What’s Holding Back Your SEO Success?

Peter A. Liefer II | Posted: May 15th, 2024 | Updated: June 21st, 2024

Ahrefs revealed that 96.55% of content receives zero organic traffic from Google, and only a tiny fraction, roughly 1.94%, manages to attract between one and ten monthly visits.

What are the causes of low search traffic? How can your web pages escape that 96.55% bubble of seclusion? The answer: Addressing the common barriers to SEO success.


Factors Slowing Your SEO Growth

Despite investing time and resources into improving your website’s visibility, you might find your SEO progress sluggish. Here are some often overlooked reasons why your SEO efforts might not be delivering the desired results.


1. Bad Site Architecture

Your website’s structure can make or break your SEO success. Poor site architecture can hinder search engine crawlers from indexing your site, leading to lower rankings. Conversely, a clean and organized site structure, faultless sitemaps and robots.txt files, optimized site speed, and reliable servers increase crawl efficiency. Good website architecture with intuitive navigation also enhances user experience, which can contribute to higher engagement rates and lower bounce rates.

From Bad to Good Site Architecture

Here’s a checklist to improve your site architecture and SEO:

  • Organize your website’s pages and content with a clear, logical hierarchy.
  • Ensure every web page is accessible within three clicks from the homepage.
  • Use internal links to connect content and improve navigation.
  • Implement breadcrumbs to guide users and indicate their location on the site.
  • Craft descriptive, keyword-rich URLs instead of using random numbers or letters.
  • Use XML sitemaps to assist search engines in understanding your site’s structure.


2. Poor Mobile Optimization

As mobile devices account for 58.21% of internet traffic, mobile optimization can seal the fate of your SEO efforts. Google’s mobile-first indexing means search engines prioritize a site’s mobile version in search rankings. Unoptimized sites can see a conversion drop of up to 20% for each second delay in mobile page load. Moreover, 74% of users are less likely to revisit a site lacking mobile optimization.

From Unfriendly to Mobile-Friendly

a person holding a mobile phone

How to ensure your website is accessible to mobile users:

  • Implement a responsive design that accommodates various screen sizes and resolutions.
  • Optimize images and videos to load fast on smaller screens.
  • Ensure buttons and links do not hit other elements when clicked.
  • Choose easy-to-read fonts.
  • Use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Testing Tool.


3. Thin or Duplicate Content

High-quality, original content is a deciding factor for SEO growth. Thin content, which offers little value, and duplicate content that already exists elsewhere can harm your rankings and hurt your credibility.

Search engines love original, high-quality content. If your site has non-informative content or the same content somewhere on the World Wide Web, search engine giants like Google and Bing may flag you for thin or duplicate content.

From Uninformative and Unoriginal to High-Quality and Unique

Publish some of the best content on the internet with these tips:

  • Focus on producing in-depth, valuable content that answers users’ questions.
  • Use Google Search Console to identify, correct, and eliminate thin or duplicate content.
  • Use canonical links to help search engines decide which version of a page to display, particularly if you have similar content across several pages.
  • Hire a human editor to fact-check, improve, and humanize any AI-written content.
  • Regularly update and expand existing content.


4. No Local SEO Strategy 

Absent or inconsistent business information across directories can do a number on local search rankings.

Let’s say you’re a financial advisor based in Phoenix, AZ. You wouldn’t want your website to pop up when someone in Miami, FL looks up “top financial advisor near me,” right? You also wouldn’t want to be invisible to Phoenix residents—a.k.a. your target audience. Local SEO can zero in on specific geographic regions and help your local business connect with nearby customers.

From ‘Cannot Find Business’ to a Local Gem

To ensure your website appears when prospects search for your products or services:

  • Claim and optimize your Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business).
  • Make your NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) consistent across all platforms.
  • Encourage customer reviews and respond appropriately to boost local credibility.
  • Add location-specific words in your web page titles, meta descriptions, and content.
  • Include a Google Map on your site to pinpoint your business location.


5. Technical SEO Problems

Failure to address technical SEO issues is a surefire way to slow SEO progress—and maybe even kill your chances of success.

From Tech-Challenged to SEO Savvy

Solve common technical SEO problems by ensuring:

  • A fast-loading website on all devices
  • No 404 errors or broken links
  • No broken images
  • Proper indexing permissions in robots.txt file
  • An error-free sitemap.xml file
  • Correctly configured redirects
  • SSL certification


6. Bad Online Reputation

Having too many negative reviews can taint your reputation and trustworthiness. In a survey by BrightLocal, 50% of consumers think of reviews as personal recommendations from loved ones. Furthermore, 94% of consumers are unlikely to spend their money on a business with one (yes, one) negative review. If your ratings on Google and other review sites are poor, you are derailing your own SEO growth.

From Untrustworthy to Highly Recommended

Effective ways to improve your online rep:


7. Not Enough Backlinks

a laptop screen displaying the google homepage

Backlinks are a cornerstone of SEO, acting as endorsements from other sites. Without a strong backlink profile, your site may struggle to rank competitively. According to Search Logistics, the top-ranking page on Google has 3.8x more backlinks compared to pages ranking in positions #2 to #10.

From Insufficient to High-Quality Backlinks

Here are some strategic link-building ideas to get you started:

  • Publish shareable content (that naturally attracts backlinks.
  • Reach out to authoritative sites for guest blogging opportunities.
  • Try the “broken link building” strategy, where you identify broken links on other sites and sell the idea of using your content as a replacement.
  • Publish “skyscraper content,” which involves identifying the most popular topics in your niche, producing better quality than your competitors, and building backlinks from authority sites.
  • Follow expert tips on how to build quality links.


Achieve SEO Growth with PrimeView

Experiencing and maintaining SEO success requires long-term, consistent effort. You must keep tracking, measuring, analyzing, adjusting, then doing it all over again to check all the boxes.

If you need help addressing the common pitfalls and implementing the suggested solutions, you can count on us to enhance your website’s performance, drive more organic traffic, and surpass your competitors on search engine results pages. Contact us for a free quote.