5 Content Optimization Mistakes You Wish You Knew Earlier
Having a great content idea is first and an essential step for ranking top on Google search results. But it’s just that – The first step of the journey of a thousand miles.
Nowadays, publishing great, helpful, and high-quality content is not enough to attain top rankings in the search engines. Marketers must also focus on optimizing their content well in order to rank higher on the search results. Simply put, all your resources, time, and efforts will go ashtray if your content isn’t well-optimized for SEO.
So, If you’re a newbie content marketer, it is imperative to avoid certain content optimization mistakes and learn how to properly optimize every content you publish on your website.
In this article, I’ve discussed 5 content optimization mistakes you must avoid to secure a decent ranking on search engines.
What is Content Optimization?
In layman’s terms, content optimization is all about making the content of a post or webpage attractive to users and search engines like Google and Bing. Simply put, every piece of content that you publish must be discovered quickly, should have a good structure, and a high readability score.
Taking care of these parameters will not just help your target audience to find your content easier, but from the SEO perspective, it will also help to secure higher search engine rankings.
So, how can you optimize your content to avail all these benefits? Let’s find out!
How to Optimize Your Content?
As I mentioned earlier, the content optimization process is all about making your content more user-friendly and search engine friendly.
Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation online about content optimization, which newbie marketers use without verifying first and then later regret, costing their businesses search engine rankings and traffic.
Below, I’ve identified 5 common content optimization mistakes that every newbie content marketer must avoid to attain higher rankings in search engines.
Top 5 Content Optimization Mistakes to Avoid
Here are the top 5 content optimization mistakes that you need to fix as soon as possible and also avoid repeating them in the future.
1 – Headline That Doesn’t Match with Content
The headline of your post or webpage is perhaps the most important element of content optimization.
Why? Because it’s not only the first thing that your target audience sees in the search results page, but it also gives them a clue about the content of a post or page.
Therefore, it’s critical to optimize the headline of your post.
However, most newbie content marketers make the mistake of not properly optimizing the headline of their content.
Here are a couple of rules you must remember when writing the headline of your post or page.
- Try to communicate what your content is about and why it is useful. This will help you instantly grab the attention of users who need help with a particular topic.
- Keep the headline length between 50-60 characters.
- Headline must be unique so that your content can stand out from competitors in the search result pages.
- Try to include your main target keyword within the headline to get more visibility. However, you must avoid keyword stuffing (more on this later).
- Since the headline is the first thing that users see, make it as compelling and interesting as possible to get more traffic from search engines.
Following these simple rules while writing the headline for your content can greatly impact the rankings in search engines.
2 – Content Formatting
After headlines, content formatting is the next and obviously an important part of the content optimization process.
You see, writing just plain and simple text on the entire page or post without proper formatting will greatly affect the readability score of your content.
Not only users will not be able to read your content easily, but the search engines will also face difficulty in comprehending what your page or post is about.
Therefore, you must format your content using various rules to make them more user and search engine friendly.
Here are the main rules you should follow to format your content properly:
- Use the H1 tag to write the headline of your post or page. Remember, your content must have only one H1 tag.
- The rest of the subheadings and sections in your content must be formatted using H2 and H3 tags. Think of a book where the name of the book has an H1 tag, all chapters inside the book have H2 tags, and all sections in each chapter have H3 tags.
- Write small paragraphs, preferably not exceeding more than 3 lines in each paragraph.
- Use bold & italics to highlight key sentences in your content.
- Use bullet points & lists to format all key points (just like this one) to make it easier for users to skim through your content.
3 – Keyword Stuffing
Keyword stuffing is still one of the common mistakes newbie marketers make when publishing content on their websites.
While it’s true to keyword stuffing was considered an effective strategy to rank any content in the past, but today not only keyword stuffing is considered as black hat SEO technique but Google almost always penalizes websites that stuff keywords in their content.
In fact, keyword stuffing has been forbidden by Google for over 4 years now, and therefore you must avoid stuffing your content with irrelevant keywords.
With keyword stuffing, you’ll not only degrade your content quality, but it will largely affect the ranking in search engines. So, how to avoid keyword stuffing your content? The best practice that’s working right now and everybody is following is that you should not surpass more than 2% keyword density.
Suppose you’re writing a 1000 words blog post on your website. At this point, you must not include your target keyword over 20 times.
In fact, it’s also recommended to use different variations of your target keyword. By following this practice, you’ll not just avoid keyword stuffing, but you’ll also be able to target multiple keywords with one blog post and rank for all.
4 – Loading Speed of Your Content
Ever since humans’ attention span shrank and was officially declared as shorter than a goldfish, it has become even more critical to decrease the loading speed of your content as much as possible.
You see, if your content takes more than a couple of seconds to load, your target audience will immediately lose interest, go elsewhere, and not come back ever.
Apart from this, the loading speed of your content also plays a significant role in ranking higher on search engine result pages.
In July 2018, Google announced that it will use mobile page speed as a ranking signal, which means the longer it takes to load your content, the more users will leave your site, affecting your search engine rankings as a result.
According to research, 53% of visitors will abandon a site if the site takes more than 3 seconds to load.
The point is, to secure a higher ranking on search results, not only your content needs to be well-optimized, but you must also focus on improving the loading speed of your content.
5 – Indexability Issue
If your website has an indexability issue, then it will become difficult for search engines to discover, crawl, and index your content.
As a result, all the content you publish on your website won’t be discoverable by the target audience, meaning your content will never make it to the end-user.
Therefore, it’s extremely critical to ensure all links on your website are working.
One way to fix the issue is by looking for all missing pages and broken links.
Apart from this, you should also check for any indexability issues in the Google Search Console.
The Google Search Console will immediately list all errors that your website may have, which you can repair to optimize your content for SEO success.
So, what content optimization mistakes have been making so far?
I hope that with this article you have been able to finally identify the mistakes you’ve been making and you’ve learned how to avoid them and optimize your content the right way.
Content optimization sure sounds tricky, in reality it’s quite easy. All you need to do is create the habit of working on your title, formatting your content properly, and follow the rest of the content optimization rules to make it on top of search results.
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