There are some out there who still believe you can walk into an MFI store and pick up a huge discount on their range of furniture. Granted, the company went into administration in 2008 so this seems less plausible in this day and age but up until that moment there probably members of the public gullible enough to believe that the MFI sale is now on.

Similarly, the world of SEO has a number of myths that never seem to go away despite being constantly debunked and so in addition to giving you assistance on optimizing your site this list of mistakes can actually help you assess whether that SEO consultant you have commissioned to help promote your site is actually up to the job.

1) Meta Description and meta keywords are important for SEO
This is one which continues to persist despite Google officially mentioning back in 2009 that meta descriptions and keywords are not actually used in its search algorithm but that does not mean that a week is able to pass without a client asking “don’t I need to put in the meta keywords to help SEO”. It is worth bearing in mind however that meta descriptions are the first thing a user will see in search results so optimizing this can help to optimize your click through rate.

2) Stuffing a page with keywords
Overloading a page with keywords which you are trying to rank highly for not only comes across as being unnatural but it can also actually hurt your campaign. Matt Cutts from Google warned against this practice in 2007 and some paid little attention and subsequently got hit when Google rolled out their Panda algorithm update.

3) Trying to get to many backlinks
A significant amount of weight used to be given to the backlinks pointing to your site a few years ago but this is no longer the case and hence the old adage “content is king”

4) Not optimizing images
This is still an area where users continue to neglect. Search engines are not able to see images on websites, hence the importance of giving an appropriate alt text and file name to make sure the search engine knows what the image is referring to. Further recommendations also include the provision of captions for images.

5) Not including a mobile site
If your site was built before around 2014 there is a strong chance that it is lacking in responsiveness. As the vast majority of users now browse sites on mobile devices in this day and age, not only could your conversion rate be severely affected but with Google’s Mobilegeddon update your site could also be penalized by google.

6) Forgetting to secure your site
An SSL certificate can be bought for a couple of pounds, a worthy investment when you consider it tells the world and Google that you are secure.

7) Not optimizing for load speed
It’s all very well making your site look nice and indeed this is important with regards to conversion. However including too many large images, videos and slideshows can have a detrimental effect on your site’s loading time and this is a no-no from Google’s point of view.

8) Forgetting user experience
In addition to the above additional factors are taken into consideration when ranking your site such how easy it is to navigate your site. If users are unable to find pages easily then this will affect your ranking.

9) Not optimizing for local search
Targeting the area in your immediate vicinity may seem like a bad idea as you are restricting yourself to a select few customers but in reality you have much chance of being found and by the very people you should be targeting.

10) Not involving yourself enough in the process
It’s all very well getting an expert to assist you with the process, however nobody knows your business better than you, no one knows your unique selling points better than you, no one knows your target customers better than you and no one is more passionate about your business than you. In short, no one is better placed to optimise your site than you.