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How not to be penalised by Google for “over optimisation”

Published on 18th March 2012

Optimising your site to rank for the keyword phrases you’ve decided will achieve the goals you’ve set for your site is critical for your success. OK that’s an obvious statement but…

In a recent interview Matt Cutts at Google pre announced Google’s intention to penalise sites that are “Over Optimised” to “level the playing field”.

Google Over OptimisationFor several years I’ve been told by clients that they get a call every week from someone promising to get their site to the top of Google for a monthly fee, sometimes a huge monthly fee.  Some of the methods to achieve this will leave your site more attractive to machines (search engine spiders) than it is to humans. BAD NEWS.

I have always advised that the most important attributes for your site content is that it’s relevant and engaging.

Here’s my top tip for not getting caught in the “Over Optimisation” trap.

CREATE CONTENT FOR HUMANS NOT SEARCH ENGINES AND MAKE SURE IT’S GREAT CONTENT, RELEVANT, INTERESTING, USEFUL, AND GRAMMATICALLY CORRECT.

OK so now we have that out of the way here are my 7 top tips for getting your site found by optimising your “On Page” SEO.

1)      Carry out your keyword research diligently and for every page, product and service on your site.  Yes it’s time consuming but not doing it is like building a house without foundations.  You can use Google’s free keyword tool, it really isn’t that difficult.

2)      Ideally your page URLs should contain the keywords.

3)      Make sure on every page you have a relevant, unique and grammatically correct page title with the most important keywords at the beginning. Remember 65 characters is a good limit guideline.

4)      Make sure every page has a Heading1 title on the page, just one as we don’t want to confuse Google.  This should include your keywords, see a pattern forming here?

5)      Your content should have your keywords in the first paragraph and perhaps twice more if it fits into the word flow on the page.  Remember most people will only read the first paragraph or the “highlights” but Google will read everything.

6)      Use Heading2s, Heading3s, bullet points, bold and italics on the page to highlight important words, especially keywords.

7)      Use keywords as links to other relevant content. So a link to a “How to create a LinkedIn company page” should look like this:-  How to create a LinkedIn company page.

If you just follow these simple guidelines you’ll have 80% of your on page optimisation done and you can fine tune as you go along.

Good luck and get in touch if you need advice, it’s always free.

Alan Tomkins alan.tomkins@wsiwbm.co.uk

Categories: Google

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