The best content in the world is useless if it doesn’t reach the desired audience or struggles to get noticed at all. SEO is an excellent way to increase traffic to your website, but over-optimisation can be just as bad as no optimisation whatsoever.
What is over optimisation?
Real estate on search results pages is a finite resource. A well optimised site will contain an ideal number of keywords and relevant links, leading it to rank highly in search engine results. An over optimised site, on the other hand, will contain too many keywords placed nearby, too many (often not particularly relevant) links and crack at the seams with SEO elements. Google penalises over-optimisation and sites will see a big drop in traffic as a result.
This balance can be hard to strike, which is why many web designers turn to professional SEO services in Colchester to avoid under or over optimising their content. Over-optimisation hasn’t always been a bad thing. In the early days of search engines, cramming vast numbers of keywords and links into a text yielded favourable results. Those days have long since passed, however. Google’s algorithms are far more advanced nowadays, so SEO cramming stands out as spammy and will see your content heavily punished.
Avoid keyword cramming with SEO services in Colchester
Keyword cramming is one of the main causes of over optimisation. In simple terms, this means cramming as many keywords as possible into a piece of content, sometimes to the point where it ceases to make grammatical or logical sense. Readability is affected and the google algorithm picks up on your intentions. It sees that the content has been written primarily as a marketing exercise and deprioritises it in search results.
Keywords are essential but they should be used to “categorise” content rather than actively constitute the bulk of it. The same goes for irrelevant keywords. These will harm your search engine standings too. Rather than burying the purpose of your content in keywords, try to write something that actively answers a reader’s question, with relevant keywords weaved in subtly.
Don’t reuse or respin content
If a piece of content has been successful elsewhere, it can be tempting to respin it for your own website. This doesn’t necessarily mean outright plagiarism, and there’s nothing wrong (in theory) with putting a different slant on a pre-existing idea. This often involves using the same keywords, meta descriptions, links and anchors, albeit in a different order and surrounded by reworded text. It seems like a good idea, but Google’s algorithms see this and may penalise your content.
Even worse, don’t use content spinning software. This is a type of SEO software that takes existing content and reworks it so that it appears original while remaining optimised for SEO. While this can seem like a good idea and will certainly save you some time, but you are forgetting that Google’s algorithms are intelligent. They know when SEO content is original and when it’s been respun, no matter how ingeniously you think you’ve done it. Optimisation works best on original content. The right SEO services in Colchester will help you create original, SEO enriched content of the type favoured by Google’s algorithms without needing to rework existing pieces.
Don’t always link to homepages
This might seem counterintuitive, but pointing all your links to top level pages has a negative effect on SEO. Deep links are infinitely preferable. For example, if you want to link to something on the BBC website, link directly to the article itself rather than simply to the BBC homepage. This is widely applicable and it’s the best practice to link as deep as possible.
There are a lot of reasons for this. Deeper links seem more meaningful and are suggestive of a laser-sharp focus on a topic. Vague homepage links are much broader and suggest that the writer isn’t delivering exceptional value with their content. Moreover, many over-optimised websites contain huge numbers of top level URL links, which has widely flagged the practice as spammy.