your site. This was a popular method a few years ago, but now user experience and valuable content is ranked much higher.
- Internal linking with keyword anchor-text – Using internal links on your site can actually be quite useful for users in terms of navigation and ease of experience. However, the penalty arises when the same keyword and same link are used continually throughout the site. To prevent this from happening, ensure that all internal links that are used on your pages are both relevant and useful to site users.
SEO is one of those skills that will always require learning new skills and adapting to different guidelines. Whilst most SEO practitioners have this well-honed this particular, it never hurts to be reminded.