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SEO Troubleshooting

SEO Troubleshooting Guide (Part 1 of 2)

You’ve gone by the book for your SEO efforts decided on and chose popular and relevant keywords. You’ve optimized all the parts of your site. You haven’t done anything that you know of that could cause you to be penalized by the search engines. Still your page visits and search rankings haven’t changed since you started. Or even worse, they’ve gone down.

There’s no need to panic – if you know where to look.

In this first part of the series, we’ll look at some of the most common SEO glitches, as well as what may be causing them.

Common SEO problems and solutions

Problem: Search engines have trouble seeing and reading your website.
Solutions: Make sure that you have implemented all SEO best practices.  Also, make sure that your images and any navigation that uses graphics, including video and Flash, have ALT tags. 

Problem: Duplicate content
Solution:  You may have used the same content from other sites. Or another website may have stolen your content. Add a robots.txt file to the meta tags of your pages for any content that you don’t want search engines to see.

Problem: Your site needs more links
Solution: Add internal and external links. Our Hot Rod Linking series (link to articles) shows you how to build links.

Problem: Stale site
Solution: Make sure that you maintain and update your site frequently. One way to keep your content fresh is to add a blog.

Problem: Unrealistic expectations
Solution: SEO is a marathon, not a 100-yard dash. It takes a while for the search engines to get around to your site, especially if your site is new. Typically, it takes 3-6 months for your site to be fully read and indexed by search engines. Also, sharp increases or decreases can occur from month to month – it’s the overall trend over time that’s important.

Problem: Increasing competition
Solution: While this problem is something that’s out of your control, there are ways to deal with it. One way is to make your content as fresh and relevant as it can be.

Problem: Changing search engine algorithms
Solution: This is another problem that’s out of your control, too. Don’t worry – the basics still apply when it comes to SEO. Furthermore, a change in a search engine’s algorithm may only mean a temporary rank decrease.

SEO Troubleshooting Resources

The Google Webmaster Guidelines and the Google Search Engine Optimization Guide are helpful to figure out SEO problems.

Don’t forget our SEO tutorials  if you need any additional help.


2 thoughts on “SEO Troubleshooting”

  1. Problem: Duplicate content.
    Solution: “…………Add a robots.txt file to the meta tags of your pages……..”

    This is not possible with yola sites as unable to add meta tags to the header as there is no access!!

  2. In my experience the off-page factors are more important than the on-page factors in determining your rankings, but on-page factors are still important. You’re unlikely to get to the #1 spot in Google purely because of your on-page factors, but they could mean the difference between being on page 5 or page 1, or being ranked 1st or 5th on page 1, so that’s still pretty important.

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