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4 Online Marketing Mistakes You Need to Avoid in 2014

Internet marketing is always changing. What worked even just a few months ago might not work today. In fact, it might hurt you. As Google continues to evolve and tweak its algorithm, maintaining a strong search engine presence is getting tougher, requiring marketers to resort to unconventional and unfamiliar SEO tasks to keep up.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make sure your online marketing strategy is on point in the new year. It all starts with making sure you’re avoiding these 4 major mistakes.

Mistake #1: Focusing your link building on quantity instead of quality

Remember back in the day when the key to ranking well in Google was essentially to amass as many links pointing back to your website as possible? It was especially helpful if those links had keyword-rich anchor text. Well, times have changed, and Google is taking aim at sites using shady link building practices to inflate their rankings.

These days, building tons of links from low quality article directories and other similar sources just doesn’t work anymore. In fact, it can actually hurt your rankings. Google’s head of webspam Matt Cutts said, “In my particular opinion, [using] article directories, I wouldn’t necessarily count on that being effective. It’s probably a little less likely to be successful now as compared to a few years ago.”

The reason for this is that Google wants to see links that are natural and that come from relevant, trusted sites. These are the types of links that count as endorsements and can help with your rankings. Having tons of forced links from low-quality sources won’t do you any good.

Mistake #2: Stuffing keywords

It’s 2014 and we’re still talking about keyword stuffing. The problem is that some SEOs are still doing it. They stuff keywords in their Title Tags, all throughout their content, in all of their links, and so on. It’s overkill, and it doesn’t work anymore. Yes, keywords still have their place, but you don’t need to obsess with cramming them in anywhere you can.

Of course, you might find keyword stuffing a bit more challenging in 2014 anyway since Google made the decision to cut off keyword data altogether. Now, you’re no longer able to track which keywords visitors are searching to find your website. While Google is doing this to provide a more secure search for its users, it’s also fair to say that the search engine is exploring ways to make keywords a bit less vital to its algorithm.

Mistake #3: Not creating a variety of great content

You’re probably tired of hearing the phrase by now, but it’s still as true today as it was years ago: Content is king. Now, more than ever before, it’s important that you’re providing your users with the very best content you’re capable of creating. Google wants to provide its users with the most useful results possible, and they place a high value on websites that create a great user experience.

That’s why it’s so crucial that you focus on your content strategy in 2014. Give your users interesting content that they can’t find anywhere else, and give them variety, too. Use everything at your disposal –blog posts, infographics, slide shows, videos, animations…you name it. Variety is one of the keys to effective content marketing in 2014.

Mistake #4: Not doing the social media push

Social media plays a huge role in online marketing today. Regardless of how exactly it influences search rankings, the fact is that social media is the best tool available for getting your content found and for connecting with your customers in a meaningful way.

Expect social media to become increasingly important in determining search engine rankings, as content that gets a lot of shares and has proven worth will outperform that which doesn’t have a strong social media presence.

In 2014, you need to really focus on integrating social media into your overall online marketing strategy. Make your content easy to share, and start building up your own social media presence.

If you can avoid these 4 costly online marketing mistakes in 2014, you’ll already have a leg up on most of the competition!

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Eric Long

Eric Long is an internet marketing expert who has been working with small business clients for more than 10 years. Eric knows that one of the keys to online marketing success is to always stay on the cutting edge of the latest trends and developments, so you don’t get left behind.

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