To avoid Google penalties, web designers must use white hat search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. White hat SEO techniques require more time and effort than black hat SEO techniques, but do not carry the same risks. Risks include temporary suspension of websites in Google’s search engine and other undesirable penalties.
In general, website owners should avoid the following to prevent penalties: Duplicate content, excessive keywords, linking to “bad neighbourhood” sites, cloaking, link farming, improper use of meta-descriptions, meta-titles and keywords and selling text links to other sites. Avoid these techniques and prevent penalties from Google.
Recommended SEO techniques include:
Create Unique Keyword-Rich Content. Unique and keyword-rich content is weighted heavily in Google’s search engine algorithm. The content should be creative and unique with the most popular keywords searched for a particular product, service or topic. Numerous sites online can help companies identify popular keywords for any particular topic.
Recommended keyword density is typically between three percent and seven percent. Anything greater may result in penalties. Typically, writers adhere to approximately five percent keyword density to appeal to search engine algorithms. Anything else may sound unnatural to readers.
Keyword stuffing is frowned upon in the SEO community. Do not exceed the seven percent threshold or Google may penalise the website for improper or black hat techniques. Do not risk having your website removed while attempting to achieve fast results. Companies will lose more revenue from a suspended site than a website which is not ranked high.
Use Spiders to Find Relevant Backlinks. Designers should use spiders and bots to scour the Internet and find relevant backlinks. The process requires time to find links with relevant content and high traffic. The more reputable the websites found by the bots, the higher the search engine ranking becomes. A company’s website must be well-organized and optimized to ensure the best results.
Link farming and linking to irrelevant, but high-traffic websites, is frowned upon in the Google community. These practices generate traffic by preying on unrelated high-traffic websites. This may decrease a search engine ranking and may result in temporary removal of a website.
Anchor-Text Links in Blogs. Anchor-text in blogs, linking to a company’s website, can improve search engine ranking. This is a recommended technique in SEO that many companies use without receiving penalties. As long as the blogs are unique, informative, high-traffic and keyword-rich, penalties should be avoided.
Meta-Descriptions, Meta-Titles and Meta-Tags. Companies should ensure meta-descriptions, meta-titles and meta-tags contain keyword-rich content which will attract search engines. Many companies neglect to include keywords in this content. Search engines evaluate these descriptions for relevancy to topics. This will help to improve the ranking of the website.
Other Items that Affect Ranking Position. The organization of sitemaps and menus can affect search engine ranking. Companies should ensure that HTML coding is clean, and the site is well-organized to improve search engine ranking.
Search engine ranking is also affected by image and website load times. The slower the website loads, the more likely the search engine ranking will decrease. Images should be compressed and optimized with high resolution to be ranked higher. The website should also be visually appealing with appropriate fonts.
Implement SEO Tips to Avoid Penalties and Improve Search Engine Ranking. Google’s search engine is becoming more advanced and can detect nuances in websites. Annually, the algorithm’s ranking criteria changes. Currently, backlinks are not weighted as high as unique content. Website designers should place high value on unique and compelling content to increase search engine ranking and avoid penalties.
About Author: Rosie writes on behalf of a number of businesses on topics ranging from Auto-Enrolment Administration to holiday destinations. To learn more about Auto Enrolment, download the Auto Enrolment Guide which is free. Any opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily represent the businesses Rosie writes for.