Top 8 SEO Mistakes to Avoid for Increasing Traffic in 2021

Phillip Stemann
6 min readMay 25, 2021


In 2021, search engine optimisation or SEO is the name of the game. Anyone who has an online business has heard about it. Many marketers and company owners are frustrated by the lack of results from their SEO strategy. It’s shocking to see how easy it is to avoid these common mistakes.

If you are struggling with getting traffic on your website then just keep on reading. In this post, I will discuss 8 common mistakes and how you can avoid them to increase traffic on your website!

Mistake 1: Using SEO without a clear goal

SEO strategy needs to be clearly defined in order to achieve your specific goals. However, many business owners and marketers conduct SEO efforts with no specific objectives in mind. They feel that by implementing SEO, they would be able to boost their traffic, which would lead to an increase in sales. The trouble is that using any SEO technique is futile unless you know your goal.

You must know what you want to achieve in order for your SEO efforts to pay off. For example, suppose your goal is to drive traffic to your website in order to increase your sales. Your SEO then needs to ensure that you are driving the correct traffic, ones who are interested in the product and have the ability to buy. Using SEO simply to increase traffic will not serve your goal.

Mistake 2: Failing to conduct regular audits

An SEO audit is the process of determining how well your website complies with best practises; it is the first stage in developing a quantifiable implementation strategy. The goal of the audit is to find as many core faults as possible that influence organic search performance.

There are various steps in an SEO audit process such as checking the page speed, crawlability, keyword use and research, meta data analysis. You can either conduct SEO audit yourself or use free tools such as SEOptimer.

Most website owners create content and then forget about it. Instead, you need to ensure that your website is audited regularly to have the maximum optimisation. This will help you in identifying the weak points to increase traffic in the future.

Mistake 3: Focusing on quantity over quality

It is a common practice to upload more keywords and backlinks thinking that the more there is the better. While this might be true for lots of things in life, it does not work for SEO.

Although having more backlinks used to imply higher ranks, this is no longer the case. You’ll find that new sites with only a few connections are outranking older authoritative sites these days. What is the reason behind this? It’s simple — they have more relevant backlinks. With Google’s algorithm upgrade, the quality of links matters more than the quantity. The same applies to the keywords used in a website. Stuffing keywords on your website will not help in increasing search rank. Instead, you need to pick a few relevant keywords which will actually interest your target audience.

Mistake 4: Failing to optimise for mobile phones

A lot of website owners make the mistake of only optimising the website for desktop and forgetting about the mobile traffic altogether. This is a big mistake as billions of users search the web through their phones.

You need to ensure that your website is mobile phone friendly. To do this, run a check on your page speed, pop ups, design and reconsider how it will affect a mobile user.

Mistake 5: Failing to define search intent

The phrase “search intent” is used to define the goal of an internet search. It’s the reason why someone searches for something specific. It can be of four types: informational, navigational, transactional and commercial. For example, if someone searches for “freelancing”, then the search intent is likely to gain more information about the area of work. However, if someone searches “hire freelancer”, then they are more likely to have a commercial intent of hiring someone.

You want to ensure that the landing page matches your audience’s search intent. You don’t want to show a product page to those who are looking for information. Similarly, you don’t want to waste time giving information to someone who is ready to shop.

Mistake 6: Forgetting about the content

With all the talk that has been going on about backlinks and keyword, it’s almost as if content has taken a back seat. Simply relying on a lot of backlinks and keywords will only set you for failure — you need to provide good quality content in order to succeed in the long run.

Links are only a piece of the issue; they are not the entire solution. You can build a massive link profile, but you’ll be wasting your time and money unless you supplement it with content marketing, social signals, and excellent website optimisation.

Mistake 7: Forgetting about server issues

The HTTP status of a website is frequently linked to the most serious technical difficulties. Error 404 (Page not found) is an example of a status code that indicates the server’s response to a request from a client, such as a browser or search engine. Serious server problems can result in not only lost traffic due to unavailable content, but they can also harm your rankings in the long term if Google is unable to identify any relevant results on your site for the searcher.

You can run a few simple steps to avoid server issues. Make sure that your internal and external links are not broken. Leading users to incorrect or non-functioning pages will have a negative impact on your website. Also, make sure that your website response time isn’t too long and your server isn’t denying access. Response time of 200–350ms is considered fast while 400–700ms is average.

Mistake 8: Failing to answer readers’ questions

It should come as no surprise that the best websites are those which satisfactorily answer the questions of the readers. So the more you research on the questions being asked, the better suited you will be to provide good quality content which will increase traffic on you website.

Before writing an article, you should research for what readers are looking for most and then create content accordingly. For example, with research you can find out that your audience is searching for questions such as, “What are common SEO mistakes?”. You can create content accordingly and guarantee that your content will be read widely.


So there you go! Those are the 8 most common mistakes related to SEO. Here’s a quick round up of what we discussed.

Never develop an SEO strategy without a clear goal! Remember — goal first, SEO later. Think of your website as a growing baby. You can’t just publish it and forget about it. Keep auditing it and make changes as required. When you’re writing, your focus should be on quality of content, keywords and backlinks. Simply increasing the quantity will only harm you in the long run. Once you have written, make sure the content is easily accessible. Billions of users access websites through mobile phones. Optimising the website for mobile is necessary.

Before writing, make sure you research and provide content according to satisfy the search intent. Different users are looking different outcomes and you need to provide accordingly. You need to know what your audience wants so you can deliver accordingly. While optimising, remember to focus on your content as it is extremely important and can never take a back seat. You can drive traffic to your website through keywords but need good content to retain it.

As SEO strategy and design trends often change, it is important to keep updating your website accordingly! It’s important to remember that SEO strategies can only work if you holistically improve your website. Simply focusing on a part of the puzzle will not get you anywhere.



Phillip Stemann

I am a web developer with 10+ years of experience. I believe that every project existing in the digital world is a result of an idea and every idea has a cause.