Google is your most fickle friend. It’s been said that Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first. And this is true of all search engines. However, once you are friends, they will be the best friends you’ve ever had.
They will tell the entire world that you’re amazing, and you’re the first Realtor® that everyone should call.
The good news is there are a lot of things you can do to help your search engine optimization (SEO). The bad news is there are just as many things you can do to hurt it.
Some of the things to avoid include:
1. Linking to Sketchy Sites
Outbound links are great, as long as you link to the right places.
Real Estate Blogger Matthew Bushery advises that “frequently linking to “bad” websites — like those that are littered with spam and implement black-hat SEO strategies — could get your site penalized by Google.”
So be judicious with your links out – use them, but carefully.
2. Putting Stock in Keyword Density Numbers
A few years ago, you would hear people throw around numbers like 1.5% when it came to keyword density; meaning your keywords should make up about 1.5% of your overall word count.
Those days are over, and algorithms are recognizing people who do a bit of keyword stuffing, and punish them for it. So instead, focus on using keywords naturally, and using them in key places like headings, titles, and tags.
3. Not Blogging
The numbers are practically screaming in your face to start blogging, if you’ve been putting it off. Marketers who have prioritized blogging are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI.
So start your blog tomorrow. Unless you are…
4. Blogging the Wrong Way
Blogging is only a waste of time if you’re wasting other people’s time.
Don’t pump out content for the sake of pumping it out. Make sure your blogs are helpful and relevant to your target audience. Take time to define who your target market is and evaluate and tweak it as needed.
5. Trying to Skyrocket up the Rankings
Don’t chase quick wins. People will try to fly up the rankings and expect to be ranked #1 right away. That’s not reasonable, and it’s not how the search engines work.
Instead, focus on a smart and sustained strategy that will make you hard to knock off the top once you’re there. This means creating consistent, relevant content over time.
6. Not Keyword Optimizing Your Images
Your image name, and descriptions should be keyword rich. Don’t keep their titles at IMG_0034. Instead, name it something helpful, like “Beautiful 2BR on Stewart Street” or something appealing like “Vaulted Ceilings in Living Room”.
7. Using Duplicate Content
Google hates this. Yes, it can be expensive and/or time-consuming, but make sure each page on your site has original content, not something copied from another site. If this is a struggle, consider hiring a freelance writer to create your webpages and even to keep up on your blog.
8. Ignoring Broken Links or Images
Stay on top of your links and images. Go through the whole site on a regular basis just to make sure everything does what it’s suppose to. Having broken links not only causes you to drop in Google results, but it frustrates customers and seems very unprofessional.
9. Giving Up
Again, this is not about short gains. So don’t give up on your tactics and plan, even if you’re not breaking the internet right away. Stay the course, and make tweaks where needed. Most of all, great SEO is about perseverance and consistency.
10. Looking at the Wrong Metrics
Your current search ranking for specific keywords is important. But it’s not the only important fact. Look at every statistic and metric you can get your hands on. That way, you know which parts of your website are the ‘stickiest,” and which parts are underperforming.
All of these steps are really just about doing mindful and proven things to help boost your SEO rankings. They may not be the fastest, easiest, or cheapest things. But they’re 100% the things you should be doing.
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