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8 SEO Mistakes That Can Cost You Rankings

1) Not Including Meta Descriptions

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a process by which websites are optimized in order to appear higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). There are many different elements involved in search engine optimization, including meta descriptions. A meta description is the small summary of a webpage that appears in search engine results, underneath the page title and URL. While most search engine optimization experts believe that meta descriptions are important for SEO, there are some people who choose to not include meta descriptions in their website’s HTML code. This article will discuss the potential negative impacts of not including meta descriptions for SEO.

Search Engines Don’t Know What Content is On the Page

When a website owner chooses not to include a meta description in the HTML of a webpage, search engine crawlers have no information about the content on the page. This is because meta descriptions provide search engine crawlers with the context associated with a webpage. Without a meta description, search engines are unable to determine the content of the page, which can lead to the page being buried deep within search engine results.

Less Likely to Rank Highly in Search Engine Results

Another potential negative impact of not including meta descriptions for SEO is that it is less likely for your page to rank highly in search engine results. This is because search engine algorithms take into account the relevance of content to a query when determining rankings. Without a meta description, there is no way for the search engine to determine the relevance of the content of a webpage to a given query.

Difficulty Understanding What the Page is About

Without a meta description, it is more difficult for users to understand what a page is about. Search engines rely on meta descriptions to provide users with a brief summary of a page before they decide whether or not to click on it. Without a meta description, it is much harder for users to evaluate whether or not a page is relevant to their query. This can result in fewer clicks, fewer page views, and potentially less conversions or sales.

Search Engines Choose Poor Descriptions

When a webpage does not include a meta description, search engines will try to generate their own description. This typically results in a generic or poor description that may not accurately reflect what is actually on the page. This can result in users clicking on a page, only to find out that the content is not what they were expecting. This can lead to a poor user experience, fewer page views and potentially a lower ranking in search engine results.

Harder to Optimize for Specific Keywords

When a website does not have a meta description, it is more difficult to optimize for specific keywords. Meta descriptions provide webmasters with an opportunity to optimize pages for specific keywords. This is because search engines take into account the keywords used in meta descriptions when determining rankings. Without a meta description, pages cannot be optimized for specific keywords, which can lead to a lower ranking in search engine results.

Difficulty Showcasing Unique Content

Finally, not having a meta description makes it more difficult to showcase unique content on a page. Meta descriptions provide webmasters with an opportunity to highlight the unique aspects of a webpage and convince users to click on it. Without a meta description, it is harder to showcase the content and convince users that it is worth clicking on.

In conclusion, there are many potential negative impacts of not including meta descriptions for SEO. Without a meta description, search engine crawlers will have difficulty understanding the content of a page, which can lead to lower rankings. Additionally, without a meta description, it is harder to optimize for specific keywords and showcase unique content. For these reasons, it is generally recommended that all websites include meta descriptions in their HTML code in order to maximize their SEO potential.Unresponsive Website Design for SEO

2) Unresponsive Website Design

Over the last few years, the practice of responsive web design has become a priority among website developers. Responsive websites have become increasingly important as more businesses receive customers from a wide variety of devices. It is now critical for website owners to consider the user experience across a range of devices.

However, there are still some websites that are not responsive and remain unresponsive. Unresponsive website design can have an adverse impact on user experiences, and this can have a direct effect on SEO performance. In this article, we’ll take a look at how unresponsive website design impacts SEO.

What is Unresponsive website Design?

Unresponsive website design is a term used to describe websites that are not designed to be responsive to varying screen sizes and devices. Unresponsive websites are usually designed for desktops and laptops, and are not capable of adapting to different screens such as mobile phones and tablets.

Unresponsive websites can appear distorted on various devices, and the user experience can be very poor. This affects the user’s ability to find the information they’re looking for, which can affect their overall satisfaction with the website and ultimately lead to a decrease in conversions.

How Unresponsive Website Design Affects SEO

Unresponsive website design can have a significant impact on your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) performance. Search engine ranking algorithms now consider how user-friendly a website is, and unresponsive websites are not viewed favorably.

Google, for example, has implemented a mobile-first indexing model which considers the mobile version of a website when both a desktop version and a mobile version are available. This means that if you have a desktop website, but no mobile version, your website’s performance in the SERPs is likely to suffer.

Another key factor to consider is speed. Unresponsive websites are typically slower than responsive websites due to their size and lack of optimization for mobile devices. Google has indicated that website speed is an SEO factor, and websites that load quickly are more likely to rank higher than slow websites.

Additionally, if users struggle to find the information they need due to a unresponsive design, they are more likely to look elsewhere on the web. This can result in a high bounce rate, which is a negative SEO signal that can negatively impact your website’s performance in the SERPs.

Finally, unresponsive websites can be difficult to crawl and index. Google’s bots may struggle to access your website’s content if it does not adapt to different screen sizes, which can limit the amount of content that is indexed in the SERPs.

How to Optimize Your Unresponsive Website Design for SEO

If you have an existing unresponsive website, there are steps you can take to improve its performance in the SERPs. Here are some tips to help optimize your unresponsive website design for SEO:

  • Invest in a Responsive Design: The first step is to invest in a responsive website design. This will allow your website to adjust to different devices and screen sizes, allowing it to be accessed by more people.
  • Optimize Images: One way to improve website speed is to optimize your images. Ensure that your images are optimized for web and scaled to the appropriate size.
  • Improve Site Navigation: Poor website navigation can make it difficult for users to find the information they need. Make sure that your website is easy to navigate, with clear menus and indications of where the user is on the site.
  • Optimize Page Speed: Another way to improve speed is to optimize your website’s code. Remove any unnecessary code and enable caching to help reduce page load times.
  • Use Internal Links: Linking between your webpages is important for SEO. It helps search engines to crawl and index your website, as well as helping to increase the traffic on your website.

Unresponsive website design can have a significant impact on your website’s SEO performance. If your website is unresponsive, it is important to invest in a responsive design and optimize it for SEO. Utilizing the tips above can help improve your website’s performance in the SERPs and give you an edge over your competition.

3) Not Optimizing Site Images

Images are a powerful and sometimes overlooked element of SEO. They can help draw the eye to important information, bring the content to life, and increase the page’s overall appeal and user experience. But optimizing images for SEO is only effective if done correctly, and it’s not a one-size-fits-all thing. Knowing and following a few key best practices for not optimizing your site images for SEO can be essential for website owners if they want to maximize their SEO potential.

Many websites aren’t investing in an image optimization strategy, which is doing them a disservice. Sure, they may be saving some time, but they’re also missing out on an SEO goldmine. With the right approach, images can drive targeted traffic to their site and boost their organic rankings, making them a missed opportunity if they don’t pay attention.

Don’t Compress Images

Not optimizing your images means not compressing them, which is a mistake. Compressing images means reducing their size so they’ll load more quickly and won’t take up a lot of server space. Good compression is essential for image optimization and can take your page rank, page speed, and overall user experience to the next level.

When compressing images, you need to strike a balance between the size of the image and its quality. If you compress the image too much, it can lose its sharpness and become pixelated. On the other hand, if you don’t compress the image enough, it can take a long time to load and cause page speed problems.

Here’s a tip: make sure to use a reputable and quality compression tool. You don’t want to use a tool that will reduce the size of the image but also reduce its quality.

Don’t Choose JPG Over PNG

One mistake you don’t want to make when it comes to image optimization is not selecting the right image format. JPG is a popular choice, but it’s not always the best. Instead, opt for the PNG format, which has a better-quality image with high degree of clarity.

PNG files require less processing than JPGs and can keep their quality even when compressed. They also don’t use a color palette like JPGs, which can limit the number of colors a file can display. PNGs are lossless, meaning that you can compress them without sacrificing any of their image quality.

Don’t Use Automated Tools

Another mistake to avoid when it comes to image optimization is using automated tools. Automated tools can be helpful when you’re working with large amounts of images and don’t have the time to manually optimize each one. But they can be a double-edged sword.

Automated tools can fail to optimize the images properly and lead to poor quality images and slow page loading speeds. If you’re using automated tools, make sure to review the optimized images before publishing them to make sure they’ve come through unscathed. And don’t forget to re-run the optimization process to make sure that it’s as effective as possible.

Don’t Forget to Use Alt Text

Alt text, or alternative text, is used to describe images and how they’re used on a page. This is important because it helps visually impaired people understand what’s happening on the page and can improve the page’s ranking in search engines.

Alt text helps the search engine algorithm understand what the images are about, so not having it is a mistake. Take the time to write unique and relevant descriptions for all of your images, as this will help them rank better in search engines.

Don’t Add Captions to Every Image

Captions are a great way to engage readers and give additional context to images. But captions can also be distracting and don’t always add value to the page.

So, don’t make the mistake of adding a caption to every image. Instead, think carefully about which images need captions and which ones don’t. If the image is self-explanatory, then a caption is likely unnecessary. But if the image needs context or explanation, then a caption can be useful.

Don’t Forget Your Sitemap

Creating an up-to-date sitemap is essential if you want to make sure that your images are properly indexed by search engine crawlers. That’s why not optimizing your sitemap is a mistake. A sitemap outlines your website’s URL structure and informs search engine crawlers of all the pages (and images) that should be indexed.

Updating your sitemap regularly is crucial, especially if your website gets updated or you add new images. Make sure that all images have a unique URL and are included in the sitemap so search engine crawlers can find them.

Don’t Neglect Image Titles

Finally, not optimizing your image titles is another mistake to watch out for. Image titles are used by search engines to understand what’s happening in the image and how it’s connected to the page’s content.

Like alt text and captions, the titles should be unique, relevant, and descriptive. Avoid generic terms and make sure to accurately describe the content of the image.

By avoiding these mistakes, you can make sure that your images are optimized for SEO. This can help your website rank more prominently in search engine results, drive more traffic to your website, and generally improve the user experience. Investing a little bit of time in image optimization can be a great way to boost your SEO potential.Underestimating Local SEO for SEO

4) Underestimating Local SEO

As any digital marketing professional knows, search engine optimization (SEO) is an essential tool for increasing website traffic. Yet, what many may not realize is how crucial local SEO is for businesses looking to stay competitive in the market. Local SEO can be the difference between making a sale or not, since it focuses more on the immediate area surrounding the business. As such, overlooking this important element of SEO can be a costly mistake and put a company at a disadvantage compared to its competitors.

The key to local SEO is understanding how to optimize your website and content for local searches. This requires knowledge of exactly what local terms and keywords customers are searching and then referencing them within webpages and other forms of content. Implementing local SEO can be done in several ways, such as properly formatting NAP (Name, Address and Phone Number) on the website, creating and maintaining local listings, and including local information or keywords in meta tags, titles, and body text.

Not only does local SEO help you to reach customers in your immediate area, but it can also be essential for keeping up with rivals. When properly implemented, local SEO can give your website an edge over competitors that are not doing the same. This is because local SEO keeps your website high up on the search engine results page (SERP). This means that potential customers searching for your products or services in a specific area or region will be more likely to find and click on your website, instead of a competitor’s.

Further, local SEO enables you to gain insight into what customers are searching for, meaning you can better tailor content and services to them. This kind of information helps you tailor your website and content more specifically to what customers are actually looking for. By understanding what customers value and desire, you can continuously improve your SEO strategy to make it more effective for local searches.

Local SEO is important for increasing website traffic, but it does more than that. It gives potential customers more reasons to visit your website, often turning them into paying customers. And when done correctly, a good local SEO strategy puts you ahead of your competitors.

For instance, let’s say someone is looking for a local company that offers a specific service in their area. The local SEO tactic implemented on your website could be the deciding factor between a potential customer choosing you or one of your rivals. With effective local SEO, customers will be more likely to find and visit your website, rather than your competitor.

Optimizing your website for local SEO is far more than simply including some local keywords in your content. It involves creating a comprehensive content strategy that is tailored to local searches and customers. When done correctly, your local SEO will enable you to reach potential customers within your area, and stay ahead of your rivals.

Local SEO may seem like an overwhelming task, but it’s critical for businesses looking to stay competitive. And it doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Research and Stay Up-to-Date on Local Keywords and Trends

Understanding what local keywords and trends are trending is essential for a successful local SEO strategy. Research the keywords and phrases people are using for local searches, so you know what to target with your content. You can do this by using keyword research tools and keeping an eye on local news and search engine trends. Staying knowledgeable on these topics will allow you to create content specifically tailored to local customers.

Make Sure Relevant Pages are Optimized

Once you have a list of local keywords and phrases in mind, it’s time to begin optimizing your website. Make sure all relevant pages are optimized, such as the home page, product pages, and contact pages. Focus on including local keywords in the titles, meta tags, alt tags, and body text of those pages. It’s also important to make sure all pages are formatted for both desktop and mobile devices, as local SEO also takes mobile into consideration.

Create and Maintain Local Listings and Citations

Local listings and citations are essential for increasing visibility. You can create listings on platforms such as Google My Business, Yelp, YellowPages, and other online directories. Make sure all listings include accurate information such as the business name, address, phone number, website URL, and categories. Also, create social media accounts and post content regularly to make sure customers are able to easily find and contact you.

Conduct Proactive Online Reputation Management

In addition to focusing on local SEO, it’s important to maintain a solid online reputation. This means monitoring and responding to reviews. Customers often view online reviews to make a decision about which business to choose and if those reviews are negative, it can be detrimental to how potential customers view your business. Take the time to research what customers are saying about you online and make sure to stay on top of this.

Local SEO is Often Undervalued

When it comes to SEO, local SEO is often overlooked or undervalued. Yet, this is an important tool that can help you gain an edge over your competition and maintain your competitiveness in the market. Focusing on local SEO and implementing strategies such as research, optimization, listings and citations, and proactive online reputation management can make all the difference in how local customers view your business. Don’t underestimate the power of local SEO. Make sure your business is implementing these strategies to get the most out of your SEO efforts.

5) Not Indexing Content

Search engine optimization (SEO) is an essential tool in the digital marketer’s toolbox, helping websites to appear higher in Google search rankings. However, sometimes it’s important–and often neglected–to actually prevent a website from being indexed. In this article, we’ll take a look at why you might want to unindex content that is already on your website, so you can make sure your SEO efforts are targeted for maximum effectiveness.

Indexing in SEO

To understand why you’d want to unindex certain content on your website, it’s important to understand what indexing means in terms of search engine optimization (SEO). When Google indexes information that is on the web, it essentially means that content will be accessible in any given Google search query.

Google uses a crawl bot to locate, explore and assess the content of any given website. Once the crawl bot has identified the most relevant information based on a particular keyword or set of keywords, Google has indexed the content and will then display it in the results of a search query.

The Benefits of Unindexing Content

When it comes to the benefits of unindexing content for SEO, there are two main reasons to do so. Firstly, unindexing content can help make sure that searches return only the most appropriate content. This is important as it gives users a better experience when using Google search, as well as ensuring that searches on any given topic are most effective.

The second benefit of unindexing content is that it allows you to better control the search engine optimization process. By choosing only the most relevant content to be indexed, you can ensure that Google’s algorithm will prioritize relevance when evaluating content. This, in turn, should result in more organic traffic to your website.

What Kind of Content Should be Unindexed?

As mentioned, unindexing content can be an effective way to control the SEO process. However, it is important to consider what kind of content should be unindexed. Here are some examples of content that is likely better off not being indexed:

• Duplicate content – content that is the same or very similar to content on other websites or pages on your own website is better off not being indexed.

• Low-quality content – if your website contains content that is not up to date or is irrelevant to the topic at hand, it is best not to index this content so as not to affect your SEO rankings.

• Low traffic pages – pages that are rarely visited are also best left unindexed.

• Non-essential pages – pages that are unrelated to the main topic of your website, such as pages with user login requirements, should also be unindexed.

• Test pages – pages that are used for internal testing or are contain unfinished content should not be indexed.

• Non-important URLs – URLs that are generated for tracking or redirect purposes should also be left unindexed.

How to Unindex Content

Once you’ve identified the content that should be unindexed, the next step is to actually unindex it. The most straightforward way to unindex content is by using the robots.txt file. The robots.txt file is a simple text file that is located in the root directory of your website. It contains instructions for the web crawler bots that search engines use to index websites.

For unindexing, you will need to add this code to the robots.txt file:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /folder-name/

The ‘User-agent’ specifies the type of crawler, the ‘Disallow’ specifies the directory of the content that should not be indexed.

If the content you want to unindex is located in multiple folders, then you can add multiple ‘Disallow’ lines to the robots.txt file.

The Importance of Not Indexing Content

As can be seen, there are many scenarios in which it is important to not index content for SEO. Unindexing content can help make sure that search queries return only the most relevant content, and it also allows you to better control the SEO process.

However, it is important to take time to identify the content that should be unindexed, and then to use the robots.txt file to stop that content from being indexed. By taking the time to unindex the right content, you can ensure that your website is not holding itself back in terms of SEO rankings.Having Broken Links for SEO

6) Having Broken Links

Broken links are a major issue for websites, and can have an adverse effect on the way search engines view your website. It is important to understand the impact broken links have on your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) efforts and their importance to the overall performance of your website.

Search engine rankings play an important role in determining how much traffic your website can potentially receive. The presence of broken links on your website can cause its rankings to suffer, and consequently, fewer visitors. The impact on rankings can depend on the type of broken link, the importance of the page, and the link placement.

What causes broken links?

Broken links can occur for a variety of reasons.

A common one is when an old link is deleted or changed without notifying the search engine. This can happen when an existing page is no longer available, or if the content is moved to another location without updating the link.

URL potential typos, such as missing letters or incorrect punctuation, can also cause a broken link. Language or spelling mistakes, or even incorrect capitalization, can lead to broken links.

Stale content can cause broken links as well. URLs that are not updated regularly can be ignored by search engine crawlers, leading to broken links. Additionally, updating your website’s software, content management system, or configurations can lead to broken links.

The Impact of Broken Links on Website Performance

The presence of broken links can have a range of impacts on a website’s performance, search engine rankings, and visitor experience.

Search engine crawlers analyze and rank websites based on the quality and amount of links they find. When they encounter a broken link, they are unable to crawl and index the content, resulting in a decrease in the ranking of the website.

In terms of visitor experience, a broken link can lead to a bad user experience. A user may be looking for a particular piece of content, and when they arrive at a broken link, they are unable to find the information. This can lead to a bounce, or the abandonment of your website. This can also negatively affect your website’s search engine rankings and result in a decrease in traffic.

Types of Broken Links

There are several different types of broken links that can occur on your website. Here are a few of the most common:

404 Errors

A 404 error occurs when a page cannot be found. It is important to fix these errors as soon as possible because they will not improve over time and the page cannot be found.

Soft 404s

A soft 404 error occurs when the page returns a 200 HTTP status code, but the content on the page is not the content the user expected. This is usually due to a typo, or because the content has been moved without properly redirecting the old URL.

Redirect Chains

A redirect chain occurs when there are multiple redirects in a row between a page and a resource. This can slow down the loading time of a page, and can lead to an overall poor user experience.

Dead Links

Dead links are links that lead to pages or resources that no longer exist. These links cannot be accessed, and they can have a detrimental impact on the overall performance of a website.

How to Fix Broken Links

The first step is to identify any broken links on your website and fix them. There are several tools available that can help you find and fix broken links, such as Google Search Console and Xenu Link Sleuth. Once you have identified any broken links, you can implement one of the following solutions:

Redirects

The best way to fix a broken link is to redirect the link to the new page. This allows users to access the content they are looking for, and prevents any potential loss of traffic due to a broken link.

404 Pages

If a page has been removed and there is no new page to redirect to, you can implement a 404 page. This page should provide visitors with a helpful message, and can include a search box, links to specific pages, or suggestions on what they can do next.

301 Redirects

A 301 redirect is used to tell search engines that the page has been moved permanently. This tells the search engine that all links that pointed to the old page should now be directed to the new page.

In conclusion, broken links can have a major impact on your website’s SEO performance. It is important to identify and fix any broken links in order to avoid any adverse effects on search engine rankings, traffic, and visitor experience. There are several different solutions available for fixing broken links, such as redirects, 404 pages, and 301 redirects. Taking the time to fix broken links can have a positive impact on your website’s performance, and should be part of any SEO strategy.

7) Not Prioritizing Quality Content

When it comes to SEO, there’s plenty of talk about the importance of using quality content. A website’s content is the foundation upon which successful SEO campaigns are built, and it’s essential to get it right if you want to enjoy a high level of organic visibility and increased website traffic.

Unfortunately, many organisations don’t prioritize quality content for SEO purposes. Whether it’s because of time constraints, budgetary restrictions, or simply not knowing how to get the most out of their content, this is an often repeated mistake, and one that can cost an organisation dearly.

In this article, we discuss why not prioritizing quality content for SEO is a mistake, and how it can be rectified.

What is Quality Content?

Before we get into the ramifications of not prioritizing quality content for SEO, it’s important to understand just what qualifies as quality content. At its core, quality content is content that adds value. It should be informative, engaging, and written with the target audience in mind. Quality content should provide something useful, whether that be factual information, entertaining stories, or entertaining videos.

It should also be easy to understand and well-structured. Quality content should be written in a way that is easy for the average person to read and understand. Content should also be optimized for the best user experience — this means chunking text into paragraphs, using plenty of subheadings, and avoiding jargon where possible.

Quality content should also include images and videos, when appropriate. These can help to add context to the content, as well as break up large chunks of text.

Finally, quality content should be relevant and timely. This means staying on top of current trends and hot topics, so that your content remains fresh, relevant, and engaging.

Why is Quality Content Important for SEO?

Quality content is important for SEO because it helps to position your website as an authority on a particular subject or topic. This is because search engines like Google prioritize sites with informative and authoritative content. When search engines view a website as an authority, it helps to boost the website’s ranking for certain relevant search terms, thus driving more organic traffic to the website.

In addition to this, quality content also helps to keep users engaged on a website, leading to decreased bounce rates and increased website dwell times. This, too, is an important factor when it comes to SEO, as it signals to search engines that the website is providing a quality user experience. When this happens, search engines enhance the website’s position in their search results pages.

Finally, quality content is important for SEO because it can help boost website conversion rates. When visitors find informative and helpful content on your website, they will be more likely to take desired actions — including signing up for an email list, making a purchase, or contacting you for more information. All of this helps to boost the website’s conversion rate, resulting in more leads and customers for your organisation.

The Dangers of Not Prioritizing Quality Content for SEO

Unfortunately, not prioritizing quality content for SEO can have serious consequences for a brand. For example, if your website content isn’t up to standard and fails to provide a quality user experience, it could lead to high bounce and low dwell times, signalling to search engines that the content isn’t of high quality. This could then have a negative impact on your website’s rankings and visibility in organic search results.

In addition, not prioritizing quality content for SEO could lead to decreased website conversion rates. Poor content can lead to visitors leaving the website quickly and not taking desired actions — this, in turn, can lead to fewer leads and customers for your organisation.

Finally, not prioritizing quality content for SEO could lead to a decrease in brand trust and reputation. Poor content can leave customers feeling frustrated and as though their needs are not being met — this could then lead to them turning to competitors in search of higher quality content.

How to Prioritize Quality Content for SEO

Prioritizing quality content f or SEO starts with understanding the topic at hand and knowing what your target audience wants to read about. This means carrying out comprehensive keyword research, creating an editorial calendar, and having an in-depth understanding of the topics and subject matter you plan to write about.

Once you have a grasp of the topics, you should create a content strategy that includes detailed objectives, goals, and KPIs. This content strategy should include everything from the types of content you are going to produce, to how much content you are going to produce, and how often it will be published.

Once your content strategy is in place, you should source content writers who can create quality content on your behalf. It is important to do your research and find writers who have a track record of producing informative and engaging content for websites similar to yours. Alternatively, you may wish to invest in content writing services such as those on Textmesh an AI-powered writing and editing platform for content marketing.

Quality content is essential for successful SEO campaigns. If organisations don’t prioritize content for SEO purposes, they risk losing out on increased website visibility, website traffic, leads, and customers.

In order to get the most out of content, organisations should understand what quality content is, why it’s important for SEO, and the dangers of not prioritizing it. This should involve creating a content strategy, understanding the topics and subject matter at hand, and sourcing content writers that can create quality content in line with SEO goals and objectives.

8) Ignoring Hreflang Tags

When it comes to making sure your website is Search Engine Optimized correctly, paying attention to hreflang tags is just as important as making sure your on-page SEO is up to par.
Hreflang tags are the language versions of the same webpage that are targeted to the users in the specified country or language. This is important to keep in mind, as Google (and other search engines) don’t always know that a website is available in a certain language as they don’t always recognize a language as it is spoken.

Using hreflang tags allows you to communicate to the search engine which version of the page you’d like to be shown for a given language. This means that users in France and Germany, for example, will be shown the correct version of a web page that caters for the language they use.

If you neglect to properly use Hreflang tags and don’t add them to your pages, then you are missing out on popular international, multi-lingual SERPs and could be preventing your website from having a smooth user experience. This means that by not properly implementing hreflang tags, you are potentially losing a large portion of potential leads, clients and conversions.

What Are Hreflang Tags?

Hreflang tags are a snippet of HTML code you can use to indicate the language and region of particular web pages to search engines. These tags will help search engines know which versions of your content are aimed at readers in specific regions or countries, as well as localise the content they show people in those regions.

Using hreflang tags is a great way to make sure that people who speak a different language can find content on your site (as using the wrong language results in a less than optimal user experience). They are used to let search engines like Google know which version of the web page is most suited for a particular region, language or country.

The Impact Of Not Using Hreflang Tags

Not using hreflang tags on your website can have some detrimental effects, such as:

  • Diluting Link Equity: Without hreflang tags, every page with the exact same content can receive the same link juice, thus diluting the amount of total link juice to each distinct page.
  • Poor User Experience¸: If users who don’t speak the same language are shown pages in the wrong language, it can lead to confusion and frustration. This can damage the reputation of the business and lead to a decrease in conversions and sales.
  • Duplicate Content: Not indicating which pages are related to one another can lead to search engines thinking that pages are duplicates, resulting in a negative effect on both ranking and referral traffic.
  • Lower Rankings: Not having hreflang tags in place can mean that Google does not identify the target language and country and thus can’t determine which version of the content should be shown. This leads to lower rankings and therefore lower visibility.
  • Missed International Opportunities: Without hreflang tags, you are missing out on the opportunity to capitalise on the growing international market. You can’t take advantage of people searching in other languages if you don’t let the search engines know where they should show your content.

Key Tips For Implementing Hreflang Tags Correctly

To make sure that your hreflang tags are being implemented correctly, follow these simple tips:

  • Make sure all links use the correct language. If you’re targeting French users, then make sure to link to a French page.
  • Ensure that only correct and high-quality translations are used. If poor translations are used, it can end up negatively affecting your rankings.
  • Verify the language and the location of the web page you’re targeting. If you’re targeting France, make sure that you add the correct language codes (fr-FR and fr-BE) rather than a global language such as English (en-GB).
  • Link back to the canonical version of the web page. This means that any SEO value will be assigned to the canonical version.
  • Make sure that duplicate versions of the web page don’t exist. This includes pages with different languages and versions of the same domain (with or without www).
  • Make sure that the hreflang tags are working properly by using the Google Search Console. You can do this by using the testing tool which can detect any potential issues when implementing the tags.

Conclusion:

Hreflang tags are an important part of making sure that your website is optimised for Search Engine Optimization. Without them, your website will miss out on international visibility and potential customers. By following the key tips mentioned above, you can make sure that the hreflang tags you implement are used properly and help you reach your target audience more effectively.

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