Of all the other elements of your business, your website is the only salesperson that works 24*7. Thus, you must work on your website’s presence and performance to create a terrific first impression among prospects.
Surveys suggest that 68% of digital experiences start with a search engine. Thus, an optimized website improves your search engine ranking by increasing conversions. One of the most significant aspects of SEO or search engine optimization, website optimization, improves your overall performance.
Optimizing a website helps connect to the market more effectively without paying for ads. But when it comes to optimizing a website, certain risks are involved.
Whether you’re planning to re-platform it or create a new design and URL structure, there are risks involved with the present ranking. But did you know that over-optimizing a website can also have a lot of consequences?
So far, you haven’t yet given much importance to SEO risks, nor did you ever anticipate it. But too many SEO efforts might impact your website negatively. So, what are the risks of SEO? And how does over-optimization of a website come into being, and what are the repercussions?
This all-encompassing post will clearly give you an insight into this matter. Delve into the points to learn what exactly website over-optimization is.
Website Over-Optimization: How Can It Cause Reputational Damage of a Brand?
You may risk everything when you incorporate more than the required designing, marketing, and SEO elements to build an optimized. Not having a proper balance among these three essential components makes a classy website cluttered. A lack of flow can leave your users underwhelmed and immensely confused.
Search engine over-optimization involves creating more than required SEO improvements to the point that the website improvements ruin the ranking ability. As a result, they leave your place and visit a competitor’s hub to buy a product or service.
So, first things first, until and unless you understand the prime purpose of your website, will you be able to focus on the required improvements? No, so let’s first understand the purpose and intention of marketing, designing, and SEO. After which, this post will give a detailed overview of signs that indicate you are over-optimizing your website.
The Purpose of Designing, Marketing, and SEO
The right design elements can create a terrific first impression on potential customers. So, beautifying a website is a top-notch priority for designers. In fact, many designers use cut-off typography, parallax effects, and color schemes to delight visitors and offer a unique digital experience.
But what if an elegantly designed website is not accessible? What if the prospects are physically disabled people? In such circumstances, adding parallax scrolling/carousels might not be a great decision.
Call-to-action of CTA is the most important element when it comes to marketing. They are implemented everywhere, starting from the footer, header, navigation bar, and more. Marketing experts favor content such as testimonials and customer reviews, video/image galleries, and award badges.
Such content pushes customers along a buyer’s journey. These approaches may make a hard sell to prospects not yet ready for the purchase. Or worse, it may even overwhelm visitors with multiple choices. But if the conversion rate is decent and traffic is low or down, it’s time to prioritize SEO.
With a complicated algorithm, Google implements multiple factors for web page rankings. Some are related to technical aspects, such as load time, while others are based on elements present on the page, such as backlinks and keywords.
SEO efforts can improve the site’s navigation as well as page speed by eliminating broken links and duplicate content. But concentrating on SEO solely and undermining the design and marketing elements can be a wrong approach. It may affect the ranking and cause over-optimization with keyword stuffing and link spamming.
An over-optimized website has already invested in these three elements but in an unbalanced manner. Such a website will face certain consequences, as mentioned below:
Repercussions of Website Over-Optimization
Managing a website takes a lot of consistency and effort. Over-optimization has a multitude of consequences, and it may also cause your brand’s reputational damage. Note down the following repercussions:
Poor UX or User Experience
Over-optimizing your website might make your users leave the website. Keyword stuffing and irrelevant keywords might also decrease the ranking too.
Besides poor UX, over-optimizing results in a loss of credibility. If Google finds your site isn’t trustworthy or relevant, it might lower its rank. Worse is when it finds your website unworthy, as a result, removes it from the search result.
If search engines find your website is over-optimized, they might penalize it. Note that these penalties might be severe. Here’s enlisting other ways how SEO overdose affects your business:
- Hampers the number of conversions and revenue
- Affects brand visibility and awareness
- Damages brand reputation and overall experience
Top Website Over-Optimization Indicators
Testing changes, high-quality backlinks, enhancing the URL structure, and overhauling the site are risks worth taking. But to attract potential customers to your website, avoiding bad SEO practices that cause over-optimization is imperative. Narrated below are some of the SEO risks you must avoid:
Unnecessary SEO Improvements or All At Once
Overwhelming Google with too many keywords might have a negative impact on your revenue. And a massive website restructuring job can even lower your ranking. Remember, your website reconstruction task must be in-line with the SEO tactics.
Transforming your website with a few elements can make sense. But changing most of the content and structure to boost traffic may be a huge mistake. That makes Google’s task of relearning your site more difficult. It does not mean your site cannot undergo massive changes. But an immediate overhaul becomes a lengthy process for Google to relearn all elements at once.
Poor Link Game
Website links can be beneficial for SEO. Smart incorporation of external and internal links can allow search engines to think of the content to be a valuable resource. But internal links that take customers to the page of the main navigation menu don’t show that much importance to a content piece. What’s worse is the toxic backlinks.
Backlinks, in general, are the links that another website uses to your content or website. Google considers them to be so valuable that they can enhance your credibility. But if they come from unauthentic sources, they are toxic. Toxic backlinks may also be a part of blackhat SEO approaches. If chosen by Google, your website ranking will decrease.
Overused Keywords or Using Them Just Like That
Poor keyword use or too many of them in one piece might be dangerous. In short, keyword stuffing happens if you only put the primary keyword multiple times to get a better ranking. Two decades ago, Google did not penalize websites for using this trick.
But kudos to the late 21st-century Google algorithms; the search engine does not appreciate the overuse of keywords. This approach can even decrease the site’s ranks, thereby questioning its credibility. That’s not the end of the issue. A blog has an array of keywords.
Some of them are incorporated naturally, whereas others are purposefully implemented. Meticulously chosen secondary keywords can take content to a new scale and grab audiences’ attention. But inserting them only for the sake of adding will affect the website ranking.
Keywords in the Footer
Adding keywords to this section may detract from the site’s user experience. Search engines might view it as manipulative behavior or keyword stuffing. So, instead of thinking of it as a sitemap, one should always consider it as a proper closure to the web page.
Poor Title Tags
At the top of each story is a headline, which narrates the topic of the piece within a few words. A blog article or web page’s title tags will tell the search engine and users what is in the content. Headings that do not include keywords may affect the search engine ranking.
Also, too lengthy or nonsensical headers affect the website’s revenue negatively. According to Google, the H1 should be within 70 characters. It must include the primary keyword in H1 and H2.
The Role of Deoptimization: Understanding the Steps Involved
Over-optimization prevents your audience from seeing the value of your business. Besides, it negatively affects your organic search ranking. So, to remove elements that result in website over-optimization, you may consider the following tips:
- Use keywords in the content naturally
- Analyze over-optimized content
- Build natural links
- Avoid including keywords in the website footer
- Don’t undermine the importance of user experience
The main intention of deoptimization is to eliminate a website page that drives the wrong type of traffic to the website. At times, you may benefit from eliminating a page entirely from SERPs. Also, removing pages that have suitable alternatives might make sense.
Over-optimization only occurs when you have an eye only on technical SEO aspects. If you consider the bigger picture, simplistic web page designs will last longer in prospects’ hearts. So, if you want to stay in your prospects’ hearts forever, it’s time you start working on a well-balanced optimization strategy.