To have a highly ranking website on various search engines it is important that you understand SEO and how it works. Sometimes there are components of a search engine ranking that you cannot control. However, your on-site SEO is something you can control in order to boost your ranking. There are many common problems that can prevent your website from being ranked at a higher level.
Listed below are the six most common on-site SEO problems. Being able to identify and fix these problems will hopefully allow your website’s ranking on search engines to grow.
1. Broken Links
Links that are broken can cause a significant problem in terms of SEO. There are a few reasons why broken links are a problem. Firstly, when users are directed to a 404 Error page it is likely to deter them from your website as they are not able to get the information they desired and they will assume your website it of low quality. Also if your link is broken this means there are less pages that are able to be in the ranks of search engines and therefore less chances for consumers to find your website.
2. Broken Images
It is very important to ensure that you have pictures on your website. This visual content increases the chances of engagement and conversion rates. However, research suggests that 45% of websites have at least one image with missing alt tags and 10% contain broken images. The alt tags of an image help search engines recognise what the image actually is (it is like a written explanation of the photograph). Images that are broken cause a similar issue as broken links. Search engines are unable to find these images which impact your website’s search engine ranking.
3. On-Page Links
It is important to obtain the correct amount of on-page links; however this is a very difficult task to correctly preform. Having a website that includes many natural and high quality links will boost your search engine ranks. Many websites are taking the quantity over quality approach and this is negatively affecting their ranking. Websites that contain too many links often thins the value of your website and usually causes a decrease in traffic. Therefore, it is important to use links that are useful and relevant to support your content.
4. Duplicate Content
The search engine Google heavily frowns upon duplicate content (however there is no actual penalty). Research shows that this is the most common on-site problem for websites. Even though there is no penalty it is still imperative that you produce your own content to give your website an individualistic feel. If consumers feel as though you are simply repeating yourself on every page of your website they may become quite bored. Duplicate content means that search engines don’t know which page you would like to be the landing page and you will also lose control of which page you want the highest rank for.
5. Language Declaration
This may seem like a simple task to choose the correct language for your consumers. However, research shows that there are a few websites that are declaring the incorrect language for their website. Due to the fact that the internet is global and therefore users of all different languages can access your website it is important to state the default language of your content. This helps users understand what language the content is written in, it assists with international SEO and allows for users to hear your text in the correct dialect so they are able to understand.
6. Word Count
Producing the correct amount of words for each page can be a difficult task. Many websites are struggling because they aren’t putting enough words on every page. Even though there is no official minimum amount of words for each page, Google usually highly ranks content with a greater depth (i.e. more words). When writing more content to increase your depth and therefore search engine ranking, it is important to avoid waffling as this has the potential to disengage consumers.
Kieran is the Social Media Manager and SEO Expert at SEO Shark. He is an expert in Social Media, link building, PPC and of course SEO. In his time off work Kieran enjoys reading and playing rugby, as well as following all kinds of sports! You can read some more of his articles here.