ActiveRain Tutorials: Are You Over Optimizing Your Website?

Are You Over Optimizing Your Website?

Life RingWhile search engine optimization plays such a crucial role in how well your business does online, one of the ever increasing issues I see from various SEO companies is the over optimization on customers websites. While there is great importance in having the SEO information done properly on your website, it is even more important that things do not go overboard. Going overboard can result in a website being either penalized greatly or possibly even banned from search results.

Also, search engine optimization is not a quick fix for any website. If your results come that quick, more than likely you are doing something in a way you shouldn't, and that will catch up to you in just a matter of time. So, be careful in who you hire to do your SEO work. Don't trust those that promise the world for just some dollars. Get involved and be a part of making your website effective. Ask specific questions as to what they are going to do to make your rank better. Don't let them just decide on some random keywords, but ask what type of traffic those keywords get each month.

Whenever I do SEO work for a client, I provide them with a spreadsheet showing them the monthly search of many of the keywords related to their business. Not only is this helpful for the initial setup, but this list is also very handy when you are trying to find topics to blog about or just know what keyword phrase to use in the post. I once had a client that by changing one word in the keyword phrase increased the popularity of searches from 180/month to 8,800/month.

Google Doesn't Like Over Optimization

When I hear someone say a site is over optimized, I immediately think either someone doesn't know what they are doing, or they are trying to use some less than honorable black/grey SEO tricks to push a site up the search engines. While this might do what they are looking for and push that website to page 1 of Google quickly, the site will inevitably be found by Google and penalized. If you remember back a few months ago, I shared about the JC Penney debacle and how when they were caught by Google, the penalties took them from #1 in the results to not even being found on the first 5+ pages.

Whenever I build a custom WordPress Site for a client, I make sure to try and follow all of these guidelines as close as possible to keep my clients from danger. Does it make the process of reaching page one results take longer? Yes, but I'd rather it take more time of them writing good quality blog posts and sharing valuable content that lasts for years than get instant results that end up being banned in just a few months. Post that I wrote over four years ago on an old blog of mine still bring business to me today.

My main site 210 Consulting ranks well in the search engines for several keywords and I've never once paid for SEO work. Instead, I've simply taken the time to write blog posts that are search engine friendly, and done the work on my own of building good quality backlinks through guest blogging, commenting on other sites, and other good SEO tactics.

If you would like more information on how to write blogs for search engines feel free to contact me and we can schedule a coaching session to get your site started in the direction of page one of the search engines to stay.

I'm a full time Myrtle Beach Real Estate Agent that focuses on homes for sale in Myrtle Beach and Carolina Forest Real Estate.


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I am also the Co-Founder of 210 Consulting- Social Media Advisors.  I have traveled the country as a social media speaker.  If you would like more information on any of the topics discussed in this blog, please contact me directly.  We specialize in social media training, online consulting, and the creation of your own custom WordPress site.


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Comment balloon 41 commentsJeremy Blanton • April 09 2012 02:37PM


We had a talk this morning on the power of videos.  Youtube has set a trend that is changing marketing.

Posted by Jeff Jensen (The Federal Savings Bank/Lending in 50 states) over 8 years ago

Yeah...I have no idea if I'm over optimized or not. This is all a mystery to me.

Posted by Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner, Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395 (Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395) over 8 years ago

I know I earned my way to page one organically and without paying anyone but AR.  Worked hard, worked great, and all it takes is time and energy.

Posted by Florida Tolbert Team Keller Williams Advantage, Keller Williams Land Luxury Division Specialist (Keller Williams Advantage III Realty in Lake Nona) over 8 years ago

Great info, I just saw something else on this also.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) over 8 years ago

I can echo what Kevin said----content, content, content---with a minor in keywording.

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 8 years ago

I think you are all so right - content is king, but done with the keywords in mind, right - Jeremy?

Posted by Dagny Eason, Fairfield County CT, CDPE Homes For Sale and Condo (Dagny's Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Jeremy - Great blog and even better video. I too have been all about content but it isn't as easy as just AR for me. It's hard work and SEO. And still it's tough. I'm going against a lot of grey and black sites and it's driving me to drink at times. But your video is a great wake up call to many out there.

Posted by Charlie Dresen, Steamboat Springs, CO e-Pro (Steamboat Sotheby's International Realty) over 8 years ago

True that with Dagny's comment, right words. One should check to see how many times those words are uses and how popular they are.  the word real estate is so generic that it will get you nowhere.  Its wise to do some research on that or pay Jeremy to do it for you. He didn't pay me to say that, lol.


Posted by Cathy Criado, Making Real Estate Profitable (Criado Realty ) over 8 years ago

But, Jeremy, you don't want to nix those ridiculously stupid "I'm the expert" comments, do you?!  I 'stalk' one of the FB 'advice' forums and am shocked at the comments that the 'experts' make.  What's even more sad is that many agents believe their sales 'pitch'... until they have them build a site and then the site won't rank!

Love your vids!

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, The right Charlotte REALTOR! ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 8 years ago

I would agree that there is a very fine line.  Unfortunately many supposed SEO specialists step over it or just don't understand it at all. Great video and great info Jeremy!

Posted by Rebekah Radice, Social Media Marketing, Coaching & Training (Imagine WOW! Digital Marketing Agency) over 8 years ago

Hi Jeremy, I also do keyword searches to see what would benefit my websites. It works and it's not over optimized. I did a new website a few weeks ago and submitted it. Now I am keeping track to see when it kicks in onto Google. My main website gets a good amount of visitors and repeat visitors.

Posted by Jackie Connelly-Fornuff, "Moving at The Speed of YOU!" (Douglas Elliman Real Estate in Babylon NY) over 8 years ago

Great article Jeremy. While there are some legit / safe strategies that can help speed up the ranking process, you're right that it generally does take some time still. So be leary of those who claim 1st page rankings in 'to good to be true' time frames!

Posted by Nic Transtrum (It never hurts to know the owner @ ) over 8 years ago


Thank You for posting this! I am always trying to learn more about how to do better.

Keep the great videos coming!


Congrats on being featured!

congratulations jeremy

Posted by TODD PICCONI 909.908.7376 PASSIONATE ABOUT YOURMOVE, Patient, Persistent and Passionate About Your Move (TODD PICCONI REAL ESTATE) over 8 years ago

Jeremy: Can you write a blog post that explains to people that they need to clear their cache or search incognito if they really want to see how their blog would fair. I've seen several people who boast being on page one, yet I notice that they show up on page one because they are logged into Google. There's reality and a skewed version of it. Thanks for your tips here.

Posted by Melissa Zavala, Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County (Broadpoint Properties) over 8 years ago

LOL Melissa!  I just might need to do that :)

Wow Cathy thanks for the recommendation!

Posted by Jeremy Blanton, Myrtle Beach REALTOR®- (Myrtle Beach Homes Blog) over 8 years ago

I'm sure I'm one of the least optimized people on the the planet. I really need to get to work on this stuff, right after RETSO!

Posted by Eric Michael, Metro Detroit Real Estate Professional 734.564.1519 (Remerica Integrity, Realtors®, Northville, MI) over 8 years ago

Jeremy -- This is an very informative post.. I must say I never had contemplated that a  web sit could be over optimized.

Posted by Joan Whitebook, Consumer Focused Real Estate Services (BHG The Masiello Group) over 8 years ago

Good commonsense post about not going over the deep end with a ridiculous amount of SEO trickery.

Posted by Jill Sackler, LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate (Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500) over 8 years ago

I probably have over done some of them and undercooked a few ...  Thanks Jeremy

Posted by 1~Judi Barrett, BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK (Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745) over 8 years ago
Jeremy, I paid an SEO 'guru' one time and they took lots of money but left or site worse off than when we were muddling on our own. You I would trust. You know what you are doing. They are con men. Sharon
Posted by Sharon Alters, Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL (Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308) over 8 years ago

Yeah, I've thought about it being a tough thing when it's fake SEO so to speak.

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) over 8 years ago

Wow, I had no idea this was even possible. Great information for all of us who are currently obsessed with SEO.


Posted by Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate, Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs (Kelly Right Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Always good tips from you.

Thanks for sharing them.

Posted by Anthony Daniels, SF Bay Area REO Specialist (Coldwell Banker) over 8 years ago

Excellent post, Jeremy.    SEO is both a Science and an Art.

Posted by Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) over 8 years ago

I've seen over optimization in our market and sure enough, sites going up to the top of page 1 drop down after a month or two.

Posted by Hawaii homes (Century 21 iProperties Hawaii) over 8 years ago

I'm usually wondering what is "over" and what is "not enough" but since my site ranks well organically, I'm hoping that mine is "just right."  At least for the past 4 years, it's been working well ... but one never knows when Google is going to change their criteria and algorithms.

Posted by Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging, "Staging Consultations that Sell Portland Homes" (Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR) over 8 years ago

I'm not real sure where the perfect optimization is, but if I can write content that ranks high that's good. If I can inch it up by doing some things differently, that's better. I am far short of any keyword stuffing, so I think I am safe.  :)

Enjoyed the post, congrats on the feature Jeremy.

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage Mobile - 916-765-5366) over 8 years ago

What do you consider over optimization? Is it regards to on page or off page seo? From what I have been seeing, you can definitely be penalised for spammy off page seo and if your site comes under manual review, that is where bad onpage seo can harm your site. 

Posted by Ciara Brennan (Mass Homes Realty) over 8 years ago
I learned a few terms here. I like the second to last paragraph best about search friendly posts and back links.
Posted by Cheryl Ritchie, Southern Maryland 301-980-7566 (RE/MAX Leading Edge over 8 years ago

Thank you for the information. I learned some new things here.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 8 years ago

Great advice Jeremy.  What's interesting to me is that when I look at the key words titles used for those above me, they are usually pretty focused.  I'm now thinking of doing a couple of small focused niche sites for this reason hoping to rank better on 2 key search terms.  Hoping it will work.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 8 years ago

This is great information.  I think many of us struggle with get opitmization right.  If what you are being told by an expert sounds too good to be true, beware.

Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) over 8 years ago

Getting your SEO is still on my "to do" list for the year.  I tend to rank well but I know my website would do much better with a little tweaking.

Posted by Bryan Robertson over 8 years ago

A pro discussing what he does and why always proves to be in point. thank you

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 8 years ago

Definitely learned some interesting aspects here that I didn't know about before. 

Posted by Morgan Evans, LICENSED REAL ESTATE SALESPERSON (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Jeremy, this is a very useful tip. I will go over my site to see if I am guilty of this. Thanks.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA over 8 years ago

Hi Jeremy,  Great topic and certainly important to the AR family.  I understand what you are saying but still not sure what is and what isn't overly optimized.  You gave one example in the vid, any more come to mind ?

Posted by Bill Gillhespy, Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos (16 Sunview Blvd) over 8 years ago

Hey Bill,  here are 3 places I see things going overboard:

1.  Title Section

2.  Description Section

3.  Keyword Section

Posted by Jeremy Blanton, Myrtle Beach REALTOR®- (Myrtle Beach Homes Blog) over 8 years ago

Hi Jeremy, it sounds like finding the right combination may be a little tricky. Is there a rule to go by?

Posted by Sandy Acevedo, RE/MAX Masters, Inland Empire Homes for Sale (951-290-8588) over 8 years ago

Hi Jeremy--great post.  Ever since I had my new website completed I have been working with people who understand this.  Also glad for some more insight!

Posted by Janet Jones, Home Staging, Interior Redesign Kihei, Maui, Hawaii (Just Your Style Interiors, LLC) over 8 years ago

Thanks for sharing, I never really considered the thought of over optimization....

Posted by Markita Woods NMLS#196099, Queen of Mortgages - FHA, VA, Conventional, USDA (Fairway Independent Mortgage) over 8 years ago