With some sensible planning and diligent work you can lift your site high in the search engines’ rankings. But make a few crucial mistakes, and your site may never leave the bottom. There are a few common mistakes that people make when optimizing their websites with on page SEO. So here are four examples of what NOT to do:

1. No Alt Tags

Perhaps the most common mistake people make with on page SEO is leaving alt tags out of images. The alt tag is the text that shows up when a cursor hovers over an image. It’s also displayed when an image fails to load, so visitors have a good idea what the image is. Best of all, an alt tag is the perfect place to optimise your keyword, because alt tags count as text to the search engines.

2. Duplicate Titles

A web page’s title is one of the most important factors of on page SEO, yet so many people use the same title for multiple pages. This practice will hurt your site’s chance at ranking high. Search engines hate duplicates. Also, a page’s title is the perfect place to optimise your keywords, so take advantage of it. Always include your main keywords in your titles.

3. Keyword Stuffing

In the old days of the search engines, you could achieve a high ranking for your website just by stuffing keywords into your content as many times as possible. This maneuver no longer works. In fact, it will likely achieve the opposite effect — a drop in rankings. Even worse, your site might be blacklisted. So avoid keyword stuffing and only use your keyword naturally.

4. Overusing Flash and JavaScript

It’s tempting to enhance the appearance of a site by using Flash and JavaScript. They can make everything look fancy and professional if you know what you’re doing. But too much Flash and JavaScript will slow your website down, and they won’t help you in the least if you’re trying to optimise your site for the search engines. Neither Flash nor JavaScript uses text that can be read by search engines, and reviewing a site’s text is how a search engine ranks the site. So if you do choose to use Flash and JavaScript, use them very sparingly.

After spending a lot of time and hard work on a website, it would be a shame to let a few mistakes sabotage all your efforts. Especially if the mistakes are easy to fix. When you’re optimising a site, always keep factors like alt tags, titles, keyword density, and Flash and JavaScript in mind. Once you learn to identify SEO mistakes on your site you can take measures to correct them, and give your site the chance at a high ranking it deserves.

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