I got tons of feedback that you guys loved the episode I did on SEO mistakes that entrepreneurs make and how to fix them. So I am back with more mistakes. Three more that you can work on. Get something to write notes with because I’ve got a ton to share with you today.
SEO Mistake #4: Not Compressing Images
It’s really common that we get these gorgeous images either from a stock website or from a photographer and we just throw them up on our website without even thinking twice about it and without realizing that these images are way larger than they need to be.
There’s two things you need to think about when it comes to images. The first one is the dimension of the image, whether it’s 2,000 pixels wide or 5,000 pixels wide. Most images will never need to be shown at that resolution. And the fact that we’re uploading them at that size is just making them way larger than they need to be. So you can reduce the pixel width size of your images using a program like Lightroom or PicMonkey or Photoshop to get it down to 2000 pixels wide or under, if it’s a landscape photo. There’s usually never a reason to have a picture that’s wider than that on a website, even if it’s like a hero image. So that’s a really good thing to do. The second thing that you need to think about is the actual file size of the image. That’s like how heavy the image is in terms of how fast or how slow it will take to load on a website.
And a lot of images that you’ll get straight from stock sites or photographers will be upwards of four megabytes in file size, which is way too big and which will take a lot longer to load. So if you can compress those images, make them smaller in file size, that will give you a pretty good advantage in terms of speed of download and you can get your images compressed at a site like tinypng.com or compressor.io I’ll link both of those in the show notes for you and what those sites will do is you just upload the image and then it spits it back at you to download at a smaller file size so it can take an image from four megabytes down to like 200 kilobytes, which is a significant savings. And the reason why this matters is because page loading speed is actually a ranking factor, particularly when it comes to mobile search.
The faster a page loads, the more likely it will be to rank more highly. So if you can get all your images compressed as much as possible and get them as small as possible without losing quality, then your site should load just that little bit much faster and milliseconds matter here. Now, some website builders do compress images for you, but I tend not to rely on them for almost anything because I think it’s just better that anytime you get an image you want to put on your site that you resize it, compress it, and then put it up and that should make a pretty good improvement in your page speed.
SEO Mistake #5: Using Duplicate Content
Now there’s two categories here for this. Number one, we have content within a website that gets repeated sometimes and you need to try to avoid that as much as possible.
A little bit of duplicate content is fine. So let’s say on your blog posts, you have a footer you add to every blog post that has a call to action and a description of who you are or your bio, you know, 100 to 200 words here or there that get repeated all the time is not gonna create a penalty for you, but it really matters in terms of the amount of content that’s on the page compared to the amount of content that’s duplicate. If you have a thousand words on the page and 500 those are duplicate content. The percentage here is what we need to look at. You definitely need to make sure that if you’re doing blogging that you have a good chunk of unique content on that page if you’re also going to have some duplicate content from post to post. Now the second part of duplicate content would be copying content from other places on the internet.
And back in the day when I did SEO for real estate agents, the way we built websites was we just would take our stock website and put it up for everyone and it was already had all these articles in it and every single website had the exact same thing. Back in the day, that was fine. Google didn’t have as much penalties for things like that, but now they do. You can’t just go take pages and pages of content from other websites and put them on your website and get that content ranked because Google’s entire job is to create a directory of unique search results and if you’re just taking content from other places and putting it on your site, that’s not unique content. That is definitely something you should not be doing. You can quote content, that’s totally fine. If you want to reference and quote other people’s work, do that in a way that is legal and ethical and you should be totally fine.
You can also syndicate your content, which means publishing it on other platforms like Medium. There is a way to do that that will not penalize you, but just be really careful. Like let’s say you are a massage therapist and your massage therapy organization gives you basic starter content to start your website and so you just go place that stock description of what you do on your site. That’s probably not going to rank very well because there’s thousands of other massage therapists who have done the same thing. So just be really clear that you’re getting as much unique, handwritten content as you can your website, that’ll be an advantage for sure. That’s the whole point of doing SEO.
SEO Mistake #6: Not Using a Good Website Builder
This is a toughie because this is the hardest thing to fix. This one is not an easy one to change because if you have your entire website built on a not so great website builder, that means you’ve got to move it, which is a big job.
And so I just want to acknowledge right up front that this is going to be a hard one to correct, but if you’re in a very saturated market with a lot of competition, this may be the thing that pushes you over the edge and helps you rank better. Now, the website builder that is probably the worst for SEO is Wix. And the reason why it is bad for SEO is the exact same reason why everyone loves using it. It’s very easy to drag and drop and build a beautiful website on Wix. But the way that Wix creates those sites is with a type of code that is very hard for Google to read. Google needs to be able to crawl through a website and process the information very rapidly. And the way Wix presents its code creates friction in that process. And I’m trying not to get too technical on this cause you really don’t need to know all the technical details, but I can tell you that for sure.
There’s several things within the Wix platform that are detrimental to SEO. Oh, I know. This is such a toughie. I always feel so bad when I tell people this because they’re like, I have this beautiful site and I really don’t want to go any place else and I get it. Here’s the good news. If at some point you decide you want to move away from Wix, you take all the SEO you’ve already done and all the content you already have and you take it all with you. So you just continue to move up the hill in terms of SEO ranking. And you don’t lose anything as long as you keep your domain name the same. So the goal should be to get to the point in your business where it makes sense to move to a better platform. Now let’s talk about a couple of other platforms.
Here we have Weebly, which is pretty good in the terms of the way they write their code. The problem with Weebly is that there are several features that it does not have or things that it doesn’t allow you to do. Technical staff that are the higher levels of SEO that are going to be a problem. And the second problem I have with Weebly is it’s really clunky to manage blogs on Weebly. If you’re going to do a lot of content marketing, if you’re going to do a lot of writing in order to get SEO, it’s going to get pretty tough to manage all that in Weebly and I think you would be at a better advantage to move to an easier platform. Now, the two website builders that are pretty great and you probably will do fine if you stick with them, are Squarespace and ShowIt.
They’re good in terms of the type of code they create, they’re pretty easy to manage. They’re pretty powerful in terms of how you can do your blogging on them. They have some good SEO features, but if you’re really gunning for a competitive market, you may just not have enough traction to get where you need to be. I would say 90% of the time when people are on those platforms and they’re doing fine, I don’t advise them to move unless they just really don’t like being there or it’s too expensive or something like that. Now, the website builders that I definitely love and always recommend and only platforms I ever build sites on our WordPress and Shopify. Obviously Shopify is for e-commerce, but with WordPress, anything I ever need to be able to do for SEO is possible on WordPress and on a few of these other platforms, or really all of them. there’s always going to be something I’m like “Well, yeah, I can’t implement that for you. I’m sorry.” It’s just not possible on this platform because you just don’t have the control. When another website builder is protecting their hosting platform and how the code is created and the security of their platform, they’re just not going to give you access to do things that a site builder like WordPress can and the reason for that, you host WordPress on its own hosting platform, you basically own the real estate that the WordPress website is built on, which allows you to have really full and total control of how the site is built. And when we get into the higher echelons of SEO and really competitive markets, there’s going to be advantages there that you can’t get any place else. If I need to boost page speed by 20% I work with my hosting company to do that and there’s plugins I can use to do that that I wouldn’t be able to do on other platforms.
And there’s other types of code like AMP and schema that are pretty technical, but if you really, really wanted you high-end SEO, you may not be able to do them on other website builders. So that’s my 411 on website builders. If you want to have the opportunity to be the best of the best of the best, WordPress and Shopify are gonna allow you to do that. If you just going to have a brochure online and SEO isn’t as much as a priority for you, Weebly, Wix, Squarespace, ShowIt. I mean, you’ll be fine with any of those. All right. Those are the next three SEO mistakes that I commonly see business owners make. We had number four, which is not compressing your images. Number five, using duplicate content, and number six, using a poor website builder.
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