The Dangers of DIY Search Engine Optimisation

15 September 2014

If you own your own business, you’re no doubt one of those people who is more than happy to have a go and take the plunge with trying something new. After all, it takes some guts to start a new venture. This attitude is great for business, but it can lead you down some trickier roads when it comes to online marketing.

Search engine optimisation is an integral part of your online marketing strategy. By optimising your website architecture, links, and content, your site will appear higher up when people search for key term relating to your business. This means more web traffic for you – and more conversions.

Obviously, everyone wants to do well on Google, so it can seem like a no brainer to start messing around with your SEO techniques yourself to try and get yourself to the number one spot.

“If SEO was easy – everyone would be doing it”

Search Engine Optimisation isn’t simple, no matter what you may read on the internet. There are hundreds of sites offering hints and tips about how to propel your site to the heights of the front page, and reams written in books about all of the different tricks that will take up there.

The reality is that the Google search algorithm is highly complex, constantly updated, tweaked, poked and prodded to ensure that Google are providing users with the very best results for what they’re looking for. This means that understanding what exactly makes Google tick and how to be good at SEO is a full time job in itself. If you’re trying to run a business, you really should concentrate on the core of what it is you are selling and not spending your time researching how the latest Google update is going to affect whether you appear on the first page or the fifth.

The penalties of not knowing SEO inside out

Back in 2006, BMW in Germany were heavily penalised by Google for trying to manipulate the search engine giant. They had optimised their site by stuffing it full of the keywords ‘gebrauchtwagen’ (used car) and ‘neuwagen’ (new car) using a JavaScript redirect. In punishment for this underhand tactic, Google completely de-indexed the German car site from its listings, meaning that when users searched for BMW Germany, they would not be able to find the site, instead sent to the global site or perhaps a local independent retailer.

For a massive brand like BMW, they managed to recover fairly quickly, but for a small company, something like this can mean that your site will never recover.

Google Panda and Google Penguin

You might have heard of Panda and Penguin if you’re delving into the world of SEO. These two updates affect your page position on Google based on your link profile and your website architecture. When the updates came down from Google and started to affect where websites were appearing, the world of SEO was in a panic. Now your website can drop drastically on Google through poor links or even long load times. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you could end up penalised without meaning to, and struggle to come back from it.

Why you should hire an SEO Professional

Search Engine Optimsiation is a process, not an end point. You have to consistently monitor your analytics to ensure that nothing untoward is happening. If something does go wrong and you don’t keep on top of it before it gets to be a major issue, you’ll have to fork out a lot of cash to fix it, if you even can recover from the problem.

Hiring an SEO professional in the first place ensures that your website is set up in the best way possible to start attracting customers from the off, meaning you are making money quickly. Your business will do better if you are spending your time building up your client base and your profits instead of your SEO knowledge.

If you’re looking to improve your website’s search engine rankings check out our SEO services and take a look at some of the companies we’ve helped.