SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION

The 5 Most Common SEO Mistakes and Facts to Know

METEHAN URHAN

20 May, 2021

I met SEO in my college years, and I have been a part of the Zeo team for a long time. For all this time, I have had the chance to meet many people who are interested in SEO and work with countless brands. I've gained a lot of experience from the projects I coordinated or took part in. I want to share the famous SEO mistakes I've seen or heard throughout the years with you.

In this post, I'll mention the common SEO mistakes and the false facts that are thought to be true.

1) One-time SEO for a certain period of time is enough.

One of the common SEO mistake is that it would be enough to do one-time work for a certain period of time. Usually, those who have just met SEO or have not gained long-term experience tend to believe it. It is commonly believed that there are some steps to follow, which will directly make the relevant website rank high. Of course, the facts happen to be quite different. :)

First of all, the route for SEO should be set correctly for short and long-term plans. Because every website has its own deficiencies or needs. Actions must be prioritized and taken in an order on websites, deficiencies and needs of which should be planned properly beforehand. The outcome of all this work depends on many variables such as the current SEO performance, the number and power of competitors, and the industry the website provides service in. That's exactly why the same monotonous SEO for different websites does not usually yield the best results. Besides, ranking high in the search queries as targeted as a result of proper SEO does not necessarily mean ceasing this work.  Because this equation includes competitors and the Google algorithms. But when your work bears good results, it is crucial to maintain your position.

Measurement is another important part of SEO. After working on the optimization, it is necessary to keep track of the website's performance and review it in detail periodically. Basically, for these reasons, it is quite challenging to succeed by working on SEO once and for a certain period and to maintain that success. In short, SEO should be practiced regularly on any website that aims to rank high on search engines throughout its online presence.

2) The only purpose of SEO is to achieve high rankings.

When you say SEO to someone, they usually think of ranking first in the queries.  I think the reason for this is that SEO used to be done monotonously and some SEO specialists promised their customers or brands that they would be ranking in the first position. After all these years, so many people still associate SEO with ranking in the first position. However, SEO is much more than just ranking in the first position in search queries.

Then we can say that the main purpose of SEO is to increase the presence of a website on search engines and help it increase the number of relevant visitors. A corporate website can leverage SEO to raise brand awareness while an e-commerce site does the same in order to increase its sales. Each website has its own search query targets to achieve. It may sometimes be easy for a website in a niche market to rank high in the search queries.

But think about a new website that competes with the largest e-commerce sites in Turkey in the search queries. Is it possible for such a website to rank in the first position with a little SEO effort? Suppose that it is. Well, how effective would that be? When I discuss this with my own customers, I usually give the same example. For instance, we have been working SEO hard and regularly for our website for years. In the end, we have achieved our goals and ranked high in the search queries we targeted. And then, do we want a new website in the industry to rule us out just like that? Or when it does so, don't we think that it is unfair?

That's exactly why it wouldn't be easy to rank high in a short time in an environment where competition is intense and the competitors have started SEO way earlier than us. But it wouldn't be fair to consider ourselves unsuccessful not ranking high if we compete with powerful websites that have been in the game for longer than we do. That's why the criteria for SEO success and its purpose depend on some variables such as the current SEO performance, the industry the website provides service in, and the number and quality of the competitors. In short, the purpose of SEO is not to rank in the first position but to make our website more visible on search engines and reach more relevant users in the best way possible considering the current conditions.

3) Anyone can do SEO.

I've provided consultancy services to large businesses as well as smaller businesses so far. At our meetings, I heard from most of these businesses that they had tried SEO on their own or in some other way and failed, and then decided to get professional support. I can say that this is experienced more frequently by businesses with a limited budget or those that do not want to allocate much of their budget to SEO. Is time the only thing wasted in this process?

Unfortunately, time is not the only thing wasted when the competition is high, and the competitors have been working SEO regularly. It wouldn't be wrong to say that your competitors can easily leave you behind in this scenario. It causes the time needed to achieve success to be extended although professional support is received afterward. That's why especially the businesses that have targets and care about organic traffic should leave this process in the hands of people whose knowledge and experience are reliable. Otherwise, amateur SEO could lead to very negative outcomes such as wasting time and money, falling behind the competitors, and being penalized by Google.

4) SEO alone is enough.

Some businesses can invest in other channels because of low budget or for some other reason. And this channel can be SEO or something different. Think about a business that invests only in SEO. How much can this business succeed? Or does it need other channels to succeed?

At this point, brand awareness is the leading factor. If this business has not invested in other channels before, its brand awareness will probably be limited.  And the websites of brands with limited awareness are less likely to get natural backlinks or high ranking. When we consider that it's all about the ranking factor, brand awareness suddenly becomes much more important. It may be difficult for businesses whose competitors have a high level of brand awareness and thus backlinks and rankings to get the best out of SEO. Therefore, businesses that expect to see good results of SEO should have a high level of brand awareness. Benefiting from other channels to increase brand awareness will be helpful.

5) Strong brand equity and brand awareness alone are enough.

We sometimes see that some brands with a high level of awareness can take digital channels for granted. This is mostly because they find their current traffic in the queries sufficient thanks to their high level of brand awareness. This is usually experienced by businesses that do not sell a product or service directly on their websites, which causes them to underestimate the potential in other search queries in the industry.

As mentioned above, think about a brand which is highly recognized in the industry. Naturally, the website would rank high in the queries in which some users who know about the brand search the brand name or related keywords. But consider the users who know about the brand but do not type the brand name in the query and others who do not even know about the brand. In this case, it may not be possible for the website to rank high without any kind of SEO. Now consider the potential organic traffic that is lost because it did not rank high in the queries. Every industry that has a considerable amount of search queries without the brand name requires SEO. Otherwise, as I said, we might be missing the chance of getting more organic traffic, brand awareness, and maybe more customers. :)

Thus, each business in an industry where there is a substantial amount of search query should take SEO into consideration. Besides, if the business has strong brand awareness, the amount of brand search and natural backlinks will probably be larger, which affects the SEO performance positively. In short, brands with a high level of awareness should turn it into an SEO advantage instead of merely relying on it.

Search engine optimization is a field with no certain limits, in which there is controversy about the accuracy of some facts and some issues are proven only by experience. That's why we hear so many mistakes. In order to be sure of our knowledge, we should reach the information through powerful sources and get professional SEO support.

I have discussed the famous SEO mistakes in this blog, and I hope it's helpful. See you in other blogs. :)