3 Pieces of SEO Advice NOT to Take

There’s no shortage of advice when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO). Everyone has an opinion. And while SEO isn’t an exact science, there are certain things that you should certainly avoid. Here are 3 pieces of SEO advice that you should NEVER take.

1.  Use your keywords as many times as you can.

Keywords are definitely important, and you should make a conscious effort to use them in your website’s content. But be careful not to become so consumed with using keywords that you neglect the overall flow of your content.

“Stuffing” your website unnecessarily full of keywords is not only harmful to readers, as it makes it difficult for them to understand your website’s content, but it could also hurt your SEO. Keyword stuffing is part of Black Hat SEO—a disapproved practice that unethically increases a website’s ranking in a search engine result page (SERP).

Black Hat SEO practices violate Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and often result in a penalty. Along with keyword stuffing, other Black Hat tactics include:

  • Content Automation
  • Doorway Pages
  • Hidden Text or Links
  • Keyword Stuffing
  • Reporting a Competitor
  • Sneaky Redirects
  • Cloaking

Remember, your keywords are meant to complement your content, not overpower it.

2. You can never have too many hyperlinks.

Hyperlinks are an important part of SEO. Adding 3-5 hyperlinks per page is a good way to boost your SEO. But if you go hyperlink overboard, you could end up doing more harm than good. Just like keyword stuffing, adding too many hyperlinks can overwhelm your readers and distract them from the true meaning of your content.

3. There’s no such thing as duplicate content penalty.

Wrong. Duplicate content is content that appears on the Internet in more than one place—and it can hurt you.

While there isn’t a specific penalty for duplicate content, Google will only rank one site with any given piece of content, meaning you’re missing out on an opportunity to rank for both website pages. And if your website is newer or growing and you also posted that content on a higher authority site such as Huffington Post, your site will never rank for that content. And worse, if Google determines this is a pattern for your site, your website could stop ranking altogether.

So instead of duplicating content, use great placements as an opportunity for an authoritative backlink including a link back to your site. You can also add a short introduction or description of your website and link back to the original content.

The most important thing to remember with SEO is that content is king. Don’t become so focus on technical SEO that you neglect your content marketing. Keep your reader in mind and you’ll be surprised how well you will do.

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