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Optimizing for Search Engines: Common Startup Mistakes

Search engines still drive the majority of traffic to sites, and if you want your startup to get the attention that it needs to survive, you need to invest in SEO. Unlike offline advertising, which has a high number of businesses that are pursuing the same strategies, SEO is more of a boutique market. If you know how to maximize your content towards the search engine algorithms, you can quickly get a lot of organic traffic and rank for highly valuable keywords. However, if you don’t have any experience or you are interested in cutting corners to spend less on a service provider, you will likely do more harm than good.

If you are a neophyte marketer looking to better the internal SEO practices of your company, it will do you good to read this article to the end. Here, we will discuss the most common mistakes to avoid when optimizing search engines. 

Optimizing for Search Engines: Common Startup Mistakes

Although there are countless issues that a search engine optimization (SEO) professional will be able to identify with your website, there are a few that are so common that they are considered to be mistakes. This article will show you a list of 20 of them.

1 – Not Improving Slow Page Load Time

If your site is not loading fast, your users will leave. Google puts a lot of weight on page load speed, and if a user clicks on one of your pages and it takes more than four seconds to load, you are just wasting your time. You need to cut the extra fat to speed up your site and ensure that users can navigate to the information that they need with a minimal amount of effort.

2 – Failing to Optimize for Mobile

Mobile traffic has surpassed desktop traffic, and Google has been favouring mobile-friendly sites in its search results. If you aren’t optimizing for mobile, you aren’t doing your job.

3 – Not Improving Quality of Content

It is true for Google and human readers alike that the quality of content has a lot of weight. Particularly with sites that have a lot of search-related content, the quality of the content is very important.

4 – Not Researching Your Keywords

Keywords are like the key to the highway to search engine traffic. However, they can also result in a lot of aggravation if you choose the wrong ones. If you aren’t researching the keywords you want to rank for, you are likely going to end up wasting your time and hard work.

5 – Not Educating Yourself on Google Algorithms

If you want to get a good ranking, you need to make sure that you are doing things the way Google wants you to. Every so often, Google changes its ranking algorithms. If you don’t keep up, you are going to get stuck at the bottom of the page.

6 – Neglecting UI and UX

User experience is an important thing to think about if you want to rank highly with Google. Google’s algorithm prefers sites with a great user experience over those with a high amount of external links. If you want to rank highly, you need to look at SEO as a holistic search engine optimization service.

7 – Ignoring Social Media

Social media is an important part of modern internet marketing strategy. If you want to rank highly, you need to make sure that you are active on these sites with the keywords that you want to rank for.

8 – Not Optimizing for Local

A lot of searches are local, and if your startup is trying to revolve around a local audience, you need to make sure that you are putting yourself in front of the right people and ranking highly locally.

9 – Not Having a Mobile-Friendly Site

It is almost a certainty that if you have a website, it will likely be accessed through a mobile device at least some of the time. If you don’t have a mobile-friendly website, you are missing out on a lot of traffic.

10 – Not Being Visually Appealing

If your site is visually unappealing, you can’t expect Google to rank you highly. Google is always looking for the prettiest, most visually appealing sites, and this is one of the leading factors in its ranking algorithms.

11 – Not Creating Clean, Clear and Valuable Content

The best search engine optimization strategies combine a lot of different approaches. Keywords are going to get you a lot of traffic, but if you aren’t providing valuable content, people aren’t going to come back.

12 – Not Understanding the Competition

If you are in a market where there are a lot of other businesses doing the same thing, you need to be aware of the competition. You want to make sure that the keywords you are going after aren’t dominated by the competition.

13 – Targeting Search Engines Instead of Users

While search engines do drive a lot of traffic, they don’t put a lot of value in their search results. If you spend all of your time trying to rank high with search engines, you are not necessarily going to rank high with users.

14 – Ignoring Best Practices

You need to look at search engine optimization as a multi-layered service. If you aren’t doing everything that you can to give yourself an edge, you will likely start getting passed by your competitors.

15 – Not Claiming Google+ Authorship

Google+ authorship is very important if you want to rank highly. Google+ authorship involves getting your name and your brand on Google+ and providing content to your followers.

16 – Failing to Share and Interact

If you want to rank highly, there is a lot that you need to know about Google+ authorship. You need to create a Google+ profile, claim your brand on that site, and start sharing your content with your followers.

17 – Poor URL Naming Convention

If you want to rank high, you need to make sure that you are using your keywords in your URL. If you are using keywords in your anchor text, you will rank more.

18 – Not Having Meta Descriptions

Meta descriptions are a great way to increase the click-through rate. If you have a poor one, no one is going to click. Your meta description is your opportunity to tell people what your page is about, so don’t waste it.

19 – Not Providing a Clear Call to Action

If you want to rank highly, you need to make sure that you are driving traffic to your business while they are on your site. This is the only way to get repeat traffic.

20 – Using the Wrong Links

Links are important for your search engine rankings. Internal links will help you rank higher with keywords for your site. External links will help your site rank higher for related keywords.


These are just some of the most common mistakes that you need to avoid when optimizing search engines. Although you may not recognize all of these mistakes if you are a new marketer, if you finish reading this article, you will likely be able to identify them in your own work. And if all else fails, working with a digital marketing agency will help you avoid mistakes and have more chances of success. 

If you want to make the most of your SEO for startups, contact New Digital Marketing Agency. We help dominate categories and drive growth through a combination of marketing strategy and specialized execution. Contact us, and let’s better your SEO today!

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