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SEO is like a mythical dragon that some believe in and some don’t. Well, the fact of the matter is that it’s very tangible, and very real. There are right ways to do it, and wrong ways to do it. If you fall into the latter camp – or you think you do – check this list of mistakes and eradicate them. If you’ve already made an SEO goof, then fear not. It’s not the end!

Can I rectify these mistakes once I’ve made them? For the most part, yes. The great thing about SEO is that it’s ever-evolving, and ever-changing. New tips and tricks are being discovered every single week, without fail.

Because it’s such a big area of web design, there’s no shortage of help. Whether it’s a YouTube video or a blog post, there’re always people you can ask for help. If you believe you’ve committed an SEO mistake, don’t despair. It can be rectified! A simple tweak of your meta description or removal of spammy keywords can go a long way.

Of course, it’s far better to avoid making mistakes altogether, but sometimes they’re unavoidable. Here are five of the biggest SEO errors you should try and avoid, whether you’re launching a blog or running a business.

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1. Only factoring in SEO at the end of a website build Gone are the days where SEO could be tweaked at the end. From the start, you should be building in header tags, quality meta descriptions and appropriate keywords. In fact, SEO should drive every aspect of your website design. A professional SEO company will help with this from the outset, so if you’re struggling, enlist some help. Once you’re off to a good start, the rest of the job will be made a lot easier.

2. Forgetting to optimise images It can be easy to just plonk down images and other media on your page with little thought, but don’t. Properly formatted images can help with your website’s SEO in a big way. Be sure that they’re processed with relevant keywords and tags. This is another factor that search engines use in their algorithms. You’ll rank higher, and bring in more traffic as a result

3. Sacrificing content quality in favor of SEO SEO best practices don’t have to interfere with the integrity of your content. When building a website, you should factor in SEO from the beginning. When you write a blog post, the opposite is true. Focus on writing the best article you possibly can first, and add in a keyword or a backlink later. You want people to find your site, sure, but you don’t want to turn them off with spammy content.

4. Excessive use of keywords Search engine giant Google penalizes excessive use of keywords – ‘keyword stuffing.’ This refers to the practice of intentionally spamming a web page or post with the same term. People do this in the hope that they’ll rank higher, but in reality, they won’t. Consider removing some terms in place of a more quality post.

5. Broken links We’ve all seen that error page before, and it’s annoying. If your links are broken, they’ll count as ‘bad’ by many search engines. Your site will be pushed down the rankings, and you’ll disappear. Try and include plenty of quality links to respected sites to build your cred.

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