SEO Mistakes Web Developers Make

Written by Nick Stamoulis

SEO and web development go hand in hand. SEO work in conjunction with web development work attract both the search engine spiders and target audience members to a website. However, web developers aren’t SEO professionals (just as SEO professionals aren’t web developers!). Sure, they might have some knowledge on the topic but when it comes down to it, their focus is on creating a nice-looking, functional website, not so much on organic search traffic. This is why website owners shouldn’t assume that SEO is taken care of just because they’re working with a professional web developer. It might not be. In fact, a web developer could be making mistakes that are actually harming SEO. Here are a few of the top mistakes web developers make when it comes to SEO:

Creating a “text-lite” site

While a minimalist design that utilizes mostly imagery to convey a purpose might look nice to human visitors, it’s not telling the search engine spiders much which means that it will have a hard time ranking for priority keywords. We get it, big sections of “clunky” text might not be attractive, but it’s serving a huge SEO purpose. Find a happy medium of text for SEO and imagery that isn’t going to slow a site down. Avoid high resolution images, large image and video files, and flash.

Adding the same title and meta description to all pages

Every page of a website should have a unique title and meta description that incorporates keywords. We see so many sites that have “Company X” as the title tag across all pages of the site and filler text or no text at all within the meta description. Most web developers know this needs to be customized, but it’s not typically their job to write it, so they leave it like this thinking that the website owner will make the necessary changes. Unfortunately, many don’t. Advise your web developers what the title and meta descriptions should be before the site is launched or as changes are being made.

Forgetting about tracking code

Website performance should be monitored just like any other marketing activity. The web developer should be adding Google Analytics code to every page of the website and verifying the website in Google Search Console. If the website has a lead form, they should set up tracking within Google Analytics in order to see where leads are coming from.

Removing pages/not 301 redirecting

Sometimes a website needs a facelift and older pages might not be relevant anymore. But they shouldn’t just disappear and send visitors to an error page. Any time a page is removed from a website it should be 301 redirected to an active page of the site, which preserves SEO link trust and also provides a good user experience.

Web developers and SEOs exist in the same “world” but their job functions aren’t the same. If you’re working with a web developer, no matter how great they are, you need to make sure that you’re also watching out for your SEO. It’s worthwhile to hire an SEO professional to work with the web developer in order to keep your SEO best interests in mind.

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