Bad SEO Practices from Donald Trump: What Not To Do
Donald Trump, President of the United States of America.
Who would have ever thought?
Learn what not to do from some of Donald Trump’s bad SEO practices during his online campaign.
Judging by the levels of pandemonium being experienced throughout the US and even at home here in Perth, it would seem that a great number of people were left dazed, confused and even a little upset by the results of the US Election.
Donald Trump, a person with no political experience stealing an unpredicted victory over Democratic presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
His inexperience running for public office was nowhere more evident than in a number of digital marketing discrepancies and bad SEO practices which were littered throughout his online campaign.
Despite these digital flaws, Donald Trump still somehow managed to pull off arguably of the greatest political upset in history with a lot of help from his wealth of experience with public relations, following the infamous credo that;
“There is no such thing as bad publicity”
Unfortunately, most local businesses are not offered the same luxury as Donald Trump in being able to achieve such success with a poorly designed online strategy.
Perth’s competitive and small population market means business’ who are not household names are far more affected by bad SEO practices and can develop negative reputations around their brand very easily in such a small, isolated community or industry.
When working to promote a local business using SEO on the web and increase visibility online, it’s crucial that any website’s optimisation for search engines is up to speed and running effectively.
At Summit Web we have given Donald Trump’s digital marketing practices an informal audit and analysis to determine some of the major things which were hurting his SEO.
We have outlined them below so your local business’ own SEO campaign does not make the same mistakes.
Trump’s Bad SEO Practices
Just as Divisive with Web Traffic:
Donald Trump has played a leading role in dividing the nation and world’s public opinion during his presidential campaign.
His divisive nature also revealed itself online as the Republican candidate clumsily split up the bulk of his web traffic over two separate sites instead of funnelling one hundred per cent of users searching for him online into the one location.
Comparing Donald Trumps two different websites and how they split SEO efforts and traffic for Perth SEO
www.trump.com is Donald Trump’s business website and has been successfully operating on the web since 1998 as a location for corporate, real estate and other business related interests of his brand.
www.donaldjtrump.com has been the new President Elect’s political and campaign website which was registered back in 2007 but largely took off with regular activity in 2015.
The issue with having these two sites is that Donald Trump’s business site actually ranks as a higher website authority in Google’s eyes than his political site, largely due to its earlier establishment and consistent activity.
Both sites are forced into unwanted competition with one another over the same keywords such as ‘Donald Trump’ and ‘Trump’ with the result leaving often the incorrect site in the top ranking in search results.
As a result, Donald Trump is inevitably losing large amounts of traffic who are being directed to the wrong site and unrelevant content to what they are searching for.
This article + video can give you some ideas on how to create relevant killer content to your website.
It is crucial when branding online for SEO, that a local business groups all different website names, addresses and even social media profiles under the same banner for SEO purposes.
This includes the way a business name or tagline is spelled right down to the tiniest of details so it is as easy as possible for Google and other search engines’ robotic algorithms to understand all the different content and locations are for the same brand.
Search engines like Google will then group and reward this behaviour accordingly, providing your business with a nice bump in its own online visibility and ranking.
Burying Keywords is Bad
Donald Trump’s digital director Brad Parscale who developed the President Elect’s political website was caught engaging in some unethical behavior during it’s development.
Parscale also owns a Texas based web development firm and was caught attempting to increase his own company’s online visibility through burying a piece of text with his own website and business’ name in the back end coding of www.donaldjtrump.com .
Donald Trumps web developer using black hat techniques. -What not to do in Perth SEO.
Secretly adding keywords or other text into the coding where they are invisible to users offers no value other than to piggyback off a more successful site’s visibility.
This is not condoned as it is considered one of many bad seo practices to participate in.
Burying such a link is also deemed unethical by the strict webmaster guidelines set in place by Google.
This behaviour is often referred to as a ‘black hat technique’ in the web development and digital marketing industry which can result in a very serious penalisation in a website’s Google ranking if discovered.
Here is a useful list from SEO Shark, an Australian SEO firm in the eastern states which outlines other things which might be considered as ‘black hat techniques’ by Google which you should avoid at all costs on your website.
The Real King of Keywords
Bernie Sanders, the real king of keywords and a great example for local business in Perth SEO.
Donald Trump clearly paid less attention to the incorporation of important issue and policy related keywords throughout the pages of his campaign website than other candidates.
Effectively identifying the way users typically explore the web for information such as policies and issues and then adding these keywords into the content of a site is a crucial aspect in funneling the right types of users off of search engines and into any campaign website.
Below is a graph where we can see the efforts of a number of candidates when it comes to their keyword incorporations.
A keyword comparison of Donald Trump and other candidates to show the importance of varied keywords in Perth SEO.
The chart shows Bernie Sanders significantly ahead in covering the spread of political issue keywords, followed by Hillary Clinton with Donald Trump coming in third just above Rand Paul.
Bernie Sanders demonstrated an effective SEO campaign during the DNC Primaries through broadening his range of keywords rather than narrowing his focus down to just a few issues with greater intensity like Donald Trump did.
Trump demonstrated another of his bad seo practices by not performing sufficient keyword research and failing to utilise this research across all of his online content.
Local Perth companies should take note and spread their keyword coverage over a broad selection of services, and different user enquiries rather than focusing on one or two keywords repeated on every page of their website.
Check out this local Perth SEO Company’s guide on how to perform effective Keyword research.
Can’t Satisfy The Search Results
Donald Trump also struggled to set up effective tags for his page-links on the Google’s result page.
Donald trump’s poor title tags use will hurt your local business’ Perth SEO.
Due to their short single word titles such as a state’s name and nothing else, Google was forced to pull additional text from other headings found in that page’s content to fill the gap. Ie. “Win Iowa -Volunteer For Trump”.
This results in often irrelevant or unideal page link labels being visible to users in the Google results page.
These pages will not effectively rank for the most basic and common of keyword searches like “trump campaign maine” for example.
Poor title tagging for Donald Trump website can negatively affect Perth SEO efforts.
It is vital for local business websites to always incorporate a page’s keyword in its title tag which will be the text visible to users on a search results page.
A user must be engaged and enticed by a title tag to click it and learn more so it’s also not as simple as chucking a good keyword in there because you know it will be seen by a lot of people.
You also need those people to decide to click it.
This is the same for the short description below the Google results page-links known to web developers as ‘meta description’ text.
Google tends to dislike unoriginal and repeated content here which is exactly what Donald Trump’s website displayed.
On www.donaldjtrump.com the meta description is repeated and identical across all the pages of the site which misses a serious opportunity for Mr Trump to improve his ranking score for each page.
A local company’s website pages must include meta descriptions which are unique and different on each individual page that run approximately 150 characters long in order to avoid this example of Donald Trump’s bad seo practices.
Finding ways to reuse the same selected page keyword in this location as well as the title will also help in your efforts.
It is very clear that whoever was looking after Donald Trump’s SEO during his campaign was either fairly inexperienced or very lazy.
Donald Trump’s attention to detail correctly labeling image alt text. When performing Perth SEO, this is critical.
Another critical spot to insert our website’s keywords is in each and every image uploaded to your site.
Images should include the keyword being utilised on that particular page and inserted into both the image title and in the image’s alt-text.
An alt-text tag is a method which search engines and visually impaired users often use to identify what an image might be.
Don’t forget to add an image alt text for best Perth SEO.
Google requires us to use sentence like language and word structure to describe the contents of an image as best as we can to be rewarded with a more effective SEO result.
It can often be difficult to find ways to insert our keyword into this second input area of an image while making sure it still makes grammatical sense to readers and search engines.
Here is a fantastic local resource which explains why and how to successfully adapt your image alt-texts from E-Improvement.
Donald Trump’s website ignores this aspect of SEO as many of his site’s images lack titles and feature copied alternative text tags.
This example of Donald Trump’s bad seo practices is clearly evident throughout the images in his ‘gallery’ which contain no alt-text tags altogether.
Spelling mistakes and grammar inconsistencies are a worst nightmare for effective SEO practices.
The smallest keyword inconsistency could mean users searching for a particular keyword will miss your website all together.
Over time, constant spelling errors will also harm the credibility and image of your brand.
Due to Donald Trump’s organic and unscreened personal use of social media, spelling mistakes are bound to occur.
Other political candidates’ tweets and comments would typically either be written or edited by a team of professionals and when this doesn’t occur we see mishaps such as the following example of bad seo practices become more regular.
Donald Trump’s twitter spelling errors hurt brand and Perth SEO
It’s clear how such error riddled commentary can hurt any brand.
Its also important for any local slang, grammar or spelling to also be respected in your content to effectively reach the target demographic of local online users.
Ultimately Donald Trump participated in a number of bad SEO practices which inevitably hurt his brand, and online ranking despite him winning the 2016 US Election.
Don’t take the same gamble with your own local business’ chances for success and make sure your own SEO practices are up to scratch today.
Are you familiar with another good or bad digital marketing strategy which Trump utilised during the election?
Tell us about it below.