25+ common seo mistakes

25+ Common SEO Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Website (Infographic)

From established businesses to small local businesses just starting their online journey, everyone needs to invest in SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) to garner more brand exposure.

SEO helps make your site user-friendly, providing your audience with an enhanced web browsing experience, leading to more conversions.

Without the proper knowledge of how SEO works, you might be committing SEO mistakes that could ruin your website.

Some of the common SEO mistakes that you might be making include the following:

  1. Non-mobile-friendly website design.
  2. Slow website speed and download time.
  3. Over-optimisation of keywords.
  4. Lack of interesting and benefit-focused content.
  5. Use of irrelevant images in blog posts.
  6. Not having a Social Media presence for your business.
  7. Lack of Local SEO.
  8. Not Tracking Analytics.

If you are new to the online world and have been doing SEO yourself, we have an infographic guide with other SEO mistakes to help you identify issues that might hurt your site’s search engine ranking and traffic.

This guide provides you with 25+ common WordPress SEO mistakes to rectify. By following this guide and implementing the corrective measures suggested, you’ll ensure that your site is well-optimised for your site’s visitors and search engines.

So, check out this infographic and optimise your WordPress site to improve user experience and rank well on search engines.

25+ common seo mistakes infographic

25+ Common SEO Mistakes That Are Killing Your Website (Infographic) by the team at hostingclues.com

Let’s tackle the biggest WordPress SEO mistakes below and what you can do to resolve them:

Sluggish PageSpeed and Response Time

Slow PageSpeed and server response time can deter people from accessing content on your page and ultimately cost you hard-earned SEO traffic. Ideally, server response time should be less than 200 ms.

The most common reasons for slow server response time include server delays, large page size, unoptimised images, and render-blocking JavaScript and CSS.

To improve site speed, choosing a reliable web hosting provider and regularly monitoring your website’s performance is important.

You also can compress images, minify JavaScript and CSS, enable browser caching, and use a content delivery network (CDN). For the first two, you can use caching SEO plugins like WP Rocket to resolve them. With regard to CDN, you can connect your website to Cloudflare and use its various data centres across the globe to load your WordPress site faster on browsers.

Related: 19 Above And Beyond Tips To Speed Up WordPress

Poorly Designed Landing Page

Concerning WordPress site speed, cramming too many elements on a single page is the main culprit of a poorly designed landing page. This causes the page to load slowly, resulting in a high bounce rate, low dwell time, and low conversion rates.

Other landing page design mistakes stemming from poor design choices include:

  • Having too many conversion goals
  • Using a complex or confusing design
  • Not matching ad copy with landing page copy
  • Not including a prominent call-to-action button.

To fix these issues, you can simplify your design, use whitespace effectively, and match ad copy with landing page copy.

generatepress templates

If you’re not a designer, you can use templates from Gutenberg WordPress themes like GeneratePress. Choose the template you want to use across all your site pages and edit with your branding with a few clicks.

Not Optimised for Mobile

Mobile devices are increasingly used to browse the internet, and Google has shifted to mobile-first indexing. This means that Google will primarily use the mobile version of a website’s content to rank pages and cater to mobile users.

A website not optimised for mobile provides a poor user experience, which causes Google to lower your site’s search rankings.

Most WordPress themes implement a responsive design, which adjusts the layout of a WordPress website based on the screen size of the device being used.

google mobile friendly test

To be sure your site is in the clear of this issue, use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool.

shortpixerl bulk processing

Optimising your images and videos also helps your website load faster on mobile. Use plugins like ShortPixel to decrease your image file size without losing quality. They can bulk-compress your uploaded images to ensure all photos are optimised for mobile viewing.

Not Having a Sitemap

An XML sitemap is a file that lists all the pages on your website, helping search engine bots crawl and index them much faster. Without a sitemap, search engines may miss some pages, leading to lower search engine rankings.

You can create a sitemap and submit it to search engines like Google and Bing to fix this issue.

yoast seo wordpress

You can use tools like Yoast SEO to generate XML sitemaps. The plugin also updates your sitemap with your latest published pages, so you don’t have to.

Not Testing Different Browsers Compatibility

Different browsers may interpret code differently, leading to a poor user experience or even broken functionality. The inconsistency in how browsers load your website leads Google to rank your site lower than others, if not at all.

To fix this issue, you can perform cross-browser testing, which involves testing your website on different browsers and devices to ensure it works correctly.


You can use tools like BrowserStack, Comparium, or Sauce Labs to test your website on other browsers and devices.

Not Optimising for Local Search

Local search optimisation involves optimising your website and online presence for location-based searches, such as “coffee shops near me” or “plumbers in [city name].”

google business profile

To fix this issue, you can create a Google Business Profile, which allows you to manage your business information on Google Maps and in local search engine results.

You can also include location-specific keywords, meta tags, and URLs in your website’s content.

Additionally, you can create location-specific landing pages, get listed in local directories, and encourage customer reviews.

If your website doesn’t cater to a specific location, you can ignore the fixes here.

Not Updating Old Content

Outdated content can negatively impact your search engine rankings and user engagement. As a blog post ages, it gets less traffic because it loses relevance over time. In addition, search engines factor in recency and relevance when ranking pages.

You can update your old content by adding new information, statistics, and examples to fix this issue. You can also refresh the design and layout of the content and optimise it for new keywords and search terms.

Additionally, you can repurpose old content into new formats, such as videos, infographics, or podcasts.

Writing Content that is Not Benefit Focused

Benefit-focused content focuses on your product or service’s benefits to your customers rather than just the features. So, if you don’t focus on your business’s positive impact, you make understanding your product’s or service’s value difficult for visitors.

To fix this issue, you must flex your copywriting skills by knowing what ails your target audience, amplifying their pain points if they don’t address them soon, and showing how your business can help solve these.

If applicable, use customer testimonials and case studies to demonstrate the benefits of your product or service.

Inconsistent Content Publishing

Inconsistent content publishing can make it difficult for search engines to understand the relevance and authority of your website. A consistent and predictable content velocity can help improve your search engine rankings and increase website traffic and user engagement.

To fix this issue, you can develop a content calendar that outlines your content strategy, including topics, keywords, and publishing dates. Compile this information and come up with as many ideas as possible. The goal is to write about these topics in advance so you can schedule them at the publishing rate you’re comfortable with.

You can also create a content creation process that involves researching, writing, editing, and optimising your content for search engines.

google search console

Additionally, check your Google Analytics or Google Search Console to track the most-visited pages on your website and create similar or related content to those. People go to these pages often because they like what they see from them.

Not Using Alt Tags for Images

Alt tags provide a text description of your pictures, making them accessible to visually impaired users and improving overall website accessibility.

In the case of search engine bots, they rely on alt tags to read images since they can’t process the meaning of photos on their own. Without alt tags, bots don’t know what your images are about or whether they’re related to your content.

alt text field

In this case, add alt tags to your images that describe the image’s content and include relevant keywords to fix this issue. You can also use descriptive file names for your pictures, captions, and titles to provide additional context.

Uninteresting Headlines

Headlines are the first thing that users see when they come across your content, and they play a critical role in determining whether or not they engage with your website.

Uninteresting headlines make it challenging to capture the attention of your target audience and encourage them to click through to your content.

coschedule headline studio

Using CoSchedule Headline Studio, you can write attention-grabbing headlines relevant to your content and use strong action words and emotional triggers to fix this issue. You can also use numbers, questions, or controversial statements to pique the interest of your target audience.

nelio a b testing

Additionally, you can test different headlines using an SEO plugin like Nelio A/B Testing to determine which ones work best for your target audience.

Not Creating Engaging Content

Engaging content is relevant, informative, and valuable to your target audience. Without it, you make capturing the attention of your target audience and encouraging them to engage with your website much more difficult.

Similar to addressing the lack of benefits-focused content, create engaging content that focuses on your audience’s needs and interests. You can use storytelling, humour, or emotion to make your content more relatable and engaging. You can also use visuals, such as images, videos, or infographics, to make your content more visually appealing and easier to consume.

contact from quiz wordpress plugins

Additionally, you can use contact form plugins that let you create quizzes, polls, or surveys, to encourage user engagement and feedback.

Mistake # 20 – Keyword Stuffing

Keyword stuffing is the practice of overusing keywords in your content to manipulate search engine rankings. Using this spammy tactic makes your content less readable and less valuable to your audience and can result in Google penalising your website for violating its guidelines.

To fix this issue, you can use keywords strategically and sparingly in your content and focus on creating high-quality, valuable content relevant to your target audience.

semrush yoast seo

Instead, use related keywords and synonyms to provide additional context and relevance to your content. Connecting Yoast SEO with SEMrush gives you words and phrases related to your keyword to make your content more topically relevant.

Lack of Proper Interlinking

Proper interlinking involves linking to relevant pages within your website, which can help search engines understand the relationships between different pages and content.

Without it, search engines won’t be able to find pages on your site properly, which leads to these pages not appearing on search results.

You can create a clear and logical internal linking structure to fix this issue. It makes navigating your website and understanding the relevance and importance of different pages and content much easier for users and search engines.

Additionally, use descriptive anchor text for your internal links and ensure that your internal links are relevant and add value to your content.

link whisper

A plugin like LinkWhisper helps you add internal links to your pages with just a few clicks. It suggests relevant pages and anchor texts to use on your pages to take away the guesswork from this task. You can also edit the suggestions to customise your internal linking.

Not Replacing Broken Links

When a link on your page has been removed or its URL changed, it becomes inaccessible. So, whenever somebody clicks on the broken link, they are brought to a 404 (error) page that may disrupt the user experience.

This is equally bad for search engine bots because having too many broken links means your site is unoptimised. This decreases search rankings over time if you don’t address them soon.

link whisper report

To prevent this from happening, regularly check your website for broken internal and external links using LinkWhisper and replace any broken links with working links. You can also create a custom 404 page that provides users with helpful information and links to other relevant content on your website.

Mistake # 23 – Ineffective Keyword Research

Effective keyword research involves identifying relevant keywords and phrases your target audience is searching for and strategically using them in your content.

The last thing you’d want is targeting the wrong keywords, which can lead to lower search engine rankings and reduced website traffic.

keyword finder

To fix this SEO mistake, you can conduct thorough keyword research using tools like KWFinder and identify keywords and phrases relevant to your target audience and your business. Not only do these tools show you the search volume of each keyword suggestion but also its keyword difficulty.

From here, you want to target keywords with high search volume and low KD to increase your chances of ranking at the top of Google organic search.

You can also use long-tail keywords, which are more specific, to help you target more niche audiences and improve your search engine rankings.

Finding which SEO keywords to use on your pages enables you to perform on-page optimisation by mentioning them on your web page title, meta descriptions, and others.

Failing to Track and Analyse Results

Tracking and analysing results involves regularly monitoring your website’s search engine rankings, website traffic, and user behaviour and using this data to identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions.

true ranker

Regularly checking in on your rank tracking tool like TrueRanker gives you your search engine rankings, traffic, and user behaviour. You can also set up regular reporting and analysis processes to ensure you regularly review and act on the data.

Not Linking Out to Quality Sites

Linking out to quality sites can help provide additional context and value to your content and improve your website’s authority and credibility.

Some would argue that including outbound links on your content allows your authority to escape from your website, making it less authoritative in the eyes of Google.

However, linking to websites relevant to and highly respected in your industry allows you to position yourself in the same light as these sites. Also, it paints you in a positive light to your audience since you’re sharing equally valuable information with them from the page you’re linking to.

Ineffective Use of 301 Redirects

301 redirects are used to permanently redirect users and search engines from one URL to another and are an important tool for maintaining the integrity and relevance of your website’s content.

wp 301 redirects

To fix this issue, use a plugin like WP 301 Redirects to identify any pages or URLs that have been moved or deleted, and set up 301 redirects to redirect users and search engines to the new URL. You can also use 301 redirects to consolidate multiple pages or URLs into one, which can help improve the relevance and authority of your website’s content.


Avoiding common WordPress SEO mistakes is crucial for the success of your website. By understanding and rectifying these errors, you can ensure that your site is well-optimised, user-friendly, and visible to search engines. From optimising website speed and design to focusing on engaging content and proper keyword usage, each aspect plays a significant role in improving your site’s search engine rankings and attracting organic traffic. By following the corrective measures and implementing the suggested solutions discussed in this article, you can avoid these SEO mistakes and set your website up for success. Remember, investing time and effort in SEO is essential for achieving long-term online visibility and driving conversions.

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About Steven Watts

Steven WattsSteven is the founder of Newt Labs. He's a WordPress specialist with an interest in building the most effective websites possible. Since 2010, he's been helping businesses with their online goals.

100 Tips for Maintaining Your WordPress Site

Defend your site from hackers, improve speed, and learn tactics used by WordPress experts

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