Tag Archives: SEO

The 8 Biggest SEO Misconceptions of Hreflang Implementation

The 8 Biggest SEO Misconceptions of Hreflang Implementation

There are a number of excellent tips on how to effectively geo-target sites, but there is one of the best methods is to use the hreflang element. Unfortunately, there is still so much confusion around, which caused some serious errors on many sites. In fact, more than half of them had some sort of problem with the code implantation, and it must be due to lack of understanding of hreflang fundamentals.

Therefore, in this article, we would like to give you the 8 misconceptions that often mislead many web developers and SEO services agency. So, if you are working in those fields, you’d better read the following points, and hopefully, after reading the points below, you can understand the right concept for understanding and applying the hreflang in your SEO strategy.

Misconception 1: You only Need Hreflang on the Home Page of the Site

Some people prefer to put hreflang tags in a few sites on their home pages. Unfortunately, Google’s sample code only displays the home page version of a URL which makes some interpreting only needed on the home pages. Many SEO professionals said that Google was smart enough to figure it out. All you need to do is just give them the template and they will understand.

However, Google cannot understand the client’s wants, that’s why in most cases, it will show the incorrect page in the local market. Therefore, you need to add the hreflang element to any and all pages that have an alternative version included in an xml site map and not just home pages.

Misconception 2: You only Need Hreflang on Dot-Com Domains

Some developer teams are arguing if it is possible to develop a solution to map pages across different top-level domain. They think that once they use ccTLDs like .co.uk, the search engine would understand what country they are targeting. This is why you need to do a test to make sure that it is understood and that no other local sites are ranking in the market. Also, it is strongly recommended for you to use the hreflang element for any page that has an alternative, no matter what domain it is on. Besides, enterprise hreflang XML tools can map the URLs regardless of what domain they are on. Furthermore, you can also host the XML sitemaps for all of the different sites in the same location which makes maintaining them much easier.

Misconception 3: You can only use the X-Default on the Home Page with a Country Selector

Another opinion came from a few SEO pros that said the x-default could only be used when you have a home page that has a country selector which can only be used on this page. This statement is almost right, but actually, there are two specific applications of the x-default. For instance, sites like FedEx or Ikea present a splash page with a language and/or country selector asking the visitor to choose which location and/or language version of the site they want to visit. Since this page does not target any specific language or country, the x-default would tell search engines to present this page in any market that does not have the assigned page. The wrong part is when the SEO pros state on how to handle older and large multinationals, especially those in the United States, a place which the main dot-com site is often used as both their global site and their U.S. site. So, in this situation, you should also use the x-default.

Misconception 4: Regional Sites Cannot Use Hreflang Element

People usually use regional sites to target multiple countries in a region using a single language site. The most common of these regions are APAC for Asia Pacific countries, LatAM for South and Central American country regions, or MENA covering Arabic speaking Middle East countries and North Africa.

You can also use the hreflang on a regional site in some ways. The first method is by setting the regional site to a common language which is most commonly done with an Arabic language site.

SEO Tactics

Another way is to tag the same page for multiple countries. Usually, sites do this when they already have a designated language site, multiple local sites in the same language, and want this version to be visible in specific markets rather than the x-default or language version.

In this approach, every language market will list the element that you are targeting.

SEO Tips

Misconception 5: To Save Lines of Code Add Multiple Codes to the Hreflang=Syntax

Some people think that the application can cut down on the number of XML sitemap entries by adding multiple countries and language codes to the syntax.

SEO 2018

The fact is this is not working, since you must create a separate URL element for each URL and Google has been very clear about this.

Misconception 6: You Should Set Your Rel=Canonical to the Global Site

This is totally wrong as doing so will remove your local language pages almost as fast as blocking them with a robots.txt entry. In fact, this might be one of the biggest mistakes that many companies make, related to hreflang other than incorrect country and language codes. Most make this suggestion in the context of removing duplicate content. The hreflang element essentially does this for you.

Therefore, the right answer is to point to the local language page it is on and never point to any other page unless you want the page to be blocked. This makes no need for hreflang tag to be on the page. For example:

SEO Techniques

Misconception 7: You can combine Hreflang and Canonical Tags

This mistake is probably the most common one that often happens. In many cases, developers often try to combine the canonical and self-referencing hreflang element into a single tag.

In this case, it was the page for Ireland English.

SEO Practice

Therefore, as a solution, you need to make sure that the rel=canonical must be its one entity as must the hreflang element for the page. For that reason, you cannot combine them under any conditions and the correct entry should be like this.

Best SEO Practice

Misconception 8: The Rel=Canonical Can Serve as the Self-Referencing Entry

The source to support this concept is still hard to find, but it is completely incorrect. Below is an example of this mistake when referencing the Argentina Spanish page.

New SEO 2018

As stated before that it is incorrect; therefore, you must use hreflang element for the self-referencing element. In fact, if the hreflang tags are on the local pages, they should look like this:

SEO Tactics 2



We have to admit that hreflang is one of the most complex technical issues SEO pros must deal with. Unfortunately, there are lots of incorrect interpretations that you can find anywhere. So, take a moment before you tackle your hreflang implementation to think about what problems you are trying to solve and be careful whether these changes can cause new problems or not.

6 Important Elements to Put in Your Design Guide Right Now

6 Important Elements to Put in Your Design Guide Right Now

In order to produce a good design team output and for ensuring a consistent brand identity, a web designer should create smart design guides. This is because a good design guide is such a work of art that has practical application in everyday design work. With design guide, you can showcase what your project is and aspire to be. It should include elements of design, voice and even code in a way that’s manageable, usable and easy to understand.

Above all, you need to know the six design guide elements that should be included in your documentation. Here they are.

  1. Brand Identity Examples

A good design guide should emphasize your brand identity in a visual format that represents your design material look. In other words, it should show than tell. However, the best example should display real-case uses that look exactly the same as the design standard and what you want to portray. Furthermore, discover when the design is at its best, whether it is on your website homepage, mobile homepage, app or any other place, then screen shoot to capture the image.

By using real images, you don’t need to create extra work to showcase visual elements, since you already have them in hand. Then, with visual proof, the team members can easily understand the actual practice of the written guideline work.

  1. Design Guidelines

Don’t forget to outline the use of design elements clearly; everything from color swatches to typography palettes and shapes, since explaining these things can help users apply the design style more accurately and consistently across medium. Furthermore, it is a good idea to include elements that might be different from print branding counterparts and how they relate when it comes to website design. So, if this is a part of your design strategy, you need to know which typefaces is substitution.

Remember to be specific when outlining design guidelines, for example H1 tags are always 88 points or thumbnail images are always 200 by 200 pixels, but be careful with too over-communicating unnecessary details, since it may make your team members get confused to find something in a sea of specifications.

  1. Voice and Personality

Believe it or not, but a descriptive writing style for copy can also impact the visuals type of imagery you choose, for example, the type of imagery you choose to use and even elements such as colour and type. All of these elements will produce an overall personality for your brand. Other factor, such as a strong voice and personality can also become a part of the visual identity.

  1. SEO Keywords

In search engine optimization, you will need to use keywords in your content, in fact, you need to involve keywords in the way you speak about the brand, in descriptive language about the design and put a list of the top keywords in the design guide itself.

With a keyword list, you can bring the words you want to say to top of mind, every time you see them. In other words, SEO keyword list attempt to make the words get stuck in reader’s head. Therefore, a good website design should be able to correlate to these keywords at all time to the content.

  1. Pattern and Element Styles

Make sure to have guides for all possible uses, such as on your still and animated versions of logos, colour palettes, patterns and even design elements such as form fields and navigation. If you want to give extra convenient to your team, you can create a pattern and element style guide in an online location so that users can just copy and paste elements for quick usage.

  1. Code Snippets

Web design and code are two things that you need to know in every website design guide since you will find codes from buttons to small animations to slider effects. Of course, these codes might consume your hours to your daily workflow as it eliminates the need to manually enter specs with every new element.

With Firefox, you can include design component information in its design guide for the recently revised branding and logo usage. All you need is to remember to include some base information such as where to use H1 through H4 on pages within the website design and how to style buttons and images, even if you don’t provide a full library of code snippets.

All the points above show that a design guide doesn’t always have to be a static document. In fact, you can present it in a way that can leverage your brand and visual identity. You can also use online versions of a design guide so that you can quickly and easily make changes, such as grabbing code and colour snippets.

5 Mistakes Many Smart People Keep Making in SEO

5 SEO Mistakes many Smart People Keep Making_YWF-01

Before starting this article, I would like to remind you that everyone makes mistakes, so whether you have been in this industry for years or a new player, you will likely make mistakes and the only way to minimalize the mistakes is to learn about your mistakes. There will be many SEO mistakes to talk about, but primarily, we want to share some of them with you, so that you can identify and avoid them and then hopefully, it can gain you success faster and more efficiently. If you are a business owner, don’t forget to share this knowledge to your SEO services agency too.

  1. Serving Bots Before Humans

If your SEO efforts are still all about chasing algorithms, or trying to trick search engines, you’d better leave it all behind, since now what it takes to rank well today is exactly the same as what it takes to satisfy visitors.

Unfortunately, many people still think about putting bots above actual humans which can result in ineffective tactics like keyword stuffing, specific content length, and manipulative linking schemes. I understand that this kind of thinking works in the olden days, but in today’s SEO environment, you really need to change your paradigm.

This is because the main priority in SEO is to always focus on your human visitors, since they are the people that will buy and use your products or services. For example, the main idea of creating a mobile-friendly website is to satisfy mobile users with lots of useful, original, and well-written content that can load quickly.

  1. Thinking about Tactics Instead of Strategies

Many people still mislead between tactics and strategies. In fact, this confusion has become a big problem which causes people to be inefficient and aimless. Therefore, it is important to achieve significant long-term success by having a clear understanding of the difference between the two; here are the simple ways to differentiate them:

  • Strategy: A big picture objective that will give you a significant competitive advantage.
  • Tactics: The actions you have to take to achieve that strategy.

For example, when you want to sell things online, you will use social media selling as your strategy, but providing lots of content per day to make people aware of your products is the tactic.

  1. Failing to Accurately Track Performance

It is important to know exactly how you’re performing, so that you can see whether you’re making sufficient progress or not. Furthermore, instead of relying on your gut instinct, you can try to track your performance through so many powerful tools available that can range from Google Analytics and Search Console to paid tools like Raven, SEMrush, and Moz.

With those tools, you can increase what is working and fix or eliminate what isn’t working well in your campaigns. Besides, you can detect any problem early and it will also allow you to correct it early.

  1. Taking Advice from Questionable Sources

With internet, you can easily find a lot of information, but you need to be careful as information that you get from the internet may have been out-dated, or they can be hoax too. On the other hand, SEO has changed dramatically over the last 20 years. This surely makes it is easy for you to find information that is flat-out false. Therefore, you need to stay on top of SEO by reading the top publication from the trustworthy sources. Furthermore, since SEO is a constantly and rapidly evolving industry, you need to keep learning from many reputable sources.

  1. Not identifying Worthwhile Key Performance Indicators

In SEO, there are many things that you can use as your key performance indicator. However, not all things can be used as a good KPI; it depends on the context. For example, if you determine the number of new links on your website as a KPI, then you will call it a win if there are a lot of links coming from one website, and this is not true, as the links can also come from comment spam.

Therefore, your KPI must be objectively measurable and tied to a specific business goal, such as getting in front of ideal prospects, generating positive PR, or generating revenue, such as a link within content that’s relevant to what you do.

By knowing the 5 mistakes that even smartest people often do, you can prevent yourself from doing the same mistakes. Hopefully, after performing good SEO strategies, you can easily run a good SEO performance for growing and improving your business.