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Not every site relies on organic traffic from the search engines, but nearly every successful one does. Sure you can drive traffic from all sorts of places now but there’s still little to beat the targeted traffic that comes from the likes of Google. Unfortunately if you make search engine optimization mistakes, your site can get banned, not just have your rankings hurt. Given below are a few SEO mistakes that you should be aware of.

Not having much written content on your site and using lots of images instead is a fairly common SEO mistake. You can certainly use images that improve the way your site looks, but keep in mind that they don’t help much from an SEO point of view.

Your main focus should be on giving both your readers and the search engines lots of good content, which is the best way to help your ranking. Do use images, but only where you think it is necessary. Images won’t help you with the search engines, and having too many of them will also make your site slower for visitors, something else you don’t want. Just have a look at your site through an English proxy server like this which can help assess the speed.

For any images you do include, remember to make use of their ALT tags by putting your main keywords in them. This is something that the search engines can read, unlike the image itself. The best way to deal with this is to try and replace most of the images with something that’s worthy to read and also has your keywords in it. Good content that you create (or outsource) is still what the search engines like best.

You also should be aware of the mistake of thinking only about outbound links and failing to make use of internal linking on your site. If you can use internal linking in a manner such as sites like Wikipedia employ, you will be using an effective on site SEO tactic. Having an effective internal linking system informs the search engines that your site is well designed for the benefit of your visitors, who can get where they want to go by simply clicking on these internal links. Simply place your chosen keywords in anchor text and create a link that points to another page on your site. When you do this, of course, it has to be done in a way that makes sense. Your goal is to put together a logical internal linking system that is easy for visitors to navigate and that the search engines will understand.

Building a large number of backlinks to your site in a short time is a serious mistake. At most you will get short term results by doing this, and it will end up backfiring on you. You are much better off acquiring your backlinks naturally, and not try to get thousands all at once. This is one of the main reasons why sites get banned. Creating a large number of links quickly is clear proof to the search engines that you are doing something unethical. It’s just not worth risking the possible harm to your ranking and general reputation.

As long as you remain ethical and stay alert to what you’re doing, you won’t make the kind of SEO mistakes we’ve been discussing. Not making such mistakes can go a long way in bringing you success at SEO.

James (Italia) Joyce