Google Cracks Down On Over-Optimization

Over-OptomizationWith Google planning to crack down on over-optimization with their newest round of algorithm updates SEOs everywhere are scrambling to find out if they will be affected. Rather than speculate and face heavy penalties it is best to play it safe for now and check a few key places on your website to make sure that your small business SEO is on the level. Here are a few things to check to make sure your site isn’t over optimized.

URL Strings – The first thing to look out for is your permalink structure. There are many people out there who just cram as many keywords as they can into their URL string just for the sake of ranking a little higher. This is not a good SEO practice, instead make sure your URL’s are short and unique while still being relevant.

Content Body – I’ve talked about this a bunch of times before but it bears repeating. Key word density in your content is a huge factor and will definitely be taken into account when deciding if your site is over-optomized. If you want some hard numbers usually it is best to keep your keyword density under 2% that means you should have a keyword in your content only once every 50 words. It would be advisable to play it safe and make sure it’s more like 1 for every 100 words. You should be writing your content for the user any way rather than for search engines.

Meta Tags – Uniqueness is the key for meta tags. Repeating multiple key words in your meta tags will definitely get you a stiff penalty from Google. Make sure you review your pages meta tags closely and make sure they are not over stuffed or repetitive.

Anchor text – Anchor text manipulation has lost its value in the current Google algorithms. In years past anchor text was weighed heavily because it is there to tell the user where the link was going, but after years of manipulation search engines tend to be suspicious of highly searched keyword terms in anchor text.

Back links – Goole has started targeting and de-indexing link networks so you can bet they will be paying close attention to your sites back link profile. Any back link profile that looks suspicious i.e. over done or aggressive will raise red flags so brace yourself.

Domain Name – Many people who are obsessed with SEO use generic keyword domains to help them quickly rank well on search engines. Unfortunately, Google is starting to differentiate between brand domain names and non-brand generic domain names. Obviously changing your domain name might be a drastic move but if you start to see your page rank plummeting you may want to consider it.

Need help keeping up with Google’s constant algorithm adjustments? Finding it hard to get your website to rank well? Contact Wikimotive for a free evaluation of your website and sound advice on how you can drive more traffic to your site.

2 comments… add one

  • “URL Strings – The first thing to look out for is your permalink structure. There are many people out there who just cram as many keywords as they can into their URL string just for the sake of ranking a little higher. This is not a good SEO practice, instead make sure your URL’s are short and unique while still being relevant.”

    What proof do you have for this claim?

    I doubt very much that this is a worth-while point > because the way wordpress, loomla, and other blog platforms work, taking the headline of a post to form a URL, they are long by nature. And many blogs with long URLs rank just fine.

  • The point is not that long URL’s in general are a bad thing but that having long strings of keywords in your URL’s could hurt you. That being said it’s hard to find proof of anything that Google does in their algorithms, if they were public and we could analyze exactly how they evaluate sites, SEO would be a whole lot easier. These are just general best practice suggestions based on my level of experience with SEO, and the recent buzz around over-optimization.