There are certain techniques in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that can have a very detrimental effect on your website ranking and its overall success. And you might be thinking “Which SEO techniques should be avoided”? Let’s go through some of the key SEO practices which you need to avoid at all costs to protect your website reputation and get a higher search engine ranking.
Popular SEO Techniques that Should Be Avoided
One of the most well-known practices that can be seen even to this day is Keyword Stuffing. It means the content has too many repeating keywords in the body, Meta Tags, or Alt Tags. The reason why many use this technique is because they want to manipulate search ranking to appear more relevant to some keywords.
Nevertheless, most search engines have evolved and have placed countermeasures to find and punish websites that use this technique. Instead, you can focus on creating quality content with the natural use of keywords in a relevant and meaningful way.
Another thing you need to avoid is having duplicate content. Having the same content in two different places on the website or copying content from another website is a form of content duplication and this can have a negative impact on your SEO.
Most search engines prioritize unique and original content, therefore having duplicate content on your website can blacklist you from search results and even flag your website. You should always try to make original content, have relevance and provide readability for your visitors.
Cloaking is a deceptive practice in which a website show two different pieces of information to search engine and its visitors. The key factor for using this method is to influence search engine results by giving optimized content to search engines and something different to visitors.
This technique is strictly against the search engine guidelines and any website caught using it can be punished or deindexed from search results as well. Therefore, you need to make sure that your website is not following this method.
Overuse of Anchor Text
Anchor text is the interactive text placed within a hyperlink. Search engines can signal red flags if you use the very same anchor text across multiple backlinks. This is commonly referred to as “over-optimization”. Additionally, it can be considered an effort to influence search rankings for a certain keyword.
In fact, you should always use different and relevant terms describing the linked content in order to create natural variety in your anchor text. Not only does it give a better user experience but it also appears more natural to search engines.
Hidden Links and Texts
A common black hat SEO technique that is often used is hiding links or text on a website to manipulate search engines. The trick is very simple, all you need to do is add white background and write text with white color as well as you can hide links behind images to achieve better search ranking. You should not try them on your website as it is highly unethical and you can receive penalties from search engines.
Engaging in link exchange systems or link schemes with the main goal of manipulating search engine results breaks search engine rules. Excessive open linking or taking part in private blog networks (PBNs) are examples of these techniques. Rather, you should focus and put effort into creating good content with natural link-building and marketing.
You should avoid buying backlinks through link farms and other questionable sources to increase the authority of your website as it is a dangerous strategy. We already know that search engine value natural and organic backlinks that are earned by making high-quality content with relevancy. If you are using bought links then it can lead to punishments as well as harming the overall reputation of your website in the long run.
Yet another black-hat SEO approach is the use of gateway pages, in which a website develops low-quality, keyword-stuffed pages optimized for certain keywords only for the goal of obtaining search engine traffic.
Doorway pages are normally hidden from visitors and have the goal to redirect users to the website homepage or related pages. Rather than trying to trick search engines with such strategies, it is important that you focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that fits the needs of your target audience.
Bad User Experience
The user experience has an important role in SEO. Ignoring user experience standards could end up in higher bounce rates & poorer search rankings. In order to determine the relevancy and quality of a website, search engines use a lot of user engagement data like time on site, bounce rates, and click-through rates.
Users are more likely to leave quickly if your website is difficult to browse, or lacks important content, indicating to search engines that your website is not giving a great user experience. You should focus on creating a website that is user-friendly with easy navigation, quick load times, as well as informative content to increase search engine ranking.
There are multiple unethical techniques and practices that you should avoid at all costs. And to help you understand “which SEO techniques should be avoided” we have mentioned some commonly used ones with proper explanations.