SEO Checklist 2021 | Don’t Gamble your ranking with wrong SEO

People using a black hat is something you must have heard, which is unethical. It merely means that you are going against Google’s guidelines. While seeking SEO services, you need to be extremely careful not to get a company that uses scammy SEO methodsSEO expert Los Angeles is renowned for using only the white hat ways. Once caught while using unorthodox methods to manipulate the search engine, it will be detrimental to your website. It will not only destroy your ranking, but your site may get black-listed. We have made an SEO checklist that includes major bad practices that you should avoid in order to be safe.

Using duplicate content

Top of the SEO checklist we have content duplication. Duplicating your content to your other page is a wrong SEO. We say it’s not right; it’s because the content may have gotten indexed, and you will be showing it again to the search engine with nothing new. But if indexing has not happened, the search engine will get confused about which content to index. However, if you feel that it has essential information that needs to get across your page, you need to indicate “no index and no follow.” At least that way, your site won’t have a negative SEO impact. Other ways to fix duplicity include;

  • Avoid creating duplicate content, and you will be safe.
  • If you have duplicate content, redirect it to the canonical URL, or
  • Add the canonical link to your duplicate page, or
  • Add an HTML link from your duplicate page to the official page.
  • Although you won’t get penalized for having duplicate content, only one version gets to be indexed.

Avoid cloaking

Avoid cloaking  SEO checklist

After content duplication, we have Cloaking second on the SEO checklist. For your better understanding, cloaking is the act of hiding a link’s destination. It is a practice considered risky and wrong. Help your users and search engine to differentiate the content and ads of your website. This practice will make your site look untrustworthy because the way it presents information to the user is not the same way it shows the search engine. An excellent example of this is when you choose to serve a search engine with an HTML text while showing your users images instead.

Cloaking should never be an option. Offer valuable content to both your users and the search engine. Otherwise, you will be risking to permanently remove your site from Google indexing and other search engines.

Ignoring Google’s webmaster tools

The reason why Google developed its webmaster tools is to enable smooth communication with webmasters. Get enriched with your website’s information that will help you understand your site better. That will be easy to identify what might be affecting your ranking. Some of those may include wrong links, duplicate titles, crawl errors, and many more. Nevertheless, using an SEO expert can be a good idea. They will easily find the technical problems on your site and fix them all.

Five of Google’s webmaster tools

Ignoring Google's webmaster tools , SEO checklist

Below are five of Google’s webmaster tools that you need to embrace:

Screaming frog :

it helps you identify some critical SEO elements you might have missed. For example, big file images causing a slow page load, missed page title and meta description, pagination issues, errors appearing in response codes or URLs.

Google Analytics

some of the issues that this free tool can help you identify include traffic and penalties.

Page Speed Insight:

It is a Google tool that can help you find your website’s speed. However, you may require professional help to solve your site’s speed, such as SEO expert Los Angeles.

SEMRush: 

When you want to check on why your competitors are ranking better than you, or do a keyword search, SEMRush is your tool.

Ahrefs: 

It is such a popular tool for doing link analysis. You only need to use a site’s link profile to know how they are building their backlinks strategy. 

Buying all kinds of links

Buying all kinds of links

Most people would rather buy links instead of waiting to build natural backlinks. It is a wrong shortcut that is not advisable because it is a black hat practice. It might seem favourable at the start but will later result in losing your rankings.

The reason why Google rules out 75% of a search result is a lack of credibility. One of those reasons is finding a site that cheated to get on top through bought links. That denies a page that had organic links, to get a higher ranking.

As per Google’s Penguin update, webmasters that build links using the paid ones will get penalized. By all means, avoid them.

Bad blogging comments

bad blog links or comments

 Unfortunately, spam comments are something that most bloggers experience. And how does this happen? Those who practice black hat can use semi or automated bots to post over a thousand comments to thousands of sites in a day. It is an attempt done to build backlinks and add traffic to other websites. However, it is likely to pollute your blog posts, affecting your page ranking. As bad as it gets, Google will read your page’s negative signal, which will impact your site authority.

Google will also smell a rat on your site if you combine low-quality links with treacherous keywords associated with spam.

The solution

First thing first, moderate comments.

Platforms like HubSpot provide you with an email notification comment that has to get approved before allowing publishing.

Since they may try to snag the spam comments using inappropriate language, use a strong spam filter.

Enabling a formal comment policy in your site lets your user know which discussions you will allow on your website.

Lastly, a developer such as  SEO expert Los Angeles can help you disable links in your blog comments. Although text URLs might remain, the experts will work out how they won’t click over to the various sites.

Keyword stuffing

Keywords Stuffing SEO checklist

Does keyword stuffing have a positive effect? Well, it might have some short-term, but it’s a risky business. Your page might get lower ranking, or even get removed. That’s because keyword stuffing is a black hat tactic. Matt Cutts issued a warning to the webmaster about stuffing keywords.

keywords stuffing SEO checklist

Google dislikes anything that is not “user intent,” such as keyword stuffing. Most of the black hat tactics purpose to beat the search engine algorithm, instead of focusing on user experience.

It is essential to know how you should use your keyword despite all the talk of stuffing. The remedy is to put your focus on the user rather than the search engine. The best way to do it is to keep a keyword density that ranges from 2 to 5 percent. Also, consider using a longtail keyword with three to four words that spice up your content.

Using a synonym is safer, according to Google. They reward the sites that use them because they help it stay relevant.

Guest blogging

guest blogging | SEO checklist

One of the best ways to secure your backlinks to your website is through guest blogging. However, it’s prudent to do it right and avoid cheap methods.

What you need to do;

Spammy blog: it does pay to write unique content, don’t relent. 

Avoid using the word “guest posts” Search engine doesn’t have to know what it is. What value most is the relevance of your content on the website.

Contextual links: rather than having your relationships in an author profile, keep them within your content.

Market your brand: use your brand’s name on an anchor text, and it will help you build a natural link.

Focus on the end-user instead: writing a quality content that resonates with the user, and solves their problem is what you need. Don’t ignore them, instead answer and reply to their comments promptly.

Page deletes

Once you delete your page or URLs, you won’t get ranked on those keywords anymore. That can be risky, especially if you still need their keyword ranking. If it’s a product page, you cease to carry, what you should put on the page is an alternative message of what other products replaced the previous one. It is safer to do this since you won’t be deleting the URLs or the page.

For page consolidating, you should ensure the old URL 301 shows a redirect to the new URL. That as well need to cover all the keywords that were on the previous page. And it will be a smart move that saves your keywords without disappointing your users too.

Don’t Use spammy structured data

Using a spammy structured data SEO checklist 2020

Structured data tells the search engines of the rich-information that needs to appear on the search result page. However, some people manipulate the data to get the search engine to display the wrong information to the search page. If caught up, this is something that can severely hurt your page.

One of the most abused schema markups is telling the users that your product has five-star reviews when they click on them, they find nothing. To combat this, Google started banning such sites abusing the structured data.

Once your site gets banned, you will try to recover it by convincing Google that;

  • You have removed the misleading code.
  • That kind of practice won’t happen again.


In conclusion, although pulling the black hat ways might sometimes work, avoid them. Not because you will get caught, but the fact that they are unethical. Don’t struggle alone and gamble with the SEO ranking that will later harm your site. Use the right SEO experts Los Angeles who will use the white hat methods. Because if you don’t adhere to Google’s guideline, they will eventually remove your site from the result page. That can be a significant loss to your site

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *