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February 8, 2012

7 Things NOT to Waste Your Time On When Doing SEO – A SEO-News Exclusive Article

Time is precious. They say “time is money,” but I think it’s even more than that. In this post, I would like to talk about the SEO practices that are a complete waste of time.

Before writing the post, I simply sat down and penned my SEO experiences. As a beginner, I used to waste a lot of time on different SEO methods that later on turned out quite useless. So, I made a list of those. I’ve also “interviewed” some of my SEO buddies and included their piece of advice in this post, too. So, what I would like to present to you is our distilled wisdom. Enjoy!

It is NO use:

1. Hanging Out at SEO Blogs/Forums

Ironically, this is what you are doing now, aren’t you? Well, it’s not the same, and let me explain why. There is a difference between CHOOSING to read a blog post or a forum thread that looks really helpful (this is what experienced SEO’s do) and simply reading everything in sight to stay informed about everything at all times.

I remember the days when I used to read every reply in a forum thread that I started, even when I already knew the answer to the question I had asked in the thread. I was just curious! So, guess what, I don’t have the time for curiosity anymore.

Also, one of my SEO buddies had volunteered to moderate an SEO forum. He thought it was gonna be fun, but it turned out to be extremely time-consuming. Well, if you have nothing better to do, you might as well do that.

2. Commenting on SEO Blogs/Forums

First, let me make myself clear and say that I do NOT mean using blog/forum commenting for SEO purposes, I mean using it for commenting purposes. Like, sometimes you’d get caught up in a heated discussion, especially when the “wow, I didn’t know that” stage is over, and you can give your opinion on different SEO matters, and you don’t hesitate to do it. So, this just eats up your valuable time and doesn’t really do anything for you.

3. Thinking That Manual is Better

To all of you perfectionists, double-checkers and sure-makers out there, I’d like to say that manual is seldom better. At least not when it comes to SEO. Many of my SEO friends, including me, say that, as SEO newbies, they had tried to do everything by hand. Partially, that was striving for better quality, and, partially, it was not trusting the SEO tools.

Anyhow, once they did try SEO software, they never got back to the olden do-it-yourself ways, ever. The general principle here is, if there IS a tool that can do it FOR you (like, a rank checker), go for it. Will save you loads of time.

4. Submitting to Crappy Article Directories

One of the SEO managers I know admitted that she used to spend a lot of time submitting to crappy article directories. Later on, she discovered that article marketing was all about quality, not quantity; that it was better to find fewer better-targeted, perhaps even paid directories and submit there.

5. Spinning Content

Another friend of mine did a lot of article submission, too. But those were not unique articles, but spun articles that were being submitted to hundreds of directories on the Web. At some point, he realized that writing and promoting one unique and useful article had a much bigger impact on site rankings, than spamming the Web with hundreds of “clones.”

6. Doing Manual Link Exchange

When I was still a beginner, the way I used to do link building was one link at a time. I would find a site, offer to exchange links, write “best regards” at the end of each email – Hah, now, when I think about it, it seems just so ridiculous.

I don’t do that any longer, of course. I now use SEO tools like LinkAssistant and SEO SpyGlass to build links. I now sometimes build 100 backlinks a day, with very little effort on my part.

7. Keyword Stuffing

One of the SEO’s, who I have great respect for said that he used to engage in keyword stuffing at the beginning of his career. He just wanted to rank faster for his major keywords, you see.

Well, of course, that affected content quality. His bounce rates went up, and the rankings went down. So, my acquaintance decided to work on interlinking instead! He provided useful links between different pages of his site. This worked both ways: to help SEO and to improve user experience. Users began following those links and, as the result, were staying longer on the site.

So, this is it. Are you practicing any of the above-mentioned techniques? If you are, take our word, they are not worth it! There is a saying that goes like ‘a smart man learns from his mistakes; a wise man learns from the mistakes of others.’ So, be wise and save your precious time!

Alesya is a blogger and a marketing manager at Link-Assistant.Com, a leading SEO software provider and the maker of award-winning SEO PowerSuite tools. Link-Assistant.Com’s SEO tools have set industry’s benchmark for automated link building and Web promotion.