7 Outdated SEO Tactics You Should Stop Doing

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Per day, search engines serve millions of people looking for answers and solutions to their problems. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a crucial aspect of digital marketing because users trust search engines — especially results on the coveted first page — to provide the information they seek.

In today’s competitive market, SEO is more significant and impactful than ever, which is why it’s critical to keep up with industry changes. In this article, we are going to delve into the seven outdated SEO tactics that you should stop doing. We will help you understand which tactics you should abolish from your practice because let’s face it — they don’t work anymore.

1. Outdated Pages

If your website takes longer than three seconds to load and no longer serving relevant content, you are likely to experience recurring declines in ranking. Always remember that Google and other search engines prioritize responsive, informative, and user-friendly websites. Depending on your industry, you may need to update your web pages weekly, monthly, or whenever a significant industry shift occurs. For instance, a successful post from 2012 on The Importance of A Website Redesign would still be relevant to readers in present time, and it should continue to prosper for as long as the content is up to date.

2. Keyword Stuffing

Back in the day, SEO was all about keyword stuffing in an attempt to appear on the coveted first page of search engines. There was a time when search engines were only capable of interpreting simple signals such as keyword density, and stuffing keywords into a web page was all the rage. Unfortunately, this is not an effective SEO tactic. More importantly, it makes your company look bad by making it seem like you employ toddlers to write your copy.

3. Poor-Quality Content

78% of chief marketing officers believe that custom content is the future of marketing. It won’t matter if you use keywords that aim to convert if the entirety of your content is mediocre. An effective SEO campaign requires you to produce regular, quality content. We understand that this can be difficult for time-pressed marketers. Lack of time and resources can lead to rushed content creation, which is why PrimeView offers the service to businesses in diverse industries.

Ever since Google released the Panda update in 2011, the algorithm has been further refined and worked into the core algorithm. In short, gone are the days of producing content just for the sake of publishing something. As a business leader, your content should always be accurate, compelling, well-written, engaging, and long enough to serve its purpose.

4. Exact-Match Domains

There was a time when exact-match domains (EMDs) were a hot topic in search engine optimization. It was easy to create a microsite on an exact-match domain and rank quicker than a traditional, branded domain — which often took effect in merely weeks, and sometimes even days.

With an EMD, your domain matches the exact keyword phrase you are attempting to target. Here are a few examples:

  • seophoenixarizona.com
  • arizonagraphicdesign.com
  • videomarketingarizona.com

Unfortunately, EMDs became a thing of the past when Google adjusted their algorithm. Exact-match domains had an opportunistic potential to rank just as well as any other domains, but they also had a higher and riskier potential to be flagged for spam, either algorithmically or manually — which ultimately makes websites with EMDs untrustworthy and less likely to convert.

5. Flat URL Structures

  • Ex. 1: http://sample.com/page1/
  • Ex. 2: http://sample.com/topic1/page1/

Flat URL structures (Ex. 1) make it difficult for search engines to comprehend the hierarchy of your website since all of your pages are treated with the same level of importance. On the other hand, a faceted URL structure (Ex. 2) communicates the significance of each page within your website.

Here is a quick guide to remedying your flat URL structure:

  1. Change your default permalink settings.
  2. Next, if you have not done so already, publish your second-level pages and create corresponding blog categories; or,
  3. If your blog categories already exist, move them all and set up appropriate redirects.
  4. The slugs for your categories must match the slugs for your second-level pages. This detail is crucial because it determines how search engines will value the pages within your website.
  5. Once properly configured, each third-level page or blog post adds more authority to the page it appears nested under.

It’s important to prioritize URL architectures because changing them later involves redirecting all of the pages in your website, which can potentially decrease your ranking.

6. Quantity over Quality Links

Link building plays a crucial role in search engine ranking factors. According to Search Metrics, link building remains in the top 5 most important rankings factors, but in a manner much different than marketers were used to.

There was a time when building as many links as possible without analyzing the linking domain was the typical workflow of SEO. By choosing quantity over quality, your website was sure to rank higher. The tables were turned after Google implemented Penguin 2.0, an algorithm update released in May of 2013. Nowadays, the quality of links on a website triumphs over quantity. Less is more if you know and understand how to build links the right way.

7. Alt Text Absence

Most adults are like children in a sense that — whether you admit it or not — like seeing pictures as you read through heavy blocks of text. But unlike us, search engines cannot see images on websites unless we incorporate alt texts and file names.

For the longest time, we ignored the images on our website and continued to rank regardless if we incorporated alt texts and image file names to increase our page relevance. On-page SEO is more impactful than ever, so excluding images will prevent your website’s SEO campaign from reaching its maximum potential. It is of utmost importance to give all images an alt text and relevant file name to ensure that search engines know what the image is about.

A Word of Advice

It’s mandatory for digital marketers to become agile with their SEO tactics and adapt to the latest search engine guidelines and algorithm changes. If you are guilty of using any of these tactics, it is high time for you to restart your SEO game and create a better strategy.

Update Your SEO Tactics Today

If you are practicing outdated SEO tactics, you not only risk your credibility as a helpful resource, but you jeopardize your business as a whole. If you seek assistance in revamping your SEO practices to target the right audience and increase your search results placement, contact us at 480-993-0907.

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